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Anyone eaten at DBGB yet?

Curious likes & dislikes on the menu. I will be going tonight. Happy to share my thoughts in the morning.

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  1. Could you report after you visit the place? I'm going tomorrow for dinner

    1. Yes and not blown away. Our table had sausage, chopped salad, pate, the roast lamb, the braised steak (flatiron maybe?), the skate, a Frenchie burger and some desserts. The best sausage was a kaisser something and was filled with cheese and came with kraut. It was really good. The pate was a disappointment...they should turn it into a better plate or bump the price and give you a couple kinds...as is it's just whatever and they just slap down a slice of pate and the same bread they bring you when you sit down. The burger was the one with the pork belly. I think you'd be better off going with the plain burger and adding bacon. I don't really understand the burgers...they're 6 oz, two come with crazy pork toppings (the pork belly and another with daisy may's pulled pork and slaw), and cost $17-$19. The braised steak was great. The ice cream sundaes were ridiculously good.

      I guess I couldn't really figure the place out or I wanted it to be something it wasn't. The space is pretty awesome and the entrees are good. The burger was underwhelming (but there are so many good burgers in the city). I think you could approach it in two different ways: one trip you could go the apps/ entrees/ desserts and wine route and another way would be to just order three or four sausages and a bunch of beer. I'm sure the place will kill and will be packed late night but I was surprised by my "meh" attitude about it considering how much I like the other DB restaurants.

      5 Replies
      1. re: jgradieoakes

        I had dinner there on Friday. Not blown away either. I had the sausage you were talking about, I think it's the Viennoise. I actually found it rather unappealing. The taste was good but the color was this awful pale pinkish grey. Maybe it was the lighting but god the look was completely unappetizing. Thank god it tasted better then it looked but it was still just ok.

        My appetizer was good though. It was asparagus with a breaded fried (semi-hard boiled) egg with duck chitlins and procuitto. And yes the ice cream sundaes were delicious. I didn't try anyone else's food but the guest who had the frenchie really enjoyed it. other than thatm I'm not rushing back anytime soon.

        The decor however was really nice. I liked the space. Too bad the food isn't up to par

        1. re: kelea

          I third the "meh" opinion. The most outstanding feature of this place are the beers. SO many and the bartenders (especially) are so knowlegable. They encouraged us to sample a couple before deciding what to order a full glass of. We had cold cucumber soup (very nice with a bread stick with raw salmon), hot tomato bisque (the best part was the crostini), and three sausages. Vermonter, Viennoise and the last was not memorable enough to recall. We did not stick around for dessert due to the lackluster savory portion of the meal. Now I wish I had tried the sundaes!

          1. re: lollypop

            i'm on the 'meh' train as well.. although i'd say a little worse than 'meh' - place was pretty terrible to be honest. we're working on our full review but in short, i felt like i was in a Restoration Hardware eating dinner. There were too many people mulling around our table doing nothing but getting in the way and awkwardly tending to needs that didn't need to be attended to. Our waiter was ridiculous. didn't have a clue what was going on and looked way too much like will.i.am. He admitted he knew nothing about the menu and has only eaten the food once. Way overpriced, we had two different steak dishes, two sausages a bunch of apps (those salads are a joke) and nothing was impressive. except the bill. which was nuts for what we ate.

            seriously i'm not a hater, i buy in on most buzz but this place was just not good. it belongs on the upper east side and there, it would be a solid addition. no disrespect Flex Mussels. I love you. Don't be mad.

            new site!

            1. re: iFat

              UES has Cafe d' Alsace...no need for DBGB.

          2. re: kelea

            i've had the "viennoise" type sausage in vienna. it was terrible there too (and it's usually also wrapped in bacon). too bad DBGB doesn't label it on the menu the way most viennese restaurants (and sausage stands) have it: a puss stick.

