If you are unfamiliar with the oft-used term "feh" it is defined by one Yiddish-to-English dictionary as: "It stinks! No good."
Suffice to say, "feh" is most certainly not what Gothamist looks for in a dining experience. But we can't help but notice that one Brooklyn restauranteur, Nando Ghorchian, has perfected the artform of the middling meal with a string of mediocre haunts in Brooklyn Heights, ranging from Montague Street's Caffe Buon Gusto to the recently shuttered Cafe del Mar and Balzar (pictured) on Henry Street. He's also started up what The Brooklyn Papers has referred to as a "schizophrenic" jazz club-restaurant called Cafe 111 on Court Street.
Brooklyn Heights' Montague and Court Streets have long been considered home to an array of sub-par eateries - in part due to exorbitant rent and the pedestrian tastebuds of the office workers and courthouse jurors that crowd the area at lunchtime. But Ghorchian's other restaurant attempts seem more than a bit off-the-mark, considering that their strictly residential locales on Henry necessitate attracting local diners. Between hot spots like the neighborhood fave Noodle Pudding, various Middle Eastern options on Atlantic and the proximity to Smith Street's gourmet delights, how does Ghorchian compete?
Let's just say he isn't bringing home the gold. During Gothamist's trips to his restaurants, grubby grub, drab decor and waitstaff that left you waiting seemed the norm. To top it off, we couldn't help but laugh at the wine glasses that Cafe del Mar proffered when we ordered a bottle of vino. They were so gargantuan that we couldn't put them down on our tiny table for two without clinking.
And now, it appears that Ghorchian is unveiling two new restaurants for fans of "feh." El Cubanito just opened at 78 Henry with a Latin-theme -- and a menu that spells ribs with two "b's." And, soon-to-open in the eatery location formally-known-as-Balzar will be Ghorchian's take on a French bistro: Chez Henry.
Gothamist can't help but wonder what Yiddish phrases will be needed to describe these new establishments. The term "drek" is coming to mind...
-- Vittles Vamp