The Sun-Times restaurant section is weird. This is not a new story, but it’s told a different way each week. First, Bruno reviews the newest location of the Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar chain on Ohio Street, and finds it utterly uninteresting. Although not in so many words! While his steak seems overpriced and mediocre, Bruno still writes from the perspective of, okay, if you go, at least this and that will be alright. Where is the line between service journalism and reviewing for Bruno, exactly?
Another piece of his this week makes the distinction even less clear. His write-up of Carlos’ in Highland Park begins: “The quote below is lifted word for word from the Carlos’ Web site (there is no way I could say it any better).” And indeed, more than half the words on the page are from the restaurant website (excuse us, “Web site”). That’s kind of crazy, when you think about it!
Finally, Bruno’s microreview of The Gage is pegless (why now?) and bizarrely brief considering how much he seems to like the hopping gastropub (“But the food here is so good, it has a way of drowning out the noise.”) So why does he devote so many more words to Flemings? Because it’s new, yes, but you get the point.
Back in normal land (i.e. on the Reader), there are a bunch of reviews pertinent to your life. Because it’s barbecue weekend! Mike Sula and Gary Wiviott highlight four of their favorites (Uncle John’s BBQ, Lem’s, Cole’s Choice Barbecue, and Honey 1 BBQ), and then tack on a whole mess of other BBQ reviews for reference. By the way, does anyone go to Fat Willy’s anymore? We hear they’ve gone way downhill.
[Photo: Gary Wiviott knows what he’s talking about; these are his ribs, via MMChicago]