PLAYBOY: There’s a controversy about foie gras, which is often made with livers of geese that have been force-fed. Should it be banned?
BOURDAIN: I’ll say this on foie gras: I don’t know any chef who would buy the kind of foie gras that is produced the way they show in those PETA films. No restaurant I know of would buy the product of a stressed-out, terrified, abused goose or duck. That equals bad foie gras. But it’s a straw-man issue to start with, because every duck and goose raised for foie gras in this country, at least that I know of, lives a far more luxurious, happier, better life than any chicken ever killed for the Colonel or Popeye’s, as the PETA people well know. They’re picking on foie gras because it’s French, it’s expensive, most people haven’t had it and it looks ugly in the scary films they show. It’s a French thing, and you know those French.…"
I freaking love Bourdain. If you ever get the chance, watch season 7 episode 13 of No Reservations where he goes to Arizona with Josh Homme, the lead singer of Queens of the Stone Age.
Mr Tim’s Country Kitchen in San Antonio, TX. $5.99
I’ll review this soon, but I wanted to show this first.
352 Bedford Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11211-5586
Service 12/15 or 75%
If there was one, I didn’t see her.
- Promptness(5/5 points)
This place runs like a well oiled machine. I was amazed and dumbfounded by how fast they got my food out to me. If one bartender was making my coffee, the other was getting me milk and sugar. If one was serving me food, the other had my flatware ready.
- Alertness(4/5 points)
I don’t think I even got the chance to thinking about my water or coffee before the waiter was asking me if I wanted a refill. It wasn’t too eager though, so I didn’t mind; it was clear they were keeping everything in check.
- Friendliness(3/5 points)
I was going to rate this higher, but then I remember the first thing that was said to me was, “no laptops are allowed in here.” The laptop was closed and being carried like a book; it’s not like I sat down and spread out papers to stake a claim to my territory. The rest of my experience was quite enjoyable. I even overheard them reserving a table so that a dog owner could keep an eye on his dog, but not ruin anyone else’s dining experience.
Food and Drink 15/20 or 75%
- Price(4/5 points)
The prices looked really low on the menu. Then, when I tasted my food, I knew I was getting a great deal. I would have easily paid five to six dollars more for my eggs benedict. Probably, I would have paid another dollar more for the coffee too.
- Quality of Food(4/5 points)
I had their version of the eggs benedict. It was the complete opposite reaction I had to Prune. Their version was adventurous, but well executed. Instead of a plain English muffin, they used an herb flavored version. Instead of plain Canadian bacon, they used crumbles of well cooked bacon. The sauce was the perfect consistency, not too runny, but not too thick. The home fries left me wanting a little more spice. The side salad just felt like a cop out to me, but I think it could be much better with a few flavor modifications.
- Quality of Beverage(4/5 points)
Rabbit Hole might have the second best coffee I’ve had yet. It wasn’t bitter or sweet; it was right in between. The subtle aromas tickled your nose even before you took your first sip and you were left with a deliciously chocolate aftertaste when you were done. I was going to limit myself to just one cup, but after five minutes I decided I definitely wanted another. I regret not having a third, but I know that would have pushed me over the edge. They also lost a point because they have the water bottle problem.
- Presentation(3/5 points)
Everything was nicely arranged on the plate, but there was nothing extra done to make the food look nearly as good as it tasted. A subtle flare here and there would have helped.
Decor and Space 15/20 or 75%
- Cleanliness(4/5 points)
Cleaning was part of their service process, and rightfully so. I was impressed that not only was everything I used quite clean, but also that the waiter, bartender, and dishwasher all had their own little cleaning roles.
- Theme(5/5 points)
This place has the most amazing interior. I really didn’t want to leave when I was finished with my meal and I might make this a more regular location just based on the decor. It’s dark wood; it’s tile floors; it’s candles discretely hidden for ambient light. File this place under excellent spot for a night time date.
- Adequate Seating(4/5 points)
Plenty of seats in the front, at the bar, in the back, and outside. The do close the outside seating from time to time, but it’s well worth it for a lovely day.
- Location(2/5 points)
This place isn’t even remotely close to a subway stop. The ten blocks from Bedford Avenue on the L does make for a pleasant stroll after you’ve eaten though.
2 points for outdoor seating.
Overall Score 42/55, with bonus 44/55 or 80%