Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Going Sober: What It Means For A Food Critic

Lately, I’ve been having some serious thoughts about my life. I love my wine, I really do. However, I’ll be brutally honest. Wine does not love me back. As much as I used to live for escaping away into a glass of vino, the truth is that it was costing me a ton. It was getting to be a serious problem, socially, physically, and economically. 

In a very unexpected (for anyone who knows me) turn, I decided to stop drinking. It was not doing me any good. The thing is, my sobriety is something I needed to do. By the time I decided to quit, I wasn’t even enjoying the drinks anymore. But the problem is…I’m a food critic. This can be pretty rough. So, what does this mean?

The Obvious: I’m Not Guzzling Wine Anymore

I’m not drinking booze of any sort. No, not even White Claws. This means that I won’t be able to do much as far as telling you what drinks are the best at bars firsthand. It’s just not healthy for me to do so. 

However, I often bring along a buddy to my reviews. So, I will have them do that work for me. And I will relay what they say. Should I find a restaurant that pushes drinks on me hard, I’ll make sure to note it in my reviews.

Ossiana Tepfenhart: Going Sober: What It Means For A Food Critic

The Not-So-Obvious: I Can Still Tell You If It Looks Like A Good Watering Hole

Though I don’t drink, I can still tell what a decent wine selection looks like and what craft cocktails are supposed to look like. Moreover, I still can order all the mocktails that money can buy…and trust me, I’ve become a major connoisseur of them over the past month or so. 

The way I figure it, if you can’t muddle mint, you won’t make a good mojito—virgin or otherwise. I have no intention on stopping my mixology critiques. Besides, who doesn’t love a good mocktail?

The Truth: I Want My Reviews To Be Healthier

Don’t get me wrong. I am a huge fan of junk food. I mean, I’ve waxed poetic over Taco Bell more times than I can count. However, I’m in my mid-30s. I’m looking to lose weight and get healthy. The pandemic (and my own behavior) has started to make me rethink the way I work. 

From now on, I’m going to stick to venues that are healthier—or at the very least, offer food that is filled with high-quality ingredients. Getting a case of “the itis” is too 2020 for me, and it’s time that I start turning over a new leaf. 

Are all my reviews going to be faultless? No, not at all. We all have to indulge from time to time. However, you might start to notice a drop in fried foods and “traditional” junk foods in my reviews. That’s by design. I’m hoping you’ll still want to read my stuff as I work through my journey as a healthier food critic

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Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart is a food critic, writer, and at home culinary enthusiast!


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