Food Media 10

Howard Seftel's Reviews

sxfan | May 29, 200812:38 AM

I have been to the Estate House twice now and really enjoyed it both times. Was it a life changing experience? No. Were the dishes on the cutting edge of cuisine? No. But the food was well prepared and the service was "pleasent" (not flawless). So, after seeing Howard's 3 star review today I have to say I was a little confused and thought it might be time to question the validity of his process. Surely awarding restaurants like humble pie 4 stars and a restaurant like Estate House 3 should raise some questions. Clearly they are not in the same league. A pizza place getting a better review than a solid french restaurant? Howard seems to rate places against their peers instead of an objective set of guidelines that creates a standard. That may sound well and good untill you consider two very different french restaurants that once held the same rating: Zinc Bistro and Mary Elaine's. Both very good in their respective classes but not the same caliber restaurants. It completely skews the integrity of the rating system. The heart of the problem is that when Howard rates a restaurant against its peers, the decision of who those peers are falls solely on Howards shoulders. Comparing The Estate House to very small chef owned restaurants like Binkley's and Sea Saw is an error in judgement because that is clearly not who they are trying to be. Estate House is like 4 times the size of those places.So I guess if you are planning to open a restaurant and want a good review from Howard you have 3 options: open a pizza place, do mildly interesting Japanese food, or be Kevin Binkley.

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