Best and Worst Food Trend of 2013





Best Trend


Stein’s pick: It’s all relative, obviously, but I’m excited by the unprecious, unpretentious and affordable tasting menus at places like Contra ($55), Luksus ($75), Aska ($79) and Feast (prices vary), to name a few. I like the idea that instead of tasting menus being mindless splurges or endless slogs, the ones here really do allow the diner to have a full experience of what the chef is trying to do in its most pure form. It’s a pleasure to surrender, when you can afford it.

Ozersky responds: This is a very smart answer, and better than mine. I totally agree and wish I had come up with it. Is it too late to change? Just kidding. Sort of.


Ozersky’s pick: The addition of Filipino food to New York, in modern, elevated form. Maharlika, Jeepney, Pig and Khao, and Lumpia Shack are just the start of what might be something special. On the other hand, we said that about ceviche too.

Stein responds: Filipinos have been in New York since the 1920s, and they had Filipino restaurants then too. Were they “elevated”? Well, no. But saying this is a trend just because non-Filipinos are taking an interest, on both sides of the counter, is like when Columbus “discovered” America. The Arawaks beg to differ.

Worst Trend


Stein’s pick: Steak houses, the big-dick celebrations of ostentation, have exploded at historically aberrant levels. Among the newbies are Costata, Reserve Cut, American Cut, M. Wells Steak House and the Arlington Club. You won’t leave dissatisfied, but they all celebrate the sort of economic aggression, reckless spending and showy wealth that form the crust of the 1 percent and burn the rest of us—not to mention how limited the steakhouse canon is, how little it brooks innovation and how little technique is used.

Ozersky responds: Calling steak houses a trend is like nominating William Howard Taft for Man of the Year. It’s almost impossible to think of something that is less trendy than this hidebound, ancient genre.


Ozersky’s pick: I am totally against the indiscriminate use of bone marrow, either by itself or shmeared onto other things. It’s basically pure fat, with no flavor to speak of, and the cheapest, shoddiest shortcut to luxury I know of.

Stein responds: There are 1.5 million New Yorkers who are going hungry. Whether restaurants use bone marrow or butter is shuffling the deck chairs. #JoshOzerskyProblems



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