Sam Sifton awards one star to Graffit for the fanfare more than the fare: “Jesús Núñez, the Madrid chef who opened the restaurant in December, has no evident interest in classical cooking — either Spanish or any other kind. His attention instead appears to be centered on art and architecture, on a playful response to culinary tradition rather than an allegiance to it.”
Underground Gourmet approves of Earl’s Beer and Cheese in Harlem: “an excellent ambassador for all things hoppy, malty, and dairy, in a neighborhood where those pickings are particularly slim.”
Jay Cheshes seeks out new Jewish cuisine at both Mile End and Octavia’s Porch. The former “strikes just the right balance, with a new dinner menu that manages to be both ambitious and reverential.” The latter, however, “misses the mark, fumbling awkwardly through [Top Chef alum Nikki Cascone’s] ancestral pantry.”
Tables for Two finds a lot to love at Porsena: “As [Sara] Jenkins proved with Porchetta, the roast-pork shop she opened down the street in 2008, she knows what she’s doing in the kitchen.”
Gael Greene revisits Café Fiorello, where she is unpleasantly surprised to find she’s been priced out: “Now this well-preserved standby — old fashioned, a bit too bright — across from Lincoln Center has become rather, sort of, how shall I put it? Okay, here goes. Expensive.”
Instead of a review, Steve Cuozzo weighs in on the five New Yorkers on the San Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants list: “‘Let me get this straight — Momofuku Ssäm Bar [No. 40] is better than all of the restaurants in Asia.’ Noodle on that! In fact, of course, the whole thing’s a joke. … I’m thrilled that Per Se came in at No. 10 worldwide, Daniel at No. 11 and Le Bernardin at No. 18. … Where’s Del Posto? L’Atelier Joel Robuchon at the Four Seasons? Marea? Nowhere! But Eleven Madison Park made No. 24.”
Have a restaurant tip or other food news? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
And follow us on Twitter: @ForkintheRoadVV.