Which State Has the Most Food Bloggers? Should Critics Cook? Culinary Questions and Answers from Around the Web This Week

Questions-and-AnswersI don’t have all the answers, but I’ve seen some interesting food and dining questions this week. Thankfully, either experts have answered them — or you (not I) will have to.

* Do you know which state has the most food bloggers? Warning: This is a trick question.  [The New York Times]

* Should critics have to cook to be qualified for their jobs? [Denver Post]

* Why do Chinese food and doughnuts go together like peas and carrots in California (and my tummy)? [The Atlantic]

* How do you know if you’re a foodie? [Serious Eats]

* Which restaurant has the nicest restroom in the U.S.? [America’s Best Restroom]

* Are you the next “Vacation Food Dude”? [Eater PDX]

* What should diners do when seated next to a boisterous table? [SF Gate]

* Why don’t servers write down orders? [Chow]

* Did the weather keep you away from chain restaurants? [Nation’s Restaurant News]

Well-Reviewed: Baker and Banker; Beacon; Birch and Barley, and Other Restaurants That Don’t Start with a ‘B’

Recent restaurant reviews from the news…

  • Beacon in Los Angeles gets high marks for its fusion burgers from Damon Gambuto at A Hamburger Today. [Serious Eats]
  • Ezekiel J. Emanuel hates all of the 555 beers served at Washington, D.C.’s Birch and Barley (because he hates all beer), but he loves the food. [The Atlantic]
  • Victoria Pesce Elliott has an uplifting dining experience at South Beach’s Solea. [Miami Herald]

No Reservations about No-Show Charges

amex.jpgThe folks over at Serious Eats have been debating whether or not it’s fair for restaurants to charge diners for no-shows. Most Serious Eaters don’t have an issue with such a policy as long as the restaurant is flexible and fair with diners, understanding the difference between extenuating circumstances and an out-and-out no-show.

While some OpenTable establishments require a credit card to hold a table, most do not. I will admit that the first time I ran across such a request, I started to picture worst-case scenarios (getting mowed down by a cab and winding up in St. Vincent’s emergency room with a cast on my leg and a no-show fee on my charge card). However, my wild desire to dine at this particular restaurant beat out my wild imagination, and I don’t even think twice about leaving a credit card number anymore.

Do you feel comfortable securing a reservation with a credit card – or do you look for another open table at a restaurant that doesn’t ask for one?