With his unmatched familiarity with the extensive menus and far-flung gems of L.A.'s restaurant scene, Jonathan Gold is an impossible critic to replace. But L.A. Weekly finally ends its hunt for the heir to Gold's shoes today, with the announcement that Besha Rodell will be taking over as the weekly paper's restaurant critic. Strangely, The Weekly hasn't picked a local, as Rodell made her bones in New York and more recently, as the valued food editor and restaurant critic at Creative Loafing Atlanta, where reports noted that she'd been let go in March.
Welcomed in Squid Ink, Rodell is described as a James Beard nominee and two-time winner of awards for feature writing from the Association of Food Journalists. With a distinctive and dynamic voice, Rodell is certainly a promising choice to lead the Weekly with energy, wit, and a fresh perspective, even if she probably has a lot of catching up to do and pounds to gain from L.A.'s endless spread of eats if she's to ever match the luster of Gold, the first and only food writer to win a Pulitzer Prize. Expect to see her first reviews appear in the coming weeks.
We'd love to hear thoughts on the pick from our readers in the comments. And if you happen to be a restaurateur hoping for a perfect review, just be really, really attentive to anyone rocking a burka from here on out.