Crossing the food review Rubicon

In the last year there have various incarnations of a piece penned on the subject of food critics – with a mind to one day making it more palatable, removing the bitterness and replacing with a sabayon of warm wit.

But something has happened to make me reassess my musings – I have discovered the yardstick by which I can now measure all food criticism. And thanks to a single piece of journalism I can now see into the void. I now understand with ridiculous clarity the genius of Rayner, Coren and Gill.

It was this.


that plate of food doesn’t match with any food mentioned…


This actually appeared in one of my local papers under their restaurant review banner – not just online, where they have endless content targets to meet, but in a newspaper where space is at a premium! Although glancing at the online version, below, makes you appreciate just what a good job sub editors do.

Screen Shot 2013-12-01 at 11.51.58

Even ignoring the terrible grammar (my favourite being ‘I also wasn’t expecting as many prawn toasts as I got as well’) and the lack of any subbing on the online copy, it is still just some bloke talking about a takeaway his girlfriend and he got one Friday night. This is not a food review, it’s barely comprehensible, let alone informative, funny, whimsical, pretentious or downright rude as any good food writing should be. Or as any good writing should be.

This is where we are people. You can’t blame shrinking budgets, or staff cuts for this shoddy – this is a local newspaper playing fast and loose with their responsibilities of competent journalism for paying readers. And they should be ashamed of themselves.