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Bruni Valedictory

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NYT restaurant critic Frank Bruni delivered his valedictory column today. He is moving on. His departure was necessitated at least partly by the publication last week of his new book Born Round: The Secret History of a Full-Time Eater. He can no longer dine in anonymity, with his appearance a secret no more. (See above for Bruni as a boy.)

In today’s column, Bruni selects some questions that were asked frequently or that he wishes he was asked and provides his answers. I especially enjoyed his response to, “Is there any best, safest way to navigate a menu?

Scratch off the appetizers and entrees that are most like dishes you’ve seen in many other restaurants, because they represent this one at its most dutiful, conservative and profit-minded. The chef’s heart isn’t in them.

Scratch off the dishes that look the most aggressively fanciful. The chef’s vanity — possibly too much of it — spawned these.

Then scratch off anything that mentions truffle oil.

Choose among the remaining dishes.

I recognize myself as one of the diners likely to order dishes I’ve seen in many other restaurants. I will pay more attention to this. No problem with the truffle oil advice. I’m always happy to scratch those items off.

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Categories: Food, Restaurants
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