Alan Richman and the Egotarian Chef
Backlash against chefs who seem to be cooking more for themselves than for their customers.
No surprise here. This is from the man that felt that chefs should actually work in the kitchen, as opposed to host TV shows.
This goes back to the thread on the appropriateness of asking for salt and/or pepper in a restaurant.
I get that people don't like pre fix and long tasting menus and such.
But...there are so many options out there I don't see the point in railing against them. Go elsewhere to eat. Some people clearly do enjoy the whole experience.
I've also gone to a few restaurants that don't have menus and they've always been more than willing/happy to adapt to my dietary needs (I had a lung transplant, I have to avoid a handful of things now).
There are a handful of places, though, that have on their website that they can't/won't alter their dishes and I've simply never gone.
I suggest that Alan Richman go back to his days of eating in a NJ style diner and dissecting each little thing on a 20 page menu. Nothing listed is good enough until it is substituted with something else or nothing or whatever. Just as long as Alan Richman has the authority over the waiter and the short order cook to tell him what Alan Richman wants to see on his plate. A chef is nothing but a tool for cooking what Alan Richman wants that moment. The restaurant that has a waiter immediately tell Alan Richman or has this printed on the menu, "we will be happy to make anything you like. Please ask your server."
Unless he just wants to write about "trends"... and be all "Alan Richman" like about it....
Alan Richman... the Egotarian diner...........
Boy am l the odd one out here. l like Richman, thought his article on America's best pizzas was spot on and seem to side with him on this article.
Of course, he can eat elsewhere as do l rather than 'endure' the places he tried. He cannot as his job is to report on food and food trends.
One does not have to agree with him or even read him, but l do and enjoy it.
Now Bourdaine will come after my ass.
I think this is an absolutely ridiculous statement: "This is the first food development in America that exists not because customers are eager for it but because chefs insist on doing it."
If people weren't "eager" for it the chef wouldn't be in business.
Richman is a master of feigned naiveté. Unfortunately, once you spot the the gulf between his cloyingly populist assertions and his relatively sophisticated understanding of food and the restaurant business, it's impossible to take his articles seriously.