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#1 Wilfrid1

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 02:53 PM

Revealing that we have no thread on the place. I suspect that if any members use it, they've nothing new to say about it. I hadn't been for years, but noticed ready availability on Open Table recently, so decided to remind myself what it was like.

It's showing some wear around the edges, but all desire to comment in detail was swept aside by some very poor food. This is a good opportunity for everyone to explain to me both how I should have ordered differently, and how I should better have handled the situation when I didn't like what I got.

I am all ears.
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***Every Monday***At the Sign of the Pink Pig.

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#2 oakapple

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:02 PM

Haven't you heard? Joe Dobias is now working there as a consultant. He'll do for them what he did for his other restaurant.
Marc Shepherd
Editor, New York Journal

#3 Wilfrid1

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:04 PM

I thought of you when I wrote it up, because I don't know what damn greens were in the dish, and it really didn't matter. laugh.gif
Elect-a-lujah

***Every Monday***At the Sign of the Pink Pig.

If the author could go around the place hitting random readers with a rubber hammer, the Pink Pig would still be worth a visit.

#4 splinky

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:15 PM

looks like we dodged a bullet yesterday, then. when we had to change our meeting time we looked on opentable to see if there was space for 5 at 1pm. when we saw that there was space for 5 at every half hour interval, we thought it very odd and went back to our original plan. haven't eaten at USC for a few years but had never been disappointed in the past. i think i'll play it safe and just hang onto those good memories.

“One thing kids like is to be tricked. For instance, I was going to take my little nephew to Disneyland, but instead I drove him to an old burned-out warehouse. 'Oh, no!', I said, 'Disneyland burned down.' He cried and cried, but I think that deep down he thought it was a pretty good joke. I started to drive over to the real Disneyland, but it was getting pretty late.”
~Jack Handey

*proud descendant of cheese eating surrender monkeys*

 


#5 Lex

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:34 PM

QUOTE(splinky @ Jul 20 2009, 11:15 AM) View Post
looks like we dodged a bullet yesterday, then. when we had to change our meeting time we looked on opentable to see if there was space for 5 at 1pm. when we saw that there was space for 5 at every half hour interval, we thought it very odd and went back to our original plan. haven't eaten at USC for a few years but had never been disappointed in the past. i think i'll play it safe and just hang onto those good memories.

I hear the duck confit is memorable.
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#6 nuxvomica

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:44 PM

the first - and last - time i ate there must have been about 10 years ago and it was nothing to write home about either, food-wise. the service and wine were highlights.
“Eat me,’’ it says. “Eat me and die.’’ -- Jonathan Gold

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#7 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:52 PM

I had the exact same dish as you last month when USQ was chosen as a non-threatening venue for us to take my fiancees younger siblings (18 and 21) for one of their first "fine dining experiences." I pushed for Craft, but it wasn't my call and I wasn't paying.

It was a pretty uninteresting meal. All around, but the menu had plenty of things on it that weren't going to scare anyone.

It was a terrifyingly large portion that was pretty lame. Although my greens weren't overly bitter - in fact I thought they were Spinach at the time. But the mostarda was pointless, and the duck was not good. It didn't even have a confit texture.

"This is a battle of who blinks first, and we've cut off our eyelids"


#8 oakapple

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:55 PM

I suspect that there are better dishes on the menu than that duck—not that it is excusable.
Marc Shepherd
Editor, New York Journal

#9 Wilfrid1

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 03:56 PM

QUOTE
terrifyingly large portion


QUOTE
It didn't even that confit texture.


Right and right.

QUOTE(oakapple @ Jul 20 2009, 11:55 AM) View Post
I suspect that there are better dishes on the menu than that duck, not that it is excusable.


I thought about that too. Unless I am overlooking specials, meat choices are limited to chicken, steak, duck and lamb chops "scotta dita." Given the restaurant's Italian slant, the chops might be a better choice; given that I don't tend to order roast chicken when eating out, and reserve steaks for places that specialize in them, the duck loomed as inevitable. (Yes, there's fish and pasta, of course.)
Elect-a-lujah

***Every Monday***At the Sign of the Pink Pig.

If the author could go around the place hitting random readers with a rubber hammer, the Pink Pig would still be worth a visit.

#10 Steve R.

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 04:06 PM

Several of us went last December and I remember the meal as thoroughly mediocre. Not enough so that I would pan it, but definitely enough to not wish to return any time soon. My only real memory of anything enjoyable was the bread basket. Well.. the wine too, but I'm pretty sure that we paid corkage and that someone brought it.