        2. dbgb. Great food. We ordered tuna tartar (the only boring choice) and asparagus with egg as starters, then skate and steak as main courses. Wonderful. Carrots as a side fine but definitely not $6 worth. Front end service snippy as hell. This is how two men are treated during gay pride week? Fire the schmuck. Wrong entry served to us (two steaks, where's the skate?) but the apology so too little too late (check time) Daniel should fire this schmuck too.
          Recap: great food, so do go. Ugly experience for us.

          1 Reply
          1. re: workintheater

            I wasn't blown away...

            Cucumber soup- nice & refreshing

            Pate Campagnard- just ok (I am one who loves pate). They need to give more bread with this.

            Duck & Cherries- This was ok. The duck was well-cooked & the sauce complimented it, the spinach *needed something*

            I preferred the Sausage duo- (Vermont & Beaujolais)

            Veal Tongue- I am kinda scared of Veal tongue (it doesn't look too appetizing to me), but this was pretty darn tasty.

            Bone Marrow- The presentation is interesting. They serve you a big bone, that is cut on the side so you can take out the marrow. Personally I am not a fan of marrow, but other people at the table seemed to like it. I think I actually said, "Blech!" as I put it in my mouth & the other people looked at me like I was "uncultured" or something.

            The tripe was good too. I usually hate tripe (only had it in soup). This tripe was fried. I guess everything tastes good fried. :-)

            My fave thing was the pig's foot. It was fried. On the inside, it was kinda like shredded pastrami. Served with a dijon mustard. Yum!

            Fries- were good, but nothing special.

            The beer selection & wine were fabulous. My fave beer was the Rodenbach Grand Cru. I wish I remember what wine we got.

            The chocolate cake was amazing.

            All the sundaes were great. Listed in order of my favorites: 1. Coffee Chocolate 2.Apricot 3. Kriek Beer. But really, you can't go wrong.

            The Baked Alaska is a fun presentation. They set it on fire at your table. The verbena is very strong in this. I preferred the sundaes, though.

            The room was open, but somehow it felt claustrophobic. I wasn't a fan of the the decor, but it was fun looking at the pots from all the chefs.

            Service was friendly, but slow. The bathroom was dirty.

          2. Add me to the "meh" chorus. But with a caveat: the food was by and large very good. It's just the prices... I have no problem paying a lot of money for food - but I need to see value for price on the plate. And DBGB ain't got it. $17+ for a FIVE OUNCE burger? Seriously? Every bite was delicious, but that's simply ludicrous. Expand the burger to eight ounces - the wholesale cost will increase by, what, 50 cents? As they stand, were they one millimeter smaller you could call them "sliders" - and no one would pay $17 for a slider.

            The dogs and sausages, same problem. Small portions for the price. Heck, the hot dogs were nothing more special than you'd get at Crif Dogs, but for nearly double the cost. I'm sorry, but I'm not paying extra just because DB's initials are attached to something. And the portion sizes were so small that, honestly, you'd have to spend nearly as much as you would at Daniel or Cafe Boulud if you actually want to leave full.

            Mind you, I'm awful fond of Daniel. I didn't feel bad leaving either his namesake resto or Cafe Boulud or Bistro Moderne. But when I left DBGB I felt... ripped off. Not a good feeling. I may - MAY - be back to try some of the "regular" menu items. But I'm not in any hurry. There's so much to eat in the EV/LES at every price point, that unless radical changes are made, there's no need to go back to a place that left you feeling burned.

            Great beer list, yeah - but with DBA just a couple blocks away, why would anyone really give a crap?

            1 Reply
            1. re: sgordon

              Not that great - won't return. Went at lunchtime when it opened at 12 on the dot. Sat at the bar, friendly enough barmaid, decent beer list (but not overly special considering the multitude of places that now have a bunch of "craft" beers on tap...I was like, yeah decent list but not blown away like some others) ordered the yankee burger with vermont cheddar. Service awful. Took 45 mins for the burger to turn up...I was on the verge of leaving when it finally appeared. Very underwhelmed by it. To begin with, it is quite small...looked smaller then 6oz. Meat was nothing special, I ordered it medium and it came out cooked through but I let it pass as I did not want to wait another hour. It was also way too salty. Seriously over-seasoned. It was accompanied by a small portion of so-so fries that were entirely unremarkable and gone in about 3 bites. No garnish or anything else to accompany. Was about 17 bucks for the pleasure. Massively over-priced and with the dreadful service I won't rush back to this place.

