Where should I go for dinner? For a 2nd date. With my parents and my new boyfriend. Before a night out on the LES. I get asked these questions a lot. Apparently so do the guys at Immaculate Infatuation, who I have to say are very, very cool, and who I would happily go on a date with any night of the week (I think one’s spoken for but the other might still be up for grabs – Chris Stang, Padma’s just not that into you. Call me). Seriously – they’re young, they’re sharp, they work in music, they’re native New Yorkers (one is even from the Bestchester), what more could you want?!
I use their blog as a reference point when asked the recurring restaurant quandary because they cater specifically to my demographic ( that demographic being 22-35, Northeast, socially active intellectually curious upper middle class smarty pants foodies with a been there-done that attitude). They review restaurants that a) I can afford on my gallery salary and b) I actually want to go to. Doesn’t matter how good Eric Asimov claims Monkey Bar is, I’m probably not meeting my hood rich girlfriends there for a weekday catch-up dinner.
Immaculate Infatuation is also exactly on my wavelength when it comes to contempt for establishments that attract large tables of yapping females. To quote from their most recent review of Sons of Essex, “The success of the Lower East Side mega-club restaurant Beauty & Essex was bound to create some copycat establishments. Lord knows that there are plenty of drunk girls to cater to down there, and they all have one birthday (week!) every year.” Preach!
This is not to say I regurgitate their suggestions and pass them off as my own. They describe Crispo as “high quality Italian with great pastas, a nice selection of cured meats and antipasti, and a solid wine list.” Crispo bores the bejezus out of me. They like La Esquina, I think they’re the weakest tacos in the Nolita quadrant (Fonda Nolita is the place to go – I live in Nolita and eat a LOT of tacos).
But they’ve steered me in the right direction many a time, and along with Grubstreet, eater, the NYTimes and a little Feinberg mojo I am still the Master of my own restaurant Domain. So thank you Immaculate Infatuation, a big Feinberg hat tip to you!