Most people know Tony Chen for his restaurant-reviewing, chef and critic-stalking food blog SinoSoul ("Sino" is the Latin prefix for "Chinese"). His most recent project, Eating Valley Boulevard, is suspiciously reminiscent of Jonathan Gold's goal back in the '80s, to eat at every restaurant on Pico Boulevard from downtown to the ocean. We asked Chen about his new blog, his take on food blog ethics, and his personal definition of east and west Los Angeles. Believe it or not, this Angeleno is anti-burrito.
Squid Ink: How long have you been blogging about food?
Tony Chen: One year exactly. I previously stalked Chicago's "culinary chat" site:
LTHforum, interjected by periods of mental lapse on Yelp.
SI: What's your real job?
TC: I'm a customs broker, collecting duty for Uncle Sam.
SI: What's your favorite little-known food blog?
TC: Infinite Fress! He's like my brother from another mother, except 300 percent wittier & sharper.
SI: Favorite bar?
TC: Cube's cheese bar. I refuse to fall for the trickery that is mixology.
A $15 pisco sour, or feed one for days in San Gabriel Valley? Simple choice.
SI: Are you from LA? If not, where?
TC: Taipei born, LA suburbia raised. Years spent in Flushing, Chicago, Ann Arbor.
SI: What is the hardest part about food blogging?
SI: Where do you get most of your ideas for posts?
TC: Usually on the toilet, in the shower, or on the motorcycle.