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Rachel Levin Is Eater’s First San Francisco Restaurant Critic

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Why we’re investing in more restaurant criticism


Today, the incredibly talented writer Rachel Levin (New Yorker, Lucky Peach, SF Mag, etc.) will publish her first ever restaurant review for Eater (it’s a one-spot for A Mano) as Eater’s first ever San Francisco restaurant critic.

At Eater we think of restaurant criticism as cultural criticism. While restaurant reviews provide a service to the reader, offering recommendations and advice as to how they should spend limited resources, they should also treat restaurants as cultural attractions akin to the theater, film, and dance. A review shouldn’t just tell a reader whether to order the omu rice or the penne a la vodka. It should tell them where this restaurant fits into the culinary landscape of the city, why diners are (or are not) flocking to it, and what financial, artistic, or societal forces are pushing it to be a certain way.

We chose San Francisco over other American dining capitals for a number of reasons: its history of next-level cuisine, the diversity of the great food on offer across the price spectrum, its concentration of American wealth — and the shifting realities of real estate and affordability that wealth brings with it — and the burgeoning food scene just outside SF proper. And, frankly, Bauer could use some more competition.

More about Rachel. She is a long time freelancer who has covered the world of food, travel, music, and the outdoors for over a decade. For Eater, she will visit restaurants anonymously (or as anonymously as possible) an average of three times per review. Her reviews — which will award restaurants zero to four stars — will run every other week.

So please check out today’s A Mano review, stay tuned for her next entry in two weeks, send congrats to Rachel at @rachellevinsf.