Inside Pat LaFrieda’s World; Platt Underwhelmed by Faustina

Photo: Hans Gissinger/New York Magazine

In the magazine this week, David Amsden profiles Pat LaFrieda, the chef-friendly, old-school meat master who turned the world of high-end hamburgers on its ear with his “mad-scientist” dry-aged beef blends. You’ll find a burger — but not a LaFrieda one — on the menu at Faustina, where Adam Platt is disappointed in Scott Conant thanks to food that “feels like it’s been whipped together in a hurry and slapped on the plate.”

More promising, perhaps, are the three new restaurants Rob Patronite and Robin Raisfeld highlight, including Balaboosta, which takes its name from the Yiddish word for the perfect housewife, the retail-oriented Crop to Cup Café, and a peculiar take on Asian-Latin fusion at Zengo. Mesclun greens are in season; serve them with a garlicky vinaigrette recipe from Alice Waters’s latest cookbook. And spring is officially here: look for ramps at the Greenmarket on Wednesday.