As I was channel surfing the other day, I immediately paused when I caught a glimpse of Adam Richman as one of the judges on a 2011 episode of Iron Chef America. I have always been a fan of Adam’s show, Man vs Food, not necessarily because of his crazy food challenges (Who am I kidding! I love his food challenges!)but more so because of Adam’s simple and direct descriptions of something he’s tasting for the first time. I love his style! Friendly, down to earth, and simple unpretentious descriptions that most anyone can easily comprehend and quickly relate to. I was glad to see that he still maintained his same style on Iron Chef America but what really caught my attention was one of the interactions between the other 2 judges, food writer Nigella Lawson and executive chef Laurent Tourondel. The 3 judges were asked to critique a dish called Parisian Gnocchi. Adam gave his usual straightforward and uncomplicated description but what I really loved was Nigella’s comment regarding chef Laurent’s critique. Her initial comment was that chef Laurent was “Too strict.” but most assuredly my favorite comment had to be when Nigella said “…all I ask myself is ‘Is this giving me pleasure?’ and the answer is yes.” That one line alone universally summed up, for me at least, the most basic definition of what is good food. Too often I read elaborate, overly complicated, and pretentious food reviews. I start asking myself are these people actually talking about food or are they simply just enamored with their own writing skills. Perhaps they believe that even the most minute detail needs to be placed under a microscope and scrutinized to death. Personally I disagree with this form of critique very much. It not only destroys the beauty of food, which after all is an art form, but it also intimidates and fails to connect with the average diner. My goal on this blog is not to write embellished, luxurious, and over-analyzed food reviews. My goal is to simply tell you what I thought tasted good while eliminating all of the background distractions like ambiance, service, name of the chef, decor, location, etc. No more and no less.
This was my opinion on the subject of food reviews and I would love to hear yours! Do you prefer the simplicity of Adam Richman or the complexity of Laurent Tourondel? Feel free to comment.
The video of this particular Iron Chef America episode can be found here:
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