This week, Pete Wells files on Governor, the ambitious new Dumbo restaurant from the team behind Colonie and Gran Electrica. Wells likes many of chef Brad McDonald's unusual creations:
For better and sometimes for worse, Mr. McDonald treats familiarity as if it were an enemy to be conquered. What comes to the table may take a little decoding. What are these white noodles under a bright yellow dust? Celery root, shaved into ribbons wide as pappardelle and blanched just until they fold softly over themselves. The sauce for this mock pasta is a froth of cream and clothbound Vermont Cheddar and the yellow dust is grated yolk of preserved eggs, which I could never quite detect, and grated lemon zest, which I could, and which gives the whole dish a nice lift. It's cool, smart and unexpectedly seductive.Not every dish works, but there are a lot of winners here, and Wells thinks that the bread program is really something special. The critic gives Governor two stars. [NYT]
Adam Platt is impressed by Battersby: "As veterans of fancy kitchens like Blue Hill and Gramercy Tavern, Battersby's chefs and co-owners, Joseph Ogrodnek and Walker Stern, know all about pretty food. But working in a kind of tag-team lather in their tiny kitchen here, they produce the kind of intimate, painstakingly prepared food that Brooklyn chefs are often praised for these days but don't always achieve." Plattypants gives the restaurant three stars. [NYM]
Steve Cuozzo is not a fan of Mihoko's 21 Grams in the Flatiron District: "Oblivious to our growling stomachs, dark-suited waiters hovered, loomed and fussed with the silverware. Unrequested green tea and a type of rarefied sake were interminably prepared tableside while we waited nearly an hour for the first morsel of solid food. For every successful dish there was a correspondingly awful one. Cold corn velouté with cooked langoustine evoked summer bliss. Chawan mushi with snap peas, a strained fusion effort, registered as thick pea soup with barely perceptible custard." The Cuozz gives the restaurant a half-star rating. [NYP]
Jay Cheshes awards three stars (out of five) to Mile End Sandwich and two to Lake Trout. On the latter: "Despite the skillful chef at the helm, none of Lake Trout's food is an upgrade on the dirt-cheap Eastern Seaboard originals—though it's not really trying to be. As a postcard from Baltimore, though, it's got some travelogue charm. Considering the talent behind the place, it could certainly be much more exciting than that." [TONY]
Robert Sietsema finds an uneven menu at Potlikker in Williamsburg: "Although many things in the first two sections are exciting, the slender list of four main courses is less successful—though the failures are noble ones. A nicely browned half-chicken with a sweet corn flan constitutes the single unalloyed triumph. Worst is something charmingly called a "big ol' pork chop." It must have been a fine specimen at one point, but the meat has been rendered tough as a tortoise shell and an odd shade of pink in the middle." [VV]
Ryan Sutton digs chef Justin Hilbert's creative American fare at Gwynnett St.: "Roast duck brined in peach pits and paired with peaches, faro, chanterelles and pecans is even better than it sounds. Lamb is fussy and complex in the best possible way: tender loin, crispy belly, red pepper juice and aubergine in various incarnations (smoked eggplant puree, grilled fairytale eggplant and charred japanese eggplant)." Sutton gives the restaurant three stars. [Bloomberg]
Michael Kaminer awards two stars (out of five) to Siro's, the new restaurant from Mariano Rivera and a handful of other celebrities: "The crab cake ($18), as promised, is a wonder to behold, chunks of pure meat flash-fried into a massive meatball that looks like something Rivera might toss. A pallid black-bean-and-corn salsa accompaniment, though, looks, feels and tastes like an afterthought. Likewise mealy yellow "Israeli couscous," peculiarly served with an oven-roasted pork chop ($32) in a glaze of fig and Chambord mostarda, the Italian fruit-and-mustard condiment." [NYDN]
THE ELSEWHERE: Gael Greene has an excellent meal at Jean Georges, Silvia Killingsworth of Tables for Two enjoys the rustic Italian fare at Il Buco Alimentari e Vineria, and Tejal Rao samples some strong dishes and a few sloppy ones at Jezebel.
THE BLOGS: Ed Levine checks out breakfast at Maison Kayser, Gotham Gal is not a fan of Mission Chinese Food, the Immaculate Infatuation boys are wowed by the food at Square Meal, Eat Big Apple is pleased with the offerings at Ken & Cook, Chekmark Eats samples the sweets at Pasticceria Rocco, NYC Foodie thinks that Bugs is a gem of a Japanese restaurant, and NY Journal likes his meal at Rafele.
· All Coverage of Reviews [~ENY~]