Welcome to On the Record, where we share the quotes that stuck from the past week in food media.
On the New York Times’ star rating system: “As a critic, I really hated the star system. It’s stupid and insulting to readers. I’d sometimes give a restaurant a lower rating so people would leave a restaurant saying I wrote a three-star review, but only gave two stars. But as an editor, I would never get rid of it. When you run a four-star review, it gets talked about all over the world.” — Former Gourmet editor and New York Times restaurant critic Ruth Reichl [The Daily]
On drinking like a real cocktail bartender: “Cocktail bartenders should drink cocktails. If you prefer a beer, you are a hypocrite and are morally wrong. You probably make bad cocktails too. It’s like being an acupuncturist and going to see a western doctor when you get sick.” — Milk & Honey owner Sasha Petraske [Class Magazine]
On bucking trend for casual restaurants: “Picture a tree: you have the middle of the tree, which is the heavy bark. You can be just fine eating from that, or you could reach higher, go out on a limb, and eat the sweeter fruit. I tell my cooks that a lot. If we aren’t taking risks, how will we know how far we can go?” — Grace chef-owner Curtis Duffy [Eater]
On Brooklyn Brewery expanding distribution in France: “Parisians adore Brooklyn—they can’t get enough of it. It’s a brand on its own. It’s America. It’s New York.” — Wine exporter Camille Rivière [New York Times]
On chef’s hating Valentine’s Day: “If it’s a school teacher, and this is the one night a year they can go out — who knows how much money they make? It should be just as special for that person, even more special, than someone who can afford to go out all the time. I just think the concept of amateur night is kind of insulting. I’m trying not to have that attitude in my life anymore.” — ink.’s Michael Voltaggio [LA Weekly]