It’s been a busy few days for Jonathan Gold. In a piece published in the Los Angeles Times on Friday, the longtime restaurant critic officially revealed his identity, including a photograph of himself in the article (as well as several masked shots). While photos of him have been viewable on the Internet since 2007, this is the first time that Gold has declared “the pretense of his anonymity” to have ended. He points out that restaurants have effectively known the identity of the majority of critics despite any and all attempts at disguising themselves and argues that this “game of peekaboo” helps neither critics nor the restaurants they write about.
Gold will be even more visible starting this week, when producer Laura Gabbert’s “City of Gold” premieres at Sundance. The documentary explores the transformative power of food and food writing in how we experience whey we live. The film stars — you guessed it — Jonathan Gold. No masks or disguises involved.
Gold is not the first major critic to “unmask” himself. New York’s Adam Platt abandoned his own routine of charades just over a year ago for similar reasons, though he had managed to maintain an impressively high level of public anonymity up to that point. With people demanding transparency more than ever, and with constant streams of information flooding social media feeds, it is somewhat unsurprising that members of one of the most historically secret professions are choosing to eschew methods once considered traditional and necessary. Here’s looking at you, Pete Wells!
Check out these Los Angeles stories on Food Republic: