Jump to content


participating member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Mebutter

  1. I'm working on a story for the Tribune on seaweed. It's sort of a primer: types available, how to work with seaweed, health benefits (but just a little on that) and recipes. I'm curious to find Chicago area folks who cook/eat/love the various forms of seaweed out there. And does anyone have a good recipe for hijiki? Now don't be shy...e-Gullet is all family I'd like to try and get this story finished in the next two weeks, so if you have something to say about seaweed - favorite type, best recipe, biggest seaweed screw up and where you like to buy it - please let me know. Write back to me here. All the best, Bill Daley Chicago Tribune
  2. Thank you, Michael, for the kind words. And a big THANK YOU to all the eGulleteers who responded to the question with great ideas and great recipes that didn't have to be "tinkered" with by the test kitchen pros. A Happy Thanksgiving to you and to all, Bill Daley Chicago Tribune
  3. You know, you are right about the croutons. they would be easy to make. I'm going to, politely, suggest my editor was a little crazy about that one. I love the idea of the sweet potato mousse....I don't suppose you have a recipe we can use (and credit)??? Also, I wanted to say how impressed I am with this thread. I'm getting so many ideas!!!! And the stories are great. I'll be pm-ing a number of you soon. thanks so much, Bill Daley Chicago Tribune
  4. Thanks, Genny, did you tell the family you were doing this in advance or did you surprise them? Was there any sense of discomfort at first or did they accept it right away? Bill
  5. Hi there, I'm not sure if this is the best place to post this query but, what the heck, "adventures in eating" implies a certain hearty sort hanging out here...so let me give this a try... I'm working on a Thanksgiving story for the Tribune tentatively titled "Shifting Courses." (ick...I much prefer a Cubist analogy.) Anyway, we're talking about leaving the turkey exactly where it is at the center of the table but taking the traditional trimmings and moving them to different points in the meal. Like pumpkin in the soup, sweet potatoes in the stuffing, cranberries in the dessert. (Actually, I'd like to turn the stuffing into rustic croutons for a wild green salad but I think it would be too much work. Ditto for cooking the turkey, chopping it up into pieces and threading the meat on skewers with cranberries, slathering with a sweet teriyaki glaze, and giving the whole thing a quick whirl on the grill.) I'm wondering who has tried this sort of thing out there; what succeeded, what didn't. Would you share your war stories and recipes with me? What sort of mood where you in when you decided to depart from the norm? did the family notice? did the family care? Did Thanksgiving still feel "right" for you? Let me know. Thanks. Bill Daley Chicago Tribune
  6. Hey everybody, Here's the press release announcing the winners of the Association of Food Journalists 2005 competition. Entries for the 2006 contest are due in March. For more details: www.afjonline.com Bill Daley Chicago Tribune Association of Food Journalists News Release FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT: Jill Silva, 816-234-4347; jsilva@kcstar.com Carol DeMasters, 262-965-3251; carolafj@execpc.com AFJ Names Winners in Awards Competition 2005 Winners were announced Sept. 10, 2005, in Awards Competition 2005, sponsored by the Association of Food Journalists (AFJ), during its annual meeting in San Francisco, California, Sept. 7-10. These awards recognize excellence in reporting, writing, and photography in all media, and newspaper food section design and content. A total of $13,200 was awarded in 22 categories. There were 487 entries. Cash awards are given for first-place, $300; second-place, $200; and third-place, $100. All winners received certificates. Awards are given in three circulation divisions (under 150,000; 150,001 to 350,000; and over 350,001) in the following categories: best food section, food news reporting; series, special section and special project; food feature writing; food columns; and restaurant criticism. The best food feature in a magazine, best food coverage on the Internet, best studio food photography and best non-studio food photography have no circulation restriction. Jill Silva, food editor at The Kansas City Star in Kansas City, MO, was chairman of the Awards Competition 2005. The 66 judges include editors, professors and other award-winning journalists from colleges and universities and all circulations of newspapers and magazines. The Awards Competition, begun in 1986 and