Crown Taking Reservations by Carrier Pigeon, Gilt City Through DinePrivate.com

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DeLucie: "Have your carrier pigeon call my carrier pigeon." Photo: Patrick McMullan

Time for the latest in restaurant-reservations news. Curmudgeonly Steve Cuozzo is bitching about trying to secure a table at Crown: "Does new Crown REALLY have no tables except at 6:15 pm, or is it already turning club? This won't work on East 81st St," he tweeted yesterday. We happened to run into Crown chef-owner John DeLucie over the weekend at the New York City Food & Wine Festival and asked him whether it was indeed as difficult as everyone said to book a table at his new one. DeLucie denied this, joking, "We take reservations by phone, e-mail, or carrier pigeon." Meanwhile, Grub Street learns that Gilt is forging ahead with its food-world domination, having just acquired Joe Bastianich–founded reservations site DinePrivate.com. Bastianich will join Gilt City as "Private Dining & Restaurant Expert." Maybe he can help Cuozzo get that Crown table? [Thecuozz/Twitter]