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Donald Trump, Vanity Fair engage in a digital food fight after scathing restaurant review

The Trump Tower Grill is viewed at Trump Tower in New York on Dec. 15, 2016.
Jim Watson | AFP | Getty Images
The Trump Tower Grill is viewed at Trump Tower in New York on Dec. 15, 2016.

The decadeslong feud between Donald Trump and Vanity Fair Editor Graydon Carter has turned into a presidential food fight.

On Wednesday, Vanity Fair posted a scathing review of the grill at New York City's Trump Tower, under the headline "Trump Grill Could Be the Worst Restaurant in America." Written by political reporter Tina Nguyen, the review said the appeal of the restaurant, "like the candidate, is that it seems like a cheap version of rich."

The dumplings, Nguyen wrote, were filled with "flaccid, gray innards"; the burger, she said, reminded her of an "M.S.G.-flavored kitchen sponge lodged between two other sponges"; and the drinks seemed to be created by a college freshman "experimenting in their dorm room." Even the complimentary dessert tasted like Tums, Nguyen wrote.

"As soon I got home," she wrote, "I brushed my teeth twice and curled up in bed until the nausea passed."


Trump sent out a tweet Thursday morning saying Vanity Fair's circulation numbers are in "big trouble, dead!" He added that Carter, the publication's longtime editor, has "no talent" and "will be out!"

Of course, the Carter-Trump Twitter war is nothing new. Over the past four years, the president-elect has fired off a round tweets about Carter, calling him a "real loser" and "dopey."

The two have been going at it since the 1980s when Carter, then at Spy magazine, famously referred to Trump as "the short-fingered vulgarian" — a label that continued to follow him through the Republican debates.

In response to Trump's tweet, Vanity Fair on Thursday sent out a link to the restaurant review, asking, "Is this the story that set @realdonaldtrump off this morning?"

In November 2015, Carter wrote about his longstanding feud with Trump, saying, "The myriad vulgarities of Donald Trump — examples of which are retailed daily on Web sites and front pages these days — are not news to those of us who have been living downwind of him for any period of time."

And on Thursday, Vanity Fair proclaimed at the top of its website that it's "The magazine Trump doesn't want you to read. Subscribe now!" Clicking on the banner directed visitors to a subscription form page, which had a different banner that quoted Trump's tweet.

Vanity Fair did not immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment.