Calling it the perfect neighborhood spot, Sam Sifton awards two stars to two year-old Tribeca restaurant Marc Forgione this week. He calls the food "three times better than it needs to be" given the environment, and notes that this Forgione is taking up the throne for his famous father Larry, the founder of An American Place:
Mr. Forgione’s food is sometimes sweet. Other times, it is salty, sour or spicy. Sometimes it is all four — and loudly so. The brashness is deeply and above all American: an augmentation of international cuisines in a land of plenty...
...There is a kind of mac and cheese, for instance, with toasted orzo and gamy bits of lamb neck, marscapone flecked with black pepper and mint, and a garlicky crust of bread crumbs and melted Parmesan: a haute stoner’s reward...And perhaps best of all: a bowl of peppery gnocchi in a sauce of demi-glace keeping company with matchsticks of apple, micro-celery and knuckle-hunks of veal sausage made lively with coriander. Just like grandma’s.Also recommended: barbecued oysters that "taste of time travel," fiery lobster, flatiron steak, and the best item on the menu, and perhaps the most American of all, simple brick chicken with potatoes and broccoli rabe. [NYT]
Jay Cheshes gives a tepid two stars to Eddie Huang's Xiao Ye: "Despite Huang’s shock-jock inclinations...his food turns out to be pretty tame. The 'Poke-her-face' prawns are medium-size shrimp in the shell, simply slicked in a goopy General Tso’s sauce with more fire than flavor. Even the Cheeto chicken...exhibits restraint, the tender, boneless hunks of crispy fried fowl sparingly dusted in snack-food crumbs with bittersweet orange sauce on the side." [TONY]
Plattypants heads to Mario Batali's food hall Eataly and awards three stars to meat-centric restaurant Manzo, two stars to Le Verdure and Il Pesce and one to the rest: "...once you’ve acclimated yourself to this quirky environment, you’ll find all sorts of unexpected pleasures...And where would you find a true multistar sit-down meal at Mr. Batali’s sprawling gastro-circus? The answer is the meat palace, Manzo, which you’ll find across from the fish stand, behind an Italy-travel-tour display." [NYM]
THE ELSEWHERE: Ligaya Mishan finds some transporting Yemeni food at Bab Al Yemen, Robert Sietsema advises to skip the pho and get anything with beef at Vietnamese restaurant Tu Do in Manhattan, Gael Greene finds delicious excess at FoodParc, and Sarah DiGregorio recommends nine month-old Venezuelan restaurant Guayoyo as a good alternative to Caracas Arepas Bar.
THE BLOGS: The Feisty Foodie checks in on Dirty Bird to-go and approves of the eponymous fowl, Serious Eats contributor Kathy YL Chan likes most of the over-sized desserts at Francois Payard Bakery, eateryROW has "the most singularly disappointing meal" they've eaten all year at Kingswood, and Immaculate Infatuation just plain loves Traif and isn't overjoyed with Marc Forgione, Serious Eats gives a B to Peels, and The Pink Pig doesn't hate Minetta Tavern's black label burger but is happy he doesn't have to eat it again.