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Pete Wells Gives Two Stars to Dirty French, Plus Great Beef Ramen and More in This Week's Reviews

A roundup of what the critics are talking about, from a new ramen star to Almanac's confusing menu.

Daniel Krieger

Yesterday Ryan Sutton gave two stars to Aldo Sohm Wine Bar. Now here's a roundup of the rest of the week's reviews:

Pete Wells reviews the Torrisi team's French blockbuster, Dirty French. On the chicken: "First to arrive is the sneakily rich (translation: you can't see the foie gras) white meat in mustard-herb sauce. Then the bird's hindquarters show up on a cutting board. They've been soaked in a Vietnamese marinade of soy, fish sauce and lemon grass, slowly cooked in melted chicken fat...then grilled and freshened up with lime zest." Two stars [NYT]

Like Ryan Sutton, Tejal Rao also reviews Le Bernardin offshoot Aldo Sohm Wine Bar this week: "What Aldo Sohm does far better than its peer is to make itself accessible to a less spendy clientele. The bar offers a relatively affordable menu -- no ossetra by the ounce, no lobster in brioche. The wine list has Easter eggs, but it is not snobby, with plenty of bottles under $50, and glasses that start at $10." Two stars. [Bloomberg]

Zachary Feldman finds great new ramen on the Upper East Side at Mei-Jin Ramen: "A simple soy sauce version is mild yet robust, with a gamy background note. 'Spicy Chili' has plenty of fire to back up the claim, adding seasoned ground beef to a broth shimmering with neon-red hot-pepper oil. And the restaurant's signature blend, the 'Mei-Jin,' includes slices of beef and is doused with sesame and chile oils and supported by the funk and silkiness of miso." [VV]

Joshua David Stein files his early take on Galen Zamarra's replacement for Mas (La Grillade), Almanac. Some of the food is very good, but: "At Almanac, the confusion of the menu illustrates an inherent existential confusion in the restaurant as a whole and in many dishes in particular. I just don't see a cohesive idea to the place. In its absence, Mr. Zamarra and his team have added a bunch of bells and whistles to obscure that essential lack." Three stars. [NYO]

Christina Izzo is mostly unimpressed by White Street: "[Floyd] Cardoz's meandering menu largely can't live up to the lofty expectations of the room. It's hard to botch burrata ($15), humbly festooned here with Arbequina olive oil, Long Island sea salt and toasted bread, but cutting into the creamy orb fails to elicit that crucial ooze. Pure fromage heartbreak." Two stars. [TONY]

THE ELSEWHERE: Ligaya Mishan reviews Hanamizuki, a counter peddling Japanese rice balls in Chelsea. Shauna Lyon enjoys the Nawab cuisine at Awadh. Gael Green dines at La Mangeoire to bid farewell to departing chef Christian Delouvrier.

THE BLOGS: The Infatuation reviews trendy dumplings at Mimi Cheng's and old-school pizza at New Park Pizza, Chopsticks + Marrow eats at the Korean cafeteria in Spa Castle, NY Journal details the highs and lows of Sushi Nakazawa, the Food Doc loves Mission Cantina's new Vietnamese breakfast, Chekmark Eats explains the appeal of the Meatball Shop, and Restaurant Girl is impressed by Bowery Meat Company.