Esquire Magazine Best New Restaurants-2006?

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by cuffthis, Oct 18, 2006.

  1. cuffthis

    cuffthis Senior member

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    Please help me understand the logic behind their picks. As the attached schedule indicates, my restaurant's food and combined Zagat scores were higher than all but 2 of the winners. What gives? Is my home state of Delaware not worthy? And if a dinner only costs $37 at Domaine Hudson vs. much more at other places, doesn't that matter?

    NAME\t\tFOOD\t\tDÉCOR\t\tSERVICE\t\tPRICE

    Domaine Hudson\t\t25\t\t25\t\t24\t\t$37
    1314 N. Washington St.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (bet.13th & 14th Sts.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Wilmington, DE\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    302-655-9463\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Acadiana\t\t23\t\t21\t\t22\t\t$49
    901 New York Ave. NW\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (9th St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Washington, DC\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    202-408-8848\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Ame\t\t25\t\t25\t\t24\t\t$67
    689 Mission St.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (Third St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    San Francisco, CA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    415-284-4040\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Cut\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tVE
    9500 Wilshire Blvd.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (El Camino Dr.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Beverly Hills, CA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    310-275-5200\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    A Voce\t\t24\t\t22\t\t21\t\t$61
    41 Madison Ave.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (26th St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Manhattan, NY\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    212-545-8555\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Stephan Pyles\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tE
    1807 Ross Ave.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (N. St. Paul St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Dallas, TX\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    214-580-7000\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Bong Su Restaurant and Lounge\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tE
    311 Third St.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (Folsom St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    San Francisco, CA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    415-536-5800\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Cordavi\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a
    14 North Market St.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Charleston, SC\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    843-577-0090\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Country\t\t23\t\t26\t\t21\t\tVE
    90 Madison Ave., 2nd fl.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (29th St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Manhattan, NY\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    212-889-7100\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Dona\t\t24\t\t26\t\t24\t\t$67
    208 E. 52nd St.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (bet. 2nd & 3rd Aves.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Manhattan, NY\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    212-308-0830\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Ecco\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tM
    40 Seventh St. NE\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (Cypress St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Atlanta, GA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    404-347-9555\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    The Georgian Room\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a
    The Cloister\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    100 Cloister Drive\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Sea Island, Ga\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    912-638-3611\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Guy Savoy, Restaurant\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tVE
    3570 Las Vegas Blvd. S.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (Flamingo Rd.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Las Vegas, NV\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    877-346-4642\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Joël Robuchon\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tVE
    3799 Las Vegas Blvd S.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (Tropicana Ave.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Las Vegas, NV\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    702-891-7925\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Junnoon\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tE
    150 University Ave.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (High St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Palo Alto, CA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    650-329-9644\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    OM Restaurant & Lounge\t\t18\t\t25\t\t15\t\t$58
    92 Winthrop St.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (Paris St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Cambridge, MA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    617-576-2800\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Proof On Main\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a
    702 West Main Street\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Louisville, KY\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    502-217-6360\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Rasika\t\t26\t\t26\t\t23\t\t$46
    633 D St. NW\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (bet. 6th & 7th Sts.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Washington, DC\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    202-637-1222\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Redd Restaurant\t\t27\t\t21\t\t25\t\t$65
    6480 Washington St.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (California Dr.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Yountville, CA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    707-944-2222\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Repast\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tM
    620 Glen Iris Dr. NE\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (North Ave.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Atlanta, GA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    404-870-8707\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t

    Sorellina\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tn/a\t\tVE
    1 Huntington Ave.\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    (Dartmouth St.)\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    Boston, MA\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
    617-412-4600\t\t\t\t\t\t\t\t
     
  2. cchen

    cchen Senior member

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  3. Kent Wang

    Kent Wang Affiliate Vendor Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    Esquire Magazine ranks mean even less.
     
  4. Aaron

    Aaron Senior member

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    Zagat scoring metrics aside, the Esquire food critics may have never eaten at your establishment. Or do you know they have?

    A.
     
  5. cuffthis

    cuffthis Senior member

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    Zagat scores ARE from discerning diners. Surveys are provided only to those who subscribe to zagat.com or sign up via purchasing products from them. For the most part, IMHO, people who are interested enough to pay the subscription fee are pretty discerning diners.

