Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Ouch, Alpana . . .

Feast of Fools host Fausto Fernós (left) with Alpana Singh (Photo:

Local wine diva Alpana Singh gets called out by MenuPages for over-promoting her real job on her new vino-themed blog:

"FoodLife is owned by LEYE. And Alpana? Is the director of wine and spirits for LEYE. And as such presumably has a hand in selecting these $4.95-per-glass wines and signing off on the signs for the singles-friendly wine tastings.

Don't get us wrong—we know that when a restaurant employee blogs about his or her professional life, the blog serves as an extension of the restaurant brand. No one expects, say, Philip Foss to go on a screed against hotel dining, f'rinstance. But this kind of wide-eyed who-me advertorial gets our undies in a bunch."


Anonymous said...

I don't know if I'd call this a "call out," Audarshia. The blogger at MenuPages made some inaccurate assumptions about Alpana's role at Lettuce. While it's true she is the director of wine and spirits for the company, she is not the decision maker (or even involved with) the wine programs and promotions at each of the 55 plus stores across the country. I think that your and MenuPages' charge of "over-promoting" is unfounded, not to mention mean-spirited. Lettuce is a great company, and most of the employees are happy and proud to work there. I know several who have been with the company for a decade or longer and would readily name Lettuce restaurants as some of their favorites (and--gasp!--they eat at the restaurants too!). I don't think Alpana's post was an attempt to "over-promote"; she was just reporting a cheerful encounter with her husband getting something to eat in their neighborhood a little simpler and a better value than, I don't know, Pane Caldo or Spiaggia. Further, I don't get what's so wrong about an employee wanting people to patronize her company. If the food and service at LEYE restaurants are as good as, and in many cases, better than other places out there, why wouldn't those who have "real jobs" with the company want to enjoy the same food and service that is available to everyone else? Everybody has to eat, you know. Isn't that why you "promote" the restaurants and bars that you do? (At least in theory? I'll pretend I don't know what goes on in restaurant PR, and won't even bring up the likely free food and drink you get in exchange for your "reports.") You know, if you and Helen want to be taken seriously as bloggers too, maybe you should try to employ some journalistic integrity in your posts. Ouch!

312 Dining Diva said...

Good try, "anon" LEYE employee, but you wrote the EXACT same thing on MenuPages blog. ;)