Critiques, Cravings and Conundrums From the Madison Food and Dining Scene
Small Dishes

October 2011




Posted at 08:21 AM | Permalink | Comments

Adventures in Good Eating


Adventures in Good Eating

That was the name of Duncan Hines’ restaurant guide in 1950s.  He was the Tim and Nina Zagat of his day and the leading authority on dining out.  Today, most people only recognize his name as that of a popular cake mix.  Fame as a restaurant critic is fleeting and taste in food fickle.   Just like what we eat, much has changed about the restaurant business in the last 50 years.  For one thing, “adventure” and “good eating” are rarely associated with each other anymore.   The success of chains like McDonald’s and Kentucky Fried Chicken were built on uniformity and no surprises.  Now, a restaurant adventure has become a pejorative.  Even Duncan Hines admitted, “I've run more risk eating...

Posted at 10:55 AM | Permalink | Comments: 3

Counter Culture


Counter Culture

It seems way too early to be thinking about Christmas, but it’s difficult not to, going to Target and Costco and seeing all the holiday glitter already on display. Like many, thinking about Christmas takes me back to when I was a little kid, because that’s when it was the most alive and real. Then shopping was an adventure, special from the start because I wore my best clothes even though it wasn’t Sunday.  It was an essential ingredient in the anticipation of Christmas that never came fast enough.  I still remember the thrill of squandering the $20 fortune that Aunt Bertie Louise gave me each year—much better than the Savings Bond I got on my birthday. I especially miss going to the five and dime, stores like S. S. Kresge and F. W. Woolworth....

Posted at 01:02 PM | Permalink | Comments

About This Blog

Dan CurdI found my interest in writing by accident. My training and first job was as a graphic designer. Unemployed, the only employment I could find in advertising at that time was as a copywriter. Somehow, I convinced Richard Newman & Associates to hire me. Later I learned they were desperate. Madison has been my home off and on since 1957 (nonstop for the past 31 years). I write about food, which I love. – Dan Curd

Recent Posts



Atom Feed Subscribe to the Small Dishes Feed »