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Review Preview: SHO Shaun Hergatt

Photographers from the New York Times were spotted in SHO Shaun Hergatt’s dining room last week, which likely means that it will be reviewed tomorrow. We’ll post the Eater.com odds when and if they appear. In the meantime, we offer our usual instant analysis.

We’ve dined at SHO three times and reviewed it twice (here, here). We think it was the best new opening of 2009, and easily a high-end three-star restaurant. The Times thought otherwise, relegating it to a Pete Wells Dining Brief during the interregnum between critics Frank Bruni and Sam Sifton.

We thought that Wells missed the point of the restaurant by a country mile. Yet, Hergatt should be grateful that he didn’t file a rated review. Had he done so, it clearly would have received no more than two stars, and would have foreclosed the review that Sifton is filing tomorrow.

Business has been picking up at SHO: that was not only our own observation, but that of others who’ve visited lately. Hergatt and his backers deserve credit for sticking to their guns, and continuing to offer a high-end experience, when they could very well (and quite understandably) have dialed down the concept when the economic crisis hit.

Sifton has been unpredictable, to say the least, but we assume he would not invest a review slot unless it were to upgrade Wells’s judgment. We therefore make the only prediction we can: three stars.

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