Hello and welcome all you gastronomes, gourmands and grub-hunters to The Restaurant Brat, one of roughly a billion food blogs out there on the web. My name is Brat and I toyed with the idea of starting my own blog for a long time, but laziness and I suppose the general torpor of nothing in particular kept any illusions of potential blogosphere grandeur in check. But I have finally taken the plunge. Years and years of excessive eating, drinking and the good life in general have inadvertently had quite a dramatic effect on my mind, body and soul – it’s reached a point where it would be far too selfish of me not to share.
You may be wondering why, with the sheer amount of material out there, you would have any reason to read The Restaurant Brat. Quite frankly, there are a host of food blogs out there that showcase photographs of near pornographic quality. You will quite easily find blogs with prettier layouts and perhaps a more professionally presented format. Reach for it, and I dare say that you may even manage to locate a handful of amateur blogs that contain written content as good as mine. But probably not. And it is this which I hope ultimately earns The Restaurant Brat a bookmark in your browser.
I am tired of reading two to three-line reviews on websites like Yelp urging you to, “GO NOW!” because of the “AMAZING SUSHI! OMG!” While these websites serve a critical purpose to the dining public, I sometimes find myself wondering how I can really let such a random agglomeration of thoughts, often written by people with as firm a grasp of grammar as a garbage can, dictate what I do with my time and money. Indeed, I firmly believe there is a niche for comprehensive, lovingly written amateur restaurant reviews. An alternative viewpoint, hopefully as eloquently expressed, to the Frank Brunis and Sam Siftons of the world – who write for established, professional publications like the NY Times.
A bit more about me: as you may or may not have guessed from the last few sentences, I have a pretty damn high opinion of myself. You might say this extends beyond merely my writing ability. I like myself quite a bit. But why not? I eat like a king, drink like a sailor and party like a rockstar. Hey, in a former life, I even was a rockstar. Hedonist, bon vivant and global jetsetter – I like luxury, and make no excuses about it. I inhale foie gras like it’s going out of fashion (it never will). I shave truffles into my morning oatmeal. My personal shopper at Saks also tends to George Clooney. Spraying Dom straight from the bottle onto a mass of writhing revelers is a favored hobby. Douche bag? Nah, hardly. Don’t let the veneer fool you because genuinely, when all’s been said and done, I’m one of the nicer people out there. I just happen to be more straightforward than most. I enjoy life and am not ashamed to call it like it is, that’s all. And crucially to this blog, when it comes to food, I let no obstacle stand in the way. Michelin Stars are a proper treat, but I am equally at home chowing down on greasy, artery-clogging comfort food at filthy holes in the wall, sweating it out among ravenous flies, mutant cockroaches and stifling humidity at Southeast Asian hawker centers, or sampling fried scorpions while simultaneously bathing in the pungent aroma of raw pig organs at wet markets around the world.
So there you have it, that’s me: The Restaurant Brat. I love eating out. I love trying new things. I see cuisine as a unique cultural expression, and haven’t discovered a type that I haven’t at least respected yet. Read this blog because you love food; read this blog because you appreciate lovingly crafted prose; read this blog because you have friends coming into town and you need a quick Brat-o-Meter restaurant recommendation; heck, read this blog because you want to live vicariously through me – but most of all, read this blog because… well… it’s bloody good.
Happy reading and happy eating!