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Acme Restaurant & Bar


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#241 nuxvomica

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:09 AM

heh, wish me luck tomorrow.

alas, no luck for me - closed for a private party tonight. again :lol:

tried calling a few times today to check but nobody answered the phone and yesterday it was busy each time i called.

Wilf - try calling before going to check if they are open to the public. i've had spectacularly bad luck picking days to go (they have to align with meetings in the area not followed by work dinner so fairly limited) - this was 4th or 5th time we tried to go, only to find out they were closed for a private party
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#242 Lex

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:24 AM

tried calling a few times today to check but nobody answered the phone ...

I am trying, unsuccessfully, to think of an acceptable reason for that.

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#243 Lippy

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 05:50 AM

Walked past it tonight and saw that it was closed to the public for a private party.

#244 Nancy S.

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 02:27 PM

Walked past it tonight and saw that it was closed to the public for a private party.

My understanding is that they are involved in Fashion Week festivities.

#245 joethefoodie

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 02:39 PM


Walked past it tonight and saw that it was closed to the public for a private party.

My understanding is that they are involved in Fashion Week festivities.

So more leggy blondes than usual? Sneak?

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#246 Sneakeater

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:29 PM

Actually, I was discussing that very question with a female friend last night. Her opinion was that the people going to Acme wouldn't be models but rather fashion design, manufacturing, and press people. So, she said, they wouldn't necessarily be attractive. She agreed with my suggestion that they would at least be well put together.

[This was all eventuated by my rant about how I should have gone to Acme after LPR Monday instead of Rouge et Blanc, since Rouge et Blanc is -- as I knew but forgot -- closed Mondays. I ended up at King, which, although I had a great time with the bartender and my barmates, and although I wish Fran Derby and his venture nothing but the greatest success in the world, just isn't striking me as that good.]
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#247 Sneakeater

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 04:07 PM

Wilf - try calling before going to check if they are open to the public. i've had spectacularly bad luck picking days to go (they have to align with meetings in the area not followed by work dinner so fairly limited) - this was 4th or 5th time we tried to go, only to find out they were closed for a private party


No worries. As Wilfrid has already pointed out, if Acme is closed he can always just stroll into Il Buco Alimentari. How crowded could THAT be?
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#248 Lippy

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 04:11 PM

No worries. As Wilfrid has already pointed out, if Acme is closed he can always just stroll into Il Buco Alimentari. How crowded could THAT be?

That's actually what we did last night. At 10:15, there was no problem getting seated at the bar. A few mminutes later, we could have had a regular table.

#249 Sneakeater

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 04:13 PM

I'm genuinely shocked.
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#250 nuxvomica

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 04:11 AM

so, finally got to eat here tonight. (success! walked in around 6:20, bar completely empty and only a table or two taken but it filled up by 7, for all you potential walk-ins.)

liked the sunchokes a lot; unfortunately, half of them were undercooked. the farmer's egg (light and creamy, cute presentation in a basket over hay) and bread & beer dessert were also highlights. an interesting (in a good way) salad of raw shrimp and bison tartar with bitter greens. the barley and clams, while nice in a creamy risotto kind of way, was a surprisingly sweet dish - i expected more briny flavors*. Also, quite substantial - could easily make a starchy main. And I'm not a fan of food completely covered by foam - i like to see what i'm eating. The chicken and egg was nice - and massive, easily feeds two - but also sort of sweet and creamy and mild. No distinctive flavors, just mild with a soft texture. The arctic char, on the other hand, was too vinegary with too crunchy leeks - here, i was hoping for melty, soft leeks. Sherry vinegar is my favorite kind of vinegar in the world but flavor-wise maybe not as the dominant note. To me the char was inedible but husband liked the fish itself, esp. the well crisped skin.

As mentioned earlier, the dark beer soaked bread dessert was very good. The donuts - ok, nothing wrong with them but not transporting either (the zeppole another diner shared with us at Parm last night were better). an interesting enough bottle of carignan blanc - how often do you see that on a wine list? (BTW, Sneak is right, the by-the-glass selection is a snooze. Also, you get better glassware when ordering a bottle - don't love it when restaurants do that)

it was interesting to try food that's so different from what's being served all over the city right now but it's kind strange when a dessert is the most memorable dish (and i don't have much of a sweet tooth).

the bar staff is very friendly, accommodating and enthusiastic. (although they could drop the "chef and the purity of flavors" spiel.) the bathrooms have their own heaters, which is appreciated this time of the year (but it's a bit of a maze down there and the smells are not pretty). the bathroom wallpaper is great. really. just look at that sketch on the menu. great pottery/tableware, a pleasure to eat off something other than a paper lined plastic basket (the new two-star plating) or the endless procession of oversized white plates. a nice dark rum-rye drink. fun atmosphere, a bit like Gusto or Balthazar when they first opened, down to our neighbor who had eaten at Acme before but couldn't remember what he ate and whether it was good because he was drunk.

overall nice but i think Hospoda might have the edge on the food (and wine**), the flavors sharper and more precise. more exciting when looking for something different. alas, uptown.

