The Other Critics

Hirsch Finds Some Cleaner Vietnamese at Kim Son; Bauer Returns to Cook; Roth Discovers Super Duper

Examiner critic Jesse Hirsch filed his first review on the job of Tu Lan, just a couple months back, before their well publicized health-department shutdown. He notes that while “It’s no surprise, to me or anyone who visited this Sixth Street funhouse, that Tu Lan wasn’t the cleanest,” he was still shocked by thoughts of vermin near his food. Anyway, it left him craving Vietnamese, and so he went off to the Outer Richmond for Kim Son, which he says “sparkled and gleamed” in comparison. He recommends the imperial rolls, and the com tam suon bi cha (a.k.a. No. 25), which he says is like a “deconstructed fried rice dish.” [Examiner]

Mr. Bauer returned to Cook in St. Helena, giving it its first update in the eight years since it opened. He says it’s a place where “dinner… isn’t designed to be an event,” and it remains a Napa Valley favorite. He says that chef-owner Jude Wilmoth is “fill[ing] a niche” but can’t find much nice to say about the food. He gives it two stars and concludes that people still love it mostly for the atmosphere. [Chron]

And over at the Weekly, newcomer Anna Roth reviews Super Duper, we suppose because no one had bothered to review it before. Most of us pretty familiar with the greasy, drippy, Niman Ranch burgers, self-serve pickles, and serviceable fries at the mini-chains four locations, but it’s still new to Roth. She finds those fries “merely okay,” and the service “speedy enough.” As for the burgers, they “taste like the vegetarian-fed Niman Ranch beef they’re made from.” [SF Weekly]

Hirsch Finds Some Cleaner Vietnamese at Kim Son; Bauer Returns to Cook; Roth