That restaurant review….

That Giles Coren review of Goodfellas is online now (it was the Irish News, not the Irish Times Giles). Paolo Tullio is both a restaurant reviewer and a former restaurateur and has experienced the issue from both sides:

I can’t speak for reviewers of things other than restaurants, but on that subject I do have some opinions. Unusually, I think, for restaurant reviewers, I used to have a restaurant and I know exactly what it’s like to get reviewed. I got reviewed in my restaurant, I’ve been reviewed when acting on stage and my books have been reviewed. I’ve had two excoriating reviews in my life, one for my restaurant and one for my book on Italy.

Let me be clear here: both the book and the restaurant only ever got one bad review each, but curiously they’re the ones I remember best. Helen Lucy Burke gave my restaurant a real going over — naturally I thought unfairly — but here’s the odd thing: my business improved the following week as regular customers came specially to lend their support. And the book? It’s still selling 10 years on.

In which case, it will be interesting to see whether Goodfellas takes the case back to trial…


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