When Jewel Bako opened in mid 2001, gourmands, critics, sushi addicts, and, especially, message board junkies all agreed: JB was among the very best sushi restaurants in the city. The Times called it a sublimely sensual experience and eGullet members launched a thread laced with the kind of high praise about which most restaurateurs can only dream. By mid 2002, you'd have been hard pressed to find a sushi eater in the five boroughs who did not have Grace and Jack Lamb's Jewel Bako on the very top of his to-try list.
Now, the picture at JB is markedly different. Countless sushi chefs have come and gone, a recent expansion has made the pint-sized space slightly less intimate, and success has turned the once-gracious Jack Lamb into a somewhat less welcoming host.
Indeed, friends, this is a hard one to swallow. We, too, enjoyed many a meal at Jewel Bako circa 2002. But thanks to the organizational virtues of eGullet, you can read about it for yourself and then make your own judgements. The Michelin-starred Jewel Bako's evolution from delightful to debacle is chronicled in one single thread, spanning the better part of four years.
· Jewel Bako, Reviews and Discussion [eGullet]