Lest the following sound petulant, I want to emphasize at the outset how much I enjoy responding to reader requests for restaurant recommendations. As my grandmother might say, I don’t eat eight burgers a week for my health. The fun of exploring the local food scene is sharing what I find: I love trading tips with residents and helping visitors plot their Charleston dining adventures.
But it’s astounding how many e-mails don’t provide any details about what the writer’s seeking. “You probably get questions like this a lot, but it looks like there are many great restaurants in Charleston,” a correspondent wrote this morning. “Can you recommend any that would be within walking distance of the Embassy Suites near Marion Square?”
According to a downtown Charleston restaurant map I picked up at Tales of the Cocktail this summer, that narrows the choices down to about 107 eating places. I consider many of them pretty great, but I have no idea whether the writer and I have the same definition of greatness. He sounded like an awfully nice guy, so I’d hate to steer him wrong.
By contrast, another future visitor last week sent me his tentative dining agenda, along with the following guidelines for additional ideas: Continue reading “Unsolicited Advice for Seeking Local Restaurant Advice” »
“You think you know your pomegranate arils?,” a promotional postcard from a Produce Marketing Association convention vendor teased.
Well, no. (Turns out arils are the good part of the fruit: I always mistakenly called them seeds.) So I’m now headed to the PMA convention in New Orleans to advance my plant education: Stay tuned to my Twitter feed if you want to keep up with what I’m learning.
Immediately after the convention, I’m embedding with the Cook It Raw gang, which means the blog may look sparser-than-usual again next week. Again, I hope you’ll turn to Twitter. And to learn more about the event, don’t miss my feature in Monday’s paper.
Alright, I’m off to eat arils and hang out with gun-toting chefs. See you soon.
Readers will always debate whether critics got a restaurant’s star rating right, but we’re hoping to help ground those discussions by providing a better sense of what the stars mean to us.
A box defining our rating criteria will now run with every Post & Courier restaurant review. Eagle-eyed readers will notice the definitions have been very slightly tweaked to reflect the diversity of the local dining scene. Like most contemporary newspaper dining sections, we’ve removed any allusions to fine dining standards from our criteria: Nowadays, a restaurant can deliver a five-star wow without ever unfolding a white tablecloth.
Additionally, it’s Post & Courier policy to always award at least one star. Should you choose to dine at a one-star restaurant, Godspeed. Continue reading “Review Star Ratings Defined” »
Features editor Teresa Taylor was kind enough to conduct a very comprehensive Q-and-A session with me, so you’ll find more than you ever needed to know about me in today’s food section: I’d wager I’ve taken road trips with folks who couldn’t tell you what my mother served for Thursday suppers (taco salad) or my primary form of transportation (a 2009 Trek Soho.) What the column doesn’t include, though, is a picture of me.
Via Twitter, we immediately heard back from a reader who wondered why. Since I made a point of stressing openness and transparency in my responses, he wrote, why not put my picture out for all to see? It’s a legitimate question, and one which deserves more than a 140-character answer.
It’s a truism today that there’s no such thing as anonymity. Eater’s published my photo so many times that when I’m meeting someone for the first time, I spare them the descriptions of my hair color and height, suggesting they just pull up my picture on Google beforehand. If anonymous means nobody knows what I look like, I haven’t been anonymous for years – and neither has any other critic of note. Continue reading “Who’s Raskin Anyhow?” »