Saturday, October 18, 2008

Who's got juice?!

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It doesn't matter if you're a restaurateur, chef or just someone who loves good food, there's always one media outlet you count on when it comes to the best dining reviews.

But who is it?! This is your time to sound off!

Do you turn to the Chicago Tribune or Chicago Magazine for the more established opinions? Hungry Magazine for its edgy take on what's going on? How about that snarky approach made infamous by Time Out Chicago? Or the "power to the people" obsessed Chowhound and LTHForum?

When it comes to clout in this town, who's the best for reliable reviews and why? And who gets it wrong?!

Cannot wait to hear what you've got to say!

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think TimeOut is always the most reliable. I usually agree with their reviews 90% of the time. Chowhound is fun, but I'd rather get the opinion of the pros...

Anonymous said...

I always like to hear what CS has to say....and the Tribune is always a handy alternative!!!

Anonymous said...

Tribune, of course, and what about the reader? They review interesting neighborhood restaurants I would never had heard of had it not been for them.

Anonymous said...

I think you don't give Time Out enough credit. Their reviewers are always spot-on. Who cares if there's a little snark?

David B. said...

definitely rely on chicago mag and the tribune which offer the most credibility & experience in the chicago market. time out has this "i'm too cool for anything" attitude that pisses alot of people off, and hungrymag pretty follows heather's beck and call. SO, SO lame. it's pretty pathetic. and LTHForum? such a joke.

For Intimate Gatherings said...

I read reviews from everywhere including LTHForum, TimeOut, the Reader, the Tribune, Chicago Magazine and various personal blogs including Elizabites.com, NoOlives.com and Tastybeat. I don't think the "experts" are always more qualified to express opinions than real people. That said, once you follow a forum (like LTH or Chowhound)or blog for a while you learn whose tastes are most similar to yours.

Anonymous said...

although new to the city, i think chicago mag has the most appeal. time out tries a bit to hard and the tribune seems dated. hungry mag simply looks like some lonely dude looking for a voice...

Elise said...

Heather Shouse from Time Out Chicago is a bitter lunatic that should be let GO! All my friends and I have cancelled our subscriptions to the magazine. Her reviews make my skin crawl!

Matt said...

Agreed, Time Out is a joke. Think YELP reviews are actually the most beneficial since it truly gives power to the people, followed by LTH.

Anonymous said...

Established, professional reviews are the way to go. TOC's review-for-subscribers are predictable, pedestrian and stink of personal vendetta rather than constructive criticism.

Anonymous said...

As a private chef, i'm drawn to LTH because it's a great platform to share ideas, recommendations and thoughts with other members of the industry. The ability to have outlets outside of "the establishment" are really key which is why I'm a huge proponent of blogs and other new sites.

Anonymous said...

As a publicist, I often turn to LTH, and larger publications that can write about food as culture, how and why it's valuable to our lives.

The outlets that make my first cut are Chicago magazine, CS, and the Chicago Tribune. Not only is their integrity unquestioned, but it's clear that their writers have a mission and passion for elevating the scene.

For neighborhood spots, I still turn to word of mouth to get the word on the street... especially when it comes to cute date spots, low-key business entertaining, and the best of BYOB.

Anonymous said...

For me, I feel Pollack and Ruby run a tight ship over at Chicago magazine and that it's the most impactful review in town. Dish, their e-newsletter, is also required reading. I believe TOC is bush league. Hungrymag.com is great for Top Chef recaps but not reviews. And when it comes to the online world it's 312 Dining Diva and then LTHForum. Hands down.

Anonymous said...

heather shouse and david tamarkin are two of the biggest douche bags i've ever met. period.

Anonymous said...

CS is only interested in fulfilling their advertisers best interests. If you read a review it will always be painted in the best possible light.

Anonymous said...

Wow, lots of vitriol here. Looks like a whose who of editors and wounded restaurant workers trading shots at one another. Clearly no one reads anything they talk about...anyone who says they love Trib, Sun Times, or Chicago magazine is 80 years old, has too much money and no imagination...reviews are basically poorly written lovefests and long boring descriptions of everything the overpaid old white man who can't write put in his mouth. While I agree Time Out can be snarky and that Shouse and Tamarkin sometimes come off as even more bitter and petty than the old men in the Trib and Sun Times, they are relatively creative in terms of writing and ideas. The "alternative" sources like lthforum.com, hungry magazine, yelp etc have the occasional stray data point, but the larger group of eaters writing on them produces a lot more balanced information I think. They are full of diners who haven't lost their enthusiasm for eating. You learn to pick and choose who really knows there stuff and who you agree with.

Anonymous said...

I have to disagree. As a young professional who is very in tune with the restaurant and nightlife scene in the city, I often see Chicago Magazine as offering more substantial content than Time Out - which is trying too hard in my opinion. The food content is ridiculous and to think people actually care about the opinions of two angry writers who probably didn't have alot of friends growing up (i.e. Shouse, Tamarkin) is amusing. Okay, that was mean but probably not off base - just 'sayin.

LEE said...

Online, I do appreciate DISH and Ms. Audarshia's info. is always-up-to-date and well-informed. I do check out reviews on Metromix and you can hope to find authentic commentary.

kelly said...

heather shouse should be booted. she's such a bitter woman - so pathetic.