As noted yesterday, Pete Wells thinks that Michael White's Soho steakhouse Costata is worthy of two stars: "This spaghetti with clams almost eats like carbonara, with its sticky yellow-tinged sauce that clings to the noodles. The casarecci, bent scrolls blackened with squid ink, have a powerful oceanic undertow that pulls the sweet shrimp and sepia along in the current. For a minute, we're wondering if he's laying it on a bit thick, showering shredded fontina over the oxtail ragù with cavatelli. Then we take another bite and decide that when somebody makes pasta as wonderful as this, there are some questions you just don't ask." [NYT]
Steve Cuozzo slams Corvo Bianco on the Upper West Side: "Sweet, flavorful prawns in light romesco sauce promised more good things to come. But tiny, dry and flavorless meatballs arrived tucked into stale profiteroles propped open to resemble Pac-Man. 'Fava beans' was a misspelling of '95 percent corn niblets.' Rampant, purplish sauce made goat-cheese agnolotti look, and taste, like one giant beet." He gives the restaurant a half-star rating. [NYP]
Stan Sagner gives four stars out of a possible five to Paul Liebrandt's The Elm in Williamsburg: "Full bellies don't come cheaply here, but Liebrandt's layered sensory grenades are not about volume. Try not to scoff when a $21 saucer of Swiss chard Agnolotti rations a mere three per order. Then try not to swoon as each glistening bite foaming with brown butter, studded with nuggets of grilled lobster and showered in aged gouda, seduces you. You might consider selling your grandmother for a second helping." [NYDN]
Daniel S. Meyer gives two stars to Charlie Bird in Soho: "A bowl of nearly too-soft cuttlefish-ink chitarra strands (small $18, large $24) is saved by toothsome cuttlefish and crunchy bread crumbs, its lemon-bright tomato sauce turned wonderfully sinister (if you choose) by the jar of chili oil that accompanies each pasta. Back on land, a blissful, Thanksgiving-rich bite of crispy brick chicken ($55 for two) and fried bread dabbed in chicken liver mousse is knocked jarringly from autumn into spring by minty fava puree. The herb is a good-faith effort to cut the richness, but it vexes a palate primed for rosemary and sage." [TONY]
Alan Richman also files on Charlie Bird: "There's a pasta category. Perhaps that's what allows Charlie Bird to qualify as an Italian restaurant. They're admirable, in particular the chitarra nero (hand-cut pasta darkened with cuttlefish ink) with Calabrian chiles. The preparation was accented with crabmeat on one visit, with cuttlefish on another, each version served with a personal pot of toasted chiles on the side. The pasta is already so fiery you're unlikely to embrace this option." [GQ]
Joshua David Stein is not charmed by Charlie Bird in Soho: "Charlie Bird is the restaurant version of Miley Cyrus twerking. Manhattan is a city whose income inequality rivals that of Sierra Leone, where street art exists mostly as coy social media campaigns for luxury brands, where the poor, the already marginalized blacks and the Latinos (whom Mos Def calls 'my peoples') are being pushed off the island. I'm not saying any restaurant with entrees over $25 can only play John Mayer. But at least have the decency to not play the anthems of the dispossessed as you dispossess them, to mythologize a myth of New York even as you do your part to destroy it. As Public Enemy sang, 'Don't believe the hype.'" [The Observer]
[Khe-Yo by Daniel Krieger]
Gael Greene finds a lot to like on the menu at Khe-Yo in Tribeca. On the duck tongue salad: "I've never had a duck tongue I really liked till these crispy battered tongues, alternating with slices of meat, in Jurgielewicz duck salad. Khe-Yo means green, and there's something green on almost every dish. Watercress, baby arugula and Rau-Rum, here — Vietnamese mint — with shaved lemongrass, crispy shallots and toasted rice." [Insatiable]
[Estela by Daniel Krieger]
Adam Platt awards two stars each to Estela and The Musket Room. At the former, he finds that Ignacio Mattos is serving some great new dishes: "The ricotta dumplings are by far the best of the four entrée-style dishes at Estela, but if you're in the mood for something slightly more substantial, I suggest the culotte steak, which has the consistency of good fillet and is plated with a streak of salty anchovies and a tart cabbage gratin. " [GS/NYM]
[Quality Italian by Daniel Krieger]
THE ELSEWHERE: Ligaya Mishan loves the Georgian fare at Oda House in the East Village, Restaurant Girl has a fun meal at Quality Italian, and Zachary Feldman goes on a sushi tour of the Upper East Side.
[Atera by Daniel Krieger]
THE BLOGS: Serious Eats editor Max Falkowitz gives a big thumbs up to El Gauchito Butcher and Steakhouse in Elmhurst, Andrew Steinthal of Immaculate Infatuation bestows an 8.1 rating on Sweet Chick in Williamsburg, the Pink Pig digs the Indian street food at Masala Wala in the East Village, NYC Foodie checks out Khe-Yo in Tribeca, Joe DiStefano tries the Cronut knockoff and a few other sweets at Paris Baguette in Flushing, Eat Big Apple visits the Manhattan location of Dinosaur Bar-B-Q, Chekmark Eats is not totally on board with Umami Burger, and NY Journal is blown away by his meal at Atera.
· All Coverage of Reviews [~ENY~]
[Top Photo: The Elm by Daniel Krieger.]