Regarding Restaurant Critics and the Quest for Anonymity

The non-anonymous Andrew Knowlton.
The non-anonymous Andrew Knowlton. Photo: Dean Kauffman/Bon Appetit

“Nobody is anonymous anymore … [It’s] impossible these days just because of all the social media out there … My thought is, I go to restaurants anonymously and if someone spots me, I feel that I’m wise enough to know if I’m being treated differently than other people. If a place isn’t good or I don’t like it, I just won’t write about it … And if the food sucks, there’s nothing they’re going to be able to do within five minutes to change that.” — Bon Appetit’s Andrew Knowlton regarding the need for anonymity as a critic. Coincidentally this comes as Michael Bauer, whose anonymity is often a mutually agreed-upon fiction at many local restaurants, celebrates 25 years at the Chronicle. But c’mon Andrew — kitchens probably do step up their game when they see you coming. [Feast]