The Other Critics

Ryan Sutton Impressed by Brushstroke; Steve Cuozzo Calls Marble Kitchen ‘Credible’

Ryan Sutton calls Brushstroke Manhattan’s “antidote to the enervating, if beautiful, austerity of kaiseki service,” joining the other critics in their effusive praise. The grilled freshwater eel “tastes like a Tokyo picnic” and the fermented tofu is a “vegan triumph.” He recommends you “skip the upcharge” of the rice hot pot with its “overcooked shrimp” and opt for the lobster roll, and reveals the bar menu “hides a gem of a dish: braised wagyu with a raw egg yolk.” [Bloomberg]

Sam Sifton upholds the one-star rating for Palm and Palm Too, explaining, “Palm is for groups” while Palm Too is “more intimate.” The food at both is “first-rate,” he writes, as long as you “stick to the original script of salad and tangy, prime-rated beef, or salad and huge, perfectly acceptable lobster, along with potatoes and greens.” Despite the ever-expanding chain and calorie counts on the menu that are the “price of success,” he says, “[c]ut into your buttery meat, your buttery potatoes, your creamy greens. These are prepared with real skill and care, and taste it.” [NYT]

Robert Sietsema compares momos (“huge crimped dumplings”) at Nepalese restaurants Bhim’s Café and Lali Guras. Served in a spare upstairs dining room, Bhim’s Café’s momos are “some of the best in town” with “noodle wrapper […] as translucent as a baby’s skin, revealing the pungent cilantro and scallions inside.” In contrast, he writes, Lali Guras “offers a menu that encompasses Nepalese, Tibetan, Chinese, and international items.” He instructs, the”ragged noodles called thenthuk” and sel-roti are “not to be missed,” but the Bhutan entrée is an “unexciting stir-fry of lamb and peppers.” [VV]

Lauren Shockey checks out Sa Aming Nayon, with which “home-style Filipino cooking has triumphantly returned to the [East Village].” Out on one of the “city’s top restaurant secret gardens,” she suggests, “steer clear of the pure grease gluts, like the ukoy fritters,” but “relish the fork-tender flesh” of the “molasses-based sauce” covered pata tim, the superior version of the crispy pata (deep fried pork leg). “Order [the Bangus] boneless” and conclude by “diving into halo-halo — the frozen, sweet equivalent of kitchen-sink soup.” [VV]

In The New Yorker, Silvia Killingsworth likens the Smile to an “intimate dinner party with young tastemakers.” For “virtue as well as flavor,” she recommends the sugar snap peas and julienned watermelon radishes. “[Chef Brice Melia] Marden’s homey straightforward entrees mostly succeed, and where they don’t the fixes are obvious,” she writes, impressed by the rosemary-and-oregano-roasted leg of lamb and “delicate” olive-oil-poached Arctic char but less by the “undercooked pork chop.” [NYer]

Chef Manual Trevino “so far runs a credible kitchen,” Steve Cuozzo writes of Marble Lane, where the global menu and customers both reflect the go-crazy ways of the club-driven TAO/Strategic Group.” The salads are “crisply assembled and appropriately dressed,” and the loup de mer and filet mignion “held their own,” but the Guinness-grilled short ribs “tasted not at all of brew,” and the “desserts fell flat.” [NYP]

Ryan Sutton Impressed by Brushstroke; Steve Cuozzo Calls Marble Kitchen