    IMO, Zagat scores don't mean much to discerning diners.
     
  6. chorse123

    chorse123 Senior member

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    "For the life of me" I can "hardly stand" the "silly" "worthless" "sound bites" that make up Zagat "reviews." I see "Zagat" as "little more than a mini phone book." No "offence" intended to "cuffthis," "whose establishment I would visit were it possible."
     
  7. Kent Wang

    Kent Wang Affiliate Vendor Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    To be more serious, I understand cuffthis's consternation. Whether Zagat and Esquire's ratings accurately reflect quality, they do bring in a lot of business. Few restaurants can remain profitable with "discerning diners" alone.
     
  8. Mute

    Mute Senior member

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    Zagat may not always be correct, but I usually find their rating system to be fairly accurate and certainly much more reliable than any single critic's opinion for any given establishment.
     
  9. bondurant

    bondurant Member

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    Please help me understand the logic behind their picks. As the attached schedule indicates, my restaurant's food and combined Zagat scores were higher than all but 2 of the winners. What gives? Is my home state of Delaware not worthy? And if a dinner only costs $37 at Domaine Hudson vs. much more at other places, doesn't that matter?

    I'm going to take a wild guess and say that having a famous chef (preferably one with at least two Michelin stars) as a consultant or a well connected NY PR firm in your employ would help things tremendously.

    I also agree that Zagat ratings mean next to nothing. The vast majority of people I know who subscribe to Zagat (either on the web or in hard copy) are in no way discerning about their food. They do, however, as a rule enjoy chalking up experiences at fine dining establishments so they can discuss them in the office and also fancy their opinions much more important than they actually are.
     
  10. darkoak

    darkoak Senior member

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    "For the life of me" I can "hardly stand" the "silly" "worthless" "sound bites" that make up Zagat "reviews." I see "Zagat" as "little more than a mini phone book." No "offence" intended to "cuffthis," "whose establishment I would visit were it possible."
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  11. Earthmover

    Earthmover Senior member

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    I think it's simply connections + geography. Someone at Esquire has to know about it and try it out (and obviously be influential in the editorializing to make you be on the list), and being in Delaware is not really conducive to that. In any case, I'm a firm believer in Zagat over any one critical source (they've never been grossly off for any of the NY restaurants I've tried), so I think it's not something to worry about. It's too bad that you can only be on a new restaurant list once, and Esquire never had the chance to hear about Domaine Hudson.
     
  12. JRinDC

    JRinDC Active Member

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    All I know is Mariani can't possibly eat in all the place he needs to in order to credibly put out a list like this. Acadiana and Rasika would not make anyone's top 10 list in Washington, DC, let alone the country. Rasika is good, but it's second tier and Acadiana isn't even in the same league.

    The only 4 star restaurants in the DC area are:

    Inn at Little Washington
    Maestro
    Cityzen
    Citronelle

    That's it folks. After that, there's the very good:

    Palena
    Restaurant Eve (tasting room)
    MiniBar
    Equinox
    Obelisk
    Tabard Inn
    1789

    That's 10. Rasika's in the next 10, maybe.
     
  13. auto90403

    auto90403 Senior member

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    Come on, folks, you're overbraining this.

    Lists produced by magazines of the "best" anything are very often just staffers kicking around what they're familiar with, with enough variation since the last time they produced such a list so they have a headline that attracts readers.

    When US News' college ranking come out every year with a reshuffled top 10, do you really think any of the schools did anything in the previous 12 months that would affect their ranking in a meaningful way?

    And yes, having a hot PR firm on the payroll probably has more to do with making Esquire's list than having a hot chef in the kitchen.
     
  14. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    how the fuck did you guys get around to reading that article? i didn't get past the pictures of scarlett Johansen[​IMG]
     
  15. whoopee

    whoopee Senior member

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    My experience is that Zagat scores cannot be compared across regions. A Philly 28 is not equal to a NYC 28, let alone Paris. For all the criticism Zagat guides take, within a region, they are fairly accurate in reflecting local tastes, and are excellent sources of contact information, espeically with those indices.

    Esquire's list doesn't mean much to anyone I know.
     

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