Our own Tejal Rao visits the East Village’s Jeepney, the latest venture from the Maharlika family, to try the unhatched duckling eggs at the “modern Filipino gastropub” in her review of Jeepney. She offers some guidelines for enjoying the small bites: “Think of the impossibly pure broth you get when you poach a whole, unroasted bird–don’t think amniotic fluid and don’t look down, because if you examine the tiny, scaly thing inside, folded up like a sleeping dragon, you might lose your nerve when it comes time to spoon up the duckling and put it in your mouth.”
Also at the Voice, Robert Sietsema smokes out the scene at BrisketTown, a Texas-style barbecue joint in Williamsburg. In his review of BrisketTown, he writes that the restaurant is helmed by Daniel Delaney, the hard-to-miss pit master “with horn-rim specs [and] red visor with a volcano of unkempt hair shooting out the top,” and serves as equal parts meat laboratory and designer deli counter.
At the Times, Pete Wells wants to bathe himself in the buttery polenta at the East Village’s L’Apicio. Of the Gabe Thompson and Joe Campanale restaurant, he notes, “the yellow grains are spread in a broad swath on a long wooden dish, the spianatora. At first they feel almost weightless on your tongue, like polenta foam, but gradually they surrender multiple waves of nutty melted Parmigiano-Reggiano.” Though some dishes miss the mark and the space can feel overwhelming, Wells finds the experience an enjoyable one. He gives the restaurant one star.
The Post’s Steve Cuozzo checks-in at John DeLucie’s “damned fine gorgeous new place,” Bill’s Food and Drink in Midtown. The space formerly belonged to Bill’s Gay Nineties, but now houses a revamped version of the famed restaurant. Cuozzo suggests diners bring an appetite and try “the marbled mammoth’s sirloin portion… garnished with herbed horseradish lardo in a pool of thick but allegedly butterfree redwine bordelaise. Confounding expectations, the filet seemed deeper-flavored than the sirloin–proof that any steak can surprise you.”
Bloomberg’s Ryan Sutton praises the New York restaurant scene for its fighting spirit in the last few months and offers his top choices for the 12 best new restaurants of 2012, all of which live below 28th street. Pok Pok, The NoMad, North End Grill, Thirty Acres, Maison Premier, La Vara, Atera, Parm, Perla, Gwynnett Street and Blanca all make the list. The winner’s circle belongs to Empellon Cocina, where Alex Stupak has ” has helped free Mexican cuisine from the stereotypes of rusticity, the shackles of authenticity and the burden of being cheap” and Mission Chinese, a spot that will “inflames your insides while warming your soul.”
The New Yorker’s Leo Carey visits Ootoya, a chain restaurant from Tokyo serving a canonical rendition of Japanese food. Carey says of the experience, “Just as the classic New York diner serves everything from chicken Cordon Bleu to gyros and hamburgers, so Ootoya presents seemingly the whole of Japanese cuisine–yakitori, noodles, sushi, hot pots, and, for that matter, hamburgers. Known as hanbaga in Japan–say it out loud–hamburger is often eaten without the bun, and Ootoya’s version comes in a thick demi-glace sauce.”