            2. Sounds like a lot of people weren't that impressed with DBGB, but I really like the restaurant and took my family there for dinner when they were in town. Here's the rundown of what we ordered:

              - Beaujolaise sausage and merguez sausage with mint (two sausage combo deal) - both sausages were amazing, although when I went with my family, they ran out of the merguez sausage and substituted with a sausage that had Vermont cheddar and hash browns on the side. I don't think you can go wrong with any of the sausage choices

              - Cold cucumber soup - refreshing and light, but not something I'd order again.

              - Yankee burger with fries - kind of disappointed with the burger (although my friend says I'm crazy for not thinking the burger was amazing). The bun was too heavy and there wasn't enough meat. Also, the burger was a tad on the dry side, even though it was a medium rare (I might have been expecting too much considering I had the black label burger at Minetta a week before)

              - Skate - okay, but I think it's prepared much better at a Jean-Georges establishment

              - Handmade pasta with vegetables - pasta was cooked a little unevenly, but had a really great flavor and I'd order it again (although that portion was a little small).

              I'm not a wine/beer drinking so I didn't order any alcohol, but that menu might've been larger than the food menu! The desserts also looked really good, but I was so stuffed from the sausages, burger, and all the other good food that I couldn't even look at the dessert menu.

              Here is a full review and some pictures: http://gracenotesnyc.com/2009/06/11/d...

              1. Just came back from my birthday dinner at DBGB and overall, I had a nice time. First the food. I had the chop-chop salad. It was a salad, but the dressing was addictive, and I enjoyed it. I opted for a sausage for my main--the beaujolaise. This was delicious--loosely-packed and very flavorful. I had a side of fries w/it. I love my fries, so I did "manage" to finish them, but they were a bit limp. I had the apricot pistachio sundae to finish. Overall, the flavors were great, but the house-made ice cream was very icy, much more the texture of sorbet than ice cream. Nevertheless, a great dessert. I didn't get to try my friends' apps, but the bites of the frenchie burger (great, but cooked rare rather than medium rare) and skate I had were very good. Service was not snooty, but definitely left a bit to be desired. They tried to deliver the wrong dish to us twice, fries came out 10 mins after entrees, and because they were having problems with their credit card machine, it took about 15 minutes to get credit cards back. On the way out, we saw Boulud sneaking into a back entrance to the restaurant. He's obviously invested in this project. I chalk the failures up to "working out the kinks." Normally, I'm not so charitable, but because the food I had was enjoyable for the most part, I'll definitely be back.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Lucia

                  Figured i'd follow up my previous post w/snippets from our full review of DBGB here... Still don't get it! Place is awful...

                  Imagine Restoration Hardware served food, and someone was handing out flyers all over the Upper East Side promoting this hot new furniture store/restaurant downtown where you can bring your second wife after she gets sick of Per Se. Lots of midlife crises on display in this buzzy new Bowery restaurant.

                  DBGB is definitely an attempt at the gastro pub model - a few burgers on the menu, twenty-some-odd beers on tap, and some fancy things with duck egg thrown in so you don't forget who's running the place. The menu is way too big, and the food was a huge letdown. So much so, that we didn't manage to finish a single dish we ordered ... not even the desserts they comped us as penance for the entrees showing up just minutes after the appetizers. There must have been twelve waiters assigned to our table, and I'm not sure there was one moment of peace without some asshole wiping down the table, re-folding a napkin, or erroneously delivering a third order of fries. What's that? There is a great beer I have to try that tastes like coffee? Get out of my face, I am trying to eat a tiny crab cake.

