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Time's "Gods of Food" cover story doesn't mention a single female chef

Not even Alice Waters. An editor explains how they chose their "Gods"

An enlightening quote, "It's all men because men still take care of themselves. The women really need someone — if not men, themselves actually — to sort of take care of each other. "

It is a pretty interesting read on their selection process.

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  1. A lot of BS there to wade through. This, in particular, used to justify why no women on the list: "It's really to look for people who are the most influential in terms of food."

    Love her or hate her, I don't see how you can leave Alice Waters off a list that pretends to be about influence.

    I do understand that Time has a vested interest in stirring up some controversy that attracts readers.

    1. News flash: the old boys club is very much alive.

      1 Reply
      1. re: linguafood

        If you email me, I can explain the morning blood exchange :(

      2. Not surprising - my first day cooking on the line the chef came in and said 'what SHE doing there?' Next thing I know I am peeling 50 lbs of carrots, onion and potatoes day along with peeling 5lb garlic and prepping veggies for the 'gods' who worked the line. Didn't stay long at that job I can tell you!

        1. Stay tuned for the Goddesses of Food.,

          Why should the women settle? :)


          8 Replies
          1. re: HillJ

            This was a GREAT rebutal to the stupid time cover/articles, and then the even lamer interview of the author by Eater...

            Grubstreet article proves that Alice Waters should have been a tree, and her offshoots branches, and that Susasanna Goin should have been listed under Alain Passard!

            1. re: gingershelley

              Part of the issue isn't just the boys club, it's incredible regionalism. The American chefs are very NY focused. LA has a strong tradition of women chefs (who train each other) (like Suzanne Goin) but the west coast consistently gets dismissed.

              1. re: Savour

                Great insight. I never would have noticed.

                Even so, if you wanted NYC, you could go with: Melissa Hamilton (Canal House), Gabriella Hamilton (Prune). both are (sorta) in NYC.

                Admittedly, Canal House is a book series, but I think it influences how we cook and eat ona daily basis than a few of the chefs they named.

                1. re: Savour

                  This is normal for most food writing. The midwest is completely dismissed. Check Eater.... they have "editors" for almost every big american city... unless it is in the midwest.

                  1. re: Savour

                    Howard Chua-Eoan (Time editor) as quoted in the Eater piece:

                    " ... not because New York isn't the center of the food world, but because everyone knows New York is the center of the food world ..."

                    Everyone in NYC, maybe. Ironic that the headline chef they chose to represent the US, Thomas Keller, originally abandoned New York in exasperation, made his name in the 1990s on the West Coast in a subregion (Napa Valley) historically known for its lack of restaurants, and only after his big success there, opened a New York expansion restaurant (Per Se), without which Chua-Eoan would not have been able to cite him as someone "both in and out of New York."

                    1. re: eatzalot

                      The recent FN history show mentioned that the Network was very NY centric until some exec (Brooke Johnson?) mandated - get out and do travel shows, and move the cooking shows to the daylight hours.

                  2. re: gingershelley

                    not sure Grubstreet article "proves" anything. The author of the Time article is a mysogynistic D!ckhead, but Grubstreet omitted several extremely talented and influential women chefs who have whole chains of success stories trailing them, Lidia Bastianich, Jody Adams, Lydia Shire, Barbara Lynch come to mind immediately. And where was Sara Moulton?

                2. "Another reality: none of them have a restaurant that we believe matches the breadth and size and basically empire of some of these men that we picked. "

                  It seems to come down to penis size and where that penis is used.

                  So even though Barbara Lynch in Boston has almost as many restaurants as David Chang, because she is Boston-local only, it doesn't give her broad enough coverage on her penisability.

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: LindaWhit

                    I plan to use penisability in a random conversation as soon as humanly possible, considering my handicap of being vagina-laden.

                    1. re: Firegoat

                      And I would hope you come back here to tell us how the word was used and the reaction you got, Firegoat. ;-)

                    2. re: LindaWhit

                      It seems to come down to penis size and where that penis is used.

