Pour some Chablis out for Danyelle Freeman, a.k.a. “the Restaurant Girl,” the former blogger/Daily News food critic turned blogger. The Post’s “Page Six” writes with ill-concealed glee, “the paper has evidently decided it doesn’t need restaurant reviews any longer.” Man, first Ted Kennedy, then Dominick Dunne, now the RG. Let’s take a look at some of Ms. Freeman’s greatest hits, shall we?
There are many reasons why the paper might have let Ms. Freeman go. Budgetary concerns probably did the old girl in, but certainly Ms. Freeman didn’t help her cause. For a while now, her reviews have been mid-level pans of restaurants no one really thought were good anyway, delivered in a formulaic manner that veered between cliché and baby talk. And it couldn’t have helped the paper’s credibility that Ms. Freeman seemed very concerned about getting her face “out there.” Nevertheless, Ms. Freeman’s tenure did leave us with some gems, or as she might say, temptingly succulent, steamy gems.
In her recent pan of Civetta, a line suddenly poignant!:
My gnocchi were lifeless little nubs stuck in a quicksand of pesto.
A poetic musing from her review of Marea:
Ever slurped the sea? I don’t mean an accidental mouthful of salty ocean water. I mean the briny fruits of the sea before being plucked from their underwater habitat and tossed on the grill. I imagine it would taste like the seafood stew.
Freeman aptly used steaming, piling adjectives in profusion. Cf. Casa Mayoacan:
The persuasive aroma of cooked meats and freshly baked, corn tortillas drifted down the crowded, sweltering streets.
An oldie but a goody from a Bar Blanc review:
I immediately entered into a love-hate relationship with a duo of tuna: On one side of the plate, an exquisitely fresh piece of sashimi nestles in crispy burdock, tender elf mushrooms and a black truffle dressing — a beguiling interplay of textures and flavors.
Ye shall be beguilingly missed, RG.