Monday, December 16, 2013

My Opinion is Only Worth the Attention You Give

A few days ago, my friend Lisa posted this article from the Chef & Steward blog: How Chefs Feel about Food Critics and Food Bloggers.  The headline made me stop, not only did it apply to me, but it could be a large insulting article on how food bloggers are not experts (as Martha Stewart likes to say).  I found Chef Lij's take giving credit where credit is due.  And I agree there are too many people criticizing food without any experience to back up their opinion.  They have never wielded a knife, developed calluses and served thousands of ungrateful brats guests. 

And then there is me.  Why should you listen to me?  Much of my regular readership is probably my mother and my boyfriend.  I, by no means consider myself an expert-but my 15 years in the food service industry has got to say something, right?

I've been having a moral struggle on how much of my history I should share.  My past is dotted (like so many others) with...'discrepancies' I'd rather leave to the past.  But it was my discrepancies that lead me to food and vice-versa.  Plus, in reality-Im rather sardonic, especially at work in the privacy of the kitchen and my shared office.  It goes against a fun, light-hearted foodie blog with smiley faced pancakes and pumpkin-flavored [name random food]. 

Why not leave the sarcasm to Bourdain?  The savory detail to Reichl?  The sexiness to Ripert? 

What makes my opinion, worth your time? 

A question I ask myself every day.  But I have lived the restaurant/bar business for over 15 years now.  I've made so many drinks and dishes that when I'm old and senile, I'll still be able to rock-out a Manhattan and  fresh guacamole. 

I'm not an expert, but I have trained hundreds of new employees, created inventory systems, created budgets, new menus and opened multiple new businesses.  I write, because its mine.  During the day I have to abide by their rules and regulations, wear their uniform with a nametag (proof the caste-system still exists)-writing is my personal act of rebellion. 

I have decided to tell my story on how the food business and I came together and why we just seem to know each other so well now-like its my old, wrinkled friend who still smokes and goes out to the bars on Sunday nights.  So stay tuned and I'll try not to bore you because I'm not sure how much I care about being considered an 'expert'.  I'd rather just keep my dignity.

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