the other critics

Mas Revisited for Two Stars; Three Takes on Mia Dona

Mas, tucked away into an odd corner of the West Village, has been off the city’s radar for a while, but has been plugging away, and now been rewarded by a very appreciative two-star rereview by Frank Bruni. [NYT]

Steve Cuozzo goes wild for Mia Dona: “The impossibly inexpensive, all-Italian sequel to prematurely shuttered Dona is also almost impossibly good — and not just in relation to the prices.” Alrighty then! [NYP]

Paul Adams, though noting some early lapses, likes Mia Dona too, but says that it falls into the uncanny valley between the refined (Anthos) and the rustic (Kefi). [NYS]

Continuing the Mia Dona theme, Randall Lane submits a catty, acerbic three-star (of six) takedown that, among other things, dismisses the original Dona as "forgettable," does a Mr. Blackwell routine on the room, and slags most of the dishes, including a "bland, leathery" pork chop and vinegar French fries that mysteriously taste sour. [TONY]

Both Nizza and Sook get nice reviews in "Dining Briefs," although the latter seems to have service issues. Peter Meehan does call out Nizza as an ideal theater-district quick meal. [NYT]

Despite a generous sprinkling of superlatives, Danyelle Freeman’s two-star take on Commerce makes the place sound incompetent and gross, with far-out dishes haphazardly executed. [NYDN]

Alan Richman tried to like Bar Blanc, but you can tell he’s just fed to the teeth with cutesy, complicated restaurant food like that, even if it’s done well. His best line: “The only dish that missed the mark was a lamb lasagna so refined it forgot it was food.” [GQ]

To be honest, we didn’t expect Robert Sietsema to like Merkato 55; but other than sniffing that West Africa isn’t represented the way it should be, he seems to more than approve of the place. [VV]

Andrea Thompson hits Market Table, apparently on an off day — some of the dishes weren’t on point — but she loves the room, the burger, and the vibe generally, and so it’s another good review for Mike Price and Joey Campanaro’s little owl spinoff. [NYer]

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