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Comments

kelly

Is Machu Picchu Restaurante still open? I was there one time and was pretty impressed.

s4xton

Great post, both on the trends as well as the food blogging jabs. They're jabs, but I agree with you. I also think you've labelled me well: you didn't call me a food blogger, you said I write "entertaining food-related posts." I don't know if anyone else has more accurately described what I do. Many people label me as a "pizza reviewer" and a "pizza expert" (and shit, sometimes "cat expert" and "cupcake reviewer" etc. etc.) but honestly many times I'm asking "what that green shit is" too and hell, making pancakes, pasta and grilled cheese at home doesn't count for cooking.

I understand the difference between a real reviewer and someone that has fun posting about experiences at restaurants. I think a lot of people forget the difference. If you ever read Bill post about a restaurant, it is the farthest thing from a review but many times very entertaining and many people trust his personality and taste. His posts also seem to generate a lot more traffic (and therefore dollars) than mine do. Point I'm getting at is that I wanted to bring up almost the same thing: just because you have a website and you post about restaurants doesn't make you a food reviewer. That said, there certainly is a market out there for people like me: people that post about their experiences and thoughts (or as you said, people that write entertaining food-related posts). Like me. :-)

Then again, perhaps this is me trying to draw lines when the lines are fading away. (I've also said in the past that Twitter is about what you're doing right now and that there's a major difference between blogging and journalling online.)

Rich G.

Machu Picchu closed -- Moto-i opened in its place.

And just a heads up, Alexis: Moto-i has soba and ramen soups on the menu.

Kate

Wow... I'm really kind of shocked at how incredibly pretentious you come off as being in this post. I enjoy reading your blog for the most part, but I wasn't expecting such an authoritative post about who should write about food. I actually stopped reading chowhound, for reasons not unlike this post of yours: because of how angry the snobby people on there made me... and anyone who knows me thinks I'm about the biggest food snob there is!

Just a few thoughts:

1. A food blogger that doesn't cook at home. Seriously? Just because they don't cook themselves doesn't mean that they are ignorant about food. If you dislike ignorance, just say that, but don't assume that people who don't have a lot of home cooking experience can't or don't know what they're talking about.

2.A food blogger with a palate that can't identify ingredients. Well, if the menu says there is a dill mustard sauce on top of the chicken and they don't know what it is, then we're just talking about an idiot in general, and of course I don't want to read what they have to say. I guess I understand this annoyance.


3. A food blogger who reviews a restaurant that's been around for years. I totally disagree with this. How many years are we talking about anyway? Do you think only new restaurants should be reviewed? Chefs move from restaurant to restaurant all the time, and just because a restaurant is an institution, doesn't mean there aren't changes (or standards) that aren't work reviewing.

That being said, there are only a handful of MSP food related blogs that I read... most to keep myself informed of the local happenings. I don't entirely trust people's opinions of restaurants , but do like to get ideas of places to go, both new and old, and specific dishes that they have loved

Alexis

Thanks for your comments, guys. Rich, the soba noodles at moto-i are a cold salad, not a soup, and the ramen is served in a a chicken and pork broth. I could just ask for the noodles in the dashi from the miso, but I suppose at that point I'm making my own dish and not having what the chef put on the menu.

Aaron, yes. A blogger who writes food-related posts and occasional restaurant reviews is different than a blogger who creates a blog specifically for that purpose. And when the latter continually peppers their posts with negative criticism based on subjects they don't know a damn thing about, their ignorance just shines through.

Kate, welcome to my blog where you can read my opinions on all sorts of different topics. Pretentious? I've been called worse. But as a paid freelance food writer, occasional restaurant industry consultant and former caterer, I'm more than entitled to think my opinions are worth voicing for the readers of my blog. As well, I allow readers to voice their opinions here in the comments, as you have done.

s4xton

A blogger who writes food-related posts and occasional restaurant reviews is different than a blogger who creates a blog specifically for that purpose.

I know you knew this, I was just using your site as a platform to vent.

geoff

Excellent thought provoking post Alexis...maybe you should stay home sick more often.

