Tony Tony TonyForget McCain comparing Obama to Britney Spears. Bourdain sees some of her in Sandra Lee.
Back of the House
Morton’s Arrives to Destroy the Last Bit of Brooklyn’s SoulNow that Morton’s has announced that it’s opening a steakhouse in Brooklyn, the borough has lost its claim to a culinary soul. Morton’s — a chain steakhouse that presents its meat to customers under plastic wrap — is the culinary equivalent of the banks and drugstores that have pushed out mom-and-pop businesses all over town.
Ask a Waiter
Winston Gitonga Serves Takeout to Britney, Discourages Buddha Climbers at Tao
A couple of years after he started working at Tao in 2003, Winston Gitonga and two colleagues founded Shiftdrink, a Website with insider information on restaurant working conditions written by and for industry professionals. When he’s not running his Website (now up to 2,800 members), Gitonga is flashing his wedding ring and keeping customers from climbing the Buddha at Tao.
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Dirty Delta of Lucky Cheng’s Serves Orgy Bowls to Britney Spears
Dirty Delta came to New York eighteen years ago and was introduced to the gay scene via nightspots like Club 58. It wasn’t until she got a job at Lucky Cheng’s a month after it opened that she fell in with the drag queens; for thirteen years the bartender and server has seen the East Village institution through visits from disco divas (“Grace Jones came in and tried to cop pot. We had to let her go”), East Village freaks (“my family”), as well as swarms of “crazy bachelorettes and crazy birthday girls.” As it turns out, her most unforgettable encounter (that we could print) was with a certain pop star.
Five Points Owners to Transform Provence (But Still Serve Bouillabaisse)It’s always a sad day for Francophiles and nostalgists when yet another beloved old-school French restaurant shutters its doors, but in the case of Provence — which served its last bowl of bouillabaisse on Saturday — it could be a lot worse.
Vicki Freeman and Marc Meyer, the owners of Cookshop and Five Points, have taken over the space with plans to completely gut the kitchen, redo the dining room, put in a raw bar, and reopen by January as — guess what? — a nice French restaurant called Provence.