In spite of lousy desserts and a misstep in the fish department there, Frank Bruni couldn't avoid giving Allen and Delancey's complex, accomplished food two stars. [NYT]
Alan Richman, no pushover, was also very impressed by Allen & Delancey, though he noted that the chef's strength clearly lies in the realm of turf, rather than surf. Still, the respect is there: “The visceral satisfaction is high. He piles on flavors, and he does so with assurance.” [Bloomberg]
Irving Mill: tired concept, spotty execution. Restaurant Girl joins the chorus. [NYDN]
On Monday we hit one of Bacaro’s bacchanalian opening parties and suggested a Halloween visit to preview the spooky (and soon-to-be-sceney) basement. Eater, in telling folks that the place wouldn’t open till Thursday, scared off the riffraff and we had no problem strolling in (again, no doorman or publicist or list, just word from a staffer that bubbly was on the house all night) and immediately tucking in to gratis plates of cuttlefish risotto, gnocchi, marinated sardines, spaghetti alle vongole, meatballs, and so on.
According to Urbandaddy, Peasant’s new restaurant, Bacaro, was to open tomorrow with a party for the neighborhood. Didn’t sound right to us was a place like Peasant really surrendering their first night to the notoriously steak-and-stripper-happy readers of the Dad? We went down last night, strolled right in (what’s this, no list?) and indeed, owners Frank and Dulci DeCarlo were throwing a bacchanalian fête for the usual Soho/Nolita/Chinatown suspects basically everyone you’d see at Sway’s Morrissey night. (Note to anyone planning to be a Benjamin Cho hipster type for Halloween: Epaulettes are majorly in.)
“The doctrine of seasonal correctness is as ingrained in the collective restaurant psyche, these day, as linen napkins, pre-dinner cocktails, and superfluous baskets of bread,” Adam Platt writes in his review of Park Avenue Autumn, and who are we to argue? The combined efforts of Platt, the Robs, and Gael Greene all point to the triumph of the seasonal aesthetic. But that’s not to say they aren’t fun. Platt gives two stars to Park Avenue Autumn, Gael seems fairly pleased with Irving Mill, and the Robs introduce three restaurants (Lunetta, Bacaro, and Smith's) that are all about fresh ingredients, as well as a recipe for Bosc pears that is, of course, in season. Meanwhile, back at the Greenmarket, a long-overdue crusade against plastic bags is at work. And, though not an expression of the Haute Barnyard mystique, it's very much a sign of the times: PDT has named a hot dog for David Chang — proof that the Original Soupman has made it to the big time at last.