Every week, we take our turn with Lady Luck on the BruniBetting odds as posted by Eater. Just for kicks, we track Eater’s bet too, and see who is better at guessing what the unpredictable Bruni will do. We track our sins with an imaginary $1 bet every week.
The Line: Tomorrow, Frank Bruni reviews The E.U., a restaurant best known for its eighteen-month odyssey to obtain a liquor license. In the kitchen is Ahktar Nawab, formerly the acclaimed chef de cuisine at Craftbar. Eater’s official odds are as follows (√√ denotes the Eater bet):
Zero Stars: 3-1
One Star: 3-1 √√
Two Stars: 8-1
Three Stars: 85-1
Four Stars: 25,000-1
The Skinny: We don’t really have much to go on this week. Bruni tends to lag the other reviewers, so by the time he gets to a place, there’s a body of critical opinion already out there. That’s not so for The E.U., but we rely on Eater’s report that “Chef Nawab’s food has ranged from legitimately very good to wildly less so.”
The menu is also not in The E.U.’s favor, with its polyglot categories: raw bar, tapas, charcuterie, panini, along with standard appetizers and entrées. Bruni tends to think—and here I agree with him—that a restaurant trying to do so many things will usually misfire on some of them.
If Bruni is grading on his “downtown curve,” there’s an outside shot at two stars. On the whole, we think one star is the safer bet.
The Bet: We agree with Eater that Frank Bruni will award one star to E.U.