Trotter's--what's wrong with it?
- The Dairy Queen Jan 20, 2008 06:10 AM
People on the Midwest board keep making sideways swipes at Trotter's. http://www.chowhound.com/topics/48098...
I've been--only once--and had a lovely experience, though, I confess, I don't dine at that fine dining level that much, so I don't have a huge base of comparison, but, still, can someone tell me what's wrong with the place?
Nothing's wrong with Trotter's. Most reports continue to note its consistent excellence, with only a small fraction dissenting. The only thing that has changed over the years is that, when it opened, it was by far the most innovative restaurant in town, whereas now Alinea, Tru, and Avenues are playing in the same sandbox, and Moto is even more "out there".
Many people think that being contrarian makes them intelligent. Charlie Trotter's is very good, but, as nsxtasy notes, there are now more options in that tier of restaurant. There is also a solid argument to be made (not just about Trotters, but about Alinea, Tru, etc...) that no meal is worth the amount of money you pay at those establishments.
The other issue at play is that there is a huge amount of second-hand rumor-mongering that Charlie Trotter is a nasty, nasty person. For one, I'm naturally skeptical of any internet-rumor-mongering based on second (or more) hand reports. Secondly, you don't have to interact with the man in order to eat in the restaurant, so I'm not sure why his personality is even a topic.
Another factor I've observed on occasion is that people from one city will visit another and not be receptive to good food. Some see cities as a "competition", are envious that another city enjoys a more widespread reputation for its food, and are looking for a bad experience to support their belief that their own city deserves better. Some come from a city with a great reputation and they travel with the expectation that food in other cities will not measure up to what they have available at home. It may sound silly to those of us who enjoy great food wherever we may find it, but people have attitudes of all sorts. Bottom line - if you walk into a restaurant looking for reasons to criticize your meal, you will probably find them.
[[Some come from a city with a great reputation and they travel with the expectation that food in other cities will not measure up to what they have available at home.]]
Sounds like just about every resident of a certain city "by the bay" that I've known.
They seem to have an almost pathological need to diminish Alinea. Converseley, my New York aquaintences have been universally in awe of Alinea.