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Battersby Chef's Table

I don't understand what the fuss is about this place. It's way overpriced, and the food is just ok; there was nothing creative on display in the fish and pasta dishes I tried.

Jul 09, 2012
jpbelmondo in Outer Boroughs

Sue Perette (on Smith between DeGraw and Sackett)

I've been back to Sue Perette a few times since my original posting, and after having sampled the full menu, I am sorry to say that, while the food is good there, it is unexceptional -- solid but simple. But the prices are killing me -- over $60 per person with tax and tip and one or two glasses of wine. Unless the prices drop or the cooking picks up, I don't see myself going back.

Feb 16, 2010
jpbelmondo in Outer Boroughs

Sue Perette (on Smith between DeGraw and Sackett)

I had no idea it existed, but, after seeing a movie last week, and being very hungry, we passed the old Cafe Dore space and saw a new French/American restaurant in its place -- they were still serving at 11 pm (though I don't think the kitchen is open much past that.) They've only been open a week or so, and they are slowly adding items to the menu -- there were three entrees available when we arrived. We started with a tasty lentil salad, and for an entree, I had the roast pork, which was falling off the bone and quite good, and my friend had the fish (grouper?) which she also liked very much. Entree portions were large, and prices are in the $17 - 22 range. The owners, a French couple, are very friendly. I look forward to seeing how this place develops.

Sep 09, 2009
jpbelmondo in Outer Boroughs

Sunday Brunch in Boerum/Carroll/Cobble/Atlantic area?

Aug 03, 2007
jpbelmondo in Outer Boroughs

Neroni is out at Porchetta

Precisely what was innovative about Porchetta? I don't recall seeing anything novel there (unless you consider the "pork martini," and you are welcome to it.) I only ate there once, but the food was just okay, and definitely not surprising or interesting. Given that better, and cheaper, restaurants are in walking distance of Porchetta, I was not inclined to return. (The ridiculous hype accompanying Neroni didn't help.)

Apr 09, 2007
jpbelmondo in Outer Boroughs

DIB Meal at Blue Ribbon

I had never been to Blue Ribbon before, but, based on its reputation, I have to say their DIB offering was pretty disappointing. They offered a choice of two appetizers (squash soup or beet salad) and two entrees (lamb shank or salmon), and one dessert (bread pudding). I had the soup and salmon, and both were merely okay, certainly nothing interesting or commendable. The salmon, in particular, was pretty boring, with a "mustard" sauce that was in no way hot or spicy. Of course, the place was packed, so I'm sure they view restaurant week as a chore, but one would think they would want to get people attracted by DIB to come back and drop more money later.

On a side note, the volume in the restaurant was deafening. On top of very poor acoustics blending every conversation in the place, management was playing bad lounge music with booming bass followed by Eighties' Top 40.

Mar 25, 2007
jpbelmondo in Outer Boroughs

Mexican in LES, East Village

Try Itzocan, which is on 9th between A and 1st, I think.

Aug 16, 2006
jpbelmondo in Manhattan

Wine Bars

Check out Jadis, 42 Rivington, great wine for $5 - $9/glass, plus a good selection of cheeses, meats, quiches, and a special or two ever day.

Aug 02, 2006
jpbelmondo in Manhattan

Cubana Cafe- Smith Street

I used to eat there a fair amount, because of the relatively low prices, but always found the food there to be exceedingly bland. The last time I was there, for brunch, I ordered the "fresh-squeezed" orange juice, which cost about $4, only to see the waitress pour it out of a jug of concentrate. When I pointed out that this did not constitute "fresh-squeezed," she agreed, but did not offer to reduce the price or otherwise make-up for this misrepresentation.

Aug 02, 2006
jpbelmondo in Outer Boroughs

Muffelleta

I had a muffaletta from Two Boots at Rock Center, and it was perhaps the worst sandwich I have ever eaten -- crumbly bread, no olive paste, horrible tasting cold cuts -- basically inedible.

Jul 12, 2006
jpbelmondo in Manhattan

Saturday LUNCH Options near South Street Seaport

Try Fresh Salt, 146 Beekman St., great for soups and sandwiches.

Jul 06, 2006
jpbelmondo in Manhattan

Provence en Boite: Smith St.

I ate there with a friend two weeks ago, and found the food to be mediocre, at best. On the recommendation of the waitress (who also advised that, as she didn't eat meat, this was just what was most popular), we ordered the lamb chops and the duck. Two of my lamb chops were gamy, and the other two were tasteless, while the sauce was just sweet and did nothing to enhance the lamb. My friend ordered the duck, which was passable, but, but dry, and, as Peter noted above, mostly flavorless as well. We had a strawberry tart for dessert, which was just ok. Based on this experience, I'd rank the food below every other "French" place in the area, which isn't saying much.

In addition, the music was cheesy Euro-pop (Gypsy Kings, etc. -- why can't these places play decent French music -- Gainsbourg, Autour de Lucie, Tiersen, etc.?) and the decor was in the touristy kitsch vein, so, based on the ambience alone, even if the food improves, I'll never make another trip there.

Jul 06, 2006
jpbelmondo in Outer Boroughs