                      Linda, if you're right and it is all about "penis size" then thank god there are no female chefs on the list.

                      I want no part of any female chef with a penis. And if there is one walking around, I do not want to know about it either.

                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        Ummm....the whole point of my comment was because Barbara Lynch doesn't have a penis, she would never be included in Time's list.

                      2. re: LindaWhit

                        I am pretty sure that Barbara Lynch has more successful restaurants than David Chang

                        1. re: C. Hamster

                          I was just going with what the moron at Time Magazine said, C. Hamster. :-)

                          1. re: ennuisans

                            This was a great article. Love her ironic replies.

                          2. This is a terrific public relations ploy. This irrelevant, innocuous magazine is now garnering vitriol, controversy; attention.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: globocity

                              I used to subscribe to Time. I guess they've changed a lot if this describes them: " irrelevant, innocuous magazine is now garnering vitriol, controversy; attention." Wow. Is this how others think?

                              1. re: c oliver

                                Of course, can't speak to others' perceptions; I didn't claim it was a popular sentiment. Just my nonhumble opinion. And I also used to subscribe to Tie and Newsweek.

                              2. re: globocity

                                One odd thing is that isn't even the cover story in the US edition. Only the international editions.

                                1. re: ratgirlagogo

                                  Is that the reason, then, for the Gods title and male-only chefs? Because that is the tradition in Europe and elsewhere in the world?

                                  I wonder also if they came up with the story title and concept, Gods of Food, and then chose chefs to fit the concept, which obviously could be male only because of the title word, Gods.

                                  In any case, a limited concept, and worldview.

                              3. In that interview with Eater, Howard Chua-Eoan comes across as a grade A moron and a lazy journalist.

                                1. Julia Child; Alice Waters; Mary Sue Millikaen; Susan Fenniger; Ms. Faukner; Dorrie Greenspan; Nathalie Dupree...just to name a few.

                                  Men may be "god" chefs, but you know what? Women are the heart and soul of cooking...and without that heart and soul--it would just be eats.

                                  7 Replies
                                  1. re: jarona

                                    We all know that it is woman that births greatness. Either gender; god or goddess. :)
                                    I can live with that!

                                    1. re: HillJ

                                      Yup! Because some people don't realize that we women are true goddesses--which is far more important:):):)

                                    2. re: jarona

                                      Do I have to be the heart and soul? 'Cause I would really rather be the hand and the head, if it's all the same to you.

                                      1. re: jarona

                                        Julia Child, Dorie Greenspan and Nathalie Dupree are/were not chefs. Did not run restaurant kitchens. Teaching, writing, tv shows all combine to make these brilliant women experts, but not chefs. Julia was always very emphatic about that.

                                        1. re: ChefJune

                                          But the article is "Gods of Food," not "Chef Gods."

                                        1. re: Firegoat

                                          Yeah, you could almost hear the clock ticking on that gag.

                                          1. re: Firegoat

                                            LOVE the "cronut, cronut and cronut" and "ronald, the colonel and the king".

                                          2. The title is gods, not goddesses.

                                            I hate to throw a damper on the riotous indignation, but St. Julia is dead and Alice Waters has been beating the same drum for over 40 years. The biggest female impact on the food scene from my perspective is not Sara Moulton or Cat Cora, but Rachel Ray.

                                            Let the howls of outrage commence.

                                            11 Replies
                                            1. re: INDIANRIVERFL

                                              Since I believe that if there's a god and if god has a gender, my vote would be for a female god. But honestly I've never understood that whole "ess" thing. I mean, there are doctors, lawyers, etc. No "esses" :) And honestly Moulton, Cora or Ray? REALLY???????????? Not sure where you've been but Waters has had more than one drum. And as you can see from this post and the included links there are plenty of vagina-toting people around who are gods in the food world.

