Critic Roundup: Hixter Has a "Piece of Kit in the Kitchen"

Every week, The Daily Meal rounds up restaurant reviews across America

Bloomberg's restaurant critic Richard Vines reviews Hixter in London, which he says "has a piece of kit in the kitchen" which helps distinguish it.

This week in restaurant news, Bloomberg's restaurant critic Richard Vines reviews Hixter in London, which he says "has a piece of kit in the kitchen" which helps distinguish it.

"It’s a broiler made by Montague Co., a California company that traces its history to the Gold Rush era, when one Wilfred Weed Montague started his business selling pots and pans before moving up the food chain to French-style kitchen ranges," Vines says.

In Boston, Boston Globe's restaurant critic Devra First says Ostra "wants to be Boston’s Le Bernardin," and that "on many nights, it succeeds."

"Austere as an iceberg, it has white walls and tablecloths, with large-scale black-and-white photographs of rocky shores and sea hanging on the walls," he says. "An open kitchen provides a glint of steel, fronted by an ice-filled case of gleaming whole fish. Caramel leather banquettes are the rare warm accent; jellyfish-like pendant lights offer a touch of whimsy. In the lounge area, there is live piano music. Everything is carefully chosen — ridged utensils with real heft, chargers with a horseshoe crab pattern so stylish one is sorry to see them whisked away, dishes arriving at the table under metal cloches."

In Denver, The Denver Post's restaurant critic William Porter notes that Thai Basil doesn't limit its menu to Thai food; It also incorporates flavors from Vietnam, Indonesia and China.

"This is one of those Thai places that takes a something-for-everyone approach to its pan-Asian offerings... The room will look familiar to anyone who has ever eaten at a mom-and-pop Thai restaurant. Oak tables sit under paper lanterns, the walls are jade green and there are a couple of cozy wooden booths made of carved wood and bathed in the glow of golden light."

New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells does not review a restaurant. Instead, he writes a piece titled "Ramen's Big Splash," in which he highlights some of New York's best ramen for the "serious ramen hunter."

Restaurant Critic Roundup: 3/5/2014


Critic Publication Restaurant Rating
Gael Greene Insatiable Critic Mountain Bird
Devra First Boston Globe Ostra 3 stars
Tom Sietsema Washington Post The Shack  
Jonathan Gold Los Angeles Times Church & State  
Michael Bauer San Francisco Chronicle La Nebbia 2.5 stars
Richard Vines Bloomberg Hixter 8/10 marks
Brad A. Johnson Orange County Register Fig & Olive 2 stars
William Porter Denver Post Thai Basil 2 stars
Scott Reitz Dallas Observer Origin Kitchen and Bar  

Click here for The Daily Meal's "Top Chefs Review — and Rate — America's Food Critics."


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Haley Willard is The Daily Meal's assistant editor. Follow her on Twitter at @haleywillrd