Reactions to NYT dining critic Pete Wells’ zero-star roast of landmark steakhouse Peter Luger are rolling in: Disbelief. Confusion. But also: Agreement. In fact, many New York dining fans — who have, until now, apparently swallowed their concerns about Luger — can finally speak their truth.
Problems at New York’s foremost steakhouse, Wells writes in his review, start with service: “The Department of Motor Vehicles is a block party compared with the line at Peter Luger.” But they also include uneven food — like a literally unevenly cooked burger — at steep prices.
Reactions to Wells’ zingers — he looks forward to the restaurant’s German potatoes the way he look forward “to finding a new, irregularly shaped mole” — were spicy themselves. While there was some defense of the restaurant, suddenly, lots of opinionated diners were eager to tell the world they, too, had noticed the emperor wasn’t fully clothed. Most responses fell into a few camps.
“Peter Luger is, in fact good”
My other opinion today is that Peter Luger is Good. I have been a bunch of times in the past few years and it is always sort of a debacle and always costs too much but it’s great for reasons I can’t totally explain, much like New York City itself— Amanda Mull (@amandamull) October 29, 2019
I've seen plenty of questionable, ridiculous stories and pieces in @nytimes over the years, to the point where I can't even look at it now, but I have NEVER once had a bad meal or a bad experience at Peter Luger.— Ryan (@ryanfield) October 29, 2019
“Never-Lugers,” who say they totally questioned it the whole time
Seems my contrarian Peter Luger Is Bad view is no longer contrarian. While all the complaints in this review are correct, @pete_wells fails to note also that the restaurant is lit far too brightly, like a hospital. https://t.co/sSJvzynmVI— Josh Barro (@jbarro) October 29, 2019
Peter Luger Steak House has always been bad. I'm glad we're all finally admitting it now. https://t.co/pQgoPzcByo— Josh Barro (@jbarro) October 29, 2019
The Times' review of Peter Luger is more than fair. My last two visits were just bad.— Robert Armstrong (@rbrtrmstrng) October 29, 2019
I regret to inform everyone that most steakhouses are so overrated. They are only worth it, in my opinion, if their service is extraordinary. Otherwise go to costco for a cheap usda prime and call it an evening. https://t.co/sL4izXFiFx— Tom Carroll (@TRCsnow) October 29, 2019
the peter luger server bringing me the check for my burger, fries, and wedge salad pic.twitter.com/fNuaqmxI7Z— Adam Moussa (@adamjmoussa) October 29, 2019
This is a fucking devastating review. Holy shit. @pete_wells has a beautiful and crushing way with words, and I’m a little heartbroken. But this speaks to me...because the hard truth is that he’s absolutely right. #irregularlyshapedmole https://t.co/9nmKeSJxID— A s t o r i a | H a i • B O O ! (@AstoriaHaiku) October 29, 2019
After having dined there in the late 70’s and 80’s when its reputation was deserved, went back after years away in 2016 and we were very disappointed with food and service exactly as described in NYT review. Appears they can live on rep for a l o n g time and $$$$$ too— Charles C Andrews (@CharlesC1976) October 29, 2019
Those just in it for the drama
pete wells just did the same thing to peter luger that jay-z did to the x5.— Desus Nice (@desusnice) October 29, 2019
And absurdists who aren’t afraid to say “okay, I’ll bite, what’s a Peter Luger?”
I see Peter Luger is trending. I hope nothing happened to him.— Adam “Spooky Boi” Cozens (@AdamCozens27) October 29, 2019