In 1991, a 21-year-old Michael Mina put himself on the culinary map at Aqua, and now, nearly two decades later, that same soft-spoken chef has created a veritable empire. At last count, he had ten restaurants under his belt, a trio of Michelin stars to his credit and a bevy of upcoming projects in various phases of development, including several in San Francisco. Earlier this fall, Thomas Keller received criticism for his world domination plans, and we can't help but wonder if Mina should be subject to the same critique. Take, for example, today's rather harsh review of a Michael Mina visit in the Contra Costa Times:
But that's when my $300 adventure went sour. The Kobe "Rossini" rib-eye was a refined disaster. There were only four bites, but each one was marred by a chewy tendon. A bad steak is excusable (it looked great), but the fondant potatoes were also practically inedible -- a square of flavorless paste.So we ask: will the overextension of Michael Mina—poised to reach epic levels in the next several years (e.g., a restaurant in Scottsdale?)—come at the detriment of his flagship? Even more importantly, as the article implies, has it already?
· Michelin-rated chef dazzles, disappoints at Mina, Arcadia [CC Times]
· Mina To Tackle Millennium Tower [~ESF~]