Scorching Review for Guy Fieri’s American Kitchen & Bar Great Reading

I cannot stand Guy Fieri. Wouldn’t cross the street to meet him – actually, I’d cross the street to get away from him. This is why I got some level of delight from reading the review of Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar in Times Square.

Apparently, it is an abysmal dining experience. Those of you who rubberneck at traffic accidents will want to go to the Times website and read the review in person, but I’ll pull some choice quotes.

…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?

…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?

…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?

…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?

Wow. Unfortunately, the crowd that is likely to go to the restaurant in the first place isn’t likely to read the review. You, however, can read the entire piece here, and the NY Times website.

Your thoughts are welcome

  1. Gary S says

    While I certainly wont dispute the comments made by the NY Times reviewer as I haven’t eaten there I think that you might be a harsh when it comes to Mr. Fieri. Guy won the next great whatever on the Food channel in part by his persona, which unfortunately meant that people expect that goofy persona.

    I actually have met Mr Fieri and my impression is that he is very different when he’s not in front of the camera. On the other hand I’ve heard him called the Ron Jeremy of the food industry by another well known food icon and there might be some truth to that.

    Just my opinion.

  2. DD says

    I laughed out loud with the NYT review……watched him on the Today show this am…..4 reviews in 2 months…..he conceded that things weren’t up to parr and shouldn’t be expected so soon. They are ‘working’ on it. Curiously when should patrons expect a restaurant to sail smoothly after opening? Perhaps it’s too ambitious?

    4 reviews within 2 months opening is perhaps leaning toward a personal agenda and just a little mean spirited.

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