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#11 Orik

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 04:32 PM

QUOTE(Wilfrid @ Jul 20 2009, 10:53 AM) View Post
Revealing that we have no thread on the place. I suspect that if any members use it, they've nothing new to say about it. I hadn't been for years, but noticed ready availability on Open Table recently, so decided to remind myself what it was like.

It's showing some wear around the edges, but all desire to comment in detail was swept aside by some very poor food. This is a good opportunity for everyone to explain to me both how I should have ordered differently, and how I should better have handled the situation when I didn't like what I got.

I am all ears.


I've thought about this some more - the sizable red herring in the anti-blogger stance by chefs (as opposed to the legitimate one by, say, LML) is that the lack of education among reviewers causes responses on blogs and review sites to be overwhelmingly positive.

On Yelp, JoeDoe, Ssam Bar, Union Square Cafe, 2nd Ave Deli, Sparks, Prune, Ippudo... all have the same score (4 stars)

You should have thrown the dish on the floor and said you thought it was a rat.
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#12 oakapple

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 04:46 PM

QUOTE(Orik @ Jul 20 2009, 12:32 PM) View Post
I've thought about this some more - the sizable red herring in the anti-blogger stance by chefs (as opposed to the legitimate one by, say, LML) is that the lack of education among reviewers causes responses on blogs and review sites to be overwhelmingly positive.

On Yelp, JoeDoe, Ssam Bar, Union Square Cafe, 2nd Ave Deli, Sparks, Prune, Ippudo... all have the same score (4 stars)

Yes, and funnily enough chefs complain only about the bad reviews. If someone says that Union Square Café is better than Le Bernardin, Danny Meyer isn't going to correct them, even though he realizes this isn't the case.

Marc Shepherd
Editor, New York Journal

#13 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 04:51 PM

QUOTE(Orik @ Jul 20 2009, 12:32 PM) View Post
QUOTE(Wilfrid @ Jul 20 2009, 10:53 AM) View Post
Revealing that we have no thread on the place. I suspect that if any members use it, they've nothing new to say about it. I hadn't been for years, but noticed ready availability on Open Table recently, so decided to remind myself what it was like.

It's showing some wear around the edges, but all desire to comment in detail was swept aside by some very poor food. This is a good opportunity for everyone to explain to me both how I should have ordered differently, and how I should better have handled the situation when I didn't like what I got.

I am all ears.


I've thought about this some more - the sizable red herring in the anti-blogger stance by chefs (as opposed to the legitimate one by, say, LML) is that the lack of education among reviewers causes responses on blogs and review sites to be overwhelmingly positive.

On Yelp, JoeDoe, Ssam Bar, Union Square Cafe, 2nd Ave Deli, Sparks, Prune, Ippudo... all have the same score (4 stars)

You should have thrown the dish on the floor and said you thought it was a rat.

Having spent money people are loathe to admit they got ripped off. It is human nature.


My favorite example of the issue Orik is talking about (I know there is some smart sounding statistical name for it?) is the Long Island Zagat guide. There its a geographic issue. Clientele in Great Neck seem to always be pissed off about something. Massapequa people seem to love everything. Makes the book useless even compared to other Zagats.

"This is a battle of who blinks first, and we've cut off our eyelids"


#14 oakapple

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 04:59 PM

QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jul 20 2009, 12:51 PM) View Post
Having spent money people are loathe to admit they got ripped off. It is human nature.

That is certainly true, though it doesn't fully explain the problem. A rating of four stars for Union Square Café is only meaningful if you know where else the person has dined. If their regular meal out is Olive Garden, then USC would be a pretty big step up.
Marc Shepherd
Editor, New York Journal

#15 splinky

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 06:19 PM

QUOTE(Lex @ Jul 20 2009, 11:34 AM) View Post
QUOTE(splinky @ Jul 20 2009, 11:15 AM) View Post
looks like we dodged a bullet yesterday, then. when we had to change our meeting time we looked on opentable to see if there was space for 5 at 1pm. when we saw that there was space for 5 at every half hour interval, we thought it very odd and went back to our original plan. haven't eaten at USC for a few years but had never been disappointed in the past. i think i'll play it safe and just hang onto those good memories.

I hear the duck confit is memorable.

my g-d, man! we had an infant with us.

“One thing kids like is to be tricked. For instance, I was going to take my little nephew to Disneyland, but instead I drove him to an old burned-out warehouse. 'Oh, no!', I said, 'Disneyland burned down.' He cried and cried, but I think that deep down he thought it was a pretty good joke. I started to drive over to the real Disneyland, but it was getting pretty late.”
~Jack Handey

*proud descendant of cheese eating surrender monkeys*