Friday, October 30, 2009

gold vs. grimes, represent!

Last night, much fun was had at the Los Angeles Public Library for this week's edition of their ALOUD series. The Taper auditorium hosted this "bi-cultural binge." Moderated by Good Food's Evan Kleiman, a classic East Coast/West Coast battle ensued between LA Weekly restaurant critic Jonathan Gold and former New York Times restaurant critic (and current obit writer!) William Grimes.

As more of an adventurous home cook than restaurant junkie, I was thoroughly engaged and entertained by the panelists' vast knowledge of food and restaurant history in their cities. Conversation spanned nearly two hundred years, from the 1837 opening of Delmonico's in New York City to current foodie trends-- food trucks and nose to tail eating.

Gold and Grimes bantered to clear up misconceptions of their respective "scenes." Kleiman proposed LA food spotlights health while New Yorkers are pleasure-seekers. Both of the guys thought instead the food cultures were more of a result of geography and physical space. Los Angeles home owners are more likely to entertain in-house using local ingredients, while shoe-box dwelling New Yorkers store books in their ovens and eat out three meals a day. Both coasts came together to shape moden food movements, from the DIY/punk rock mentality to the internationalization of chefs and resurgence of public markets.

As the crowd thinned out, probably headed to Cafe Pinot to sample their special prix fixe menu, Grimes was kind enough to give the man some insight into NYC's craft beers while I picked Gold's brain for butcher recommendations.

Check out the William Grimes' new book Appetite City: A Culinary History of New York and Jonathan Gold's Counter Intelligence.

And a special thanks to tryharder for giving us your place on the list.

No comments:

Post a Comment