I’m not one to post remembrances of people I’ve never met, but I was surprised and saddened to learn of restaurant critic Jonathan Gold’s passing over the weekend.
Living far from Southern California for almost twenty-years, I enjoyed reading Gold’s reviews and poring over his lists, especially his annual 101-restaurant lists, to keep updated on the unique nature of the LA-area. If you are not familiar with Gold, he was the subject of a recent documentary, released in 2015, that you can stream on Hulu, among other places I’m sure.
As has been noted elsewhere, Gold’s writing tried to bond the city and its various ethnic communities together through food. His wasn’t the adventurous explorations that were popularized by Anthony Bourdain. It was as if he was trying to make everyone comfortable and familiar with what Los Angeles and its environs had to offer.
In an era when a food connoisseur is one who posts a beautiful photo of a lovely plated dish bathed in warm light, optimized for an Instagram post, he will be missed.