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Interesting Article about Marika in The Observer

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Interesting Article about Marika in The Observer

George Lynch | May 31, 2001 09:01 AM

Did anyone else read the very interesting article about the restaurant Marika in the current issue of The New York Observer. It begins on the front page, below the fold.

The article is about the restaurant's reaction to having been given a "Satisfactory" rating by William Grimes in his Times review of March 28th. The executive chef at the time was Joel Somerstein, stepson of one of the principal owners, Marika Somerstein.

According to the article, Mr. Somerstein had some impressive credentials before assuming the head kitchen role at Marika. But, as the article stated, "In 1,052 words, he (Grimes) had thrown a $3.5 million business venture employing 75 people into jeopardy." The article goes on to describe how the restaurant began looking for a replacement for Mr. Somerstein the next day, and the resulting mix of negative feelings of the entire staff at Marika about the whole episode.

It made fascinating reading (at least for me) and gave a pretty detailed insight into the real inner workings of the restaurant industry in New York. I also thought the article was fair and even-handed. It didn't put anyone down, not Grimes, not Joel Somerstein, not his stepmother, etc. But it did describe the trauma of a "serious" and upscale restaurant getting a less-than-stellar review from the restaurant critic of the New York Times.

I'd be curious to hear what others who read the article think of it.

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