New York Daily Photo Analytics

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Insult to Injury

Let's try to create the most inhospitable outdoor dining situation imaginable and see if anyone comes. First, let's pick the largest city in the United States, New York, to make sure we have potential for congestion. Second, pick one of the busiest thoroughfares in Manhattan - Houston Street, so it's like eating on a super highway. Third, we make sure we choose a really crowded area to insure opportunity for the maximum numbers of passersby. Fourth, while we're at it, provide no separation between diners and those passersby, guaranteeing a complete lack of privacy.
Fifth, let's use inexpensive, plastic chairs (the kind you get for a few dollars at a discount shop) so the experience feels really cheap. Sixth, make sure we have a garbage can nearby filled with trash. Add in a fluorescent orange traffic cone for color. Seventh, let's put some of the tables around the corner next to the kitchen exhaust system for those who really want more ambiance.
So there you have it. Dining al fresco at Arturo's, New York City style. And do we get any customers? You bet, and there are no tables available.
Oh - I almost forgot - let's serve wine so we can add insult to injury :)

Related Posts: Piercing Al Fresco, Luna Park Cafe, Esperanto, a la Chien, Paris in New York

13 comments:

Mary said...

We sometimes eat at Yama, a few doors down the street, and as we pass Arturo's my husband mutters expletives under his breath. Yet it's been there for years and years, just the same.

Terry B said...

What is it that makes people think eating on the sidewalk like this is enjoyable? And worst of all, in the blazing sunshine? Now, if a restaurant has a courtyard off the street, preferably shaded by trees, umbrellas or even the walls of surrounding buildings, I'm all over that. But you're right--this looks absolutely hideous.

Mab said...

So you're saying this is not a good place to stop and eat right lol :) If I ever come to NY I'll remember to give this experience a miss, thanks for pointing this out Brian. :)

Mab :)

ken mac said...

Why pick on Arturos? Why not just cruise MacDougal Street if you want to complain about crowded sidewalks? At least Arturos is one of the oldest, most personable restaurants in the Village, doesn't gouge, and is truly a neighborhood landmark. Your criticism is misdirected and unfair. Ever walk in front of the pompous hordes that fill Bar Pitti on 6th?

Brian said...

ken;
I agree - MacDougal is worse - and filthy. The criticism was more a general one concerning harsh conditions for al fresco dining. Regarding Arturo's, it is a neighborhood landmark.

marley said...

Well, all I can say is the food must be really cheap or really, really good!

Robin said...

I have a soft spot in my heart for Arturo's. My late husband played piano there on Wednesday nights during the 1980's. The food was always great, and the waiters and waitresses would sing between serving. I haven't been there in years - but it looks exactly the same!

Aigars Bruvelis said...

I like your sarcasm:)

MmeBenaut said...

You can't buy good taste Brian. I can see your shadow on the trash can though. Some people would pay for that!

endometria said...

Agreed -- the post should be seen as critical of misguided "al fresco" set-ups that abound in NY and other towns, not directed at Arturo's in particular. Sweltering heat, glaring afternoon sun and limited sidewalk space are not conducive to an enjoyable outdoor dining experience, but it doesn't stop restaurants from cashing in on willing diners, so it's a matter of choice, really... and honestly, Arturo's is great, so people are willing to put up with less-than-favourable conditions in order to enjoy their food!

Anonymous said...

Brian..I live on MacDougal and you are correct. It is filthy!
- ken mac

CrisWar said...

Jajaj that was actually funny, and to think there are tons of places like that around the city...

Anonymous said...

get over it!!!!

I am sorry, and I have enjoyed your blog for a wile now. However Arturo's is to "me" the best place for Pizza in NYC. Live music and great mussels. Nothing is perfect in life...... LOL if your married you know that, but you still cumin back for more!

*lighten up and find another pizza place to patron.