Tell me, though, why does your kitchen sabotage even its more appealing main courses with ruinous sides and sauces? Why stifle a pretty good bison meatloaf in a sugary brown glaze with no undertow of acid or spice? Why send a serviceable herb-stuffed rotisserie chicken to the table in the company of your insipid Rice-a-Roni variant?
Why undermine a big fist of slow-roasted pork shank, which might fly in many downtown restaurants if the General Tso’s-style sauce were a notch less sweet, with randomly shaped scraps of carrot that combine a tough, nearly raw crunch with the deadened, overcooked taste of school cafeteria vegetables?
Is this how you roll in Flavor Town?
Somewhere within the yawning, three-level interior of Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar, is there a long refrigerated tunnel that servers have to pass through to make sure that the French fries, already limp and oil-sogged, are also served cold?
What accounts for the vast difference between the Donkey Sauce recipe you’ve published and the Donkey Sauce in your restaurant? Why has the hearty, rustic appeal of roasted-garlic mayonnaise been replaced by something that tastes like Miracle Whip with minced raw garlic?
And when we hear the words Donkey Sauce, which part of the donkey are we supposed to think about?
Is the entire restaurant a very expensive piece of conceptual art? Is the shapeless, structureless baked alaska that droops and slumps and collapses while you eat it, or don’t eat it, supposed to be a representation in sugar and eggs of the experience of going insane?
Why did the toasted marshmallow taste like fish?
Did you finish that blue drink?
Oh, and we never got our Vegas fries; would you mind telling the kitchen that we don’t need them?
Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar
220 West 44th Street (Seventh Avenue), (646) 532-4897, guysamerican.com.
ATMOSPHERE 500 seats, three levels, three bars, one chaotic mess.
SERVICE The well-meaning staff seems to realize that this is not a real restaurant.
SOUND LEVEL Rawk and roll, but at moderate volumes.
RECOMMENDED Roasted Pork Bahn Mi, General Tso’s Crispy Pork Shank, Cedar Plank Salmon with Jalapeño Apricot Jam.
DRINKS AND WINE Margaritas, while too sweet and strong, are the best cocktails. Draft beers are better than the largely dull wines.
PRICES Soups, salads and appetizers, $8.95 to $16.50; sandwiches, pastas and main courses, $16.95 to $31.50.
HOURS Sunday to Wednesday, 11:30 a.m. to midnight; Thursday to Saturday, 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m.
WHEELCHAIR ACCESS The bar area and an accessible restroom are on street level.
WHAT THE STARS MEAN Ratings range from zero to four stars and reflect the reviewer’s reaction primarily to food, with ambience, service and price taken into consideration.