"2010 is the worst year for new restaurants since Ice Age investors opened the first mammoth house," Steve Cuozzo gleefully declares in his column today. He counts exactly four recent openings as "real" restaurants (Maialino, the Mark, ABC Kitchen, and Tamarind Tribeca), but at least derives some joy from the rest, devoting his column to panning the year’s flops.
Zengo is too lounge-y, Nuela’s dining area "seems an afterthought behind a Vegas-like sprawl of lounge, bar and communal tables," Má Pêche "failed to thrill," Scott Conant "laid a serious egg" with Faustina, Pulino’s is "mediocre … memorable mainly for McNally’s unseemly attack on New York Magazine’s Adam Platt for not liking it enough." Is there any hope for the future? Cuozzo’s pessimistic: With the exception of Lincoln, which Jonathan Benno is opening late this summer, he doesn’t think we’ll see anything good until at least 2011.