Longtime readers of Cowtown Eats are familiar with this recurring thought. Just like movie critics, some will share your taste and other's won't. It's not a matter of facts, but a matter of opinion.
A recent review of Oak Park's Aurthur Henry's and the two different critics' opinion of the restaurant concept is a perfect example of that.
The Sac Bee's current food critic wrote recently that she enjoyed cooking her own food on the grill.
Why in the world, one might ask, would you pay $23 to grill your own rib-eye? Because it’s great fun. Eating a steak cooked by a professional is dining out. Grilling one’s own steak, and especially doing it alongside pals, is a party.
At least that’s the case at Arthur Henry’s, where a limited, old-school menu (highlighted by steaks, bourbon and garlic bread) combines with permanent-midnight lighting, velvet floral wallpaper and a jukebox partial to Steve Miller and Conway Twitty to send one back in time – to that period, roughly between 1965 and 1981, when mustaches, Corvettes and smoke-filled barrooms were held in equal esteem.
Read Carla Meyer's entire review in the Sac Bee.
But that's distinct from the opinion from former Sac Bee restaurant critic Blair Anthony Robertson in January 2014:
This is possibly the clumsiest restaurant concept we have ever encountered. The food comes heavily wrapped in plastic and is unsightly on the table – a skewer of raw vegetables next to a slab of raw meat next to a piece of stale bread with pale butter. The paper plates are on top of the porcelain plate we are expected to eat off of, something we found unappealing. When we unwrapped the plastic, we all made “yucky” faces...
Did we have a good time? Yes, we did, but our conversation – and many of our laughs throughout the evening – centered around how we actually like people with skill and passion handling our food, where we would discard our blood-soaked plastic wrap and who would bug the server to bring us more Handi-wipes.
I happen to agree with Meyer that Arthur Henry's is a good time. I've been there several times with friends for both drinks and for a full dinner. I'm glad that I don't have to go to the store, set up my grill, wait for the charcoal to light, and clean up. For that convenience and the restaurant's unique ambiance, it's worth an occasional visit. But that doesn't mean that Robertson is wrong. Sometimes your tastes are just different from a restaurant critic's.
Arthur Henry's Supper Club and Ruby Room is located at 3406 Broadway and can be found online at http://www.arthurhenrys.net/.
Dinner is a battlefield - The chefs at the restaurants participating in the Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge are up for the test. As of press time, the full list of eateries in the friendly monthlong competition had not been announced, but the V Word is particularly excited to see what Blackbird Kitchen+Beer Gallery (reopening mid-October, according to its Facebook page) concocts, after nailing it with a risotto burger last year. Shoka in Sac News & Review.
Farm-to-scoop shop comes to downtown grid - After several small delays that stalled the shop’s opening from August into autumn, Cornflower Creamery is expected to start scooping on Oct. 10 at 1013 L St., the space formerly occupied by Cafe Roma. Broughton’s hand-crafted flavors will be far from ordinary. Instead of plain chocolate or strawberry, expect such creative offerings as pistachio-apricot, candied fennel or baklava. Debbie Arrington in the Sac Bee.
Buggy Whip restaurant locks its doors - The sign on the front door of the once-iconic restaurant has disappointed a community of diners since it was posted Sept. 15: “The Buggy Whip thanks you for your patronage. It is with much regret that we must close.” With no fanfare, business partners Larry LeSieur and Steven Segal put up the sign and walked away. Customers have learned of the closure as they have shown up for lunch or dinner, only to find the doors locked and the restaurant dark. This is the second time the Buggy Whip has closed. The first was in 2012, reopening last October. Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.
Vela Cafe - Nadeem Haddad, who formerly ran Gyro Supreme at Downtown Plaza’s food court, and first-time restaurateur Feras Jowaniyah are set to open a new downtown Greek and Mediterranean cuisine restaurant in October. The cafe, which will be located near 10th and I streets, will feature a salad bar and deli station where customers can expect to see favorites like falafel and gyro sandwiches with pita bread (tossed in a garlic-based olive oil), shaved lamb and beef and tzatziki sauce. In Sactown Magazine. (Fifth item.)
Local maker of small-batch craft sodas to launch Burly Beverages - Oak Park resident Gabriel Aiello is on a mission to combine the benefits of natural foods with the flavor of sweet, fizzy soft drinks for Burly Beverages, his new collection of sodas made with local ingredients that is expected to launch in mid-November. Dani Anguiano in Sactown Magazine.