This week GraceAnn Walden gets feisty again in The Yummy Report, her bi-weekly email about Bay Area restaurant news. She wasn't too pleased with the not-glowing 25 Lusk review Michael Bauer came out with this Monday and she's telling the world about it. Remember GraceAnn worked at the Chronicle for 14 years as a restaurant columnist and then another 11 as a freelancer with "no bennies or expenses," as she puts it. So the woman knows Bauer. Don't mess. Hilariously, she refers to her former colleague as "Anton Ego" throughout her own rebuttal review of 25 Lusk and specifically calls him out several times. To begin with, "...every savvy restaurateur in the City, knows Anton Ego by sight. I've personally seen his photo in kitchens. So, when he slides in, he's anything but anonymous." Now onto the matter of chef Matthew Dolan's oxtail ravioli: "Unlike Mr. Ego, I thought all the disparate flavors contributed to an interesting and compelling dish."
Ego said the food by Dolan was heavy and was akin to dishes that dominated 1980's cuisine. Here is a dish from an Ego 4-star restaurant: Maine lobster tail - butter poached in a pound of butter, King Richard leeks, Pomme maxim (baked in clarified butter) and red beet essence. Apparently, this is not considered a heavy, 1980s dish, despite the overuse of butter and the beet shmear. Could it be it is because this is a dish from Saint Thomas Keller? But what readers have to understand, Ego, has been quoted as craving Zuni's roast chicken or (maybe) Chez Panisse's naked fig on a plate. Of course, we live in an area of bounty, but frankly, I can buy that fig at the over-priced Farmers Market. Where's the artistry in a roast chicken or a naked fig? As they say in one of my favorite Gaga songs: "Show me what you've got."
· Food Writer Cat Fight: GraceAnn Walden vs. Tanya Henry [~ ESF ~]
· Week in Reviews: Bauer on 25 Lusk [~ ESF ~]
· 25 Lusk Review, eggnog creme brulee, coffee cupping, contests [The Yummy Report]