Last week, Jason Quinn's response to a Yelper who wrote a negative review of his Santa Ana restaurant, Playground, caused quite a scene. Chefs respond negatively to negative reviews (shocking!) all the type, but they don't normally tell people to burn in hell.
When the proverbial fit hit the shan, though, and after neighboring businesses realized there weren't going to be crowds of angry people trying to trash the restaurant, I headed in for a $5 beer and a plate of food, and saw the above on the menu.
“Burn In Hell” Shrimp is not the only dish celebrating Quick Draw Quinn's comeback; previously, the Playground Burger was named the “Burn In Hell” Burger. It's since been reverted back to its previous name; the menu now admits that Yelp is right and it's way overhyped.
Not everything at Playground is celebrating the chef's temper, though. One of the things chefs always seem to talk about when they're allowed to play together is what they'd eat as their last meal. Some chefs want a fancy French dinner; some just want a Gray's Papaya hot dog and papaya drink.
Quinn, however, wants to cook his, and so this Friday inaugurated the Death Row Dinners. Every week, Quinn will cook one course of his imagined last meal. Last Friday's was a huge plate of Benton's country ham from Tennesse–a salty, fatty, impossibly rich ham shaved like jamón ibérico de bellota. It was served with two pieces of pa amb tomàquet, the grilled bread rubbed with garlic, olive oil, and then spread with fresh tomato purée that ought to be the official carbohydrate of Catalunya.
In the mean time, though, when the restaurant re-opens on Wednesday, check back and let us know what the “Burn In Hell” menu item is.