Tomorrow, Sam Sifton will weigh in on Faustina, the two month-old Scott Conant restaurant in the old, failed, sad Table 8 space.
THE PLAYBOOK: What Faustina has going for it: Scott Conant is a talented and lauded three star chef. The scope is a bit broader here but it's still solid, delicious, for the most part affordable Conant fare. And there's no chance Sifton wasn't spotted every single time he stepped foot in that restaurant.
What's working against it: Other critics call out issues with the menu set up (just recently, they moved from small/share plates to an ap/entree dessert configuration), and a general lack of tightness with the food. Some Scarpetta fans see it as a let down from a very well loved chef. Meanwhile, it shares the same design drawbacks of Table 8, a hidden downstairs bathroom, a stark, corporate seeming dining room. And finally, there's that ever-haunting fact that its predecessor Table 8 was killed by a goose egg.
SIFT HAPPENS: The Sifton wild card. This guy is hard to nail down, offering two stars to a neighborhood spot, three stars to a six week old celeb chef project that the other critics dismissed. And whatever he decides here will help us figure out what his deal is. The restaurant deserves a one or a two, but with Sifton on the loose, both the goose and the threespot are in play.
THE LINE: Goose Egg: 15 - 1; One Star: 2 - 1; Two Stars: 3 - 1; Three Stars: 15 - 1; Four Stars: 500 - 1. [Faustina Reviewed, NYT; after ~8PM]