Anatomy Of A Shill: Taranta

Here at MenuPages, we get hundreds of user reviews every single day. Most are legitimate people who ate at a restaurant and want to tell people how they liked it (or didn’t). Some are unprintable on a family website. Some are from the non-functionally illiterate. And some reviews are from shills, folks affiliated with the restaurant (be they publicists, owners, or family members). Those ones end up in Anatomy Of A Shill. Today’s offender: Taranta Cucina Meridonale

One of the most unique restaurants in Boston[1] featuring the cuisine of chef/owner Jose Duarte[2]. He combines his expertise in Peruvian and Italian cooking to create unusual dishes that may include veges that you wont find anywhere else in Boston. The Pasta dishes we had were all delicious. The hit of our evening was the Brined double cut pork chop with a sugar cane rocoto pepper glaze served with a saute of giant Peruvian corn, spinach and carmalized onions and yucca piatella[3].[4]

1) This is not a good start. Taranta’s cuisine is unique, but the odds that a real person would lead with this are slim to nil.

2) Jose Duarte is a great chef, but he’s not a big enough celebrity to have his name mentioned by an ordinary diner. Furthermore, most typical diners don’t know whether someone is a chef/owner or just a chef.

3) Here is how a non-shill would describe this dish: “the double cut pork chop with corn, spinach, onions, and yucca.” Only shills type dishes directly from the menu.

4) This exact review was left twice, word for word, in a one hour period. Guys, we get a fair amount of reviews in Boston, but we don’t get that many. Please stop insulting our intelligence.

Anatomy Of A Shill: Taranta