Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Food Media & News >
Apr 11, 2008 05:41 AM

Take 5 Review Asheville [moved from South board]

Can't the ACT get a food reviewer that can write a reasonable honest review with some sort of culinary intelligence. Quotes from this weeks: "appetizer of toasted french bread loaded down with black olives."?? The visual is just not appealing. "a breaded chicken breast stuffed with herb butter with olives"?? How do you stuff chicken with herb butter? Was is it cold? "ordered the sirloin steak......a serious man-dish....the steak itself was tough which detracted from the dish" "the onions overpowered the blue cheese in the dressing" The main course and salad received 4 out of 5 stars. The service was given 3 1/2 stars even thought there were a "few faux pas". But the most ridiculous thing about the star system is that stars were given for four items 3, 4, 3 1/2, 3 1/2, respectively. But yet the reviewer gives the restaurant only 3 stars. The review is laughable. For such a great restaurant town can't we find an interesting, knowledgable food critic?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Hmmm. He ordered the steak. Steak was tough. Tough steak detracted from steak dish? I'm sorry, I thought the dish was the steak. What goes through this guy's head?

    Anyway-- Couldn't agree with you more! That mcdaniel guy really boils my blood. I can't even read that crap anymore because it actually makes me angry to read. Can't believe he takes himself seriously, with such great phrases like "it had complex flavors.." (from bouchon "review") DID IT REALLY! complex flavors, how so mr.mcdaniel??? We've never heard of that before! Someone please alert the internet!

    But, I suppose it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that he is married to the features editor of the paper who makes those assignments. Oh, ethics, ethics, ethics...

    If you really want a laugh visit his website.

    One of you chowhounds that has a website with restaurant reviews that you do for fun should seriously try and query with that ridiculous rag. Probably won't have any luck, but it's worth a shot

    1 Reply
    1. re: charlottecooks

      I think that by far the best part of the Rick McDaniel story (not to be insensitive, of course, but as it relates to his food writing) is that the guy is legally blind. Really. So anything he describes seeing, be it decor, how the food is arranged, etc (not to mention creating his own website) must all be done by his "guest", none other than feature editor, and his wife, Polly McDaniel.

    2. Despite her at times meandering verbosity I miss Hannah's reviews in Mountain Xpress...

      4 Replies
      1. re: leahinsc

        We went to Ruby's BBQ (back when it was open on Tunnel Road) based on McDaniel's review. This was our first foray into going off one of his recs and it was also our last. He described the mac and cheese as "amazingly creamy" and it was nothing more than Velveeta shells n' cheese. The BBQ tasted like the kind you get from a plastic tub at the grocery store and everything else we had was processed junk. I am really not that picky of an eater, but this was seriously awful. I couldn't believe he had given it a decent review...what a joke.

        1. re: leahinsc

          Robby Nelms at the AC-T was pretty good before they shut him up. Now it seems that the state of Asheville food writing (at least in print) has gone from bad to worse.

          1. re: leahinsc

            i agree with you leah. I also enjoyed reading her reviews, no matter what kind of literary references were involved.

            1. re: charlottecooks

              Yes at least she knew food and could describe what she was tasting, even if you had to occasionally wade through some vitriol to get there.

          2. If you've read his reviews over the past few years as I have, you see a consistent theme. He loves the fried stuff, big portions and low prices....burgers and red meat always seem to score high.

            3 Replies
            1. re: leahinsc


              Check out the current recipe posting beside your comment--"Bison Bacon Cheeseburger topped with with a mess of jalapenos and onions."

              McDaniel would no doubt approve.

              1. re: Jeff C.

                sounds great, there's a place near me that sells Bison meet that I need to check out.

                1. re: leahinsc

                  Very lean, or so I understand.

                  Maybe McDaniel wouldn't go for it after all.

            2. The original comment has been removed