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Mar 2, 2007 07:02 AM

are any Boston food writers to be trusted?

I am just wondering if I am overlooking a local publication that actually has a critic that understands restaruant reviewing. Many times in the past I admit that I have fallen victim to the review and rushed to the establishment only to find that I dined in a different place than the reviewer. I recently rushed to Meil at the new hotel downtown after reading a raving review in a local publication. To say the experience was fair might be too nice. I even tried the same dishes that gained printed acclaim only to once again find myself wondering if the writer had actually eaten there. This is one example of many a bad experience I have had following the hype of a new review. Who's opinion is to be trusted in the local media?

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  1. Good question. I have to say that one of our own on this site (who was mentioned earlier in the day) can be trusted more than most:

    In general, I'd rather read comments on this forum (and others) than articles from food writers, because honestly, I don't know which ones to completely trust. I guess I'd rather read 20 opinions on a restaurant and then make up my own mind on whether to try the place or not.

    1 Reply
    1. re: hiddenboston

      Ditto -- lots of great posters whose names I trust on Chowhound and I often appreciate longer threads offering multiple views of certain places or areas as being very helpful (e.g. Inman Square, Dorchester). Personally, I'd cite MC Slim JB (who eats absolutely everywhere and offers very specific reviews) and you hiddenboston (we seem to be in similar places and have similar tastes), as two of my favorite/most useful posters.

    2. We have Alison Arnette that for Valentine Day tells us how good is pizza at Regina with a bottle of Chianti. Pizza and Chianti wine... that's memorable!!!!

      1 Reply
      1. re: sondrio

        Different strokes etc. I could totally see Regina's with a bottle of chianti as my Valentine's Day. It might have been more fun than the underwhelming afternoon tea at the Four Seasons that we dropped $80 on.

      2. I think "formal" critics and self appointented "experts" are a dying breed. Lone opinions are becoming less and less useful as the internet gives more and more power to the consumer. But these critics probably think the same about "the common man's" opinion as you do to theirs.

        1. Whatever you do, don't trust The Dig's critic.

          As MC Slim will tell you, he's a dastardly dude. :)

          1. Even if the writers can be trusted, your taste may not agree with theirs.

            Even in a forum like this though, your taste may not agree with 10 other posters who rave about a certain place. After a period of time though, I have found certain posters who's taste are similar to mine, and can rely on their opinions. It doesn't always work, but most of the times it does.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Infomaniac

              True. You just have to read a bunch of reviews by a particular person, figure out which food they liked and you did too, or they liked but you didn't, and calibrate accordingly.

              1. re: Infomaniac

                Very true. I think some of the Globe's Cheap Eats reviewers are good; Denise Taylor comes to mind, and somebody with an Indian name who I don't think is still there. Sheryl Julian and Robert Nadeau are ok by me, too. All the time, 100%? Impossible, never gonna happen.