I'm sorta with Kate in that I think there is a place for folks like Lazy Lightning or We Got Served in the food-blogger world. For better or worse, the internet has flattened the world of food reviewing. My one wish is that more food bloggers would use their blog subtitles to self-identify their niche (ala your "Confessions of a Minneapolis Concierge", which is perfectly concise and concisely perfect). Perhaps something like "We Got Served...can we have some ketchup with this?" or "Chow And Again...expat New York TV personality dishes on paltry flyover country food scene".

I've said it before, and I'll say it again...Aaron's pizza posts rock. I'm going to Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix next Friday night, and I wish I could take him with me to see what he thinks.

Erin

Alexis - I wanted to let you know that I really enjoy reading your blog - I've been following it for awhile.

It does make me a little sad to know that a blog that my husband and I started to motivate us to try new restaurants and learn more about food can make people so annoyed. I know you didn't call us out by name, but I felt compelled to respond after reading the last comment. I also am well aware that a lot of people really don't like blogs like ours. Oh well! We plan to keep writing as long as we still want to try new restaurants.

I am very sorry if anyone takes what we say as anything more than us writing about our experiences - I have been thinking about taking off the last "recommendation" part of our posts for exactly that reason.

Alexis

Geoff, I agree that there are certainly people who read and enjoy those types of blogs, I'm just stating that I'm not one of them and here's why. This is a touchy subject, apparently! You're totally on point: posting recipes and writing about restaurants is just one facet of Girl Friday, which is why I've never called it a food blog (see also Lazy Lightning). I just happen to dine out a lot and also know most of the chefs and GMs in this town. Combine that with the innate desire to put thoughts to words and here we are.

Erin, I just checked out your blog and, in my opinion, it's done very well. High five for good photos ;) Actually, looking at your most recent posts, your blog conveys more than most others in terms of total experience, which is absolutely useful to readers.

Moe

I'll just add that Portland, Maine is an amazing food town, especially for the size of the city. It's a weekend getaway spot for those in Boston and NYC, with the some amazing restaurants.

Rich G.

Alexis, you didn't specify traditional dashi broth. You just said noodle soup. It's the age old complaint of men everywhere -- I'm not a mind reader. ;-)

But the last time I was at Moto-i they had a soba soup special they said they were trying out for the menu. Apparently it didn't make it yet.

Terra home composters

Composting does seem to be really catching on! I remember 5-10 years ago when composting was viewed as a hippy environmentalist activity. Those days are long gone now, even my local municipality is taking action with a "green box" initiative where our compost is picked up every week!

Alexis

Oh, any old veggie broth would be super, I'm not picky. The dashi just happens to be the only veggie broth on the menu.

Rich G.

Isn't dashi traditionally made with kombu and bonito though? I thought you didn't eat fishies?

Reetsyburger

Aaron's pizza writing and photographs are WIN.

Composting is not as bad as I remember being when I was a kid. For some reason, it was really gross back in the 80s.

Economic viability is an essential value of sustainability. Sustainable systems should be profitable and environmentally sound systems that strengthen communities. It saddens me that value is the new sustainable. Sustainability and value should be synchronous.

I get excited about food, just like I get excited about shoes, sawdust, and heavy metal. I don't consider myself an food writer, nor a critic, but I am most certainly a food enthusiast.

I created a separate food blog because I had many readers in my profession (sustainable agriculture) who were interested in reading more about my observations about the relationship among restaurants, vendors, and local/regional producers, but who were clearly NOT interested in reading about my personal antics. I'm not confident that I made the right choice, but I know that there are readers of You Are Where You Eat who appreciate the dedicated food blog.

Thanks for a kick in the pants, Girl Friday. *high five*

Deborah

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Deborah

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ed

i love reading your blog whenever i can, i dont often get the time these days, but usually have a quick read in my dinner break or just after i get home from work, sometimes its quite interesting reading - thanks.

rachel

everyones downgrading what they but in the food department, all part of costcutting.

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