solely sponsored and funded by AFJ, is open to all journalists. AFJ, a professional group founded in 1974, has more than 300 members worldwide. They include food journalists employed by newspapers, magazines, wire services, Internet, and broadcast companies; and free-lance food writers, editors, columnists, and cookbook authors. For information on AFJ or membership in AFJ, contact AFJ’s Web site at www.afjonline.com. The rules and entry form for the Awards Competition 2006, which considers food writing published in 2005, will be available Jan. 2, 2006, at the AFJ Web site. Postmark deadline for entries in the Awards Competition 2006 is March 1, 2006. To read stories from most of the winners of Awards Competition 2005, contact the AFJ Web site during the first few weeks of October 2005. The winners are: ASSOCIATION OF FOOD JOURNALISTS, INC. AWARDS COMPETITION 2003 WINNERS UNDER 150,000 CIRCULATION BEST SECTION: First: Akron Beacon Journal, Jane Snow, Food Editor Second: Anchorage Daily News, T. C. Mitchell, Food Editor Third: Reno Gazette-Journal, Kathleen Stebbins, Food and Health Editor FOOD NEWS REPORTING: First: Mark Stuertz, staff writer, Dallas Observer Second: Besha Rodell, food writer, Chapel Hill, North Carolina; writing in Independent Weekly, Durham, North Carolina Third: Teresa Taylor, food editor, The Post and Courier, Charleston, South Carolina FOOD FEATURE WRITING: First: Robb Walsh, staff writer, Houston Press Second: Shelley Boettcher, journalist, writing in The Calgary Herald Third: Jane Snow, food editor, Akron Beacon Journal FOOD COLUMNS: First: Bonnie Wach, editorial contributor, SF Weekly Second: Angela Allen, writer, columnist, reviewer, The Columbian, Vancouver Washington Third: Arturo Ciompi, wine writer, Independent Weekly, Durham, North Carolina RESTAURANT CRITICISM First: Rose Martelli, editorial contributor, Riverfront Times, St. Louis, Missouri Second: Robb Walsh, staff writer, Houston Press Third: Bill Addison, food critic/food editor, Creative Loafing, Atlanta SERIES, SPECIAL SECTIONS & SPECIAL PROJECTS: First: Joanne Derbort, lifestyle features editor, Savor/The Press Democrat, Santa Rosa, California Second: T.C. Mitchell, food editor, Anchorage Daily News Third: Byron Beck, special sections editor, Willamette Week, Portland 150,001 - 350,000 CIRCULATION BEST SECTION: First: Star-Telegram, Fort Worth, Texas; Amy Culbertson, Food Editor Second: The Miami Herald; Kathy Martin, Food Editor Third: San Jose Mercury News; Julie Kaufmann, Food Editor FOOD NEWS REPORTING: First: Barbara Durbin, staff writer, The Oregonian, Portland Second: Andy Dworkin & Alex Pulaski, staff writers, The Oregonion, Portland Third: Kathleen Purvis, food editor, The Charlotte Observer FOOD FEATURE WRITING: First: Eunnie Park, reporter, The Record, Hackensack, New Jersey Second: Leslie Cole, staff writer, The Oregonian, Portland Third: Kyle Wagner, then dining critic, The Denver Post FOOD COLUMNS: First: Rob Kasper, columnist, The Baltimore Sun Second: Amy Culbertson, food editor, Star-Telegram, Fort Worth, Texas Third: Nancy Leson, restaurant critic, The Seattle Times RESTAURANT CRITICISM First: Jonathan Gold, writer, LA Weekly Second: Chris Sherman, food critic, St. Petersburg Times Third: Nancy Leson, restaurant critic, The Seattle Times SERIES, SPECIAL SECTIONS & SPECIAL PROJECTS: First: Amy Culbertson, food editor, Star-Telegram, Fort Worth, Texas Second: Brett Anderson, restaurant critic/food writer, The Times-Picayune, New Orleans Third: Amy Bertrand, health and fitness editor; Harry Jackson Jr., staff writer; Kathleen Nelson, interim health and fitness editor; St. Louis Post-Dispatch OVER 350,001 CIRCULATION BEST SECTION: First: Los Angeles Times, Leslie Brenner, Food Editor Second: San Francisco Chronicle, Miriam Morgan, Food Editor; Linda Murphy, Wine Editor Third: Chicago Tribune, Carol Mighton Haddix, Food Editor FOOD NEWS REPORTING: First: Corie Brown, staff writer, Los Angeles Times Second: Corie Brown, staff writer, Los Angeles Times Third: Carol Ness, staff writer, San Francisco Chronicle FOOD FEATURE WRITING: First: Maureen Abood, independent writer, writing in The Washington Post Second: Elyse Friedman, freelance food writer, writing in the Chicago Tribune Third: Carol Ness, staff writer, San Francisco Chronicle FOOD COLUMNS: First: Leah Eskin, food columnist, Chicago Tribune Second: Rick Nichols, food columnist, The Philadelphia Inquirer Third: Jennifer Bain, food editor, Toronto Star, Canada RESTAURANT CRITICISM First: S. Irene Virbila, staff writer, Los Angeles Times Second: Michael Bauer, executive food and wine editor and restaurant critic, San Francisco Chronicle Third: Craig LeBan, restaurant