Although the readers of certain publications are fond of snacking on critiques of food and restaurants, the faithful readers of ZQ-287 are somewhat more discerning. They prefer to feast on critiques of the critics. As such, we are pleased to bring you this week’s episode of The Food Critic Critic, by our highly-qualified field correspondent, Pirate Prentice.

– This Week –

Our Review of TOM SIETSEMA’s Review of La Vie on the Wharf, entitled

“La Vie on the Wharf is so bad I’m only writing about it as a warning”

by Pirate Prentice

What a service Tom Sietsema performs for society! While some individuals engage in largely useless occupations like war reporting in Syria, working 12-hour days in a kitchen, or picking produce in backbreaking, underpaid and criminalized conditions, Tom is out there every day selflessly going to richfuck restaurants with his richfuck friends in order to provide us with warnings which will deeply effect the livelihoods of dozens of wage earners about food that was probably not actually all that bad to any non-asshole.

“Every now and then I encounter a restaurant that’s so dismissive of diners’ senses, my initial reaction is simply not to write about it. Why waste the money, the words and your precious time? But the bigger and pricier a place, the more I feel the need to warn readers away from, among other dining pratfalls, kitchens that can’t cook and design that makes you dizzy.”

Indeed, why waste my time with any of your garbage thoughts, much less waste money paying you for anything you write? And as far as the design making you dizzy—well, take a look for yourself, dear reader.


This brutal environment apparently drove Tom to a dizzy spell. I can conclude only two things. One, Tom is accustomed to ambiences of such higher quality that it literally made him dizzy to slum in such a nasty hellhole as this, and two, Tom does so little work that the act of going to a restaurant to eat leaves him weak and staggering.

Here’s the first in Tom’s “punch list of problems for the restaurant to fix.” (Punch list? You’re definitely on it, Tom.)

Lack of common sense. One visit, after everyone had placed their orders, a server asked, in all seriousness, ‘You’d like the appetizers first? And then the entrees? How about the sides?’ I know the T-shirts say ‘Life is short; eat dessert first,’ but does anyone want their steak ahead of their salad, or their sides anywhere but … on the side (of the main course)?”

Tom’s so smart and capable. In his well-defined role as superfluous human scum, he knows first and foremost how to insult a single slip of the tongue by an actual hardworking professional striving merely to please him. Good thing Tom’s here to warn you about this sort of thing.

“Also, servers should never interrupt guests who are clearly in conversation to ask if everything is okay. The better tack: They should do a walk-by to ‘read’ the table, using facial expressions and other cues to determine guest satisfaction. If they see something, they should say something.”

Also, the profession of food writer — if there were any mere shred of cosmic or economic justice in this world — shouldn’t be allowed to exist. The better tack: not to capitalize the first word immediately following the use of a colon, and also not to deign yourself worthy of critiquing anyone who works on their feet in a demanding environment full of fickle, snobbish pricks such as yourself rather than what you do, which is sit on your fat ass with a cocktail in your hand telling everyone else how to better serve you.

Food that doesn’t look like itself. A confident kitchen knows to edit its efforts. Less is usually more. I was reminded of these fine points when a whole branzino was set down, split and overdressed with a kitchen sink of garnishes, including clams, tomatoes and artichokes. The entree’s recipient didn’t know where to fix her fork. ‘Very distracting,’ she said, poking into the heap.”

What the fuck is a branzino? What the fuck is the difference between a partial and “whole” branzino? I’m going to take the fact that I have no idea as irrefutable evidence that it’s what else other than richfuck food. If the “entree’s recipient”— undoubtedly some sludgy, worthless little friend of yours — is dissatisfied with how “distracting” the food she received is, then I have good news for the both of you! I’ve devised a much better premise for not only yourselves, but also the restaurant, to conduct this review by.

The whole thing starts a full calendar week before the day you even enter the restaurant. We begin by having our culinary experts abduct you and your dinner guest off a busy street in broad daylight before taking you to an abandoned, cockroach-infested warehouse, where you will be incarcerated without food for seven consecutive days. When our specialists return for you, they will serve you with a cold can of Spaghetti-O’s lovingly dumped out into a dirty frying pan, accentuated by the authentic experience of eating it with your own filthy fingers. If this still doesn’t prove palatable to you, we will prolong the “curing” process by leaving you to rot for another another seven days. We will then transport you and your guest to La Vie on the Wharf, where you will be obliged to crawl, unshowered and in the same outfits you were both abducted in two weeks earlier, in front of the other patrons to a small tarp laid out on the floor of the restaurant’s dizzying interior. There you will beg a member of the waitstaff on hands and knees to bring you any item whatsoever from the menu, at which point they will refuse you service, inform you that you are disrupting the other diners, and our specialists will kick your asses out the front door, forcing you both to walk barefoot several miles back to whatever classy little ratholes you both slimed your way out of. As for the money owed to you for completion of your review, it will be donated in its entirety to a Yemen Relief Fund or a soup kitchen somewhere.

Yeah, I think that would be a much better and more entertaining solution to this problem for everyone, Tom. You stupid fuck.


Join us next week, foodies!

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