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Pete Wells Gives One Star to Lakruwana on Staten Island

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This week, Pete Wells files on Lakruwana, an elaborately decorated Sri Lankan restaurant on Staten Island. He's impressed by the food that is coming out of chef A. Wimalaratha's kitchen:

Her excellent version of mulligatawny soup, green with cilantro and sour with lemon juice, tilts more toward Southeast Asia than India. Her kitchen also makes lampreis, a steamed packet of aromatic long-grained rice, curry, eggplant, onions, bananas, soft cashews and a fried egg wrapped in a banana leaf that is pinned shut with a paper umbrella.

A batter of coconut and rice flour is fried into a wafer and shaped while still warm into crisp, edible bowls called hoppers. You eat them with one of the curries, like the nuanced, gingery Ceylon chicken, or the Wadiya squid seasoned with toasted coriander and cumin.

In an Diner's Journal post accompanying the review, Wells notes: "Hurricane Sandy reminded everybody that, yes, this remote territory is in fact part of New York City." He took trips to Staten Island to find a restaurant to review, and after his first visit to Lakruwana, he knew he'd found a contender. Wells gives the restaurant one star, and he asks readers for more Staten Island dining recommendations. [NYT]

Steve Cuozzo likes the atmosphere and the service at Sirio, but the food fails to impress: "I hope the 'winter menu' doesn't augur a prolonged wait for spring. Galletto mattone, brick-pressed chicken (now mercifully discontinued), might be the most memorably unappetizing bird since a pinfeathered specimen I encountered in Arusha, Tanzania, in 1986. Chunky saltimbocca alla Romana required a serrated knife; the tasteless veal came with school cafeteria-quality mashed potatoes." Cuozzo praises the desserts from Janevha Gregg, and gives the restaurant one star. [NYP]

As noted on Monday, Adam Platt dropped four sparklers on Eleven Madison Park this week. His take: "I don't know if I'd call Eleven Madison the very best restaurant in the city right now, especially not for New Yorkers. But it's still one of the most interesting and unpredictable. And as long as Daniel Humm is in the kitchen, that's not going to change." [GS/NYM]

Ryan Sutton is not a fan of Laurent Tourondel's Arlington Club: "Arlington Club hopes to get you in and out fast. So better ask for raw bar items as a separate course. Otherwise the kitchen will send out your plump oysters ($18 for a half-dozen) and fatty bluefin toro ($28) with all your hot appetizers, crowding the table and leaving you to strategize what to eat at prime temperature. Lobster bisque gets chilly quickly, which hardly matters, since the soup, sugary as creamed maple syrup, contains a scientifically insignificant amount of shellfish flavor." If you must go, Sutton recommends the fish entrees. The critic gives the restaurant half a star. [Bloomberg]

Jay Cheshes gives a four-star rating (out of five) to Chez Sardine in the West Village: "The new-wave sushi, crafted behind a slim kitchen counter, features morsels from land and sea rolled into tight maki or draped onto one-bite nigiri. It's all purist sacrilege—except for the small proportions, and the properly vinegared rice. Still, you'd have to be a real zealot to find fault with how delicious they are." [TONY]

Stan Sagner gives The Marrow four stars (out of five): "The signature 'Bone Marrow' ($16), a clever, albeit obscenely elevated riff on surf and turf, pairs two of the richest ingredients from land and sea into one blissful marriage. The plate cradles a split-roasted beef bone revealing its trove of succulent marrow. A treat on its own, it is topped with sweet, briny sea urchin and a sprinkle of tiny brunoised cubes of fried potato for a touch of crunch amid such indulgence. Each bite feels like a birthday present." [NYDN]

Tejal Rao visits Ken Friedman and April Bloomfield's Salvation Taco in the Pod 39 hotel: "An ideal meal will involve a bunch of friends, drinks, and a lot of tacos ($3 to $5), because each one is just three or four bites. Start with blistered cauliflower florets and fried curry leaves on a dollop of gently curried crema, a delightful little taco with an Indian accent. Move along to nuggets of fried sweetbreads and chickpeas. There's traditional pork al pastor, too, the meat stacked with pineapple on a vertical rotisserie and cooked until it's sweet and mellow." [VV]

THE ELSEWHERE: Gael Greene can't wait to go back to The Marrow, Hannah Goldfield of Tables for Two loves many of the dishes at Mayfield in Crown Heights, Ligaya Mishan likes Korean barbecue joint Han Joo on St. Marks Place, and Robert Sietsema is happy that three great new barbecue restaurants (Mighty Quinn's, Fletcher's, and BrisketTown), are now open in NYC.

THE BLOGS: The Immaculate Infatuation boys give a 6.9 rating to Neta, Serious Eats thinks that the new UWS location of Legend is worthy of a solid B rating, Eat Big Apple discovers some winning dishes at Oficina Latina, Chekmark Eats is not completely blown away by Grey Lady, NYC Foodie recommends the seafood dishes at Prima, Pink Pig pops into Steak 'N' Shake in Midtown, and NY Journal loves all but one of the dishes at The Marrow.
· All Coverage of Reviews [~ENY~]
[Photo]

Chez Sardine

183 W 10th Street, New York, NY 10014 646 360 3705

Sirio Ristorante

795 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10065 212 940 8195 Visit Website

Salvation Taco

145 East 39th Street, Manhattan, NY 10016 (212) 865-5800 Visit Website

Neta

61 W 8th Street, New York, NY 10011 212-505-2610 Visit Website

The Marrow

99 Bank Street, New York, NY 10014 212 428 6000 Visit Website

Prima

7280 Woodmont Avenue, , MD 20814 (301) 215-8300 Visit Website

Eleven Madison Park

11 Madison Avenue, Manhattan, NY 10010 (212) 889-0905 Visit Website

Arlington Club

1032 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10021 212 249 5700

Lakruwana

668 Bay Street, Staten Island, NY

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