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Andrea Clurfeld [moved from Mid-Atlantic board]

What happened to Andrea Clurfeld? And how about Don Wilno. He was the guy who would go out with the owner of Pete and Elda's and and do a useless review in the Saturday paper.

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  1. Every Wilno review seemed to laud some mediocre bar food. I don't think he ever ate anything fried that he didn't like.

    1. If Clurfeld is in fact MIA, the local restaurant industry is rejoicing. Referred to by Tricity News' Tom DeSeno as "an unfair, mean, cheap-shot artist who punches restaurants and never has to worry about a counter-punch," he countered about a year ago by offering restaurants free copies of this sign and urged them to display it prominently...

      2 Replies
      1. re: equal_Mark

        I agree about Wilno. Perhaps he has health issues again.

        I disagree about Clurfeld. While I didn't always agree with her, I found her fair and informative. I heard she is with the NYT now. TAD, on the other hand, I find to be pompous, overly judgmental, and often mis-focused.

        1. re: cantkick

          I personally witnessed Clurfeld letting personal animosities and business connections slant her coverage of particular establishments in both the AP Press and as regional editor of the NJ Zagat guide. If her move to the NY Times is true, it confirms my suspicions of the objectivity and credibility of that publication also.

      2. I believe there has been a lot of shuffling (and possible lay-offs) at the Asbury Park Press and Gannett. The last I heard she was reassigned to another dept at the Press but I did not confirm this.
        A casual search at the Times and even Google turned up nothing.

        1. I for one will truly miss her..........

          1 Reply
          1. re: chefMD

            The vicious smear campaign against her conducted by the alleged newspaper Tri City News was way over the top. They called her unspeakable (and probably unprintable on this website) names for the crime of not being in love with every dump that opened in or near Asbury Park. I never thought she was a great restaurant critic, but no one deserved to be excoriated the way she was by that bunch of dishonest hacks......

          2. I don't believe there's been a real restaurant review in the APP in at least 6 months and probably longer than that.

            4 Replies
            1. re: jsfein

              She left APP when they did their first round of layoffs many months ago. I have no idea where she went. Agree with jsfein that there are no longer reviews and infact because of the reduction in the paper I have cancelled my subsciption. I now rely on The Coaster for local news.

              1. re: SusieQQ

                Susie -- I'm sure I can figure out what "The Coaster" is via Google, but I've never heard of it. Local publication? Where can I pick one up?

                1. re: jsfein

                  There is know way that she would ever be working at the NYT's. Dont you remeember when she tried to review NYC restaurants? You dont, well thats how fast it came and went. They would eat her alive in NYC. She has done nothing for any resturant in NJ, except for Chris Mumford, Urs Moser and Nicholas. She has know idea what and/or how to run 1, She has killed some many dreams of chefs trying to make a living. Knowing that they put up so much money for a dream and she came in and would kill it because she would review them 2 days after opening. If it is true that she no longer works at the APP, this is a dream come true for many restaurant owners.

                  1. re: jsfein

                    The Coaster is a weekly paper published in Asbury. It comes out every Thursday. I receive mine by mail but I think you can buy at any place that sells newspaper.

              2. So what does a restaurant critic do? Not say anything bad for fear the public avoids the place and it closes? Or always give a positive review and lose all credibility?

                4 Replies
                1. re: tom porc

                  Well Tom, I think the role of a critic is a very very tough "nut to crack" so to speak. Lets face it the NJ Shore isn't exactly NYC. Most of the restaurants that open within Monmouth and Ocean counties are small famliy or one and two partner ventures. To be honest I will tell you that I am a restaurant owner and I was a "victim" of one of Ms. Clurfelds most scathing rants. But I would like to make a few points. One and most importantly, this post is in no way to be construed as a personal attack against Ms Clurfeld. Two, when a newspaper like the APP decides to have a "critic" column do they set any parameters? Some of these might be...If the restaurant is in the opening mode (less than 3 months) should it be reviewed? Another would be is the review based upon a one time visit? There are so many factors that can be taken into consideration. And lastly the moral dilemma. The reveiwer absolutley hates the restaurant...everything about it. Are they willing to say this and live with the fact that their words effect the entire staff of the restaurant as well as the community it is in. I know reviewers have every right to express their opinion. Ans as a US citizen I stand completely behind that. However, doesnt the APP whose very name utilizes the city itself at a bare minimum owe the entrepreneurs that invest their money in these depressed areas at a minimum a second review after a really bad one? I would fight for ever to everyone to have their opinions, but when folks like Ms Clurfeld can wield their axe and chop heads....well, count me out.

                  1. re: foodislove1958

                    well said foodislove. i've read some of her reviews and as a restaurant patron was amazed at how ruthless she could be towards some restaurants with her biting words. I would always feel terrible for those restaurants knowing it had to have hurt them (I work in corporate PR for a living so I know how bad press can destroy a business). Some might not like TAD, and I always don't agree with him, but at least he states he won't review a restaurant until he's been there a few times.

                    1. re: dani0622

                      Clurfeld has written many times that she will not publish a review until she has been there at least twice, and her reviews usually made it clear that was the case. And if a restaurant is relatively new she states that. On the other hand, TAD often says he's visited a restaurant once, and while he doesn't publish a review till the second visit, you often can get a sense of what he might say with his announcement of the first visit. And his words can be more scathing than anything Clurfeld ever wrote.

                      1. re: cantkick

                        She might have written that but one particular restaurant that I frequent that she ripped into, she stated "on that night we visited." It was pretty clear from review, it was her first and only visit there.

                        I know TAD can be harsh as well too. But I will respectfully disagree with you on who's harsher. Clurfeld's comments have been outright disrespectful to the restaurants. The one particular review of one of my favorite restaurants even went as far as to say the tuna was bad. And I don't mean tasted bad, bad as in the restaurant was serving rotten fish. I've been to that particular establishment numerous times and have even had the opportunity to speak to the chef. It was hard to believe her writing that something like that would happen at a place like that with a chef like that.

                        do a search on clurfeld. she has burned many a restaurants for years, particularly in monmouth co.

                2. she's apparently moved to south jersey. here's an article from her with yesterday's date on it, and it's got nothing to do with food.