Epic Meal Time Is Your Eater of the Year

Technically, there are 12 hours left in the year and anything can still happen. But with the majority of the votes in, it looks like Epic Meal Time is moving towards a strong victory in our fifth annual Eater of the Year poll.

To celebrate, let’s watch the EMT crew make waffle fries…but of course, these are not your average waffle fries.

Congratulations to Epic Meal Time and to all of our very distinguished Eater of the Year nominees.

Hugs, Kisses And Avocados

So I totally hate goodbye crap. And anyway, I know you all read this for dessert glamour shots, so I won’t get all OHMYGODTHISBLOGISALLABOUTME. But I did birth this thing, so I guess a proper sign-off is necessary.

Endless Simmer is a fucking wonderful place. It’s funny and silly and naughty and just serious enough to be considered a worthy read. Endless Simmer created my writing career. It was the first place I wrote about food, and then it quickly progressed to The Onion’s AV Club (thanks Chris Mincher, my first editor!), The Washington Post Express, Washington City Paper, The Washington Post, Eater DC, The Chew…and now Northern Virginia Magazine.

I credit the Simmer for forcing me to write every day. To think critically about food. To order obscene dishes and mock them. To take pictures of Brussels sprouts and Andrew Sullivan in a Subway. To meet food obsessed people around the country and throughout the world and to keep in touch with one of my very best friends, BS.

Endless Simmer was my home. My priority. And very often I had to stay in, come home early or ignore my fiancé to write a blog post.  Only a few times would I call BS at 3 o’clock in the morning, wasted, to let him know I couldn’t file my morning slot. He laughed at me.

I’m super bummed to stop writing here. And I kinda wish it wasn’t so damn awesome that it wouldn’t be seen as a conflict of interest. But it is pretty rad. And will continue to be. The wonderful folks here will keep it going, bringing ridiculousness from kitchens and restaurants from Brooklyn to Orange County.

So thank you Endless Simmer, for turning me into a full time (I have a dining budget!) food writer. And thank you to: readers, bitchy commenters, people that yell at us for using the word fuck in the headline, all food bloggers, Rachael Ray, Erica our singer laureate, publicists, Liz Lemon, Eleanor and the entire TFG crew, the many dedicated and hilarious contributors, Mom, DAD GANSIE, Scott, Sherry, Bennett and BS.

And I’m still holding out that Friday Fuck-Ups turns into a coffee table book.

Hugs, kisses and avocados,

Photo: tissue box on new editor’s desk

Cocktail O’Clock: New Year’s Gin

About this time of year, you probably never want to be served another glass of punch, nog or similarly over-the-top concoction right? Here’s a New Year’s Eve-worthy drink that gets the party started, without needing to get too crazy.

Snow Miser’s Cooler

1½ parts Hendrick’s Gin
½ part St. Germain
¾ part lime juice
¼ part simple syrup
1½ part soda water
1 dash lavender
Cucumber spear

Mix all ingredients excluding soda water and cucumber spear.  Ice, shake well and strain into iced long glass and top with soda. Garnish with cucumber spear and serve in a long glass.

Keep it classy.

More: Winter Cocktails Gone Wild!

Learning How To Be a Food Critic

Nowadays, in addition, the critic must blog extensively, answer reader questions, write best-of lists, tweet, and see to other social media concerns, as well as write extensive features that require him to travel quite literally around the globe. Plus spending time with editors, fact checkers, copyeditors, etc., as all this prose is processed into print. Given all this, you can easily see why someone could burn out in two years, and come to the conclusion that all the glamor and good food has to be weighed against a monomaniacal existence in which you don’t have time for family or friends, and life is just one giant Vegas-style buffet. —Village Voice food critic Robert Sietsema

My friend and Washington City Paper food editor Chris Shott (and my former editor) put this quote on his underused tumblr. I watched (and accompanied) Shott as he schlept from bar to restaurant to burger shack to bar to restaurant to bar, all in one night. He then blogged and interviewed chefs and blogged and edited freelancers and wrote and ate and wrote and blogged and ate, all in one day. Oh, and drank coffee. And then when out that night. He repeats this all week.

Being a food writer is not a glamorous job. It’s a totally awesome gig, but it’s really fucking hard. It’s tolling. It’s a lot of food. Food as sport. Food is not really enjoyable because it’s not meant for pleasure. It’s now meant for a story. For a clue to a larger narrative. To a question about ethics or trends or judgement or beauty.

It’s a job like any other with pressure and deadlines. But it’s also part public-service. It’s also an art. Criticism is an art. It’s a whole lot. A whole fucking lot. And I’m just starting to understand the role of a professional food journalist.

Earlier this month I joined Northern Virginia Magazine as its Dining Editor. Because Endless Simmer is seen as a conflit of interest, I won’t be blogging here any longer. Tomorrow will be my last day.

More ranting, love, sadness, joy, regret, excitement and tears tomorrow.


10 Great Food-Induced Cosby Family Faces

This time of year is all about family. Love. Sharing. Laughter.

Not your family? Join the food-loving Cosbys.

10. The Joy of Giving Birth

9. It Does a Body Hmm-MMM

8. What He Said

Read More

Top 10 Endless Simmer Posts of 2011

We made you laugh, we made you cry, we seriously pissed some of you off. Just another year on the Simmer. Here are the 10 posts readers drooled on the most this year.

10. Chocolate and Salted Caramel Pudding Pops

Popsicles — back before they got naughty.

9. 100 Ways to Cook with Guinness

We can only hope this exhaustive St. Patrick’s Day resource makes up for the anger some of you felt about our #4 ranked post (keep reading).

Read More

Artsy Photo Of The Day

As truffle hogs can sniff out black truffles that grow in the ground, I can sniff out chocolate and cognac.



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