Q. How many people write for NC Triangle Dining?
Just one very hungry guy with a virtual tapeworm in his stomach! But I am looking for additional contributors to the blog, especially if you live in the Chapel Hill area…
Q. Do you get paid for any reviews on this blog?
No I don’t receive any monetary compensation for reviews, although occasionally I will get comp’ed a meal. For the gory details and truth, please check out my blog policies page. I try to focus on the most objective reviews possible because I know that accepting compensation and too many comped opportunities would certainly sway my opinions.
Q. How do you choose your restaurants?
Not much differently than anyone else! Through online reviews, friend recommendations and also what I read on social media. Probably the only difference is that I’ll make some effort to get to the newer hot-spots in the Triangle. I’m primarily focused in the downtown areas of the Triangle and do my best to avoid dud restaurants and chains…
Q. Are your pictures professionally staged?
For the majority of my pictures, no. I try to squeeze in my pictures during my meals with a minimum of fuss and muss. During the media reviews, the food is staged a bit but rarely professionally staged with lighting, etc. Since I’m not staging my photos, I’m trying to keep it as real as possible so the pictures reflect what you might get during your visit.
Q. What equipment do you use for your food photos?
Ahh, I keep it simple. Usually I’ve got my Samsung Galaxy S7 for a good portion of my pictures and then I’ll use my Canon G16 for situations where I have more time and/or lower lighting which I’m prepared for. I understand that I could get better pictures with a full SLR but don’t think it’s reasonable to use one during a standard meal service and to try and keep things discrete since I’m often eating out with friends. And as much as they tolerate my picture taking, I try to get in and out with my pics, quick as a bunny!
Q. Why do you do this food blog?
Gosh, great question. All the food reviewing started for me doing online reviews for Yelp and after doing quite a few and having people thank me for them, I decided to do the blog separately but still do reviews on Yelp. My goal is to support the restaurants that I believe are doing a great job, regardless of what cuisine they are offering! I think it’s so important to explore the food scene in your neighborhood….
Q. Do you ever do any really critical reviews?
Ahh, I try to avoid really negative, slams. I do hit occasional duds in my dining trail but don’t believe in kicking someone when they’re down. The restaurant business is tough enough without needing anonymous and unfair criticism. I’d expect Darwin and the market to take care of any poorly performing restaurants in its natural course. Please see my post on negative reviews for my thoughts and rationale here.
Q. What’s the typical price range of the restaurants you review here?
I focus on mid-range restaurants with some excursions into higher end spots. Usually if I spend more then $60 for a meal, it’s for a special dinner event. Which means often I’m skipping out on those $$$$ restaurants since this blog is about getting food value for your money. But occasionally I’ll hit up those spots just to see what all the buzz is about.