Posts for January 3, 2013

Foursquare Gives Restaurant Owners More Ways to Check-in on Customers

Foursquare overshares your ramen-eating habit.

It's unlikely to provoke the kind of outrage that followed Instagram's terms-of-service changes that gave the company more control of users' food porn, but Foursquare is now allowing participating merchants broader access to data revealing the eating, drinking, and spending habits of its users. Wired reports that Foursquare has amended its privacy policy, and starting January 28, the company will hand over more data to restaurant owners, for example, who will know the exact dates and times of any user's visit.

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Hot Drinks, Cool Nights: Winter Drinks to Warm You

A warm, potent cocktail is like a fleece blanket, if only fleece blankets could make you tipsy. Yes, 'tis the season for cloves, dates, prunes, and toasty rum—drinks that bring a little bit of crackling fireplace with every sip. (Take the Tom & Jerry specialty to the right from 80 Thoreau: a hot nog-uccinno, complete with a frothy batter of rum, brandy, and winter spices.) For more high-temp beverages for frigid days and nights, crank up the heat and read on.

Top Chef Seattle Recap: David Rees on Healthy Food and Sexy Knives

The judges are very amused.Photo: Bravo

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope some of you have made a resolution to treat the recappers in your life with more respect.

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Wretched Excess: More Writers Complaining About the ‘Tyranny’ of Fine Dining

Daniel Humm and Grant Achatz: not actual tyrants.Photo: Jed Egan

"The meal felt like a form of torture," writes Corby Kummer in the February issue of Vanity Fair. But he's not referring to Guy Fieri's Times Square restaurant; he's recounting his meal at the French Laundry. In “Tyranny — It’s What’s for Dinner,”, Kummer argues that the world's most celebrated restaurants are becoming increasingly rigid in how they treat customers, and Graydon Carter agrees. To these two, it's almost criminal that Per Se and Alinea serve multiple courses, cost hundreds of dollars, take hours to finish, and don't allow diners to ask for substitutions. (Carter’s restaurants, on the other hand, are so relaxed that you usually need a special phone number and at least a B-list celebrity on your arm to score a table — but hey, at least you can get your salad dressing on the side!) Kummer believes that Chicago's now-closed Charlie Trotter's is the root of the problem that's making a generation of young chefs "no longer willing to take orders" from the one percent.

The horror! »

Was Dennis Lehane's Dog Abducted at McDonald's?

Ming Tsai has his pooch back, but Mystic River and Gone Baby Gone author Dennis Lehane is still on the prowl for his beloved dog, Tessa, and he thinks she might have been swiped at a Brighton McDonald's. The Herald reports that Lehane's dog was last seen at a Western Avenue McD's on Christmas Eve. He subsequently "convinced a McDonald’s manager in Brighton to pore over surveillance tape to see if Tessa was lured into a car in the drive-thru."

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Crossroads Irish Pub to Host Ninja Gathering, With Swords

Do your New Year's resolutions include dressing in black and wielding sharp objects while possibly inebriated? Fine then! Make haste to Crossroads Irish Pub (405 Mass Ave.) on January 23, and please don't forget your chiseled weaponry.

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Lunchtime Discoveries: Beef with Tomato on Rice at Hei Lei Moon

Just $6.25!Photo: Brian J. Lapseritis

Usually we stroll over to Hei Lei Moon for dim sum, which is OK but not quite as fresh as at menu-only Winsor Dim Sum down the block. However, a lazy holiday-break perusal of their lunchtime menu revealed Beef with Tomato on Rice, for a mere $6.25. Feeling cost-conscious and adventurous, we decided to forgo dumplings and tuck into tomato-drenched beef instead.

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Grubstreet Sweeps

Recent reader reviews on MenuPages

  • Cookin' Cafe & Grill See the menu

    “Cookin is gooood!”

    I'm picky about meatball subs so when I say is good it's really good

  • The Pour House See the menu

    “Awsome food and drink”

    After spending all your hard earned dollars in the Pru enjoy a few cool one here before you take the T home.

  • Il Villaggio See the menu

    “Absolutely Amazing”

    Having worked at Olive Garden for 3 years I guess I never really knew what REAL Italian food tasted like.


Kara Baskin
NY Mag