critic, The Philadelphia Inquirer SERIES, SPECIAL SECTIONS & SPECIAL PROJECTS: First: Leslie Brenner, food editor, Los Angeles Times Second: Rick Nelson, staff writer, Star Tribune, Minneapolis, Minnesota Third: Lee Svitak Dean, food editor, Star Tribune, Minneapolis, Minnesota BEST FOOD FEATURE IN A MAGAZINE First: Anthony Bourdain, chef/author, writing in Food Arts magazine Second: Natalie MacLean, freelance writer, writing in Ottawa City Magazine (Canada) Third: Christopher Styler, editor-at-large, Food Arts magazine BEST STUDO FOOD PHOTOGRAPHY First: Craig Lee, staff photographer, San Francisco Chronicle Second: Evans Caglage, senior staff photographer, The Dallas Morning News Third: Diana McMillen, senior food editor, Midwest Living magazine BEST NON-STUDIO FOOD PHOTOGRAPHY First: Robert Cohen, staff photographer, St. Louis Post-Dispatch Second: Barry Wong, photographer, The Seattle Times Third: Phil Masturzo, staff photographer, Akron Beacon Journal BEST FOOD COVERAGE ON THE INTERNET First: Jon Bonne, lifestyle editor, MSNBC.com, Seattle, Washington Second: Jon Bonne, lifestyle editor, MSNBC.com, Seattle, Washington Third: Natalie MacLean, freelance writer, writing at www.nataliemaclean.com
  7. Michael, Any Chicagoans get picked? All the best, Bill Daley Chicago Tribune
  8. I'm Bill Daley, food and wine writer for the Chicago Tribune. I go be "Mebutter" on eGullet - not because I love butter so much but I am married to a Mary Elizabeth Butterworth and that was our first logon. Anyway, I'm working on a story called 'palate for hire' and I'm wondering what kind of experience you've had with wine-buying clubs and services. Did they work? Did they disappoint? What questions should people ask before joining? What do you look for to ensure a good match between your personal taste and the wine procurer's? Any spectacular find? Any disasters? Please let me know. I can be reached via eGullet, of course, or via the Chicago Tribune at 312-222-3141. My e-mail is wdaley@tribune.com and I check it frequently. While I'd like to hear from anyone anywhere, I'm particularly interested in Chicagoans or people who live nearby in the suburbs. All the best, Bill Daley Chicago Tribune
  9. Freddy Sanchez of Adobo Grill, Chicago. He was born in Guerrero and raised in Acapulco, Mexico. where he experienced the tantalizing sights and smells of the coastal city. Tribune critic Phil Vettel wrote in October: "ADOBO GRILL, 1610 N. Wells St., 312-266-7999. The considerable promise of this Old Town restaurant has been met by chef Freddy Sanchez, who is producing some of the best Mexican cooking in town, and a greatly improved front-room staff. The beverage program, which includes stellar margaritas along with a monthly tequila tasting event, is a big plus. Recommended: Ceviche assortment, guacamole (prepared tableside), tilapia with mushroom escabeche, venison tampiqueno. Open: Dinner Mon.-Sun., brunch Sat.-Sun. Entree prices: $12.95-$24.95. Credit cards: A, DC, M, V. Reservations: Strongly recommended. Noise: Conversation-friendly. Other: Wheelchair accessible, valet parking, smoking at bar only. (star)(star)(star)"
  10. Yes, very reasonable - and that's what is so dangerous about this. I'm still uncomfortable with reviewing my notes or my quotes for accuracy with a source. For one thing, it sounds awfully defensive. And it puts the reporter, or at least me, on edge - are they going to start self-censoring, stamp out the liveliness of the interview, etc. I think a careful interviewee, and you sound like you are, can tell if the reporter is getting it or not. And, if not, you can always tell the reporter you will follow up with an e-mail explaining what you meant - especially if the story is particularly high-tech or complex. You'll likely win the reporter's undying gratitude, get your point straight in the newspaper and not offend the reporter. And the one thing I'd add is if you find yourself thrust into the center of the story, as with that awful earthquake, you've got to kind of expect the telephone calls. You sound like a good sport with it, especially since you didn't have to pick up the telephone period. (Good for you for doing so!!!) I'd say to other readers out there that the reporters aren't being ghoulish. Believe me, I hated being rousted out of a Thanskgiving dinner for a murder when I was a cop reporter but I had to go and I had to call. They're working a deadline on a breaking story and they've got to get the story and get it fast. I especially appreciate your points about being clear, being considerate and thinking of what the reporter/editor is doing/coming from. I wish my journalistic colleagues were all so thoughtful.
