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Thread: NY Times Skewers Guy Fieri's Times Square Restaurant

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    Elite Member BITTER's Avatar
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    Default NY Times Skewers Guy Fieri's Times Square Restaurant


    As Not Seen on TV

    By PETE WELLS

    GUY FIERI, have you eaten at your new restaurant in Times Square? Have you pulled up one of the 500 seats at Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar and ordered a meal? Did you eat the food? Did it live up to your expectations?


    Did panic grip your soul as you stared into the whirling hypno wheel of the menu, where adjectives and nouns spin in a crazy vortex? When you saw the burger described as “Guy’s Pat LaFrieda custom blend, all-natural Creekstone Farm Black Angus beef patty, LTOP (lettuce, tomato, onion + pickle), SMC (super-melty-cheese) and a slathering of Donkey Sauce on garlic-buttered brioche,” did your mind touch the void for a minute?

    Did you notice that the menu was an unreliable predictor of what actually came to the table? Were the “bourbon butter crunch chips” missing from your Almond Joy cocktail, too? Was your deep-fried “boulder” of ice cream the size of a standard scoop?


    What exactly about a small salad with four or five miniature croutons makes Guy’s Famous Big Bite Caesar (a) big (b) famous or (c) Guy’s, in any meaningful sense?


    Were you struck by how very far from awesome the Awesome Pretzel Chicken Tenders are? If you hadn’t come up with the recipe yourself, would you ever guess that the shiny tissue of breading that exudes grease onto the plate contains either pretzels or smoked almonds? Did you discern any buttermilk or brine in the white meat, or did you think it tasted like chewy air?


    Why is one of the few things on your menu that can be eaten without fear or regret — a lunch-only sandwich of chopped soy-glazed pork with coleslaw and cucumbers — called a Roasted Pork Bahn Mi, when it resembles that item about as much as you resemble Emily Dickinson?

    When you have a second, Mr. Fieri, would you see what happened to the black bean and roasted squash soup we ordered?


    Hey, did you try that blue drink, the one that glows like nuclear waste? The watermelon margarita? Any idea why it tastes like some combination of radiator fluid and formaldehyde?


    At your five Johnny Garlic’s restaurants in California, if servers arrive with main courses and find that the appetizers haven’t been cleared yet, do they try to find space for the new plates next to the dirty ones? Or does that just happen in Times Square, where people are used to crowding?

    If a customer shows up with a reservation at one of your two Tex Wasabi’s outlets, and the rest of the party has already been seated, does the host say, “Why don’t you have a look around and see if you can find them?” and point in the general direction of about 200 seats?


    What is going on at this new restaurant of yours, really? Has anyone ever told you that your high-wattage passion for no-collar American food makes you television’s answer to Calvin Trillin, if Mr. Trillin bleached his hair, drove a Camaro and drank Boozy Creamsicles? When you cruise around the country for your show “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives,” rasping out slangy odes to the unfancy places where Americans like to get down and greasy, do you really mean it? Or is it all an act? Is that why the kind of cooking you celebrate on television is treated with so little respect at Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar?


    How, for example, did Rhode Island’s supremely unhealthy and awesomely good fried calamari — dressed with garlic butter and pickled hot peppers — end up in your restaurant as a plate of pale, unsalted squid rings next to a dish of sweet mayonnaise with a distant rumor of spice?


    How did Louisiana’s blackened, Cajun-spiced treatment turn into the ghostly nubs of unblackened, unspiced white meat in your Cajun Chicken Alfredo?


    How did nachos, one of the hardest dishes in the American canon to mess up, turn out so deeply unlovable? Why augment tortilla chips with fried lasagna noodles that taste like nothing except oil? Why not bury those chips under a properly hot and filling layer of melted cheese and jalapeños instead of dribbling them with thin needles of pepperoni and cold gray clots of ground turkey?


    By the way, would you let our server know that when we asked for chai, he brought us a cup of hot water? When you hung that sign by the entrance that says, WELCOME TO FLAVOR TOWN!, were you just messing with our heads?


    Does this make it sound as if everything at Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar is inedible? I didn’t say that, did I?


    Tell me, though, why does your kitchen sabotage even its more appealing main courses with ruinous sides and sauces? Why stifle a pretty good bison meatloaf in a sugary brown glaze with no undertow of acid or spice? Why send a serviceable herb-stuffed rotisserie chicken to the table in the company of your insipid Rice-a-Roni variant?


    Why undermine a big fist of slow-roasted pork shank, which might fly in many downtown restaurants if the General Tso’s-style sauce were a notch less sweet, with randomly shaped scraps of carrot that combine a tough, nearly raw crunch with the deadened, overcooked taste of school cafeteria vegetables?


    Is this how you roll in Flavor Town? Somewhere within the yawning, three-level interior of Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar, is there a long refrigerated tunnel that servers have to pass through to make sure that the French fries, already limp and oil-sogged, are also served cold? What accounts for the vast difference between the Donkey Sauce recipe you’ve published and the Donkey Sauce in your restaurant? Why has the hearty, rustic appeal of roasted-garlic mayonnaise been replaced by something that tastes like Miracle Whip with minced raw garlic?


    And when we hear the words Donkey Sauce, which part of the donkey are we supposed to think about? Is the entire restaurant a very expensive piece of conceptual art? Is the shapeless, structureless baked alaska that droops and slumps and collapses while you eat it, or don’t eat it, supposed to be a representation in sugar and eggs of the experience of going insane? Why did the toasted marshmallow taste like fish?

    Did you finish that blue drink?


    Oh, and we never got our Vegas fries; would you mind telling the kitchen that we don’t need them? Thanks.


    Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar

    POOR

    220 West 44th Street (Seventh Avenue), (646) 532-4897, guysamerican.com.

    ATMOSPHERE 500 seats, three levels, three bars, one chaotic mess.

    SERVICE The well-meaning staff seems to realize that this is not a real restaurant.

    SOUND LEVEL Rawk and roll, but at moderate volumes.

    RECOMMENDED Roasted Pork Bahn Mi, General Tso’s Crispy Pork Shank, Cedar Plank Salmon with Jalapeño Apricot Jam.

    DRINKS AND WINE Margaritas, while too sweet and strong, are the best cocktails. Draft beers are better than the largely dull wines.

    PRICES Soups, salads and appetizers, $8.95 to $16.50; sandwiches, pastas and main courses, $16.95 to $31.50.

    HOURS Sunday to Wednesday, 11:30 a.m. to midnight; Thursday to Saturday, 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m.

    RESERVATIONS Accepted.

    WHEELCHAIR ACCESS The bar area and an accessible restroom are on street level.

    WHAT THE STARS MEAN Ratings range from zero to four stars and reflect the reviewer’s reaction primarily to food, with ambience, service and price taken into consideration.
    ------------------------------------------------------
    So glad to see this dork get slammed. I do know he owned a BBQ sushi bar in Cali for a while, but it burned down. Talk about God's will.
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    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    Hahahaha, douche! Got pwned.

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    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    Yes- but as a poster for them pointed out he is donating HALF of his proceeds there to Sandy victims. That is a lot of money to donate.
    I didn't start out to collect diamonds, but somehow they just kept piling up.-Mae West

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    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    Maybe he should try harder for the sake of Sandy victims then. No excuse for all those complaints up there. I liked how it was a barrage of question after question of how things could possibly suck so bad. *snicker*

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    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Lol, funny piece. Tourists will eat there. Ny'ers only go to Times Square if they work in the area.
    sputnik likes this.
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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    I fucking hate Times Square. I thought it was ugly even the first time I visited New York as a kid. It's one of those touristy places io just don't get the appeal of and I don't understand why people visiting New York would want to go there.
    Lalique and levitt like this.
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    Elite Member BITTER's Avatar
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    Guy is rakin' it in; Carnival Cruises is using his name for their seagoing burger joints. They must have paid him a pretty penny for that.
    But he's still a douchebag - a human tater tot.
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    Elite Member gas_chick's Avatar
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    Not sure what they thought he'd have on a menu. I love Triple D. Makes me keep an eye out for obscure places when I'm traveling.
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    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Guy Fieri Thinks Times Restaurant Critic Pete Wells Has It In For Him: ‘It Really Seemed Like There Was Another Agenda’

    Guy Fieri can't imagine anyone disliking his food, so he's concluded that New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells' scathing — and scathingly funny — review of his Times Square restaurant must be due to a personal grudge Wells is holding against him.

    "I just thought it was ridiculous," Fieri told the Today Show's Savannah Guthrie. "I mean, I read reviews. You know, there's good and bad in the restaurant business; but that to me went so overboard it really seemed like there was another agenda."

    Without elaborating, Fieri went on to suggest that Wells was trying to "make a name" for himself, and figured that the best way to do that was to "go after a celebrity chef who's not a New Yorker that's doing a big concept, and in its second month."

    Or maybe the food was really bad? Just asking.



    Guy Fieri Thinks Times Restaurant Critic Pete Wells Has It In For Him: 'It Really Seemed Like There Was Another Agenda'
    It's no longer a dog whistle, it's a fucking trombone


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    Elite Member greysfang's Avatar
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    That review was funny as hell.
    FUCK YOU AND GIVE ME MY GODDAMN VENTI TWO PUMP LIGHT WHIP MOCHA YOU COCKSUCKING WHORE BEFORE I PUNCH YOU IN THE MOUTH. I just get unpleasant in my car. - Deej

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    Elite Member BITTER's Avatar
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    ^^^I know, right? My fave quip:
    And when we hear the words Donkey Sauce, which part of the donkey are we supposed to think about?
    Yet, he isn't clear on what he thinks the reviewers agenda is.
    What proof does he have that Mr. Wells doesn't like him because he isn't from New York? I don't doubt that he's been hard on New York-born chefs and restauranteurs. How does Guy explain that?? Fucking whiny tater tot douche.
    Good luck getting a cat to do anything let alone join in on your sexcapades. - Air Quotes

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    fgg
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    he's never claimed to make upscale, fancy food anyway. when they show his restaurants on tv they serve bar food.
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    Elite Member BITTER's Avatar
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    ^^^Which is fine; I love bar food. But it sounds like the eaterie is simply serving shitty food.
    Good luck getting a cat to do anything let alone join in on your sexcapades. - Air Quotes

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    Elite Member gas_chick's Avatar
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    I'd like a chance to review it.
    I am going to come and burn the fucking house down... but you will blow me first."

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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    In all honesty, it seems like the crux of the problem is the staff - the cooks don't know how to cook, and the wait staff sounds like this is their first job. You could have all kinds of great, interesting recipes and instructions, but if people are undercooking it and bringing it to your table half an hour late, or forgetting to bring it altogether, it's going to be a big mess. Also, it's probably true that Fieri probably didn't stick around to see how the place was running. Probably too busy touching up his 'do.

    By the way, if you think Times Square is embarrassing now, you should have seen it about 37 years ago. The last time I was there was when I was 9, and it seemed like one big porn arcade. I remember about 20 or so years ago that Jimmy Breslin (NY writer) complained vociferously about Giuliani cleaning it up and making it "respectable". Breslin was like, "No, the awful seediness was what makes it great!"

    ^^^ Witchcurlgirl, please correct me if I don't have accurately summarized.

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