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Posted by yeech on 10/28/2007
I'm not sure if this place used to be better, but a recent visit was pretty bad on all accounts. We arrived late for our reservation and then was told that it's standard policy to give away reservations after a set period of time (fair enough). Only the time they quoted hadn't actually passed yet. Somehow the front staff thought that was funny. Anyway, the service for the rest of the evening was along those lines -- really poor at that price point. Dishes were cleared away before we were finished eating, and tap water was *repeatedly* poured into bottled water glasses. The food was way too expensive for what it is, and consistently too salty and rich. Admittedly, I find the concept of selecting your own main and own side a little faulty too, as it's hard to tell from the descriptions how the sides and mains will interact with each other. That's kind of the point of going to a good restaurant and what chefs are paid to do -- come up with interesting and unique combinations, no? And one last point: while the room is beautiful, the place was really filled with out of towners and tourist types dressed to the nines. Sorry, just not my kind of place.
Posted by JLNY on 09/30/2007
Got a last minute reservation this past friday night. Going into the restaurant i was surprised to find it so upscale. I only ever hear about Tom and the food, so I guess i expected it to be a bit more casual? The Food - ordered a starter of Citrus Marinated Octopus over Avacado Puree. Then the entree of Pork Leg with pulled Sausage, and a side of Roasted Corn & Pancetta Risotto. Everything was amazing, it had to be because when the huge bill came - I did not feel ripped off and would go back again. Also the wine list is enormous, but has some good mid priced choices, i.e. Nebbiolo & Cabernet Franc....
Posted by Anonymous on 09/24/2007
We loved everything about this restaurant. The service was amazing...our glasses were never left empty---and the waiters were extremely friendly and helpful. The only thing I found to be over priced were the drinks. I had an $18.00 glass of Pinot Noir...which I thought was too high for what it was. The Cosmo's were $14.50. I think you can judge a restaurant on whether or not the food needs Salt and Pepper...this one needed nothing! Everything on our table was delious. At our table we had Scollops, Beef Short Rib, Salmon, Corn Risotto, Eggplant, and Doughnuts with Vanilla Icecream. We opted against an appitizer or salad---and we're glad we did. We walked away completely full. The amuse bouche, palate cleanser, mini dessert tart and scone were a GREAT touch. I highly recommend this restaurant---and plan on returning myself!
Posted by aldor on 09/14/2007
I went there for my anniversary , read the negative reviews but decided to ignore them. That was a mistake. The service was fair to poor, which is unacceptable considerering the prices and the reputation. The food was just alright, nothing special except the cost. A small plate of assorted mushrooms was $22.00. A bacon appetizer was not much more that a cube of pork fat on a plate. I should have sent it back. My son had a $50. steak that was all right but certainly nothing out of the ordinary. My conclusion is that celebrity chefs as a rule are incredibly over rated and you are better of going to a local place. I am sure you will enjoy it more.
Posted by Anonymous on 09/02/2007
Top Chef's star chef should look to his own establishment before critiquing others! We are avid fans of Top Chef and have heard about this restaurant for years, so were happy to try it. The service was EXTREMELY slow and unprofessional. I knew we were in trouble when the martini's came with those skimpy olives out of a supermarket jar and was splattered on me as they poured table-side. "Snack" appetizers were delicious, but very overpriced. $20 for a plate of assorted salami was ridiculous - it was no more than shaves of meat (probably no more than 1 oz.) - I didn't know salami could actually be cut that thin. Portions overall are very small - even my 6 yr old made a comment. Waitress never asked us if we wanted wine following our cocktails, she just took the glasses away. Fondue appetizer was yummy and will make it at home. Sauce for orrechietti was delicious, however the pasta was seriously undercooked. Food was uninspiring. We saw people sending back food and complaining at the table next to us. The highglight of the meal was the breadsticks - although they gave us four sticks for a table of five people! Don't mind paying the price when the food is worth it, but this is very expensive for what you get, not worth it and not going back again. I'll watch Top Chef with a completely new outlook now!
Posted by ScottG on 09/02/2007
At this level I apply a very high standard. I am seeking perfection in every regard. The food at Craft comes so close to perfection I can offer little criticism. You should know that the presentation is family style. The intention is that the table order a variety of dishes for sharing. If you wish to dine conventionally you may because the plate size is typical for one person. However, because the tables have been designed to hold plates in the center they are larger than normal. The generous size is luxurious in a New York restaurant space which is usually so cramped. However, it means you are further from your fellow diners and conversation can be a little strained. We were a group of four and felt that personal topics were being broadcast to a certian extent. Also, we were seated at a table near the front of the room and two of our party faced the street which featured a glaring street lamp. I would consider this when being seated. The back of the house is prettier. The service was very formal, not stiff, but not jovial either. Our waitperson was superb, always available but almost invisible. He could have been friendlier. Hardly a complaint. Again, at this level I seek perfection. Our group of 4 with two bottles of wine spent $480 plus tip. The food is without flaw. We only had one dish that could be considered less than perfect which was the pork loin. We considered it a touch dry. The pork shoulder was the stand out entre and the English peas the best vegetable. Spinach was also unbelievable. Oh, the crab with crispy bacon was amazing. I could go on. Avoid the front tables, don't expect the most intimate seating arangemernt (at least for four) and bring your most discrening palate. You will not be let down.
Posted by UES on 08/23/2007
Do not go here for a special occassion - you run the risk of a bad experience. I was here once before a while ago and it was good, I have been twice recently and it has been bad. The place is expensive and you no longer get what you pay for. I think the owner/chef needs to refocus. I think he has a TV show or something and this once great place has suffered. Still nice in there with great looking people...