6 comments on “Batali on Otto

  1. I lived in NYC for years. The two restaurants have nothing to do with one another — his is a full-on enoteca with a miles-long charcuterie and cheese list and a (literally) 20 page wine list. No one but a self-absorbed fat croc-wearing ass-clown is going to mistake one for the other. His menu is 90% NOT PIZZA. His has an effing train arrival and departure sign announcing table readiness — sound a lot like the hole in the wall on Congress?

    Also, no one up here gives a crap who Batali is, so why on earth would anyone copy him?

    Also also, and this is the really key point and you can take it from a New Yorker who at at Otto NYC a dozen times before moving up here ad who takes this particular issue very seriously: OUR OTTO’S PIZZA IS BETTER. It’s not even a contest if you ask me. Our Otto’s is the best pizza I’ve ever had outside of Grimaldi’s, which closed, which is a travesty, but there you have it. I’d wager I’m one of a couple dozen people ON EARTH who’ve eaten at both Ottos — I’m sure Batali hasn’t — and I’m telling you, our pizza’s better. Copy shmopy. Guy serves imported meats he didn’t cure, cheese he didn’t make, and mediocre pizza. Who’d copy that?

    As mentioned above, Batali’s an ass-clown. I take comfort in the fact that the young, talented people making my pizza at Portland’s Otto likely don’t give a crap what his old, celebrity, Marcella-Hazan-coattail-riding ass has to say.

  2. One more thing: if he wants to sue someone, he should be suing the Corner Room. THAT place’s menu is exactly OTTO NYC. And are you confusing Otto Portland with the Corner Room? Me neither.

  3. Henry, I don’t think he is arguing the restaurant itself, nor the food. Only the branding, which is (minus a few details) pretty spot on exact. There is no way that they wouldn’t know about OTTO in NYC when they were branding. It would be impossible to not know about it. I guarantee they saw it and knowingly copied it, thinking Portland wouldn’t know any better. And from the various posts out there, they did a good job fooling the masses in Portland.

    And Harding ripped off Esca, not Otto.

  4. I heard the guy from Otto’s used to manage a burger place in Queens called Mc’ Dowells. I went there once in the 80’s. Honestly, the burgers weren’t that great, but the daughter was a FOX and they had these two kids from Zamunda working there who were pretty cool. I think I gave it like three stars on yelp at the time, but really can’t say for sure.

  5. They ripped off the logo. It’s completely obvious. They need to ‘fess up and do and the right thing.

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