'Michael Bauer' on Serious Eats

Gialina: San Francisco Food Critic Michael Bauer's Favorite Pizzeria

[Photograph: Adam Kuban] This is from last week, but if you're not plugged in to the SF pizza scene, you may have missed it. San Francisco Chronicle food critic Michael Bauer officially anoints Pizzeria Gialina his favorite pizza place in the City by the Bay: What sets Gialina pizza apart is the handmade crust, with puffy edges that are darkened but not blistered and a delicately chewy texture - it's nearly cracker-crisp on the outside, giving way to that elusive tender breadiness. The secret, according to Ardiana, is a low yeast-to-flour ratio and a dough that is wetter than... More

A Mini San Francisco Pizza Jaunt: Does Alan Richman Know His Bay Area Pizza?

"I would be happy eating a Delfina pizza every day of my life, but it probably would never make me jump for pizza joy." Pizzeria Delfina is Alan Richman's No. 3 U.S. pizzeria. Last week I took advantage of a quick-turnaround, 36-hour trip to San Francisco to try a couple of much-ballyhooed San Francisco pizzerias, Pizzeria Delfina and Gialina. San Francisco Chronicle restaurant critic Michael Bauer took me to Gialina (many thanks, Michael) and I took myself to Pizzeria Delfina because, well, because that's what I do--try pizzerias near and far. And much to Mr. Kuban's chagrin, Mr. Bauer blogged... More

Ed Levine Went to Gialina Pizzeria, and All Slice Got Was a Lousy Google Alert

Gialina Pizzeria is one of San Francisco Chronicle food critic Michael Bauer's pick for the best pizza in the City by the Bay. Ed Levine here at Slice–Serious Eats headquarters was in San Francisco last week and went to both Pizzeria Delfina and Gialina Pizzeria with San Francisco Chronicle food critic Michael Bauer. And do you know how I found out about this excursion? On Michael Bauer's blog via my "pizza news" Google Alert. Hmmph. Where's the Slice report, Ed? I've been waiting for Ed to weigh in on the pizza, but since the dirt has not been dished,... More

'Am I Obsolete?' Asks 'San Francisco Chronicle' Food Critic Michael Bauer

Image from Between Meals On his blog Between Meals, longtime San Francisco Chronicle food editor and restaurant critic Michael Bauer recounts discussion from a recent forum concerning the changing face of food journalism. Panelists were asked about the rise of Yelp, reviews on OpenTable, and the profusion of food bloggers on the Internet. At one point, Bauer said, “It used to be that newspapers were the only local voices; now we're one among many.” In reflecting on the panel, Bauer asks his readers, “Am I obsolete?” It’s a question that crops up more and more, as user-driven review sites and food-centric blogs take off. Ruth Reichl recently suggested at a Columbia Journalism School lecture that the days of the critic's... More

How to Become a Restaurant Reviewer

It's a popular question for San Francisco Chronicle food critic Michael Bauer, who says people should "follow their passion and write, whether on a blog or on established websites. The unique, interesting and trusted voices will rise to the top.” Or you could just join Yelp.... More

Food Critics and Anonymity: Does It Impact Reviews?

The San Francisco Chronicle's Michael Bauer wrote last week in his column on how having a blog gives him the ability to have an open dialogue with both diners and restaurateurs, and as a result, also helps him be more informed as a critic. Given such direct correspondence with the owners, wouldn't it impact his ability to give an objective review? He doesn't think so: Call me dense, but I don't see how corresponding by e-mail with restaurateurs and chefs makes me any less anonymous. This type of interaction only helps to inform my coverage. It has no bearing on whether I'm recognized when I go to a restaurant.Before the Internet, I often would call a chef after the visits... More

Translating Passion to Diners

Michael Bauer of the San Francisco Chronicle on this year's James Beard awards: "What all this says to me is that as a dining nation we're growing up. Winning doesn't necessarily mean glitzy surroundings, high-profile names and chic locations; it's about how the people behind the stove translate their passion to diners."... More

Do We Really Need Four-Star Restaurants?

When food critic Michael Bauer awarded four stars in the San Francisco Chronicle to the eponymous Michael Mina, many readers took offense at the very notion of eating in, enjoying, and writing about such a restaurant in these troubled times. Bauer aptly explained why he feels it's important to write about four-star restaurants now. I am not a fan of over-the-top decadent dining, but from Bauer's review I would hardly call Michael Mina an obscenely extravagant restaurant. In fact, Bauer's review made me want to jump on a plane and eat at Michael Mina tonight. Related: Does the World Need More Fancy-Pants French Restaurants?... More

Bay Area to Alan Richman: WTF?

Alan Richman's latest GQ column on San Francisco's Ferry Building, "the West Coast's new temple of tastes" is a riveting read until you hit this sentence: "Alice Waters and sourdough bread aside, the Bay Area has contributed surprisingly little to the culinary ripening of America considering its proximity to fertile growing regions from the Central Valley to Napa and Sonoma counties." and then all you can do is shake your head, furrow your brow, and start wondering if he's begun smoking crack. The SF Chronicle's Michael Bauer naturally took exception and wrote about it on his blog, saying, "I simply don't know where to begin. Has he heard of wine? Artisan cheeses? Arugula?" and promises to post a list of... More

San Francisco Chronicle Top 100

The San Francisco Chronicle's Top 100 Bay Area Restaurants was published earlier this week. The corresponding maps are handy for getting all the vital restaurant information you need in one click. On his blog, the Chronicle's food critic, Michael Bauer, provides the lists of restaurants that were dropped and added and shares the tale of a reader who managed to visit all of last year's top 100 in a year.... More

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