The Other Critics

Sifton Roots for Lyon; Sietsema Impressed by Lievito

Lyon is “a Manhattan take on a bouchon, itself a Lyonnaise take on a bistro.
It serves the salads and snails and sticky bits of pork and beef that are requisite to Lyonnaise cuisine in a beautiful wooden room under yellow light,” says Sam Sifton. “The entrees need work, however. There need to be a few more things on the menu you’d want to eat again and again, more you’d return for with glee. But it is so pretty, and the staff is so winning, and the kitchen skilled enough that it is hard not to root for its success.” [NYT]

Hung Ry “is one promising new exception. The chef attempts to do for hand-pulled Chinese noodles what a certain East Village noodle bar did for Japanese ramen, transforming humble workaday fare into food befitting a stylish venue,” writes Jay Cheshes. “Working in a wide-open kitchen, surrounded by industrial-chic tables and chairs, Hodgkins combines ingredients that seem at odds with each other into deft food mosaics. But the weak broths, made with duck and veal bones or lobster shells, are a bland letdown.” [TONY]
Related: Robin Raisfeld and Rob Patronite on Hung Ry

Lievito is “a real Italian restaurant, as if it had been picked up by a spaceship in the mid-calf part of the boot and deposited right on Hudson Street, with no concessions to American sensibilities or tinkering with the menu to make it more Yankee,” says Robert Sietsema. “But lately, a new pizza style has been evolving. The crust is more like what we used to call a Neapolitan crust in New York: the “bone,” or circumferential edge, nicely browned but not charred, the undercrust relatively thin but not sopping, the toppings generous but not overbearing. Ultimately, it’s the pizzas you’ll dream about, perfect cheese-smeared and herb-flecked Frisbees unlike any others in town.” [VV]

Kin Shop is “a very good place to eat that could double as a homeopathic clinic dedicated to sinus-clearing. The heat comes first in a pinch, then in a punch. It grows until you feel it in your bones,” says Ryan Sutton. “[Dieterle] challenges diners with flavors that are both unadulterated and balanced. Imagine Mozart at the volume of Metallica. That’s Kin Shop. Pad Thai? Not served here. Rather, we get a stew of firm rice flake noodles, rock shrimp and cauliflower. Is it more American than Thai? Probably. And that’s okay.” [Bloomberg]

Steve Cuozzo likes Riverpark because Sisha Ortuzar “attempts no daring experiments, but most everything is nicely executed, and many dishes come with enough twists and riffs to make them new.” [NYP]
Related: Adam Platt on Kin Shop and Bar Basque

Sifton Roots for Lyon; Sietsema Impressed by Lievito