Whether he is fussing over a corsage of edible wildflowers or tinting a baguette with squid ink to fashion a copy of a razor clam, Mr. Lightner is opening our eyes again to how busy nature has been. He seems to be feeling his way toward an articulated, poetic response to the seasons that is something like a modern Western version of kaiseki.Some dishes don't completely work, but Wells gives the restaurant three stars, writing that it is "one of the most fascinating experiences you can have in a New York City restaurant." [NYT]
Ryan Sutton files on Blue Ribbon Sushi Izakaya: "The popcorn shrimp are a skip here, too, and the sushi’s not very good. But just about everything else I tried on the 100-item-plus menu is exactly what it should be: rich, salty and strongly-flavored. These are small plates meant to be consumed with Blue Ribbon’s own cold, creamy sake." [Bloomberg]
Steve Cuozzo finds that Sean Rembold and Andrew Tarlow's Reynards hasn't found a steady groove yet: "The vague menu leaves you in the dark...Rembold worked at owner Andrew Tarlow’s earlier Williamsburg places. His well-priced dishes are cleverly composed. The menu’s refreshingly devoid of plugs for farms and ranches. But we’d like to know a little more about dishes identified only as 'arctic char' or 'summer vegetables.'" The Cuozz gives Reynards two stars out of four. [NYP]
Jay Cheshes awards three stars out of five to Potlikker in Williamsburg: "Even the most proficient fare here is too understated to make much of a splash these days. Fresh cannelloni filled with herbed ricotta and summer squash might be a lovely light lunch in the country, but they don’t make much sense on a $17 big-city small plate. And a fluffy Dutch pancake, topped with goat cheese and honey, is an odd start to dinner, though it would be perfectly enjoyable at a casual brunch." [TONY]
Michael Kaminer visits Maimonde of Brooklyn: "You could make a meal of starters, but it would be a shame to skip mains like the MOB Burger Deluxe ($15), a fist-thick, mushroom-based patty that banishes sad memories of sodden veggie burgers. Chewy and smoky, this one arrives on a house-made sweet-potato roll with intense Brooklyn Brine pickles, charred onions and smoked eggplant." He awards the restaurant four stars out of five. [NYDN]
Tejal Rao mostly loves the French fare at Calliope: "A pork-and-rabbit terrine is a bouncy castle of meat, cut cleanly and served with hot mustard and cornichons ($13). It's the kind of dish you taste and immediately start to wonder, oh, wouldn't this be nice in a sandwich tomorrow? But of course, there won't be any leftovers. Elegant sheets of tête de porc ($12)—sprinkled with chopped cornichons, bouquets of parsley, and purple shallot threads—make the perfect introduction for anyone put off by eating a pig's face." [VV]
THE ELSEWHERE: Leo Carey of Tables for Two is not wowed by Joanne, Gael Greene samples the new menu at Brooklyn Diner, Robert Sietsema eats his way through Food Gallery 32 in Koreatown, and Ligaya Mishan visits Clyde Frazier's Wine and Dine.
THE BLOGS: Serious Eats offers a list of NYC's best ice cream sandwiches, the boys from Immaculate Infatuation find great food and terrible service at Chin Chin, Eat Big Apple has a decent meal at Lobster Joint in Greenpoint, the Pink Pig is not thrilled by the offerings at Takashi, Goodies First checks out the psychedelic sushi at Fushimi, Chekmark Eats likes everything but the pizza at Otto, and NYC Foodie approves of Pure Thai Shophouse.
· All Coverage of Reviews [~ENY~]