Optimistically Cautious

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Food Notes

  • Judy Schultz is retiring! After 26 years, she is leaving the Journal. We'll miss you, Judy!

  • La Spiga is no more. Violino, another Italian eatery, has replaced it. Judging by a positive review from the Zenari clan, it's a good bet for traditional food.

  • The next time I return to Manhattan, I'll be sure to time it around a Restaurant Week. The listing of participants for the January event is up.

  • There was an interesting article in the Globe last week about the movement to "reclaim" but also to experiment with Indian food. It talks about an up and coming chef, based in the UK, who has banished the word "curry" from his menu.

  • Food trends for 2008 (though perhaps not really worth mentioning in a food climate as slow as Edmonton's): gastropubs, comfort food/one-item restaurants (like S'MAC), and upscale frozen desserts.

  • Blogging about New York took a lot out of me, so instead of a full restaurant review, I'm copping out and just writing a few sentences about my latest experience at Manor Cafe. I had dinner there with a few girlfriends there last week, and was less than impressed. This is the second time where upon entering the restaurant, I was left waiting in the lobby for someone, anyone, to greet me. Secondly, our server opened up the evening with humor, referencing the nearly-empty dining area on the main floor ("As you can see, we're so busy"), but failed to keep up with the implied promise of good service. Andrea never did get her water glass refilled, and resorted to drinking everyone else's water. Our supply of hot water for tea also needed continued requests to be replenished. The food was nothing to write home about, though it was my choice to order the seemingly out of place Nasi Goreng dish. The rice itself was pretty bland, but I did enjoy the accompaniments provided (the peanut sauce in particular was quite tasty). Operated by the same couple who own Urban Diner (where I've always had a positive experience), I'm surprised at how inconsistent Manor Cafe has been.

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