The Other Critics

Hop Sing Laundromat’s Cocktails ‘Succeed In Unexpected Ways’; Pizzeria DiMeo ‘Excels In More Than Just Pizza’

• In lieu of a formal restaurant review, PW’s Brian Freedman comes through this week with a behind the scenes look at Hop Sing Laundromat, where the cocktails “are remarkably well-balanced and complex, and often succeed in unexpected, or at least too-rarely-seen, ways,” and with Robert Fuentevilla on the team, have “well exceeded” all the “pre-opening buzz.” [PW]

• Adam Erace ventures out to Andorra to check out the Neapolitan pizzas from the father and son team of Pino and Antimo DiMeo at two-month-old Pizzeria DiMeo, only to discover that the pies had run out. Fortunately for him, “DiMeo’s is a pizzeria that excels in more than just pizza,” and offers a “simple but staggeringly good” menu with “good Italian cooking.” Mussels, both in white wine and a red “sweet, vivid, almost prickly with acidity” sauce, and a potato gnocchi alla Sorrentin in a ”flavor-dense” marinara were hits. The di Gragnano pasta dish, he writes, is worth a return trip. [Meal Ticket]

• Still stinging from disappointing experience at the Garden Restaurant at The Barnes, Phyllis Stein-Novack pays another visit to that neighborhood to check out Latin-inspired Blue Cat. With companions sister Sandy and hubby Edward, the trio finds that the housemade plantain, potato and malanga chips are “perfect dippers” for the accompanying “glistening mound of fresh whipped” guacamole. An open-face empanada was wel liked, and the grilled asparagus with smoked mushrooms “was a small portion, but a winner.” But thanks to the presence of cilantro, Sandy’s fish taco was “the only disappointing dish of the evening.” [South Philly Review]

Hop Sing Laundromat’s Cocktails ‘Succeed In Unexpected Ways’;