Upon returning from last weekend’s Atlanta Food and Wine Festival, Josh Ozersky took to his weekly column on Rachelray.com and made some grand, and complimentary, observations about the festival and about the Atlanta dining scene in general.
Now, I know that there are few things that Atlanta foodies enjoy more than bashing our own city and spewing vitriol over how we are light years behind New York, San Francsico, Chicago, etc. I’m sure some of you are going to scan this post, and copy and paste the same tired comments ripping on Atlanta that you have posted on other blogs. And any mention of the AFWF will surely draw comments about how expensive it was, at least one post including the phrase “in this economy”, and an example of how many five dollar foot longs one could eat for the price of a ticket.
Haters are gonna hate, I guess, but I’m more of an optimist than that. And it is always nice when an out-of-towner pays us a compliment.
In his post, titled “What I Saw In Atlanta, and Why It Matters”, Ozersky discusses his belief, strongly re-affirmed after his visit at AFWF, that “the south is the new capital of gastronomy in America.” And, as Atlanta is the capital of the south, it is “the place you have to be.” He goes on to mention some of his favorite dishes of the weekend, including Asha Gomez’s Kerala-style fried chicken, which he claims was the best version of the dish at the festival. Farm 255, Southern Art, The Spotted Trotter, and a misspelled “Bocato” also get shout outs.
Perhaps the line that I appreciated the most is his comment that “the experience cemented the conviction in my mind that the South was where American cooking, in its most vital sense, is happening.”
What do you think? Is Ozersky just still riding the pork-fat high from the AFWF, or are the snarkists too busy focusing on what is wrong with the Atlanta food scene to acknowledge what we are doing right?
- By Jon Watson, Food & More blog