The Other Critics

Sifton Bequeaths Three Stars to Marea; Sutton Declares Motorino EV Superior to Di Fara

“While Marea is a seafood restaurant, it is not one that seeks to place a divide between that which swims and that which walks,” writes Sam Sifton. “It is perhaps more accurate to call it a restaurant inspired by seafood — but by no means in thrall to it.” Speaking of in thrall, Sifton decribes Marea’s ricci — toast with sea-urchin roe and lardo — as offering “exactly the sensation as kissing an extremely attractive person for the first time — a bolt of surprise and pleasure combined.” And “a geoduck clam with fresh chilies and lemon” from the bar’s crudo menu “helps explain in one bite why men would dive amid huge swells to retrieve the things from the angry Pacific.” [NYT]

Manhattanites can perhaps finally leave that heavenly trio — Grimaldi’s, Lucali, and Di Fara — to the locals. “At Motorino in the East Village, the pies are smaller, cheaper, and better,” dares Ryan Sutton. [Bloomberg]

Abe & Arthur’s may sound like a delicatessen, “but it’s a hive of hipsters and heel-totterers,” says Gael Greene. The menu, however, is a “roster of comfort and the familiar,” with sliders, tuna-tartare tacos, “super-rich” macaroni and cheese, and doughnut desserts. [Insatiable Critic]
Related: A Closer Look at Abe & Arthur’s and Its Food

“I returned to the Monkey Bar recently with a friend whose name carried some clout. We were seated at a prime table and found that the place was still buzzy with A-listers. And the food fueling this new clubhouse was actually stuff I’d pay good money to eat,” brags Jay Cheshes, who’s declaring a “turnaround” under chef Larry Forgione. The $38 steak and eggs is a “regal indulgence,” he writes — but, he also saw Gay Talese there in a three-piece suit! [TONY]

“If you find yourself on jury duty at lunch hour, you could do much worse than Sau Voi Corp.’s exemplary bánh mì dac biet (the requisite No. 1),” writes Shauna Lyon. As forBaoguette’s version: “The bread, though tasty, is too copious, and the garlicky pickling juices and fish sauce lend a bright sort of funkiness,” but she likes other menu items. [NYer]

Sifton Bequeaths Three Stars to Marea; Sutton Declares Motorino EV Superior to