Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Naming of Restaurants: Beyond "EAT"

"Bad names litter the dining landscape"
Christopher Borrelli, Restaurant, (August 19, 2010)

"...America is dispiritingly awash in bad restaurant names - every autumn, poking through best-new-restaurants-of-the-year lists, I self-righteously smirk at the chance that any place named, oh, the Moss Room (in San Francisco) could be worth the hassle. I admire the randomness of Scarpetta (which is in Manhattan and means "little shoe" in Italian) but roll my eyes at No. 7 (which is in Brooklyn and means 7 Greene Ave.) - who needs another restaurant named for an address? I marvel at dullard one-word names like Feast, Reef and Textile....

"...One expects Las Vegas to have a restaurant as gaudily named as Society Cafe Encore (on Esquire's best restaurant list, incidentally), but when one stumbles upon a Mexican joint in North Carolina named El Titanic (no joke), one wonders if America is experiencing a drought of smartly named restaurants...."

I think Christopher Borrelli's on to something here: although I also suspect that there are stranger eatery names. I've left out quite a bit of his op-ed piece: including a mention of a place in Minneapolis, a maybe-three-hour-drive south and east of my home.

Still, the ultimate bad name for an eatery may be in - I think it was an old New Yorker cartoon: Sam and Ella's.

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