Nelson Franks 
Member since Aug 4, 2011

Latest Review

Re: “Balkan Restaurant

Really nice little place. Inexpensive comfort food (Balkan style) and a very friendly and helpful staff.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Nelson Franks on 04/18/2012 at 4:42 PM

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Recent Comments

Re: “Best Sushi

Jason, sorry that I seem to have offended you, but a quick perusal of Richmond's Sticky Rice against other review sites would seem to confirm my notion that it's just not all that great. It scores 3.7 out of 5 starts with Google (think 74 out of 100). Urban Spoon gives it a 76% from ‎567 votes. Yelp is 3 out of 5 stars with 181 reviews (that's a 60). And Trip Advisor gives it 3.5 stars out of 5 from 57 reviews (that's a 70).
I have no idea how you conduct your surveys, but I do know that year after year, the results seem fairly predictable and the winners all seem to belong in the same club. Perhaps it's just local taste. I've lived in the city around 15 years, but perhaps growing up here renders different taste buds. I do know that I find absolute gems around town and in the environs that receive only paltry mention in Style while garnering ample praise from other review sites.

Posted by Nelson Franks on 10/19/2013 at 3:14 AM

Re: “Best Sushi

This is a good example why I hold Style in such low esteem. Sticky Rice, as far as its sushi goes, is at best average in the extreme and at worst as bad as it gets. Buckets of mayo, avocado and teriyaki to try and disguise fish that's been out too long. The most positive thing I can say is that it didn't cause food poisoning. And the hipster crowd is just dreary. What I suspect is that that crowd is the same as those who work at Style, a recurring theme in Richmond that explains why the same dozen or so hipster dens get top rating year after year in Style. Overall, it just affirms how inbred the Richmond 'scene' is.

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Nelson Franks on 09/25/2013 at 10:29 AM

Re: “Final Maneuver

"Benedictine's Grapes says he's committed to being a good neighbor" - what a load of crap.
Benedictine has from day one been an arrogant bully on this issue. They've mislead and refused to cooperate. Good luck, Goochland. You'll need it.

6 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Nelson Franks on 06/26/2013 at 8:46 AM

Re: “Food Review: Burger Bach

"Back in the day, 30 years ago, there was no such thing as a kid's menu" ... au contraire! The iconic McDonald's Happy Meal premiered in 1979, and even back before those primitive times, many restaurants had children's menus.
While I might share the opinion that one ought to encourage gastronomic adventure with children, I am also aware that there are many children who do not share that sense of adventure, and I certainly would hold off on judging the parents as food philistines.

As for the Burger Bach, I found the burgers to be very good, but the way one is nickel and dimed for everything (soda refills, condiments, etc) was downright angering. The final price tag was way in excess of the quality of the dining experience. If I ever go back, it will be on someone else's dime.

8 likes, 10 dislikes
Posted by Nelson Franks on 05/16/2012 at 6:05 PM

Re: “Beyond Terror

To Jangles:
What the author said:
I’ve lived in Richmond my entire life, but I’ve never truly
self-identified as Virginian. I always felt more at home in
the Northeast, where my father and his side of the family
grew up. Another reason is that in Central Virginia, it
sometimes seems like the non-Beltway portions of the
state register on a national level only when they’re doing
something really embarrassing.
What I hear:
I think too many of the people here are backwards, and I
hold them in contempt.
You contradict the finding that "most Muslims felt ordinary Americans were friendly or neutral toward them," but your argument is from purely anecdotal evidence. I am well aware that there have been anti-Muslim attacks over the years. Those attacks spiked after 9-11, and while the number of incidents has dropped, they have not vanished completely. But I am also aware that those attacks have neither been systemic nor the norm. Over the past decade the Muslim American community has grown significantly, and accommodating that growth, more mosques have been built. For example, down beside I-81 in Roanoke one finds the Masjid An-Nur Islamic Center. I'm not sure when it was first built, but I'm reasonably certain that there was significant construction that went on during the 2000s.
My issue with the article was and is that the author takes what I feel is a condescending tone towards the community. He extolls "the board’s progressive decision ... as such a pleasant surprise," as if he expected pitchforks and torches. I'm not sure how much more constructive I can be in my criticism if this is not understood.
As for my "picking on a college kid," if me feeble words can eviscerate the author, then I would seriously suggest a different line of study. He's picked a major that requires a pretty thick skin.

Posted by Nelson Franks on 09/25/2011 at 8:38 AM

Re: “Beyond Terror

I'm glad you're OK with that, Brandon.
Even in an opinion piece, one can try not to seem haughty since that doesn't usually win people over to one's side. Anyone can have an opinion, but to be persuasive requires skill.
Mr. Budryk is a journalism major at VCU. I would think an aspiring journalist might benefit from criticism. I honestly didn't find the piece terribly thoughtful or incisive. It seemed to me to be haughty, but a cliched haughty. It has become fashionable to criticize Americans as unsophisticated Islamophobes, unwilling to grant religious equality to the local Muslim community and seeing in every Muslim's eyes a potential terrorist. But just last month the Pew Research Center presented an article that discussed how the Muslim community in America was largely content and did not feel singled out as targets. In other words, the popular cliched media image - Muslims lured by the promise of being treated equally, fairly and with respect but being denied those things because of their being unjustly associated with a handful of extremists - isn't born out in the real world. The Pew Research Center "found that most Muslims felt ordinary Americans were friendly or neutral toward them."
But stories about decent people behaving decently doesn't make the news.

Posted by Nelson Franks on 09/07/2011 at 3:42 AM

Re: “Beyond Terror

You might want to have someone read your articles through in the future before posting them.
You come off as very arrogant in your article. Your "pride" in Henrico's decision is given only begrudgingly, with the tone that you were rather surprised that such rubes would overcome their Islamophobia and do the right thing.
Don’t put yourself on a pedestal so far above others. Your writing might benefit from being at a lower altitude.

Posted by Nelson Franks on 09/06/2011 at 7:25 PM

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