I’m a magazine fan. Throughout high school, I subscribed to Vogue and was able, with confidence, to Talk About Fashion (an ability that has since withered). In college, needing a pick me up, I’d secure a ride to Wal-Mart and pick up a pack of Parliaments and a few magazines: Cosmo, Shape, Health — whatever. If I were lucky enough to be going to a bookstore, I’d get Bust, Adbusters, or Artforum. My taste in mags wasn’t really as schizophrenic as I make it out to be, but in small-town Illinois, shopping locale dictates periodical selection even more than it does anywhere else, so I’d exit whatever store I was in with an armload of at-odds publications (and probably a big bag of Sour Patch Kids).
I’ve never actually read Bon Appetit (embarrassing confession), but I read the current issue yesterday morning on the bus rides to and from work. My verdict? I think I’ll need to read a few more issues before feeling comfortable making any sweeping statements about the magazine as a whole. A few of the recipes caught my eye — the honey lavender ice cream, for example, which I may yet try to make this weekend, and the salads* — and the photos are gorgeous. Overall, I wished for more narrative, more lushly constructed food fables. But, food lit is not Bon Appetit’s editorial focus, as Hook kindly pointed out — recipes are. In that regard, the magazine is successful: it’s crammed with recipes (some with no words of introduction!), more recipes than I will try before the next issue arrives.
GOOD NEWS: The Whole Foods that’s being built at the intersection of Haight and Stanyan is going to open on February 16th. That’s 18 days away! In 18 days, I’ll have only to walk a scant three blocks to get my produce (local, organic), my wine, my expertly arranged and carefully tied bouquets and my vegan scones. I’ve been watching the store’s construction over the course of a year, and opening day is so close I can smell it. Maybe that’s bum urine on the adjacent sidewalk, but whatever: my bobo fantasy shall soon be realized. (!).
*Though many of the featured salads are similar to ones I make already for lunch. Reading the feature, I was like, “Really? This gets to be published? Why are my salad creations not featured recipes, huh?”