How to Order Like Frank Bruni

From left, Monkey Bar, Hotel Griffou, and DBGB.

As part of his new policy of being visible everywhere and always, former critic Frank Bruni puts in an audio appearance on GQ's blog. He went to Hooters and hated it, obvi. The most enlightening bit is his set of rules for ordering: Look at the list of appetizers and entres Cross out the the appetizers and entres youve seen at every other restaurant thats the chef and restaurateur playing to the lowest common denominator. Then find the weirdest dish, and cross each of those off because thats the chef indulging his or her own worst vanity. And look at the dishes left and order from those.

Lets see how a couple newcomers fare.

Items crossed out in red are the clichs; those in blue are the flights of vanity.

Hotel Griffou:
Choose among Pork Cutlets from 1892, Sole Meunire with Forest Mushrooms and Marjoram, or Sweet-Pea and Ricotta Ravioli.

Monkey Bar
Choose from a Minted Pea Soup, Chasen's Chili, Chinatown Chicken Salad, Kedgeree, or Skate Grenobloise.

Choose from the majority of dishes, including Sweet-Corn Velout, Striped-Bass Escabeche, or Guinea-Hen Terrine.