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Are New York Restaurants Becoming Boring?

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Plus, America’s most basic couple goes on a NYC date — and more intel

Photo by Jean Schwarzwalder

NYC restaurants need to step it up, critic argues

Let it be henceforth known: Adam Platt is bored of Italian trattorias. The famously grumpy longtime New York magazine critic complained that “more and more new restaurants around town seem to be comfortable and well-crafted, in a focus-grouped, middle-brow kind of way,” which “if you sit through too many of these good-natured, narrowly focused meals in a row, you might quietly go insane.” He doesn’t name any names in the piece, but reading between the lines can see shade likely thrown toward Fausto, Scampi, and Legacy Records. While this proliferation of pleasantly inoffensive restaurants is certainly evident, Platt does admit that NYC is experiencing a “ great Chinese and Asian food renaissance.” Commenters on the story seem equally split in half, calling it both “out of touch” and “spot on.”

‘Bachelor’ Arie takes the winner on a real-life date

Arie Luyendyk Jr., better known as the latest Bachelor, stepped out with his new fiancée Lauren Burnham, heading to dinner at clubby Japanese restaurant Megu, where the two were apparently “all over each other.” America’s most boring couple really took advantage of the moment and reportedly fed each other sushi.

The New Yorker gives DaDong a pass

Though the duck at China import DaDong has “the right amount of fat,” it’s still “a disappointment,” the New Yorker declares in its Tables for Two column. But, there’s hope yet: “once you slap on the sweet bean sauce and roll up slices with cucumber and scallions, it still satisfies.” Just bring a credit card to this one, since it’s $98 and inspired a nearby diner to proclaim, “You can never be too rich or too thin.”

A new Hawaiian bakery in the East Village

Tomorrow welcomes Hawaiian bakery Mahalo to the East Village, where at 443 East Ninth St., between First Avenue and Avenue A, the Queens-based company will dish out treats like shave ice, pineapple guava cupcakes, and passion fruit, orange, guava pie. Expect samples and discounts all weekend to mark the occasion.

‘Top Chef’ runner-up launches a Harlem pop-up

Spoiler alert: Another white guy took the Top Chef prize, while NYC chef Adrienne Cheatham nabbed second place. The Le Bernardin and Red Rooster alum and runner-up will now start up a Harlem pop-up called Sunday Best, set to run once or twice a month. Five- to seven-course dinners will include dishes featured in the show, such as spoonbread topped with uni and buttermilk dashi and topped with tuile. While in Harlem, eat some Caribbean food this weekend: