Best New Restaurant (Since March 2004) - 2005
Readers' Choice: Saverino
It seems almost cheap to pass judgment on Frasca, since praising it is like looking over a Monet watercolor, tasting a bottle of 1955 Petrus or listening to Charlie Parker play and saying, "Hey, that's pretty good." Of course Frasca is good. It's so good as to be almost beyond words, having raised the bar to such a height that comparisons with other restaurants are pointless. Frasca exists in a place far removed from the usual definitions of success and failure, even those so nebulous they're generally applied to love and art. The owners, chef Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson and master sommelier Bobby Stuckey, both come from the French Laundry -- Mecca to modern foodies -- and they've imprinted the genius of its chef, Thomas Keller, on everything they do here. The staff is flawless, the service more comforting, more personal and more subtly enveloping than any we've experienced before. The cooks in the kitchen operate at a level of perfection we would have previously thought unapproachable, serving up the cuisine of Friuli, a region in northern Italy. If there's anything at all to complain about, it's that the wait for a prime table at Frasca is now measured in months, not hours. But we're fine eating at the bar, where seating is first come, first served. We'd eat standing up on the sidewalk if we had to. So, yes, Frasca is good. Frasca is without peer. It's not just the best new restaurant of the year, but quite possibly where you'll have the best meal of your life.