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The Bruni Thread


Guest Aaron T

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Okay what about underground restaurants? Some are pricey. Some serve serious food. Some have nice ambiance. Some are notable.

 

A good number have been reviewed by other media.

 

Does the NY Times choose to ignore them (review-wise), just because they're operating underground? Is that legitimate? Is it a disservice to its readers?

Are you referring to establishments like Bite Club? The title of Frank Bruni's column is "Restaurants". As good as Bite Club is, it's not a restaurant.

 

for the record, I know for a fact that it's not that simple. [i'm hesitant to say more in a public forum about what were essentially private communications.]

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1. RTR = Russian Tea Room.

 

2. Why was the Waverly Inn reviewed? it's just decent comfort food...like many unreviewed spots. it was reviewed because it is notable...and not for food.

I think you've forgotten a piece of the reviewing criteria. When $25-and-under places get a full review, it's practically always because they're notable for food. Whatever other notability they may have is secondary.

 

But Waverly Inn isn't a $25-and-under place. It's one of those middle-ground places I mentioned, where many factors besides the food figure in the decision to review.

 

Masa, of course is in the $60-and-over category, and there is no actual decision about such places: it will be reviewed.

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1. RTR = Russian Tea Room.

 

2. Why was the Waverly Inn reviewed? it's just decent comfort food...like many unreviewed spots. it was reviewed because it is notable...and not for food.

I think you've forgotten a piece of the reviewing criteria. When $25-and-under places get a full review, it's practically always because they're notable for food. Whatever other notability they may have is secondary.

 

But Waverly Inn isn't a $25-and-under place. It's one of those middle-ground places I mentioned, where many factors besides the food figure in the decision to review.

 

Masa, of course is in the $60-and-over category, and there is no actual decision about such places: it will be reviewed.

 

eh...Waverly Inn fits in to the $25 and under just as much as Lupa or August.

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Okay what about underground restaurants? Some are pricey. Some serve serious food. Some have nice ambiance. Some are notable.

 

A good number have been reviewed by other media.

 

Does the NY Times choose to ignore them (review-wise), just because they're operating underground? Is that legitimate? Is it a disservice to its readers?

Are you referring to establishments like Bite Club? The title of Frank Bruni's column is "Restaurants". As good as Bite Club is, it's not a restaurant.

 

for the record, I know for a fact that it's not that simple. [i'm hesitant to say more in a public forum about what were essentially private communications.]

I know that. I was making A) the descriptive statement that Frank Bruni doesn't review supper clubs; and B) the normative statement that I don't think he should. Maybe he will someday (he does a lot of things I disapprove of), but for the moment his actual practice (for whatever reason) is what I think it should be.

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Okay what about underground restaurants? Some are pricey. Some serve serious food. Some have nice ambiance. Some are notable.

 

A good number have been reviewed by other media.

 

Does the NY Times choose to ignore them (review-wise), just because they're operating underground? Is that legitimate? Is it a disservice to its readers?

Are you referring to establishments like Bite Club? The title of Frank Bruni's column is "Restaurants". As good as Bite Club is, it's not a restaurant.

 

for the record, I know for a fact that it's not that simple. [i'm hesitant to say more in a public forum about what were essentially private communications.]

 

We could argue the use of the term restaurant, but I think legality is more of an issue - I'm sure that's what Nathan is saying (or not saying to be more accurate). I purposely didn't mention a name of any of the undergrounds for that specific reason. But several have been reviewed by the mainstream media including NPR.

 

Certainly the NY Times could review an underground and just not give location or contact information - same as the other reviewers have done.

 

Hey, if the Old Grey Lady could include a semi-nude slide show in a review (of a club), then doing an underground doesn't seem to be so sleazy.

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Certainly the NY Times could review an underground and just not give location or contact information - same as the other reviewers have done.

 

Hey, if the Old Grey Lady could include a semi-nude slide show in a review (of a club), then doing an underground doesn't seem to be so sleazy.

I just don't see it in Bruni's column. The Times gives space to much more than just Bruni's weekly "star system" reviews, and I could very well imagine them covering a supper club in that format. Just not as a "restaurant review".

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2. Why was the Waverly Inn reviewed? it's just decent comfort food...like many unreviewed spots. it was reviewed because it is notable...and not for food.

 

Preaching to the choir. Waste of a slot.

 

3. as I said before, full capitalization increases the odds of high quality. nature of the beast. so expensive restaurants are more likely to be notable for food than cheap ones. but that's not at all like the belief of some that only expensive restaurants should be reviewed.

 

No, but it's true, and it's why people reasonably expect the critic to concentrate more on upscale than downscale restaurants.

 

4. Masa the restaurant would not be qua Masa the restaurant, it would not exist, unless it were the most expensive restaurant in NY.

Now you are confusing names with descriptions. "Masa", whether the man or a restaurant, is a rigid designator. The consequence of your view, as Kripke noted, is that if you were to discover a restaurant in the city more expensive than Masa - Kuruma Zushi, say - it would follow that Kuruma Zushi was in fact Masa, and Masa not Masa but a different restaurant entirely.

 

Nice argument by Kripke there.

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My bathroom break helped me to understand what Nathan and Sneak are after. They are actually content with the status quo, and would hate to see the Times critic reviewing the same places a Jim Leff would review. But they want to draft the principles behind what the critic is doing (anyway) such that it doesn't appear the little guys (or girls) are discriminated against.

 

 

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I'll say that anonymity is the most primary deterrent to a starred review.

I'm not so sure about that, because there are plenty of places Bruni reviews where he is recognized every time—any Vongerichten or Boulud restaurant, for example. But he reviews them anyway.

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