Burger Beef —Steve Cuozzo sears Tavo in a burger roundup, calling its patty a “lame, Wagyu-blend,” “with a salad bar’s worth of incompatible toppings that includes cheap foie gras.” At Chumley’s, a “$25 grass-fed double patty top round . . . tasted gray and character-less.” He praises the one at Beatrice Inn, a 45-day, dry aged burger on a brioche bun, topped with red wine-caramelized onions and creamy, melted d’Affinois cheese: “Truly grand.” There are more.
Yes it’s me, the B.I.G. — Selling Biggie, Tupac, and Eazy-E cookies for $2 each, Cake Boi Bakery opened Saturday in Bed-Stuy (627 Throop Ave.). Khayri Ayers “specializes in customized designs, creating Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles birthday cakes, crown creations, sneaker sweets and more.”
Grilled, fried, or pickled? —Stocking live eels imported from Japan, an eel specialty restaurant called Aburi Ittetsu is opening at 60 Kenmare St. It may be run by this Tokyo restaurant group. Details to come.
Back At It — After a health-related hiatus, Denisse Lina Chavez is back at El Atoradero, the Prospect Heights cheap eats favorite that moved over a year ago from its original spot in the Bronx. Florence Fabricant reports Chavez is adding some new tacos and other dishes to the menu, as well as making food for the new bar, Madre Mezcaleria, next door.
Opening— Though the official opening is next week, the gastropub from Rob McCue of Hell’s Kitchen Season Eight, The Fat Monk has soft opened at 949 Columbus Ave. between 106th and 107th Streets. Yesterday’s anti-Valentine’s Day menu was $35 for 3-5 plates for sharing.
Closing — Birdbath Bakery closed at 200 Church St. though it’s still selling tarts, scones, muffins, sandwiches and prepared foods at 160 Prince St.
And Other News— Korean barbecue spot Insa (326 Douglas St., Brooklyn) is hosting a fundraiser on Sunday, starting at 11:30 p.m., until late, with 100% of proceeds from the evening will benefit the International Rescue Committee to assist refugees.
Barlo at Arlo NoMad Hotel (11 E. 31st St.) pairs chefs Dale Talde with Iron Chef Makoto Okuwa for a 13-course omakase on Feb. 17th and 18th. It’s $175 per person, 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. seatings.
And last, for the morning sendoff: Does Instagrammable food equal good food?