The Other Critics

Sietsema Likes the Intestines at He Nan Flavor; Cuozzo Mixed on La Mar

Robert Sietsema reviews He Nan Flavor in Chinatown, where the sour noodle soups are the winner, and the two “great choices” are the ones with lamb — either in chunk or intestine form. Of the noodle dishes, beef brisket hu mei is “the most delicious.” Stick with the traditional options, and avoid the sesame chicken, which, you’ll find, is “the same sticky, deep-fried staple served at neighborhood Cantonese restaurants.“ [VV]

“Tables for Two” reviews Williamsburg’s St. Anselm, and discovers a “delightfully” “juicy” pork chop, a “tender, gamy” lamb saddle, and “a bloody steal” of an inexpensive and delicious hangar steak. The dessert menu is largely disappointing — some of the sweet plates look “like what happens when a four-year-old is left alone in a pantry” — but the vanilla ice cream garnished with fried pig skin redeems. [NYer]
Related: Steakhouse Undercover [NYM]

Lauren Shockey visits new cheese outpost Beecher’s Handmade Cheese. The ground level is a “top-quality, one-stop shopping for cocktail party bites,” but venture a floor lower and you’ll find a “cozy-yet-casual” space for dinner and drinks. “Curd nerds” should ignore the “gimmick”-y grilled cheese martini, but the Beecher’s cheese plate is a must, as is the “original” macaroni and cheese — “the culinary equivalent of cashmere underwear: comforting, warming, and decadent enough for you to feel a twinge of guilt.” [VV]

Julia Moskin checks out East Village steakhouse Prime & Beyond, which “serves wonderful beef, all of it prime, at below-market prices.” The wet-aged filet mignon “bursts with juice and flavor,” as do the “piles of Korean-style meat,” from beef short ribs to the “deeply flavored” oxtail soup. In terms of other courses, try the “delicious,” “excellent” mushrooms, but ignore the “forgettable” desserts. [NYT]

Steve Cuozzo is mixed on La Mar Cebicheria Peruana but ends up dealing it two and a half stars. The restaurant loses on decor, as the main level is “airport-like” and the upstairs, only slightly better, “a big grey snore.” But with the food, the kitchen gets “three out of four” ceviches right, and the hamachi version is “haunting.” The appetizers regularly “scored,” in particular the corn cake and the jalea, and the entree of aji de galina was “a homestyle dish refined.” Don’t miss the “tongue-tickling” desserts like the suspiro loco. [NYP]

Sietsema Likes the Intestines at He Nan Flavor; Cuozzo Mixed on La Mar