                                              1. re: INDIANRIVERFL

                                                I'm guessing because Rachael Ray is on TV? How does she impact restaurants? She doesn't have one.I guess Sarah Lee is one too.

                                                1. re: Firegoat

                                                  Did you read the offending article? Two cookbook authors made the list. As did Michael Pollan. And the head of the UN world food program. And an anti-GMO advocate.

                                                  And a coffee grower.

                                                  On second thought don't read the article. But riddle me this: why is the coffee in restaurants - even good restaurants - usually so damn mediocre?

                                                2. re: INDIANRIVERFL

                                                  I saw another list of people who have influenced food most. Brooke Johnson was listed #7.

                                                  Haven't heard of her? She's president of FoodNetwork.

                                                  1. re: INDIANRIVERFL

                                                    An amazing number of chefs have come through Alice Waters' kitchen over the years -- that's influence, whether you think Alice's philosophy or food are relevant today or not. In addition, there were artisan food movements that were spawned out of Chez Panisse.


                                                    1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                      Here's Tuesday's LA Times article, titled,
                                                      "Goddesses of food: California's female chefs who paved the way"

                                                      Alice Waters is right on top, for her "culinary sensibility...that, maybe more than anyone else, has shaped the way we cook, eat and think about food today."

                                                      But the entire lineup is something.


                                                      1. re: maria lorraine

                                                        Like I said earlier, Goddesses of Food couldn't have been far behind. This topic really ran like wild fire.

                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                          Ya know, it really does still amaze me that NO ONE said "Yoo hoo, guys, have you noticed that you've ignored women gods who just happen to be part of half of the world's population?" I continue to realize that we really haven't come that far.

                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                            But they didn't ignore them. They just didn't have a quota and no female chef made the cut.

                                                            1. re: GH1618

                                                              Oh, okay. Then they just had their heads up their asses. I'm cool with that :(

                                                  2. A few factoids:

                                                    - 4 women were indeed on the list.

                                                    - Only 5 chefs were on the list at all. 3 of them were grouped together. None were women though.

                                                    - Thomas Keller? Not on the list. Ferran Adria? Not on the list. Joel Rubochon? Nope. Ripert, Achatz, Blumenthal, Ramsey, Boulud, or any one of the great chefs working in Japan or China? Nada.

                                                    - A company that sells seafood did make the list. Why? Fucked if I know.

                                                    All in all, it was a pretty dumb and arbitrary list. Should a female chef have been included over one of the male ones? You could make that argument (though you could certainly also make the argument that they included the wrong male chefs). But the controversy over a lack of female chefs seems kinda manufactured to me.

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: cowboyardee

                                                      Excellent observations and if TIME had put one female on the cover along with two gents and called her GOD the followup articles both dead serious or gag would have been completely different.

                                                      1. re: cowboyardee

                                                        But the Adria brothers got a whole tree!!!! :)

                                                      2. Wow. No Barbara Tropp( RIP), Eileen Lo, Jody Adams, Susanna Foo, Mollie Katzen, Naomi Duguid, Patricia Well.....

                                                        Somebody needs to get out of the house...

                                                        8 Replies
                                                        1. re: Westy

                                                          There are female chefs? <ducking and covering>

                                                          1. re: cwdonald

                                                            Curious what prompted you to make this comment.

                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                              It was absolutely tongue in cheek. I knew Mollie when she was in Ithaca, before she left for the West Coast (and have four different first edition cookbooks from Moosewood), and Susanna Foo is still cooking here in the Philadelphia suburbs. I dined at the Philadelphia location many times before it folded.

                                                              I do find the whole argument contrived, beginning with Time story, If they had included 1 or 2 female chefs, people might have asked why not more but this firestorm around the story would have been a lot less. It seems like a cheap publicity stunt and people responding to it, are in fact playing into their hands, regardless of the merits of their arguments.

