Sam Sifton drops a onespot on Zak Pelaccio's eight week-old Malaysian barbecue spot in Williamsburg, Fatty 'Cue. He calls the restaurant "dark and shouty," the food "incredibly good." On to the rave:
...coriander bacon, fatty and rich, is served with steamed yellow-curry custard, fiery and light. The combination is insanely agreeable...Each weekend the crew puts a whole pig in a smoker, then sells it off in pieces, with bao and more yellow curry. If this is available, it’s a must as a main course. So, too, are long, elegant spare ribs...But not all Times readers are going to love it: "Fatty ’Cue might be uncomfortable for those who hear more music at Lincoln Center than at Southpaw." He ends with, "...can you imagine what this young man could do if he straightened up his room?" [NYT]
...you’ll want the beef brisket as well, made with way-smoked, meltingly tender American wagyu and served with chili jam, aioli and pickled red onion, with some bone broth and warm steamed bao: deckle deliciousness from psychedelic Texas
Alan Richman is not impressed with what Joey Campanaro is doing at Kenmare: "I hated the canoodlers. I hated my grilled swordfish with fingerling potatoes and fennel even more...What Campanaro seems to be doing here is piling on tastes and flavors, as many as he can. In some cases the purpose appears to be to camouflage mediocre products...In other cases, the idea might be to arouse the palates of customers who want stimulation, not food." [GQ]
Ryan Sutton calls JGV's ABC Kitchen occasionally awful and sometimes outstanding: "Mushrooms must’ve been steamed in grease; there’s no other way to describe the slimy fungi. Bigoli pasta was so salty as to be inedible. A side dish of endive, ham and gruyere was baked into bland, watery submission. Overcooked lobster’s claws had a Styrofoam-like mealiness." [Bloomberg]
Sam Sifton also files on newcomer Betel: "As at an amusement park, the food is meant to thrill without scaring. It is Thai food for farang, more sweet than fire, inoffensive to the Western palate, kind of boring...Only a marvelous chicken-and-crab salad ($19) with coconut, cherry tomatoes and a spicy green chili dressing really worked, and it’s not so much Southeast Asian as Southeast Asian-aware." [NYT]
In a review that opens with hell "very loudly breaking loose" all around him, Adam Platt files a one star review for Keith McNally's newest, Pulino's: "Appleman won’t be judged by New Yorkers on the authentic qualities of his charcuterie. He’ll be judged on his brittle, thin-crusted pizzas, the early reviews of which among the assembled pizza geeks at my table ranged from politely subdued to downright hostile." [NYM]
THE ELSEWHERE: Like many others, Tables for Two thinks ABC Kitchen is brilliantly delicious, Jay Cheshes is pleasantly surprised by the price and portion of Joay Campanero's food at the Kenmare, giving it three out of five stars, Julia Moskin finds thoughtful cooking at newcomer Canteen 82 on the Upper West Side, Robert Sietsema gets some good old-fashioned Italian-American fare at Bay Ridge's Casa Calamari, and Sarah DiGregorio has some major hits and huge misses at Michael Huynh's DOB 111 and Mikey's Burger.
THE BLOGS: Immaculate Infatuation would skip the food next time around at Bia Garden, Pink Pig has an okay time at Benoit, NY Journal thinks Zengo is a total botch job, Boozy NYC is a fan of the new Terroir Tribeca, Cleaned My Plate compares the rueben sandwiches at Cafe Katja and Katz's, and Ed Levine gives a B+ to Jean-Georges' ABC Kitchen.