I think it was also at the onetime tyro’s warm-and-friendly anniversary party that someone asked me if I watched the silly dueling-chef shows. I only wish I could tune them out, but they’re everywhere, especially after the huge rippling exposé on the vegetables used in the White House episode. People were apparently shocked, shocked that they were ringers. You mean radishes won’t hold up indefinitely? Come on, fools: It’s a reality show. Nothing is real. I’m just amazed no one has done a remake of “Casablanca” with cleavers and Crocs.
But I know it was at the warm-and-friendly anniversary party (I need to get out more) that I had a conversation about why the relatively mainstream restaurant blogs are so deadly dull lately. The writer I was talking with mentioned they mostly post on real estate, rarely food, and it struck me: No one really has a budget to eat in these hip-happening joints. Plagiarism and speculation (to steal Jay McInerney’s immortal phrase) only take you so far. It’s safer to stick to the dry facts in a comment-crazed world. A lease has to be as good as tongue now.