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Good News/Bad News Marfa

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East Village: Marfa, the new East Village Texas-themed comfort food joint in the old Waikiki Wally's space, has been open less than a month, and that doesn’t appear to have been long enough to secure it a strong fan base. While you can definitely count on Lone Star beers and Tito’s handmade vodka, the food has faced mixed reviews, many bordering on the negative. The mac and cheese earns critic approval, however, their signature drink, the Marfarita, faced comparison to a much less desired rhyming substance. Timing seems to be a big issue, but many diners are hopeful that their gripes were only temporary kinks from the recent opening:

The Good News: One native Texas Yelper’s opinion: “They have Lone Star and Tito’s Handmade Vodka. Clearly, I have to say no more.” [Yelp]

The Not Great News: Daniel Maurer chimes in with some notes on the decor: "The space, in contrast to its former occupant, Waikiki Wally’s, is as spare as an air-raid bunker. When the honky-tonk music is blaring, the acoustics are a bit of a nightmare unless you’re at the communal table in the narrow, candlelit side room (there are also bands downstairs). The house drink is the Marfarita, essentially a spicy grapefruit marg. Beer of choice: Lone Star." [GS]

The Bad News: Another Yelper complains, “For mains, 2 hanger steaks and a pulled pork tostada app (as an entrée). The steaks were low quality at best. They were cooked to the right point but so fatty that you didn’t even want to finish. The pulled pork app was not finished and? in all seriousness? the friend that ate it went home an hour later to use his bano as a result.” [Yelp]

The Middling News: The Village Voice’s Robert Sietsema has a number of critiques but likes one important thing: “Now, in Texas, a chicken fried steak is a very tough cut of meat sliced thin and tenderized with a tenderizing hammer, before being breaded and fried like fried chicken, hence the name. Marfa’s was perfect in every way.” [Fork in the Road]

The Not So Good News: Another upset Yelper says, “There seemed to be a total lack of communication and organization, and we left before our mains could arrive, a free round of shots for making us wait so long would have kept us there, but there was no apology for delays. As we exited the noises of complaint from several other tables – sans food – let us know we weren’t the only ones. Please Marfa, get your act together, you have such potential.” [Yelp]

The Better News: A satisfied Yelper quips in, "We sat at the bar (which was fully stocked) for a little bit before dinner and I guess the bartenders must have really liked us because the drinks had alcohol up to the nines that got us nice and buzzed... at about $7 for a Tanqueray and tonic, I was beginning to gain an appetite for the place already." [Yelp]

The Not Great News: And a Grub Street commenter has the news from the soft opening: "The mac and cheese was acceptable, the dry rub ribs were alright (even though I'm a wet rub kinda girl myself). The chicken pot pies were ok, and the mashed potatoes were downright inedible. Service was decent for a new place. Marfaritas were good but inconsistent in spiciness. I probably wont go back." [GS]
— Luciana Giangrandi
[Photo Credit]

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