Guy Fieri, celebrity chef and Food Network star, just opened Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar in Times Square. Of course, everyone knew it would be terrible, but New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells has confirmed it, writing one of the most enjoyably scathing reviews to hit the Internet.
“When you saw the burger described as ‘Guy's Pat LaFrieda custom blend, all-natural Creekstone Farm Black Angus beef patty, LTOP (lettuce, tomato, onion + pickle), SMC (super-melty-cheese) and a slathering of Donkey Sauce on garlic-buttered brioche,’ did your mind touch the void for a minute?” Wells asks the TV personality and celebrity chef near the beginning of the review, which he wrote as an open letter.
“And when we hear the words Donkey Sauce, which part of the donkey are we supposed to think about,” he follows up.
Wells, as could be expected, rated the restaurant “Poor.” But while his rating was a given, it’s worth reading the entire review just for its hilarious style, full of questions to Fieri like “When you hung that sign by the entrance that says, WELCOME TO FLAVOR TOWN!, were you just messing with our heads?”
One of the best lines in the review comes buried at the end. When Wells attempted to sum up the restaurant’s service with one sentence, he simply wrote, "The well-meaning staff seems to realize that this is not a real restaurant."
Guy Fieri is a strange figure in American pop culture. Few people will openly admit to being big fans of Fieri’s bleached hair and lowbrow approach to cooking, but those supporters have to be out there somewhere.
After all, “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” is one of the most popular shows on the Food Network, and his latest restaurant will almost surely be a hit with the kind of tourists that already flock to Times Square’s overpriced dens of kitsch. And so, trash like this continues to exist, but it least we have people like Wells out there to remind us how ridiculous such places are.
Still, Fieri does seem to have at least one reluctant supporter: “Good Eats” host and beloved chef Alton Brown.
“I am planning on visiting Guy Fieri's NYC eatery this weekend because it can't be as bad as all those snooty New Yorkers say. #wishmeluck,” Brown tweeted.
From Wells’ review, he’ll need a lot of it.