  11. I don't know how many journalists would agree to allowing a subject to approve their quotes beforehand. And if they did, their editor would probably refuse.
  12. Things happen all the time, unfortunately. Journalists are human. They screw up, too. That said, there's no excuse not to strive to do the best job you can with every story. It's like Edna Buchanan said about covering a murder. It may be the one and only time the dead man or woman ever got any ink. Got to respect them and give them their due. As for food reporting, it really depends on the editor, the region, the expectations and the paper's style. You've got to go in knowing the market, or thinking you can figure it out pretty quickly. Most editors want stories with a local hook because a local hook grabs local readers. Some do not want any national conotations, others love it. A matter of personal preference, I guess. Lead time depends on publication. I've worked at places where food stories could and were finished off 2 days before publication, and other places want it set 7 weeks out. Magazines tend to have long lead times, too, which is why Martha Stewart is likely not going to have the Christmas blues. She got Xmas in July.
  13. Whew, glad that's over. I was going to suggest that we all leave Pan and Carrot Top alone in this thread to thrash it all out! And I totally agree with Bux, a thread on editors would be important. they are the "forgotten" man or woman in the journalistic process. Ah...so kind of you, Michaei. Tally-ho, chop-chop and all that. Yours in times of war and peace, Karen-San ←
  14. A restaurant review at many traditional daily newspapers, and I say many not all because different papers do different things, is opinion. It is the critic's assessment of the restaurant. Ok, so that's personal. But underpinning a good review is fact-based reporting - the history of the restaurant, ownership, what's the menu like, wine-list, even the right address, telephone number and web page (simple things like this gotten wrong enrage readers.) It's nice if the reviewer has an idea of what the food should taste like, some cultural or culinary history of the given cuisine and the methods used to achieve it. A knowledge of basic culinary terms is necessary too. That's why many reviewers are classified as "specialists" by their human resource division. Overseeing the reviews are the editors. There may be one, there may be a shitload, but usually the editor - feature editor, food editor, magazine editor and copy editors up the wazoo - are looking not only for a good, entertaining read but they're looking for mistakes, errors in fact, weakly-supported assertions and, if they can, flaws in your culinary/reviewing expertise. Why? Because they want to give the readers the best product they can - and they don't want to deal with angry restaurateurs or whiney readers. So reviewers at traditional newspapers are accountable - to the editors who "test" the copy and to the readers who read it. That's the standard, more or less. And if you want to learn more about it go to the website of the Association of Food Journalists. www.afjonline.com. there's a section called restaurant critics guidelines - guidelines because journalists hate being told what to do and, frankly, restaurant criticism is still so relatively "young" in the biz (those hard news types took their time recognizing the "baby" was one of theirs) that papers have differing standards. Heck, there are differing standards for reviewing within newspapers. I helped draft these guidelines and I think they work relatively well. For some critics I know, the guidelines helped them better their position at their newspapers and thus serve the readers better.
  15. Rebel Rose's comment are, well, I just don't know where to start..... So, let me just say that I respect her thinking and agree that a good story is always compelling especially when told with brio. And Rich Pawlak don't worry, you can still scrounge that menu. I'd always ask for a take-out menu and, failing that, would sometimes slip the scrap of paper out of the menu folder into my lap on a final visit. the best menu caper was the night a woman 9-months pregnant stuffed a 16-inch-long stiff cardboard-backed menu into her shirt for me. I was so appalled I backed out into the parking lot as she triumphantly left the building.
