As mentioned yesterday, Sam Sifton awarded Greenpoint hole in the wall restaurant Anella one star this week. A few dishes are off, the place is not easy for the average diner to get to, but the food is "a wonder." Chef Joseph Ogrodnek masters the art of the vegetable and serves an excellent steak tartare, Chatham cod, pork shop, and duck confit. Plus, the atmosphere is "Pleasantly hipsterish." [NYT]
Not so surprisingly, Ryan Sutton is not impressed by nightclub restaurant Lavo. But his review is wickedly entertaining: "I could only score a midnight reservation last Thursday at New York’s Lavo. So it seems this 180-seat arena will do just as fine, even as it sells $31 shrimp scampi that taste fresh from the freezer, and veal parmesan with all the depth of flavor of a Hungry Man microwave meal...How packed is it? On one visit, a woman briefly laid her pocketbook on our oysters at a lounge table." [Bloomberg]
Jay Cheshes isn't fooled by the overcalculated LES newcomer Fat Radish: "You’ll never look better than when you’re seated inside, surrounded by votives at a distressed farmhouse table. But the shabby-chic space, as meticulously curated as an Anthropologie store, lacks warmth and personality. The same can be said of the earnest, Anglo-leaning cooking. It’s painfully on-trend—homespun, multicultural, Greenmarket, low-fat—but so short on innovation, this place might as well be an H&M knockoff." [TONY]
Gael Greene is an early fan of Ryan Skeen's work at Michael Psilakis' Fish Tag: "After two visits I’m excited to say that most of the food is very good, even wonderful, with a staccato of flubs. But, it’s just going into its third week...The trophy for most confusing menu organization passes right now from Michael White to Michael Psilakis. On the other side of my brain though, I’m thinking it’s wonderful to know you don’t have to pay Per Se prices for pretentious ambition." [IC]
THE ELSEWHERE: Dave Cook has some excellent biryani at Deccan Kebab, Julia Moskin contends that newish Chelsea Italian restaurant Eolo "needs less fantasy and more firmness in the kitchen," and Robert Sietsema seeks out Polish food in Bay Ridge at Polonica.
THE BLOGS: NY Journal loves the food at Michael Psilakis' Fish Tag but worries it won't last given both Psilakis and chef Ryan Skeen's flightiness, Eat Big Apple has a rave for Millesime and wonders why people haven't caught on, Life With Food and Drink has a clunker of a meal at Pure Thai Shophouse, The Feisty Foodie enjoys her meal at Tabla but finds it difficult to classify as "Indian" food, Kika Eats falls in love with the East Village's Goat Town, and the Pink Pig calls out Korzo Haus for being that special mix of reliable and affordable.