Today, Pete Wells issues his takedown of the Bistro at Villard Michel Richard in the New York Palace Hotel. The food on one of his visits was so awful that he actually visited Richard's restaurant in D.C. to see if he had any credibility as a chef, whatsoever. As it turned out, the food was much better there. Wells speculates that maybe — just maybe — Richard is "paying tribute to the awful hotel food of years past" at this new restaurant. Here's Pete on the duds:
The seafood pasta, after all, is almost a direct quote from the 1980s, when doughy, gluey, overcooked fresh pasta and washed-out bits of unidentifiable seafood drooped in flavorless pink sauces. Of the same vintage, and just as bizarre, were the mushrooms under a tower of puff pastry ringed with cold, mud-colored sauce that tasted of uncooked wine. (If Villard Michel Richard doesn't make it as a restaurant, it could reopen as the Museum of Unappetizing Brown Sauces.)But that theory doesn't hold water because the desserts are good. Wells also questions Richard's actual involvement with the restaurant, and he wonders if Villard is "a symptom of the deal-making culture that afflicts the restaurant business deal-making culture that afflicts the restaurant business." Goose egg.
· A Visitor's Luxury Room [NYT]
· All Coverage of Villard Michel Richard [~ENY~]