the other critics

Steve Cuozzo Complains at Loi; Ryan Sutton Gripes at Acme

Steve Cuozzo is not amused by Loi’s bid to create authentic Greek food and comes away griping: “Except for glorious bread (olive, pita and kalaokisio cornbread), early meals ranged between mediocre and awful." The restaurant has shown marked improvement he says, but not enough. He suggests, “Just forget being too ‘authentic.’” [NYP]

Acme has been hopping since it opened, but it doesn’t charm Ryan Sutton, particularly after he waits more than an hour to be seated — with a reservation. “An absence of niceties is par for the course at Manhattan’s Cajun-turned-Scandinavian hotspot,” he writes. “Don’t expect the bouncer who grilled you on the way in to hold the door on your way out.” He likes the mashed potatoes with bacon, but finds fault with most everything else. [Bloomberg]
Related: Euell Gibbons Goes Downtown [NYM]

Ligaya Mishan, who grew up in Honolulu, likes the small plates at Lani Kai. The loco moco in particular is a surprising favorite; desserts and entrees, however, miss the mark, she writes. [NYT]

At North End Grill, Pete Wells is pleasantly surprised to find excellent food in Battery Park City. The halibut, he writes, is "high on the list of the least boring halibut dishes I’ve ever tasted." But Danny Meyer is at the helm, Wells notes, and Meyer rarely allows for a culinary experience that is not exciting — or delicious. Wells gives the eatery two stars. [NYT]
Related: Neighborhood Residents Only [NYM]

“Tables for Two” ventures to the New York Historical Society this week to dine at CaffĂ© Storico. Writer Lizzie Widdicombe isn’t wowed by the food, especially at such a high price: “They’re perfectly fine, these little dishes, but, as you work your way through them, the downside of museum dining begins to sink in: they’re not cheap.” However, she calls the space “lovely, like a cross between a mausoleum and a butler’s pantry.” [NYer]

Robert Sietsema is pleased to find that more South African food has come to New York by way of Kaia — and it’s quite good, too. Try the Boerewors rol, “a swollen gray sausage infinitely brightened both culinarily and linguistically by its topping of chakalaka, a coarse-textured tomato condiment associated with Johannesburg.” [VV]

At Bowery Diner, Jay Cheshes sees an eatery that will get better with time. “While the Bowery Diner lacks the scruffy charm a place like this seems to beg for, the French and American fare is impressive—even, improbably, when you’re entirely sober,” he writes. Cheshes urges us to try the macaroni and cheese. [TONY]

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