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Foodie Pseudery (1)

This is a new occasional post devoted to gems of foodie pseudery. It’s partly a homage to the Pseuds’ Corner column in the satirical magazine Private Eye, which lists the best (worst?) examples of pretentious writing in the British press. Here, though, I’m focussing of the reams of bad copy produced by foodies, in blogs and – less forgivably – in the established media.

Why? Well, it’s endlessly amusing. And also out of an objection to food snobbery – foodie-ism – which mystifies and rarefies food, cooking, and eating. It seeks to render good food the preserve of those who believe that they possess the knowledge, sensitivity, and good connections fully to appreciate it.

All contributions welcome (sarahemilyduff [at] gmail [dot] com).

And we begin with this review of Roberta’s in the New York Times:

These are extremely beautiful plates of food, artfully designed. The cuttlefish, in particular, would not look out of place on a starched tablecloth at Per Se. They are delicate of flavor, free of excess fats or salts, as pure an expression of new American cuisine as you are likely to find anywhere. It is shocking, and wonderful, to eat them in this cinder-block garage space six stops into Brooklyn on the L, a ratty old ski lodge built for bums interested in food rather than powder.

There are no cloth napkins or tablecloths at Roberta’s, no comfortable seats. Christmas lights provide mood lighting, and urban detritus and flea-market finds the art on the walls. … Roberta’s may appear an unlikely cathedral to such culinary excellence. It is no less a cathedral for that.

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