                  I'll walk you through it in the food rundown, but the only way I can explain all the rave reviews for DBGB is that by the time you actually sit, you've likely had five pints of beer with the equivalent alcohol percentage of jungle juice. After that, sure, the fourteen dollar asparagus and duck egg appetizer probably seems edible.
                  Food Rundown:

                  Asparagus & Fried Egg
                  Fourteen bucks for fried egg and asparagus? Must have been all that duck prosciutto in there, and by "all that duck prosciutto", I mean that little tiny piece of duck prosciutto. Not good, not worth it.

                  Spicy Crab Cake
                  This was the only thing that we ordered that didn't create rage inside me. It's a decent but small crab cake with a curry sauce and an avocado-mango puree.

                  Vermont "Banger"
                  Here we are again with a fifteen dollar item ... a "banger" the size of a normal bratwurst. In fairness, it was tasty, but Jimmy Dean pulls this off at ten for a dollar in your local freezer section.

                  Skate Au Pistou
                  I don't speak French, but after having this, I am convinced that "au pistou" means, "in lake water". This was a wet piece of skate swimming in a pale green soup that tasted faintly like curry and algae.

                  Steak Frites
                  The fries were actually good, the steak ... whatever. Go to Schiller's if you're looking for a good steak frites.

                  Paleron Carbonade
                  Another steak - this one a flat iron steak with vegetables. The meat was middle of the road at best, lacking flavor. The vegetables were soft and mushy. Another dish left unfinished at the table.

                  Baba Au Rhum
                  This was one of the two comped desserts that came to the table after we paid - a peace offering since our entrees arrived at the table ten minutes after the appetizers. It was essentially a small donut that had been dropped in a bucket of Captain Morgan's and pulled out two days later. It was inedible and tasted like a straight shot of rum. Our waiter asked what we thought, and when we told him it was way too strong he said "I know! I love the boozy desserts". You are awful.

                  Ice Cream Beer Sundae
                  We were told this was an ice cream sundae made to taste like beer. It sort of tasted like Dairy Queen made a Blizzard out of warm Bud Light and gummi bears.


                  1. re: iFat

                    Now you've made me want to go, so I, too, can have an entertaining tale to tell. Excellent horrible review.

                2. Went this weekend with 8 friends. Tried a few of their dishes. Overall my opinion (and the consensus of most of my friends) was:

                  LOVED the following:
                  Vermont & Beaujolaise sausages
                  Piggie Burger
                  Yankee Burger
                  Kreik Beer-Cherry dessert

                  MEH-ed the following:
                  Octopus La Plancha
                  Steak Frites (10 oz. Ribeye)
                  Frenchie Burger
                  Duck & Cherries

                  The decor was nice. Numerous chefs gave the place their favorite copper pots/cookware which is on display with their name all around the restaurant towards the ceiling. The best part was meeting Daniel himself. Super nice and genuine. Even took pictures with me and my friends! My friend who works at Food&Wine spoke with him for 15 minutes in French and he did not seem rushed or anything.
                  I forget what beers and other appetizers, entrees and desserts were ordered/I tasted but I'd definitely go back. It was a good time.

                  1. I went with some friends last night and we really liked it. Our friends had been there before for brunch, and I admitted to them I wasn't sure about it after seeing the blah reviews here in CH. But I was pleasantly surprised.

                    The beer list is great, and I'm especially happy to see they have Hitachino White on tap which I don't see very often. We started with the asparagus and fried egg - yes it's a small portion but the egg makes it quite rich. We also shared two sausages - the Vermont which was nice and loose, and another sausage whose name is totally escaping me at the moment (it was one of the spicy ones I think). Really enjoyed both.

                    For mains - I had the steak frites which I really liked. I rarely see ribeye in steak frites and for $26 for 10oz it's a steal. Cooked exactly as I wanted at medium rare. Fries were crispy but because of the little cup they serve it in, the bottom ones got cold and limp pretty quick. My fiance had the duck which was delicious. Our friends got burgers - the Piggy and the Frenchie. I had a bite of the Piggy, it was a little messy but fun to have Daisy May's pulled pork and a juicy burger all at the same time.

