New York Magazine recently wrote up The Standard Grill under the title “Above Standard”. Well, guess what, we’ve got higher standards than that. While we loved spending a few hours blowing up Twitter with live commentary from that ridiculous scene, the bottom line is that the food at The Standard Grill is bad. This review almost got tagged with Wasting Your Time and Money, but the decent pork chop and constant parade of cougars and euros in and out of the place were worth a handful of points. The restaurant is massive, and includes a wrap around patio in front and a beer garden on the side, complete with ping-pong tables and picnic bench seating. Perfect for mixing it up with the business casual dudes that have since abandoned Brass Monkey. It seems the Standard Grill is the new place to See And Be Seen, whether you’re a nightclub socialite, a recent Wisconsin grad, or a Real Housewife of New Jersey. I’m sure that the food is good enough to keep those types coming back, but we expect more, and if you’re reading this website, chances are you do too. It’s going to take more than a bowl of chocolate mousse and three spatulas (see the Food Rundown) to get us throwing around accolades. Go spend your hard earned dollars on something satisfying.
We left oysters on the table. That should say enough. The Prince Edward Island’s were good, but the Massachusetts and West Coast selections were not, and they had all been so poorly shucked that I was constantly spitting out pieces of shell. That’s what some might call Bush League.
Calamari with Merguez Sausage
I had high hopes for this dish because I love grilled calamari and sausage makes everything better. Unfortunately, the calamari is rubbery and the sausage nearly undetectable.
Grilled Spanish Octopus
Another rubbery mess, and paired with a mealy pile of sweet potatoes. This was recommended by our waitress as a customer and staff favorite. Pass.
Three grilled lamb chops, seasoned heavily and served with chorizo. These were a bit fatty and disappointing.
Berkshire Pork Chop
This is one thick and tasty pork chop. It’s incredibly juicy and the combination of spiced salt and sautéed apples on the side take it all the way home.
Roasted Gold & Candy Stripe Beets
Greenmarket beets with some hazelnuts tossed in. This is fresh and tasty, though after a few bites it becomes a bit boring.
Duck Fat Smashed Potatoes
I don’t know how, but this was not good. Duck fat and potatoes usually means tasty amazingness, but not today. The potatoes were overdone, (not in a good way) and covered with an unidentified curry aioli.
The Deal Closer
I don’t know how anyone is closing any deals with a spatula in their mouth, but that’s the name given to this big bowl of chocolate cake covered with a mound of chocolate mousse. The bowl comes along with a few mixing spatulas for you to eat with (cute!). It’s definitely tasty, and guaranteed to impress most seven year olds.
Yes, we like the food here just as much as La Esquina on the street, but we love the brasserie because it makes us want to drink.
The incredible People Watching available at Balthazar makes scrunching into a tiny table and overpaying for brunch totally worth it. Say whatever you want about this place, you can’t take away the fact that the kitchen gets it done.
Celebs-a-plenty, The Dutch is a tried and true downtown Manhattan hot spot. It’s the kind of restaurant you visit to celebrate – to splurge and to get drunk with friends.
We keep wanting to love The Breslin as much as everyone else seems to, but we just can't get there. Partly because the food is so damn heavy, but the service sucks too. Spend your time and money at John Dory next door instead.