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Critic Critique: Jim Lahey Lashes out at the Bruni Onespot

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Just one month after the chef/owner of Dirt Candy castigated the Times' Oliver Schwaner-Albright for reviewing her restaurant too soon, Co. owner Jim Lahey is in the Observer today lashing out at Frank Bruni for this week's tepid review. The baker asserts the review came too soon, the review shouldn't have come at all—but since it did it should have been a two spot— that the Bruni doesn't understand his pizza, and that his own pizza bianca, which Bruni loved, is "dogshit."

We agree Co. could have easily been an Under or a Brief, but you can't open a restaurant with so much buzz—and with Jean-Georges Vongerichten as a backer—and expect the Brunz to sit by idly. And like it or not Jim, a review 90 days in seems to be the norm nowadays. Some choice quotes:

On the timing: "What the fuck are we being reviewed by the New York Times for, you know, 90 days into being open? It makes no sense."

On being reviewed in the first place: "I didn't open this restaurant to get reviewed by the Times. Otherwise, I would have made the food a lot differently. I would have bought really nice plates and beautiful stemware. And we would have done slightly less informal service, know what I mean?"

On what is dogshit: "You want to get two...10 Downing got two. I've been to 10 Downing. It's dogshit!", "The pizza bianca, I think, sucks...I think it's dogshit! I don't think it's a good product. And he praised it to the high heavens!"

On where the Bruni can get a pie from now on: "Ray's is right down the block!...If you want your cheese and sauce, you can get it [at Ray's]...They'll actually put extra shit on for ya!"
· 'Master Baker' Jim Lahey Chews On His Lone-Star Review [NYO]
· All Co. Coverage [~E~]