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Goodbye to all that. . .


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Restaurants & Bars 50

Goodbye to all that. . .

Leslie Brenner | Aug 5, 2001 02:36 PM

After fifteen years in New York City and five and a half in Park Slope, we’ve finally decided to pack up our things and light out for the territories.

Goodbye, then, to Lemongrass Grill, with its sweet-and-heavy all-purposes sauces and flavorless Pad Thai with soggy-Saran-wrap-textured baby shrimp. Goodbye to Cousin John’s, with its jus-de-chausettes coffee, flaccid croissants, and out-to-lunch servers. Goodbye to Mr. Wonton with its chicken broth that starts cooking five minutes before service, its leaden dumplings, its glutenous brown sauces, its misanthropic manager. Goodbye to La Tacqueria, with its cumin-laden Mexican rice, its scowling counter staff. Goodbye to Convivium, with its management so rude that I couldn’t even get in the door. Goodbye to Geiko, with its underseasoned sushi rice. Goodbye to the other sushi restaurants that are so awful or forgettable that I don’t even bother remembering their names. Goodbye to the pretend Moroccan place that was such a joke I don’t bother remembering its name. Goodbye to El Rey de los Castillos de Jagua, whose food we used to tolerate because the wait staff was so nice until one day the manager charged us for a la carte chicken, a la carte rice and a la carte beans because we didn’t say "chicken special" even though we had been ordering it every week for the past five years. Goodbye to the Dominican place across Flatbush that was so disgustingly dirty we never returned. Goodbye to Fratelli with its $9 ravioli and the one counter guy with his "the customer is always wrong" attitude. Goodbye to diners that charge $9 for a heap of iceberg lettuce topped with lunchmeat and signs that say no strollers allowed. (My kid has outgrown his, but still...) Goodbye to La Cucina, with its sixty dollar mediocre chiantis and pretentious preparations. Goodbye to Max & Moritz, with its chef who doesn’t care what a customer thinks; after all, look at all the people lined up to eat there. Goodbye to that most disgusting supermarket, Key Foods. Goodbye to the absence of cheese and good meat. Goodbye to Regina Bakery with its four-day old cookies and the red cat shedding in the corner.

Farewell and best wishes to Al Di La, to Olive Vine (though I’d spring for real plates at those prices), to Bonnie’s Grill (we’ll miss the beef-on-weck and the warm welcomes), to Uprising Bread Bakery.

Hello to fish tacos, to carnitas, to homemade corn tortillas, albondigas soup. Hello to Apple Pan and In-and-Out burgers, to wonderful sushi, to better Thai food in just about any little joint than what we find here. Hello to wor won ton soup and Chinese chicken salad, to Knudsen small curd cottage cheese. Hello to Koreatown! Hello to the brave new world of southern California Vietnamese food! Hello to the universe of regional Chinese foods in the San Gabriel Valley! Hello to great dim sum! Hello to good tomatoes nine months of the year, to Santa Rosa plums, to tasty peaches. Hello to the Santa Monica farmers’ market. Hello to Gelson’s, with its wide, clean aisles and lower prices than Key Foods. Hello to Meyer lemons! I can’t wait to come back to L.A.!

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