This past month was a good bit of work for 10 Magazine. Late February, I was getting ready to go to Daegu on assignment for the publication when the editors called me.
“We’re thinking of doing a brunch cover story. Can you do it?”
Stephen Revere is a religious Sunday bruncher. I knew that. I like brunch spots, too, but I haven’t been thoroughly checking them out. So I was wondering how I could possibly hit a bunch of brunches in less than a two week period and write up a big cover story. I was about to pass when I asked, “Can I get some help?”
I contacted Paul Matthews (Paul Ajosshi) and Brian Dye (Kiss My Kimchi). They are both great food writers, and their style of writing fit closer to what I had in mind–not pretentious and too judgmental with a dash of dry wit. I read a lot of food reviews, and I find the most boring ones are the ones that would say, “Well, the toast had a firm crumb, but the eggs were sub par and not refined enough to match the orange grove and subtle cat sweat tones of the applewood smoked bacon.”
I like reading about food, not someone’s personal finicky hyper-judgementalism mistaken for criticism. The purpose of a review is to help you find your match, and I’d like to think we accomplished it. I also thought, in keeping with the theme of the magazine, that we should to a top 10 list.
We, along with Stephen, went through a lot of brunch restaurants when making our list. We had to come up with stricter criteria to help us whittle it down.
Hotels will have their own separate page. (Strike the hotels)
They have to have more than a couple of breakfast options. (Strike some of the pubs)
Bakeries are out.
With spring coming, the two criteria we worked on besides the food were the coffee (taste and value) and outdoor seating. The night I returned from Daegu (and writing other articles for the magazine on the bus trip–thank you, new laptop) we all got in on a multi-hour conference call with our combined lists and decided who would take over what writing and photography duties. We wrote about the places that we knew the best and returned to the ones that we were unsure of, keeping track of everything on a shared Google Doc.
The piece started fleshing out and taking shape. I had already written the bookends in my hotel room in Daegu. The stuff Paul and Brian were turning in was great, along with Stephen’s input. I pulled together all the writings and notes and just wrote the whole article from those, and I think we came up with something entertaining and informative.
So we’re pretty proud of this issue. At least, I am. It was fun collaborating with Brian and Paul. And now I hear that Paul has become the new film writer for the magazine.
Get a copy of this month’s issue. It’s in a lot of restaurants and pubs, as well in the guest rooms of the major hotels. There’s also the subscription option. I also have some articles in there about Chef Nick Flynn of the Intercontinental, a review of Ho Lee Chow, and a short “food find” of the Dragon Hill Lodge.