Instead of a New York restaurant review this week, Pete Wells files on Oxheart and Underbelly in Houston, Texas. But plenty of other critics wrote reviews:
Ryan Sutton digs what chef Fredrik Berselius is up to at Aska in Williamsburg: "Any contemporary restaurant worth its salt these days is slapping bone marrow on something seemingly inappropriate. Aska gets the job done with oatmeal. The creamy grains are fortified with the meaty gelatins of beef marrow which is further amped up with egg yolk and salty shad roe. It is the best and richest cereal known to humankind." Sutton gives the restaurant three stars. [Bloomberg]
Steve Cuozzo likes the food, but not the space or the vibe at Richard Kuo's Pearl & Ash: "The menu on its own is two star worthy, not the most cutting edge but compelling if you skip those dull meatballs. Crunchy seaweed suavely complements salmon delicately tea smoked. No beef I've had this year was better than Kuo's skirt steak, the grassfed cut lent a rustic tavern twist by 'prohibition ale sauce' (a veal and beer reduction)." Cuozzo gives the restaurant one and a half stars. [NYP]
Jay Cheshes is disappointed by Montmartre: "The flubs begin with an opening snack, a warm crock of brandade, the soupy salt cod more sallow dip than the usual rich, thick slather for toast. Escargots, traditionally garlic-butter delivery systems, are reduced to rubbery garnish for undercooked chard and super-salty house-made garlic sausage. Even a pretty straightforward frisée aux lardons misses the mark, the bistro mainstay served with an overcooked egg, brackish bacon and a few leathery slips of duck confit." The Chesh gives it two stars out of five. [TONY]
Adam Platt awards two stars to Graydon Carter's Beatrice Inn, which now has a new menu from chef Hillary Sterling: "On an early visit to the Beatrice, the lamb entrée consisted of a couple of fatty chops thrown on a plate; now the lamb of choice is tenderloin, served in little pink rounds and garnished with black olives, shallots, and drifts of frizzled artichokes." [GS/NYM]
Michael Kaminer gives two stars (out of five) to Union Square Cafe: "Generous main-course portions get plated in classical, unfussy compositions. Most of them would work better as still lifes. Roasted Duck ($32), gristly and tough, challenges molars. Glutinous black rice tastes oversalted, and the 'roasted apples' and Brussels sprouts turn out to be miserly shreds. Soporific Grilled Tuna ($33) arrives perfectly cooked - medium rare, as ordered - which only accentuates its dullness. Cheerleading from grapefruit and roasted fennel can't help." [NYDN]
Tejal Rao is not thrilled by Dani Garcia's Manzanilla: "A tuna tartare ($14) is served inside a sea urchin shell, on a bed of crushed ice, under a froth of urchin. It tastes nice and it's very pretty, recalling the loveliness and excess of classical French cuisine, but it's far too overdressed alongside the restaurant's more casual presentations, looking just plain silly next to a pair of fat oxtail sliders ($10)." [FitR]
Ms. Gael enjoys her meal at Stella 34: "The truth is, I love most everything I've eaten here. I actually like the insalatas better than the pizza. The Napoli, with salami and prosciutto atop chopped romaine and arugula with artichokes, is my favorite. Barbabietole, red and yellow beets, lentils and arugula with a creamy sprawl of stracciatella cheese and candied pistachios is a close second. Big, fat, sausage-flecked rice balls come in sets of two – worth splitting if you happen to be four." [Insatiable Critic]
THE ELSEWHERE: Joshua David Stein is not totally sold on Carbone, Shauna Lyon of Tables for Two visits Mighty Quinn's and John Brown Smokehouse, Ligaya Mishan likes the quirky Mexican fare at Xixa in Williamsburg, and Robert Sietsema recommends the Grillot at Cathedral in Flatbush.
THE BLOGS: Serious Eats likes Cocina Econimica Mexico on the Upper West Side, the Immaculate Infatuation dudes give a 7.8 rating to Momoya in Chelsea, the Pink Pig is not wowed by Montmartre, NYC Foodie has a great meal at Pig and Khao, the Food Doc likes a lot of the food Montmartre, Chekmark Eats is totally won over by Carbone, Blondie & Brownie approve of the Gobblecado at Peels, and NY Journal has a solid meal at Cherrywood Kitchen.