                                                              1. re: cwdonald

                                                                Okay, you get to live :) I however don't believe that Time did this as a "stunt" to, what?, gain readership. The opposite would occur, IMO, or nothing will happen in that regard. I think some the people who decided to write this article don't know jack (or jill) about food gods. But, boy, they do now :)

                                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                                  It's not necessarily a *direct* ploy to gain readers. It could very well be an attempt at stirring controversy, which makes you relevant and talked about. Which then brings you readers/eyeballs.

                                                                  1. re: LurkerDan

                                                                    They're been courting some controversy for this issue especially, because the "Elephant in the Room" coverline over Christie on the US cover has been discussed a lot on political TV and online coverage.

                                                                    It seems like a naked plea for clicks and then to encourage subscription sales to get behind the paywall online. Because the print edition is hemorrhaging money.

                                                                    1. re: lsmutko

                                                                      Do you have to pay for their online edition?

                                                                      1. re: c oliver

                                                                        It looks like for some content but not others. Some of their stuff is behind a paywall -- it looks like it's the stuff in the print magazine. Other things seem like you can click around and read all you want.

                                                                        It's really challenging for legacy print products to make money in the new environment.

                                                        2. In a local (Denver) food blog, I found this link, 20 Badass Female Chefs TIME Overlooked: http://www.thedailymeal.com/n%20ews/2...

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: LurkerDan

                                                            That's a start, but there are still plenty overlooked in this article, too... Lidia Bastianich, Jackie Shen, Jody Adams, Nancy Silverton, Evan Kleiman, and on and on and on.

                                                          2. Interestingly, the Gods of Food cover seems to be for Asia and Europe only. The U.S. cover is yet another controversial one, a silhouette of Gov. Chris Christie of NJ with the caption "The Elephant In The Room", which they claim has nothing to do with his weight.


                                                            6 Replies
                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                              Linda, thanks for that. It had crossed my mind that they were putting this issue out awfully quickly, although when I subscribed it was a burden at times to keep up with a weekly periodical.

                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                Christie is the presumed front runner in the 2016 Republican race so that made a whole lot of sense. And there are a lot of people that want a non Tea Party candidate ...

                                                                If the top chefs is not the cover story, is it still in the US edition? Time after the AOL debacle has lost all journalistic credibility in my book.. wonder if they are actually bucking to return to hard hitting journalism.

                                                                1. re: cwdonald

                                                                  I don't disagree that doing a story about Christie makes sense. It's the headline that has caused controversy.

                                                                  And look at the Christie cover - at the top it says "Why China Can't Invent/Gods of Food", so yes, the story is in there. (Just as it says "Can Chris Christie Win Over His Party?" at the top of the Europe & Asian covers). Just not cover material in the U.S.

                                                                2. re: LindaWhit

                                                                  Well, Time magazine has a bit of a history of protecting what appears to be the overly sensitive minds of US Americans from internationally important news *not* about themselves.



                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                    Which doesn't say much good about those overly sensitive Americans OR Time Magazine for pandering to them.

                                                                3. One of the best meals I' had in France was be a then two Michelin starred Anne-Sophie Pic (She got her third a few months later.). The meal was equal to if not better than any of the three star meal I have had the pleasure of enjoying.

                                                                  The first chef to hold Three Michelin Stars at two establishments simultaneously was la Mère (Eugénie) Brazier. Not Alain Ducasse.

                                                                  Mado Point kept La Pyramide a culinary destination for years. (One can't dispute the influence there)

                                                                  Any list is going to be subjective. This is that and seems awkward as well.

                                                                  I get the feeling that they really went for current name value.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: Withnail42

                                                                    <Mado Point kept La Pyramide a culinary destination for years. (One can't dispute the influence there)>

                                                                    but not as the chef.

                                                                    1. Here's an article about the local controversy of the SF Chronicle not including any women in its annual "Rising Stars" feature:

                                                                      ANY FEMALES IN THE HOUSE?http://edibleeastbay.com/online-magaz...