My wife and I play a game when we go out to eat: Name the cliché that food writers would use to describe the place. If the restaurant has a fireplace and it's crowded: It's cozy. If we have the chocolate cake, we know it will be described as decadent by a critic soon. Here are our top five most annoying food-writing clichés. But I'm also curious what readers think. Does your local food scribe make you cringe? How so? Please add your own clunkers in the comments field.
For some reason this is hard-wired into emerging food writers' brains. If it's a dessert, and not tart or fruity, it must be decadent right? Wrong. Maybe it's sweet. Or made of chocolate. But what does decadent really mean? And how many non-decadent chocolate cakes have you had?
What does this really tell you about a place? Answer: Nothing on its own. Better to say what you see, feel, hear, smell, taste. Chances are the writer is trying to avoid saying that the place is small,