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STEER CLEAR LIST - Worst Meal You've Had in the Last Six Months

Everyone writes about the best experience they've had, or maybe even a less than stellar experience. However, we need a place to really vent and let people know about places that they should steer clear of.

Honestly write about a very poor meal or dining experience that you have had during the last six months (so that we can keep this list somewhat current) and, why the establishment should be avoided!

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  1. I'll bite. Matsuri. Hands down. Sushi was terrible -- the texture of a very simple roll was way off, both in terms of the fish and the rice. Calamari was some of the worst deep frying I had ever had -- I don't know what happened to the temperature, but it was so soggy it just fell apart. It's pathetic when the salad is the only decent dish out of 5 or so.

    I had a BBE coupon for 30%, which made me fill a tinge better about the debacle, but still... Too bad because the room is actually pretty neat.

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    Matsuri
    369 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011

    3 Replies
      1. re: IntrepidNook

        i have not been in several years, but matsuri was never known for their sushi - however their other japanese food was really good. the sea eel tempura is one of the best dishes i've ever had. but as i said, its been a few years so they may well have fallen off

      2. Fedora was easily the worst meal i've had in the past several years, let alone 6 months. Just terribly bland/greasy stodge, overpriced, crowded, loud, and careless service.

        I had the pork sandwich, which tasted of nothing but oil and mayonaise, and the accompanying shoe string fries were burnt. The fried chicken was rubbery and under seasoned - and the fact that they leave the claw intact and serve it in an undersized bowl makes it impossible to cut into and eat. I also really disliked the crispy pigs head, as it was also under seasoned and terribly greasy. I think we ate like 25% of what was on our plates - the waitress either didn't notice this or didn't care, as she didn't make a comment (like any good restaurant should).

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        Fedora
        239 W 4th St, New York, NY 10014

        10 Replies
        1. re: ExFlexitarian

          Mine was at Fedora too! I had a fish dish there that was just unbearably oily and heavy, and also contained pork, which the server neglected to inform me ahead of time! Careless service, indeed.

          My friend also ordered the fried chicken, and the intact fried claw served no purpose except to complicate the eating and enjoyment. Its presence actually almost seemed a little aggressive and obnoxious.

          Not a place we'll be returning to, but they were packed when we were there, so I don't think they'll notice!

          1. re: Oliverstreet

            agreed on fedora. i live nearby and tried it a week or two after they opened. i didnt mind the scene...i was expecting that.

            i wasnt expecting the horrible food. slimey rock shrimp salad with wilted lettuce and pig head fried balls that just tasted like melted fat and gristle.

            this place models itself after montreal's best restaurants but they dont hold a candle to joe beef or APC.

            1. re: sam1

              Wow - I've been meaning to go to Fedora as I'm a huge fan of APdC, but after FOUR horrible reviews - it may be off my to-go list!

              1. re: uwsister

                If you're an APdC fan, you should head to M. Wells instead. That should hit the spot more.

                1. re: lpshanet

                  Oh yes, we've been meaning to go to that one too. But their funky hours and not-Manhattan location haven't made it too easy. Actually we'll be back at the original sooner (next week) but M. Wells is definitely on the list.

                  1. re: uwsister

                    Very jealous that you're going back to the original. Definitely the best option. And if you have time, you could squeeze in a meal at Joe Beef, too! Once you're back, though, getting to M. Wells is actually much easier than you'd expect, even though it's officially in an outer borough. It's literally about 5 minutes from Manhattan by Subway (2 stops on the 7 train), so much closer to many parts, than the rest of Manhattan is. Enjoy your trip!

                    1. re: lpshanet

                      We in fact haven't been to Joe Beef, so I will keep the rec in mind. I *know* M. Wells isn't all that far even though we live on the West Side, but my husband sort of has a mental block. We'll work through it though, for sure.

                      1. re: uwsister

                        You'll be glad you went to Joe Beef, if you get a chance. As for the mental block, as a Manhattanite, I understand it well. Just tell him it's closer to you than the UES, LES, and E. Village;)

                    2. re: uwsister

                      I wasn't crazy about M. Wells. But if you do go, suggest you bring at least party of 4 so you can better enjoy the lively atmosphere, have a lot more fun, try more of their beers, and sample more foods.

