A good review can catapult a business to success. A bad review can have the exact opposite effect. Especially if the review comes from a well-respected publication such as the New York Times.
In the case of Guy's American Kitchen and Bar, the new 500-seat restaurant in Times Square by TV personality, author and chef Guy Fieri, Pete Wells, the Times' restaurant critic, wrote a scathing review titled, "As Not Seen On TV." The review is going viral.
Wells pulled no punches. He lays out a series of questions for Fieri, as he touches on some of the dishes:
"Guy Fieri have you eaten at your new restaurant? Did you eat the food? Did it live up to your expectations?...Did panic grip your soul as you stared into the whirling hypno wheel of the menu, where adjectives and nouns spin in a crazy vortex?...How did nachos, one of the hardest dishes in the American canon to mess up, become so deeply unloveable?...Did you try that blue drink, the one that glows like nuclear waste? The watermelon margarita? Any idea why it tastes like some combination of radiator fluid and formaldehyde?...When you hung the sign by the entrance that says, 'Welcome to Flavor Town,' were you just messing with our heads?"
The scathing questions continue through the entire review, published in Tuesday's paper, and ends with Wells rating the restaurant "poor." People on the Web can not get enough of the over-the-top insults. One person on Twitter wrote, "terribly, terribly funny."
Another said, "Best worst review ever."
Yet one person did not pile on with the bunch, instead noting the newspaper's poor timing, tweeting, "While The New York Times was busy trashing Guy Fieri's restaurant, Guy's American Kitchen was donating half of all sales to the Red Cross."
The tweeter makes a good point, but once you consider Fieri's built-in fan-base, his restaurant is unlikely to be dealt a lasting blow by the negative review. Tourists from around the world are still going to flock to Times Square. Even so, a bad review is certainly not a good way to start.