Gourmet Goes Too

Gourmet October 2009Yet another magazine to die. Gourmet, around for 70 years, will be killed by its publisher Conde Nast due to the current affliction that has been affecting so many print titles: dramatically dwindled advertising returns. The November issue will be its last. And just in case they decided to pull that one out, I decided to buy the latest issue, which turned out to be the last copy at Kinokuniya.

Gourmet is not a mag I purchase regularly as it tends to be US-centric (as with the one I just bought that touts “126 American restaurants worth the money”). American gourmet is, to me, an oxymoron, just like American fashion. But buy I do because Gourmet does report on food fads in and outside the States, which are both enjoyable and enlightening to read. Moreover, I am curious about what is lauded (or knocked) by its editor-in-chief Ruth Reichl, the culinary world’s answer to Anna Wintour.

I do not always get to try out the recipes in the magazine and I certainly have almost no chance to visit the many restaurants it recommends, but I do get a kick out of looking at the pictures: photos that make something elemental and unfussy and comforting as gnoochi with sage look like nuggets of gold amid blades of jade (page 31).

As I flipped through the magazine, subscription cards fell out. One read, “8 issues free”. How appetising is that now when the world will be free of Gourmet?

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