Oooo, ahhh, it's time for food porn

By Pauline D. Loh ( China Daily ) Updated: 2014-02-28 08:24:24

Social media has changed the way we eat. The first thing many of us do when the platters are laid on the table is whip out our smartphones and start taking photographs.

The next thing we do is to log on to WeChat, Twitter or Weibo and post food shots online.

This compulsive urge to show off has raised the ire of some Michelin-starred chefs, who criticize amateur food critics who allow their food to grow cold while they let friends and fans know exactly what, where and when they are eating.

It's the "when" that bothers the chefs.

It takes crucial timing in the kitchen to get food served piping hot, and it probably hurts the crew to see it age on the table as the excited diner posts his pictures online.

A recent story in international news media quoted chefs as saying they oppose "food porn" at the table for a few reasons. That food grows cold, and their efforts are wasted is the main reason, but they also say that photos posted online spoil the surprise for prospective diners.

While I sympathize with the first, I do not agree with the second.

If all dishes were to be a surprise, then why bother to encourage journalists to do food reviews, which are a major draw for readers of any newspaper, including this one.

Chefs, backed into a corner by the "customers are always right" philosophy, also face a delicate dilemma.

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