America’s Food Writers Reveal the Food Words They Can’t Spell

Way easier to eat than spell correctly. Photo: omersukrugoksu/Getty Images

Finally, something good on Twitter. Some of the country’s top food writers and critics have taken turns over the last 24 hours admitting which food words they struggle to spell correctly. The ball got rolling yesterday when Splendid Table host and Clarkson Potter editor Francis Lam told his followers, just out of the blue, that the word hors d’oeuvres has defeated him for over a decade:

Two of America’s most prominent restaurant critics, the Times’ Pete Wells and the New Orleans Times-Picayune’s Brett Anderson, concurred:

Lam thought they were onto something, so he called for total transparency from the food-world literati:

You no doubt noticed a pattern — the words are all French, a truth that quickly shanghaied the conversation, as you can see from what followed:

Nobody confessed to pierogi, caipirinha, okonomiyaki, sufganiyot, smörgåsbord, or even the oft-maligned Worcestershire, but if you wondered which non-French words do trip up the nation’s professional food writers, there were a few dishonorable mentions:

Food Writers Reveal Which Food Words They Can’t Spell