Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.

4.10.06

Coco Roco Loco Joko.

Most newspapers have a food writer, or more usually, a writer who happens to write about food.

Some are good, some ordinary.

But who'd want to be a restaurant reviewer anyway? Hello, New South Wales Court of Appeals.

This is nothing new. Leo Schofield was sued well over twenty years ago for describing a lobster he was served as an 'albino walrus'. That case would surely be thrown out today, but it wasn't then and Fairfax had to put $100,000 in the tip jar.

Freedom of speech means being able to call a crap restaurant a crap restaurant. There's enough of them.

3 comments:

Janis Gore said...

When I was putting the Las Colinas newspaper together just outside of Dallas, Texas, in 1991-2, my advertising role sent me in as a food critic. (It was a small operation.)

I raved about the food in a Mexican place, and it was good, but told people to overcome the setting (and that was a down and out strip mall). The owners screamed.

The paper owner and publisher quickly hired a stringer who wrote only in superlatives.

Sara said...

How ridiculous. If a restaurant is no good the owners should have worked to make it better, not gone after the reviewer. Idiots.

kitchen hand said...

Yes, a brave publisher helps, Janis. I think Fairfax will see it through.

Improving the restaurant might have been the harder option, Sara. Lawyers put dollar signs in peoples' eyes.