Sunday, December 18, 2005

To Roast or Not To Roast? A Poll on Restaurant Reviews

Dear Nancylanders,

As a new year of blogging approaches, and Nancyland turns one year old (January 30th, 2006), it's time for a little reflection and some redefining of the focus of this site. Specifically, I've been pondering the sticky bits of restaurant reviewing - the negative reviews. As the audience for Nancyland grows from my circle of friends to the rest of the human race (world domination, here we come, mwahahahahaha...oops, heh, excuse me...), I must admit I've been feeling the slight pangs of guilt for potentially affecting the business of local restaurants with my beloved little food journal. I do bear in mind that my reviews could neither break nor make any place though. I also endeavor to be very specific with what displeases me so that readers can make up their own minds about what aspects are important to them in their dining choices. And plenty of people seem to go ahead and want to try a place even when they hear a negative review, just to see for themselves. which is all part of the fun of following food writing. Occassionally, I've not bothered to post about a restaurant if my experience was bad and just didn't feel interesting enough to be post-worthy, or I just didn't feel like slamming a place. So here's a simple poll to try and gauge the interest of my dear readership. Please, as always, feel free to elaborate on your position about negative reviews by adding a comment to this post.


Tai said...

I so wanted to take that poll, but either my computer is on the fritz or the link isn't working.

Either way.

I just wanted to say that I find your reviews engaging, informative and amusing.
I also think that whatever 'negative' experiences you have had, you describe very well, and very fairly.
You don't seem to aim for a cutting blow in any of them (unless you've been treated extremely poorly, and even then you're still generous).

Keep up the great work!

Dumpling_Girl said...

awww, I'm touched. Thanks, Tai! I have been, I think, erring on the cautious side up to now. And I'm fiddling with an article or two that are critical about places that I'm actually rooting for, and that I want to see succeed. I appreciate your vote of confidence, and everyone else's input in the poll. Thanks! (The link sometimes doesn't work for me too, and I think it has to do with the poll website I'm using. Trying again later seems to help, if anyone else is finding the same problem.

SaabKen said...

I think all is fair game if your opinions (good/bad) reflect what actually happened in restaurant XYZ, and perhaps more than once, to give that restaurant a fair shake. In other words, I guess like people, all restaurant chefs/cooks and wait staff have good/bad days too. So if at least two of your experiences corroborate, well then it's prolly time to tell it as it is. Especially if there were others with you and they felt the same good/bad experiences.

In today's information age, restauranteurs no longer have any excuses to keep a blind eye/ear to their customers' feedbacks. If anything, food blogs make it so much easier for them to gauge their own quality (or lack thereof) without having to conduct expensive or tedious market research surveys or focus groups. Hey if I were the proprietor of a certain restaurant on Granville Island called "The S***B**", I'd better be paying some attention to the local food blogs !! ;-P

My $0.25