Grub Street has long advocated Restaurant Week as a way to check out expensive places without much risk, but that's not necessarily how the rest of the industry feels about it.
AM New York surveyed a few chefs and foodie notables, some of whom consider the event a feeding frenzy that allows restaurants to do extra business while turning out subpar product. Predictably, David Chang hates Restaurant Week: "You just have to cook like a maniac. Cooks are creatures of habit — all of a sudden your room's full, and you have bunch of people that want stuff well done. It's not what you want to be doing. Most chefs will tell you that it's great. I guarantee you there's not one cook that is excited about restaurant week." But Gourmet’s Francis Lam is a supporter: “I think it's perfectly all right to judge a place based on their Restaurant Week performance. If you’re going to half-ass Restaurant Week, why would I trust you not to half-ass it when you get busy, when you get annoyed, when you get a non-VIP table?” Lam asks. “I get why you wouldn't want to put big-ticket items on the menu, but I still want to taste the care you put into the food.”