Criticism is a strange job in any genre. One of the main goals of any decent critic is to develop a voice — one that readers can grow to appreciate or hate — so that when the critic writes something, the reader is familiar with the critic's point of view. For the past four years, I have been blessed with the job of restaurant critic at L.A. Weekly, and as much as I aim to speak for the paper and its readers, I would have failed at my job if you couldn't tell that it was me writing these reviews.
With that in mind, we want to explain some changes taking place in the Food section over the next six months. I am taking a half-year book leave, and the review that appears online tomorrow and in this week's paper will be my last weekly review for the time being; they will resume in early October.
In the meantime, some known and new voices will be filling in. Garrett Snyder, our food editor, will be contributing starred reviews, and you'll see some non-starred reviews and food features from various freelancers and staff writers. And I won't be completely absent from the paper; I will still be contributing one starred review a month.
I'm grateful to the Weekly for having the flexibility to allow me the time to dedicate to this project. And I'm grateful to Los Angeles for giving me the opportunity to have a voice here for the past four years. I'm looking forward to more years to come.