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Bruni: I Want What Robert Downey Jr.'s Having

Our man Bruni is catching some heat today. It seems that, for some, his star-struck brief on Bette left something to be desired by way of comment on the food.

To be Frank (you like that?), we think he pretty much nailed it. The buzz in Sacco's dining room is the thing. It is significant and distinct (and admittedly not for everyone). That she is one of a large handful of hosts who can produce this caliber of room is, as FB found, quite hard to ignore.

When I dined at Bette recently, Robert Downey Jr. was two tables away, at least when he wasn't out on the sidewalk smoking. The bar area was crowded with self-consciously pretty and handsome young things, some of whom looked as if their last square meal occurred under a Democratic mayor...
It's also plenty attractive thanks to Ms. Viñoly's efforts - to the ribbed walnut paneling on the lower halves of the walls. To the smoked glass that partially obscures whoever is supping on a 20-seat mezzanine beyond the 65-seat main dining room. To the fantastic Art Deco-style fixtures, fashioned from crystal tubes.

Should Amy be held accountable for what (her chef) Tom Dimarzo sends out of the kitchen? Yes. But, we see no reason to bend over backwards to sate foodies' curiosity when no one in their right mind is heading to Bette, having been negged at Per Se.
· Diner's Journal: Bette [NY Times]
· Dossier: Bette [Eater]