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Times Critic Opts Out of Foodie Fight

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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CHODOROW ROW Jeffrey(Photo: Getty Images)

Thin-skinned restaurateur Jeffrey Chodorow may think he put the fear of Chod into Frank Bruni, but the New York Times food critic says otherwise.

Since February, Chodorow has been maintaining a blog where he responds to Bruni's write-ups, which he considers excessively harsh.

But Bruni says he doesn't check the infrequently updated website, and didn't even know the tetchy restaurateur had responded in writing on Friday to Bruni's one-star review of Wild Salmon, Chodorow's new midtown eatery.

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"I have nothing against Jeffrey Chodorow, but I don't see any percentage in reading his blog," he says.

Chodorow, however, clearly thinks his watchdogging has blunted Bruni's quill. Referring to a 1,200-word letter he paid to publish in the Times after Bruni panned his Kobe Club, Chodorow mused, "Is it me, or has Frank Bruni actually been nicer to restaurants in his reviews since my letter?"

It's you, says Bruni, who insists Chodorow's mau-mau act had nothing to do with his neither-nice-nor-mean review of Wild Salmon.


"Like everybody, he's entitled to put out there whatever he wants to, and I respect his right to do that. But I went in there with as open a mind as I try to have when I go into any place."

Except, say, Chodorow's China Grill, which was just closed by the health inspector.



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