Have you heard the one about the five restaurant critics who walk into a bar?
That was the scene last month, when I traveled to Washington, D.C., to attend the Association of Food Journalists conference. My colleagues descended on the city’s restaurants like gourmet locusts, gathering in swarms to sample all of the latest, hottest spots in town.
I found myself without my game stomach on — more interested in catching up with old friends rather than passing around beautiful plates of foie gras and squab, trying to detect the hints of licorice root and bee pollen. I wasn’t going to jump through any hoops to get into the must-visit restaurant.
Little Serow is a dim, brick-walled basement space that barely seats 20 people. In an earlier age, it might have been a jazz club. Instead, it is a Thai restaurant that serves a weekly-changing seven-course menu for $45. It takes no reservations, so customers begin lining up at