Anthony Bourdain brings his road show to Dallas tomorrow. You probably already know that. And there’s a better than zero chance that you’ve already read Scott Reitz’s Q&A with him on City of Ate. If you haven’t, though, I’d like to draw your attention to this delicious exchange, wherein Bourdain kicks Leslie Brenner square in the teeth. Delicious.
Q: I found a reference to a disagreement between you and Dallas Morning News food critic Leslie Brenner that started with a negative book review and blossomed from there. Do you still harbor any bad feelings for Leslie?
A: No, just a low opinion.
Q: What about food critics in general?
A: I think that there are good food critics and there are bad food critics and there are critics in the middle.
Q: I’m new to the game. Help me out: What makes for a good food critic and what makes for a bad one?
A: Preserve your sense of wonder and delight. Is it still exciting and wonderful and new? Is it a fresh and are you happy with your work. Do you like eating this food? Is it fun? Do you like chefs? Do you understand the process and people behind the creation of your food? Do you understand where it came from and if it matters? Those are important.
Or are you an angry, frustrated, dissatisfied person who was working at The New York Times and then Los Angeles and then ended up in Dallas?
Of course, Bourdain was describing Brenner’s career path. The city of Dallas takes some collateral damage from that shot. But whatever. It was worth it.
Update: Bourdain directs a few pointed words at Brenner at the 28:08 mark of this video. Check it out: