with food, there’s always something new

sewer harpy

Food blogs came of age last year, and with growing power and influence, came controversy. Chefs and restaurateurs feared the fact that anyone can say anything about their restaurants

I view blogging as an important tool, discounting blowhards who blast restaurants behind the cloak of anonymity. This week, though, I read a disturbing post that made me uncomfortable.

I was clicking around, looking for bloggage, landing on an Indianapolis Star restaurant review. This is what the reviewer said:

Pretentious and overpriced.
this restaurant has as much chance of surviving as Brittney Spears does of not doing something completely mental ever again.
Dressed in a suit, and with 2 very attractive and impeccably dressed clients, we were greeted at the door by a twentysomething host who was compirable with the Maitre’D in “Ferris Buellers Day Off”. After looking at us like we were dressed like the 3 most horribly dressed homeless people he had ever seen, he asked if we had a reservation. We thought he was joking and we actually laughed, because the place had been open an hour and was EMPTY. He then literally rolled his eyes at the fact that we had the audacity to not have a reservation and suggested rather curtly that “…we may want to make one next time…” We’ll make sure to do that next time…Wouldn’t want to have any of the crickets in there waiting for a table..

The food, albeit unique, and tasty, was so ridiculously overpriced it was borderline laughable, unless you would like a $12.00 eggplant panini.

Definitely not worth eating here…It’s not even worth the “Well we tried it” experience…Especially when you have to literally pass YATS to get here.

Craig Claiborne set the bar for restaurant reviews. Reviewers visit multiple times, eat across the menu. Standards of journalism used for other stories are used in reviews.

The Star’s “review” meets none of Claiborne’s criteria. It meets no professional standards because it wasn’t written by a journalist. Instead, it’s a rant by a Cheeto-eating coward hiding behind a handle.

I don’t mind rants or mean people. I admit, I like slumming on Chowhound and reading nasty comments. On the boards, though, you know your reading opinion. From the MSM, you expect objectivity, especially when the headline says THE REVIEW.

We’re aghast at racial slurs the Star allows readers to post on TalkBack. A badly written, grammatically incorrect screed about food pales in comparison, but to the chef/owner and to the employees who work at this restaurant, it has damaging impact.

We don’t know who wrote it (possibly a competitor?) or what qualifications, training, experience allows him or her to judge this restaurant. I’m not a student of popular culture, but hell, even I know you spell Britney with one t.

Entrepreneurship is rare in Indy, especially in the restaurant business, and putting the stamp of MSM credibility to these comments is unfair.

Written by Susan Gillie

January 24, 2008 at 3:42 pm

Posted in bloggage

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