            2. re: ExFlexitarian

              I had the same horrible experience at Fedora, from start to finish it was bad. The service was horrendous I don't even think i saw for the entire time we were seated. I aske dmy server if the steak sandwich was a good option telluing him I was in the mood for meat but as long at the bread was not thick and overpowers the meat. HE responds it's the best sandwich you will ever have. I order it comes to the table and guess what it was all bread, the srteak was very tasty but I couldn't taste it with all that bread. I tell the server and his response was take off the bread and just eat the steak. I was appalled if I wanted to eat a steak I would have ordered a steak. Then he doesn't even refill our wine or our water. I have never had such a bad experience.

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              Fedora
              239 W 4th St, New York, NY 10014

            3. I had a really terrible meal at SD26. I really liked the space, but the service and the food just weren't up to what the standard should be for a meal at that price point.

              We were seated late, service in general just seemed very apathetic. The whole iPad wine list thing seemed gimmicky and out of place. There were serious coordination issues, one of our meal orders just didn't get placed at all. The pasta dishes were just ok. The meal was generally very overpriced.

              We went for a group of four people, and by the end of the meal, I was a little embarrassed that I had picked the place.

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              SD26
              19 East 26th Street, New York, NY 10010

              1 Reply
              1. re: InfoMofo

                Brunch at Petrossian. It's the first time in 30 years that I didn't leave any tip - and wrote why on the bill. The maitre d' was part of the problem, just not handling a real problem well (the waiter sort of forgot to put in the order!?). By the time our food arrived, I was so embarrassed (I had 2 guests) that none of us enjoyed our food which wasn't all that good anyway.

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                Petrossian
                182 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019

              2. M. Wells Diner (though that is in Queens and so I can't talk about it here) . . . so, in Manhattan . . . it would have to be a disappointing dinner at Recette that cost way more than it should have for truly ignorant service and only good food.

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                Recette
                328 West 12th Street, New York, NY 10014

                5 Replies
                1. re: nmprisons

                  I'd be interested in your M. Wells experience. My wife wants to go there, and I can't see standing on line for an hour, when I can get a reservation at Toournesol in LIC.

                  1. re: Stuartmc910

                    I posted something on it on the outer boroughs board. Maybe you will see this before the mods delete it: Went for dinner recently and had many of the dishes that Sam Sifton later raved about. The bone marrow with escargo was fine, but no better than average, and certainly below similar marrow preparation that I have has in the city (the wonderful -- and free -- preparation at Blue Hill blows this out of the water). The salad tasted just like those make it yourself ceasars that come in a bag. The chicken with Indian spices on an english muffin for $18 was basically a wonderful english muffin with below average Indian food on it. We didn't eat a thing that night that impressed us and I frankly just can't understand the hype. Sam Sifton would probably give my kitchen two stars as well.

                    It is worth noting that the woman who greeted me at the door and offered me a beer while I waited was warm, friendly, and a wonderful host. The insulting jerk who acted as our server for the evening was one of the worst we have ever had. He literally told my girlfriend, who is in the Industry, that she didn't know anything about how to order food when she dared ask a question about the menu and then told us that certain dishes were "not for us," with no further explanation. Ugh. Maybe if they fire that joker we would give it another go for brunch or something (the english muffin was really good!), but otherwise there are better places to spend your money.

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                    Blue Hill
                    75 Washington Place, New York, NY 10011

                    1. re: Stuartmc910

                      If you go for dinner, you can make a reservation at M Wells BTW. They only serve dinner Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.

                    2. re: nmprisons

                      Ugh. It was longer than 6 months ago but I too had a disappointing and extremely overpriced meal at Recette. Really stood out as one of our worst dining experiences in years.

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                      Recette
                      328 West 12th Street, New York, NY 10014

                    3. I had a very underwhelming meal recently at Peasant. I would not call it down right bad, just really uncaring service, bland food and a pretty high bill at the end. Had a pasta with rabbit with almost no rabbit, and the suckling pig which managed to be one of the only times that I can ever recall not enjoying a plate of suckling pig. Hadn't been in years and will not hurry back.

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                      Peasant
                      194 Elizabeth Street, New York, NY 10012

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Alan Henderson

                        I haven't had any issue with the food at Peasant, although there are certainly MANY better places downtown for that style of Italian food these days. However, I have to agree that the service can be atrocious. I once had to wait an hour even though I had a reservation. And while I waited, there was never any apology, any offer of drink or snack, or any place to sit (as the bar was full). So we just literally stood in the middle of the area in front of the host stand for an hour. When I complained later, the host/manager snippily told me that maybe I should just not come back. I haven't.