While it's important to note that I am not a fan of his restaurants (though my family had a long-running love affair with Tuscan Steak in South Beach before they changed chefs,) I have to give Jeffrey Chodorow credit for the full-page ad he took in today's New York Time's food section. Especially the second paragraph which I have quoted below and which says:
"This brings me to my second reason for writing this letter. A couple of years ago, my wife and I attended a restaurant preview dinner at which we were randomly seated with a former food critic for the NY Times and his wife, he having recently left his position at the Times. They were extremely pleasant and my wife, out of curiosity, asked his wife where they like to have dinner, now that her husband is no longer the NY Times food critic. His wife replied that they live in Queens and eat mostly at home. She told my wife that before her husband became the food critic for the Times, they almost never went out to dinner. He was a great writer, I’m sure, as is Mr. Bruni. But, they are not really food critics, at least any more than any of us who eat out regularly. Mr. Bruni comes to us from Rome where he was not the local “expert” on Italian cuisine; he wrote about politics. In fact, there hasn’t been a real food critic with food background (except perhaps Amanda Hesser) at the New York Times since Ruth Reichl (now editor-in-chief at Gourmet magazine.)"