  16. In a perfect world I think Carrot Top's idea works. Let everyone approach the table and make up his or her mind about what is presented there. But it ain't a perfect world...and not everyone has the same food background or culinary context to appreciate the food as fully "unaided." So, I think Pan is right in that sometimes a little help is necessary. That said, there's the opposite track - the herd instinct - where people squash or diminish their own thoughts about a dish (or a restaurant or a painting) because an "expert" says you need to think this way or that. I see it with blind wine tasting all the time. People are surprised a "name" wine didn't rank as highly as they thought it was. Instead of thinking the wine isn't cracked up to what it is supposed to be, or that some "lesser" wine truly stole the show, they think something is wrong with their tongue. And that's a shame. Bill Daley
  17. "Ed Shapiro"?? Oy! That's such a sad, sad nom de plum. And I"m so pleased I'm keeping Carrot Top entertained. That's 1 out of millions. I'm on my way...... The nice thing about become a "person" to readers rather than just being the critic is that they get to know your likes and dislikes. My most cherished e-mails were from those readers who trashed my opinions and said that they knew if I liked a place they'd hate it. That was so fine with me, meant I had created a profile with readers - they knew where I stood and could draw their own conclusions.
  18. Sure you can speak to the restaurateur and the industry but you can't forget the "regular" readers in the process. I also think you've misunderstood some of my earlier posts, Steven, or perhaps this thread is going in directions I don't quite understand..... On one hand you're saying critics should address their subscriber base - sound, given you wouldn't necessarily to deliver a "trade" perspective in a general interest puib, yet earlier on you were saying that critics shouldn't identify with their readership. I'm starting to suspect the only critic who can do it 100 percent right in your book is you. As for onanism - such a Bibilcal term for these heady times, Russ! - I think you get off onto masturbatory prose whenever you consciously think of teaching or lecturing or otherwise acting the expert. Far better, I think to tell a story that amuses, explains and, perhaps, enlightiens naturally without anything heavy-handed
  19. I'm sorry, but no. To forget your reader is to end up unemployed, no matter how talented a reviewer. That doesn't mean pandering, or talking down to the reader, but knowing their needs and wants and making sure you deliver.
  20. Quite true, Russ. Also, it's not illegal to get a card with a fake name. I simply called American Express, explained my position, paid the extra $35 for the card. Of course, they go along with this because I made it quite clear that the card was for business and would be paid promptly. And it has been.
  21. That is indeed a very interesting question. Certainly it didn't matter to the Times, both in its selection of Bruni and Mark Bittman, another author-on-the-dust-jacket, who served for a while as one of the Connecticut reviewers. But then their selection raises a larger issue: Is the key to success as a restaurant critic - if one accepts success is a high profile slot like the NYT - mean not being a restaurant critic in the traditional journalistic sense at all?
  22. Henry McNulty left the Hartford Courant many years ago. I don't know if this would be the same piece he'd write today (although the broad outline likely would remain unchanged) because of the rapidly altered ethical landscape at the nation's newspapers over the past couple of years. By the by, the only lie I ever made was calling the restaurant and making the reservation under a fake name - and then signing the credit card slip. I was always prepared to divulge my true identity if anyone ever asked and, you know, no one ever did - even if I turned in the 'fake' credit card only to find out they didn't carry it and I had to replace it with another card with my real name on it. I still say, all things being equal, anonymity is better than being known. It shouldn't be the penultimate factor in a reviewer being hired or doing his or her job but it is important, at least for me and the newspapers I've worked for. Certainly, there are newspapers and reviewers who disagree - all power to them. If that sort of things rocks their boat, fine.
  23. This is the key, I think, Steven's quote: "The focus should be on teaching reviewers to behave as ethical journalists whether or not they're given special treatment." As for reviewers and who they report to, usually there's a supervisory editor or two or three on up the line. Of course, it's not hard to recognize Frank Bruni - how many book dust jackets carry his photograph??????? But as long as the readers know he's recognized and getting special treatment, OK.
  24. I think most critics take act-of-God things like collapsing roofs into account, like most customers. The best policy when things bog down in restaurants is to apologize and explain what's happened or is happening. Nothing worse than going on as though everything is fine. And you'll usually win the sympathy and support of the customer (and critic perhaps) who is rooting for you to pull it through. Some of my best reviews - and best for the restaurants too - spun on that inevitable pratfall and how the restaurant tried to recover.
  • Create New...