And Parm isn't?
[Crown is] an avowed (and apparently successful) attempt to appeal to a very specific crowd.
That's the bare minimum requirement. But I think it's possible to review such a place without dripping condescension for the genre, even if it's not your personal cup of tea. I mean, Upper East Side one-percenters read The Times, too. If you're a professional, is it THAT hard to review a restaurant without being quite so blatant in your utter contempt for its intended clientele?
If you don't like that crowd the most you can do is acknowledge your prejudice and then try to be fair.
The other point I'd add, is that both my guest and I enjoyed Crown, and neither of us are one-percenters. Now, I'll allow we're not Crown's core audience. But to suggest that people like us can't enjoy such a place—when it's done well—is just wrong. I'm not going to disagree with Wells that the execution is mediocre: he didn't have my meals, and I didn't have his. But had the execution been better, I strongly suspect his patronizing attitude would have been the same; only the stars would've been different.
I think it's perfectly possible to review such a place while adopting a more neutral tone towards its mission, and a professional ought to be able to do that. I might add that it would be nice to have at least ONE critic in town who actually LIKED this type of restaurant—not that I ever had any realistic hope that Wells would be that critic.