When a reviewer is winding down his or her tenure, all of the reviews take on a certain added weight. Last week we speculated that Sam Sifton’s last review might be Scarpetta. And now a source tells Grub that it seems Sift-o plans to knock out at least one more huge review before abandoning his post next month: Per Se. Word is the critic has been in to eat on several recent occasions, and — maybe more tellingly — the paper just sent a photographer up to Thomas Keller’s four-star eatery. The restaurant’s only Times review was from Frank Bruni in 2004, when he awarded it four stars (of course). So what could Sifton possibly do but renew Per Se’s quatre étoiles? We suppose he could knock one off, as he did when he reviewed Per Se’s neighbor Masa. But that would probably make Thomas Keller’s head explode. Then again, there is something to be said for going out with a bang.
Jackets required, gentlemen! Photo: RJ Mickelson/Veras for New York Magazine