the NY incarnation of Toro received 2 stars in the NY Times; that gives us a standard for the NY vs Boston food scene. The reviewer like Toro quite a lot.
re: Bob Dobalina
As a long time fan of the New Yorker, I remember being dissapointed in the journalism on display in this review.
I've found that if a review of a restaurant:
1) Begins with or ends with an insult heralded at a certain population/city (this review does both)
2) Doesn't give the restaurant at least two months to get their rhythm
It automatically discredits it. I realize the New Yorker isn't the NYT (As evidenced by the disparity between the two reviews) but reviewing a restaurant that has been open several weeks is pretty amateur for a magazine of their standing. Secondly, starting a review with an insult towards a certain group of people/city etc. just proves you have a bone to pick and makes it impossible for the reader to separate the writer's biases from actual criticism. Following that up with a final line that digs at the pants a patron is wearing just reeks of snobbery and prejudice.
Although, there is one line that I do agree with, "In a city with so much great, affordable food, not to mention transcendent, expensive food, it’s a little hard to understand this uneven newcomer’s appeal." I do think this is, in some ways, a good summation of my thoughts re: the Boston food scene vs. the New York food scene. I am frustrated by the quality to price ratio that we have in Boston vs New York. There is a lot of bad food in New York too, but there are much better values to be found in the mid-price range ($20-29 entrees.) Then again, we've all beaten the dead horse on this debate and yes, of course, it's not fair to compare because New York is so much bigger.
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God knows that a Boston-based journalist would never take a poke at NYC! You guys are being too sensitive. She didn't care for the restaurant. No biggie. And while I agree that it may in general be unfair to review a place so quickly after it opens, it is a fair journalistic question to ask why then are people lined up out the door (a question she does ponder).
I'm sure she's not the only person who doesn't get the hype. Fortunately for the Toro team, many people do.