Would you rather pay $12 for pizza at Roberta’s or $17 at Franny’s? The answer is ostensibly simple, but because pizza is a hyper-local item, it’s likely you’ll pay the extra $5 if you live closer to Franny’s than Roberta’s. That’s the bad news. The good news is that the competitive environment for pizza in New York means you probably won’t overpay by much more than $5 for a good pie. Click through for my full observations on PIZZANOMICS for Eater!
YOU GUYS! Roberta’s in Bushwick is totally doing the negative space thing.
Some bangin new dishes from a recent meal at Roberta’s. Click through for pricing information (about $13-$16).
“Across the country, expensive tasting-menu-only restaurants are spreading like an epidemic…A high-end anomaly a few years ago, three- or four-hour menus now look like the future of fine dining.“
So writes New York Times food critic Pete Wells in his largely skeptical take on tasting menu-only restaurants, an odd, albeit interesting world where meals last over three hours, where bread courses are dictatorially delayed until mid-meal, and where dining rooms are filled by “big game hunters,” eager to spend a thousand dollars per couple for the privilege of feasting at a trophy establishment. Instagrams of the now-closed El Bulli must be the ultimate taxidermy, non?
Smart eaters will read the NYT piece in its entirety because it’s a fine lament on an expensive & idiosyncratic slice of modern gastronomy.
But what I focus on here at The Price Hike are prices, and it’s Mr. Wells’ statement about this “epidemic” of expensive tasting menus that piques my interest, as well as another one of his musings: “I can’t feel good about watching great restaurants that were already serving an elite audience taking themselves further out of reach.”
The NYT critic raises good questions. As much as I love American Omakase spots like Alinea, Blanca and Brooklyn Fare, committing the necessary financial resources toward a pricey tasting (or dealing with the subsequent gastro-intestinal distress) isn’t exactly my regular brand of bourbon.
Max Sussman’s dinner series at Roberta’s continues with a five-course pig tasting on Monday, 20 August 2012. The $130 tickets, which are 13% pricier than Sussman’s previous “get yur goat on gurl” tasting, include food, beer, wine and service.
We at The Price Hike and The Bad Deal are big fans of such all-inclusive, or “real cost” pricing, which lets guests know exactly how much they’re spending. We’re also big fans of Roberta’s, as evidenced by Price Hike editor Ryan Sutton’s two-star Bloomberg News review of the Bushwick eatery. And since Roberta’s announced this event via Tumblr, they’re now proper contenders in our “Most Excellent Menu Contest,” which seeks to showcase restaurants that use Tumblr to keep their guests in the know about menu changes, special events and prices.
Is this a BUY HOLD OR SELL? Your call world, but the deck in stacked in the favor of Roberta’s for this one. Take a look at the restaurant’s Tumblr, but those taking large quantities of LSD should take caution before clicking though. The Price Hike isn’t responsible for your hypnosis.