                    Dessert we had the hazelnut bittersweet chocolate cake which we thought was good but not great and it definitely didn't feel very bittersweet to us.

                    I think the exterior design is a little off but liked the way it felt inside and details with the glassware and other furnishings. And we were all really enamored of the bathroom wallpaper which looks like a vintage catalog for a French kitchenware shop (I thought I recognized the name but was mistaken) - we asked our server and he said it was made specially for the restaurant.

                    1. I was there recently and also was not blown away. Its a great idea and the menu looks amazing, but I don't think I'd go out of my way to go back.

                      Had the asparagus with fried egg, the frenchie burger and the piggie burger (split each one). Other people at the table had the bone marrow, the matzoh ball soup and the skate. We split the Toscane sausage. Nothing was really that amazing. The fries that came with the burgers were so over salted, I couldn't eat them. The beer selection was great though.

                      I guess I'm a purist of sorts but I think pulled pork on a burger is too much. The pork belly which is on the Frenchie burger is a little more understandable but also was too much for me. All the toppings took away from tasting the actual beef.

                      It was very busy though. And I agree with jgradieoakes that a meal there can go in different directions.

                      Meh all the way.

                      1. Had dinner here tonight. What an odd experience. I've never had 3 different waiters ask me for a drink order. The drinks were delivered to the table next to ours and the waiter managed to spill a good bit of my drink on my neighbor's bread plate. After realizing that he was off a table, he delivered our drinks with a shakey hand. I was ready to walk out after this bizarre start to the night until my wife settled me down. I was confused...this is a Daniel Boulud joint right? He is a ninja. He cares about food. Right?

                        The food was excellent. The Cucumber Soup and Asparagus/Fried Egg starters were spot on. The other reviewers who complained about the Asparagus starter....wow. You must have been there on an off night. For the next course we shared the Tunisienne and the DB Dog. Both were flavorful, rich, delicious plates. The dog reminded my wife of a Koegel hot dog , a staple of her Michigan youth.

                        The Marrow was next, followed by the Mussels main course that we shared. Both were spoon-licking good. The tab which included 2 cocktails and 3 beers was $130 before tip, not absurd but certainly not a bargain.

                        Overall the only major letdown was the service. I have a big problem when the "hipster" waiters are too self-involved to provide quality service. The food runners and busboys were 100x more friendly and appreciative than the skinny jean mafia running the front of the house. Is it not "cool" to be friendly and make eye contact? I really wanted to clank some heads. Can you not get this for $75 a person anymore?

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: PiedmontDave

                          PiedmontDave - i'll respect your linking of the Asparagus/Fried Egg starter although don't necessarily understand it : )- Just glad we were on the same page about the service. Seriously, is it necessary to have 12 different waiters on your table at once? Absolutely not... especially if they can't get a single thing right.


                        2. Went last night with two friends. Felt it was a bit overpriced, but there were some definite winners. Must note that our waitress was SUPER sweet and helpful. As for specific dishes:

                          Asparagus and Fried egg: nothing special, though the duck proscuitto was pretty delicious.

                          Fromage de Tete: good, though not mind blowing. We asked for additional bread, which was great (the waitress said they make all the bread at Daniel.)

                          Toulouse sausage: full of flavor, fresh tasting. Truly enjoyable and worth ordering again. Nice beans served with it, though they weren't quite as creamy as I expected.

                          Bone Marrow: very nice, though not mind blowing.

                          Pied de Cochon: pretty fabulous, very rich.

                          All went very well with the very interesting beer, which was pretty reasonably priced by the liter.

                          Did not love the Cassis Beer-Yogurt sundae.

                          1. I went with my brother a few weeks ago. We had late reservations on, I believe a Saturday. The back room was about as loud as the front room. Excellent service. We both liked our food; my brother complained that it was salty, though. Excellent shoestring fries. His duck with cherries was a very good preparation, though as a personal preference, both of us would have preferred for them to have made it with sour cherries or more vinegar. I wouldn't get the ice cream sundae again. I plan on going back some time to try their charcuterie.