the tasty list

The reason we have both vanilla and chocolate ice cream is taste. One person likes vanilla, another prefers chocolate. Tastes differ. You are now on your own as a professional restaurant reviewer. Therefore, never use the following words in a review:

Got - as in milk (horrible grammar)

Yummy - only used by dummies


Finest or Best (only if you have been to, or visited, every pizza parlor in the world, if writing about pizza; also related to every foodstuff as subject for a review).



Heavenly (unless you have been there for a point of reference)


Eclectic is used by people who don't know what the word means to describe menus (or food) of their creation. The best definition given me by an English teacher: "Eclectic can be made to mean anything you want it to mean." It is used by restaurant writers as a cover for their lack of culinary knowledge. It is used by restaurant neophytes as their meaning of "fancy," another descriptive with varied meanings.


Best Kept Secret - tends to apply to eateries about to go out of business for any of a hundred reasons. Advertorial writers like the term.

Awful good

Alluring - to some it means charming, attractive, tempting which it may be to some, not to others. (Suggested by Jane Snow, Akron Beacon Journal. Snow is the veteran reviewer who first exposed Mobil Guide for the ethical sin of rating restaurants without always trying the food.)



Smell (food has aroma, both good and bad; stench if something is really rotten or beyond edible)


Made with love Sounds like you are describing grandma's biscuits. Eateries with names like Mom's Diner use the phrase when they don't have a set recipe, usually for the house specialty. Phrase over used in places with prayer cards on tables next to the salt.
In Iowa ceramic creamers shaped like a cow are inscribed
L O V E on both sides; MADE IN JAPAN across the belly. (Contributed by Valerie Haber)

To die for (credit Zagat editor Jon Christensen for removing this phrase from 2 out of every 3 amateur critics responding to Zagat's Ohio questionnaire)


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