*i had a small pasta tasting directly beforehand, which included one with clams so savory and briny, the barley dish totally threw me off

**and cocktails. yeah, Hospoda has cocktails - and very good ones but that's for a different thread
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#251 yvonne johnson

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 04:13 PM

the bathrooms have their own heaters, which is appreciated this time of the year (but it's a bit of a maze down there and the smells are not pretty).

Not having much luck in that area, are you?
It was not a new dish, as I recognised my tooth marks. Wilfrid

#252 Suzanne F

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 05:17 PM

Note to Jason: Even though she doesn't mention prices, nux has given me a ton of very useful information here. And she hits on the philosophy-of-the-place business, too.

so, finally got to eat here tonight. (success! walked in around 6:20, bar completely empty and only a table or two taken but it filled up by 7, for all you potential walk-ins.)

liked the sunchokes a lot; unfortunately, half of them were undercooked. the farmer's egg (light and creamy, cute presentation in a basket over hay) and bread & beer dessert were also highlights. an interesting (in a good way) salad of raw shrimp and bison tartar with bitter greens. the barley and clams, while nice in a creamy risotto kind of way, was a surprisingly sweet dish - i expected more briny flavors*. Also, quite substantial - could easily make a starchy main. And I'm not a fan of food completely covered by foam - i like to see what i'm eating. The chicken and egg was nice - and massive, easily feeds two - but also sort of sweet and creamy and mild. No distinctive flavors, just mild with a soft texture. The arctic char, on the other hand, was too vinegary with too crunchy leeks - here, i was hoping for melty, soft leeks. Sherry vinegar is my favorite kind of vinegar in the world but flavor-wise maybe not as the dominant note. To me the char was inedible but husband liked the fish itself, esp. the well crisped skin.

As mentioned earlier, the dark beer soaked bread dessert was very good. The donuts - ok, nothing wrong with them but not transporting either (the zeppole another diner shared with us at Parm last night were better). an interesting enough bottle of carignan blanc - how often do you see that on a wine list? (BTW, Sneak is right, the by-the-glass selection is a snooze. Also, you get better glassware when ordering a bottle - don't love it when restaurants do that)

it was interesting to try food that's so different from what's being served all over the city right now but it's kind strange when a dessert is the most memorable dish (and i don't have much of a sweet tooth).

the bar staff is very friendly, accommodating and enthusiastic. (although they could drop the "chef and the purity of flavors" spiel.) the bathrooms have their own heaters, which is appreciated this time of the year (but it's a bit of a maze down there and the smells are not pretty). the bathroom wallpaper is great. really. just look at that sketch on the menu. great pottery/tableware, a pleasure to eat off something other than a paper lined plastic basket (the new two-star plating) or the endless procession of oversized white plates. a nice dark rum-rye drink. fun atmosphere, a bit like Gusto or Balthazar when they first opened, down to our neighbor who had eaten at Acme before but couldn't remember what he ate and whether it was good because he was drunk.

overall nice but i think Hospoda might have the edge on the food (and wine**), the flavors sharper and more precise. more exciting when looking for something different. alas, uptown.

*i had a small pasta tasting directly beforehand, which included one with clams so savory and briny, the barley dish totally threw me off

**and cocktails. yeah, Hospoda has cocktails - and very good ones but that's for a different thread


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#253 Sneakeater

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 05:23 PM

It's interesting to note that a common complaint is that vegetable components like leeks and onions are crunchy when you expect them to be soft. I'm beginning to see that it's a feature (although one you might not like) rather than a bug. It doesn't bother me. In fact, I kind of like it. (I thought the leeks under the char were kind of great, texturally).

You can see from the bison-and-shrimp dish that Chef Refslund really goes for crunch.
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#254 Orik

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 05:59 PM


the bathrooms have their own heaters, which is appreciated this time of the year (but it's a bit of a maze down there and the smells are not pretty).

Not having much luck in that area, are you?



With undercooked sunchokes under her belt, nux can apply for a position at Parm.
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#255 cstuart

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 06:17 PM

It's interesting to note that a common complaint is that vegetable components like leeks and onions are crunchy when you expect them to be soft. I'm beginning to see that it's a feature (although one you might not like) rather than a bug. It doesn't bother me. In fact, I kind of like it. (I thought the leeks under the char were kind of great, texturally).

You can see from the bison-and-shrimp dish that Chef Refslund really goes for crunch.

I've read an interview in which he says he prefers to undercook veg, instead of overcooking, and likes the "bite" (both texture and flavor) of, say, and slightly undercooked broccoli rabe stem.