Kitchen Con: Writing on the Restaurant Racket

Overview

Are all food critics corrupt? What’s the trick for getting a table tonight in America’s and Europe’s most fashionable restaurants? Find out in Kitchen Con. “Waiter and customer have a lot in common. Each lingers under the delusion that lunch is on the way, neither has more than a passing interest in the other, and both are at the mercy of an ill-tempered thug with a white toque,” writes Trevor White in this hilarious account of life as a restaurant critic. 

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Overview

Are all food critics corrupt? What’s the trick for getting a table tonight in America’s and Europe’s most fashionable restaurants? Find out in Kitchen Con. “Waiter and customer have a lot in common. Each lingers under the delusion that lunch is on the way, neither has more than a passing interest in the other, and both are at the mercy of an ill-tempered thug with a white toque,” writes Trevor White in this hilarious account of life as a restaurant critic. 

Kitchen Con is his passionate, intelligent exposé of the restaurant business, from the world’s first restaurant after the French Revolution to today’s most fashionable tables in London, Paris, and New York. With style and humor, White lifts the lid off the culinary cartel—owners, chefs, and critics—that cons diners around the globe. No one—not even the author himself—is spared in this riveting account of life at the heart of the restaurant racket.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781611454659
  • Publisher: Arcade Publishing
  • Publication date: 6/1/2012
  • Pages: 248
  • Sales rank: 1,455,614
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Trevor White has worked as a restaurant critic in Dublin, London, and New York. He divides his time among all three cities. He is the Dublin regional editor for Zagat.
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Table of Contents

Introduction xi

Part One

1 The Hungry Hooker: Why Restaurants Are Brothels for the Mouth 3

2 The Age of Appetite: A Survey of the Way We Eat Today 9

3 Accounting for Taste: The Author Admits His Past 25

4 Kitchen Con: How the Racket Works 41

5 The Truth about Guidebooks: The Author Loses a Job 53

6 The English Experience: On Going to Lunch for London 71

7 Celebrity Chefs: Starring Gordon Ramsay and Conrad Gallagher 91

8 The Waiting Game: Reflections on the Value of Service 101

9 On Failing to Take Manhattan: 1998-2000 109

10 "Your Table Is Ready": The Four Sweetest Words 125

11 The Lamppost and the Dog: Writing about the Racket 133

Part Two

12 Silly Season in the Wilderness: Food, Politics, and Morgan Spurlock 145

13 In Defense of Expensive Restaurants: The Author Puts On Weight 165

14 Sex and the Single Waitress: Meeting Mr. Kitchen Confidential 173

15 The Critic on Trial: Part I: The Prosecution 189

16 The Critic on Trial: Part II: The Defense 197

17 Good Food, Good Life: On Demolishing the Bad 205

Epilogue 213

Acknowledgments 215

Bibliography 217

Index 221

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