How to write a restaurant review: the menu and the wine list, Part 4

In this fourth part of the late Sam Worthington’s short book, “How To Be A Savvy Restaurant Reviewer,” Sam takes a long, hard and savvy look at the menu and wine list.

How to write a restaurant review: the menu and the wine list, Part 4

You can tell an awful lot about a restaurant not just by the contents of the menu and wine list, but also by the way – and when – it is presented. Read on…

Why a good reviewer shares in-depth comments on the menu and wine list

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How to write a restaurant review: the first impression, Part 3

We continue with this tasty series of the late Sam Worthington’s short book, “How To Be A Savvy Restaurant Reviewer,” with his chapter on the first impression you get of a restaurant.

How to write a restaurant review: the first impression, Part 3

“If the building looks tidy, and the outside is inviting, that is good.”

It seems that just like when meeting people for the first time, first impressions really do count…

Why your first impression of a restaurant is important

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How to write a savvy restaurant review: introduction Part 1

You may well remember one of HTWB’s most popular writing articles, “How to write a restaurant review” … ? That was written by one of my oldest friends who sadly passed away in 2015.

How to write a savvy restaurant review: introduction Part 1

Another issue that will invariable come up is price. That can be divisive as well because we all eat different things, drink different amounts and have different ideas about what is expensive and what is not.

Having had me nag at him to write a short book that expands on the original article, author Sam Worthington went ahead and produced it.

Seeing how amazingly popular Sam’s original article has been here with more than 25,000 reads, his family have given me permission to reproduce the text of the whole book in a series. Bon appétit. [Read more…]

Help! How can I write really good reviews for TripAdvisor?


Dear HTWB Agony Columns

I want to start writing reviews for TripAdvisor as I love travel, vacations, eating out and all the other things they focus on. How can I write reviews that stand out and that may eventually lead to me being considered as a good, professional reviewer, perhaps for a local or regional magazine?

Thanks in anticipation! [Read more…]

Food funnies: the tastiest jokes in town

medium_3431444774Welcome to the first course of your hilarious banquet … my collection of the funniest food jokes I’ve come across in the last 10 years or so. Soon to be published in a book: here’s your first taster…

Les Hors D’Œuvres

Hot air
A customer continually pestered the waiter in a restaurant. First, he’d ask for the air conditioning to be turned up because it was too hot. Five minutes later he’d ask for it to be turned down because it was too cold. So it went on for nearly an hour.
To the other customers’ surprise the waiter was very patient, smiling and doing the awkward customer’s bidding without the faintest glimmer of irritation. Eventually one of the other customers couldn’t stand it any more and said to the waiter, “for Heaven’s sake, why don’t you just tell that guy to leave?”
“Oh, it’s just his little foible,” smiled the waiter. “We don’t even have air conditioning.”

What a squeeze
One day, at a New York restaurant, a man suddenly called out, “my son’s choking! He swallowed a quarter! Help! Please, anyone! Help!”
A man from a nearby table stood up and announced that he was quite experienced at this sort of thing. He stepped over with almost no look of concern at all, wrapped his hands around the boy’s extremely private parts, and squeezed. Out of the boy’s mouth popped the coin. The man then went back to his table as though nothing had happened.
“Thank you! Thank you!” the father cried. “Are you a paramedic?”
“No,” replied the man. “I’m a Tax Inspector.”

Long wait
A business owner from up-state New York on a rare trip into NYC, decided to revisit an uptown restaurant she’d really enjoyed on a previous journey to the city. When she finally caught the eye of a somewhat stressed waiter, she said, “d’you know, it’s been over five years since I first came here…”
“Sorry ma’am,” the waiter interrupted with typical NYC charm, “but you’ll have to wait your turn. I can only serve one table at a time.”


  • Bakers trade bread recipes on a knead-to-know basis.
  • I’ve seen some really awful truffles in my day.  Nobody knows the truffles I’ve seen.
  • When I realized I was addicted to Thanksgiving leftovers, I decided to quit cold turkey.
  • Practice safe eating – always use condiments.
  • Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.
  • A grenade thrown into a kitchen in France would result in Linoleum Blown apart.
  • The snack bar next door to an atom smasher was called “The Fission Chips.”
  • A boiled egg in the morning is hard to beat.
  • A chicken crossing the road is poultry in motion.
  • A new chef from India was fired a week after starting the job. He kept favoring curry.
  • A hangover is the wrath of grapes.
  • When a clock is hungry, it goes back four seconds.
  • A couple of kids tried using pickles for a Ping-Pong game. They had the volley of the Dills.
  • The four food groups: Fast, Frozen, Instant, and Chocolate.
  • Dijon vu – the same mustard as before.
  • Overweight is something that just sort of snacks up on you.
  • Sign in restaurant window: “Eat now – Pay waiter.”
  • I thought you were trying to get into shape? I am. The shape I’ve selected is a triangle.
  • On April Fool’s Day, a mother put a firecracker under the pancakes. She blew her stack.

Quiche 22
At lunch one day a young trainee chef, on his day off, eagerly waited for his mother to comment on his first attempt at baking Quiche Lorraine.
After several minutes with no reaction, the young trainee asked his mother, “if I baked these commercially, how much do you think I could get for them?”
Without looking up from her coffee cup his mother replied, “about 10 years, dear.”

Ah so
Show me a man who comes home in the evening, is greeted with a sweet smile, is helped to take off his shoes, has cushions arranged on the floor for him, and is served a wonderful meal, and I’ll show you a man who lives in a Japanese restaurant.

small__6055872172Kissing frogs
Once upon a time, in a land far away, a beautiful, independent, assertive young princess happened upon a frog as she sat contemplating ecological issues by the shore of an unpolluted pond in a verdant meadow near her castle. The frog hopped up on to the princess’s lap and said, “Dear lady, I was once a handsome prince, until an evil witch cast a spell upon me. One kiss from you, however, and I will turn back into the handsome young prince that I am and then, my sweet, we can marry and set up home in your castle with my mother, where you can cook my meals, wash my clothes, bear my children, and forever feel grateful and happy doing so.”
That night, as the princess dined elegantly on a repast of lightly sautéed “cuisses de grenouilles” in a rich sauce of garlic, parsley and butter, she chuckled and thought to herself, “I don’t bloody well think so.”

Winning dinner
“My partner and I have a terrific relationship,” said one woman to other over lunch, “and we always go out to dinner twice a week. He goes on Mondays and Wednesdays, I go Tuesdays and Fridays.”

Check out more than 370 further hilarious jokes, articles and poems in our humour category, right here on HTWB

Diner dégoûtant
A couple were dining at a country inn in the southern USA. When the waiter brought the menu they were shocked to see a dish that was described as ‘prime cut of skunk’s cheeks braised in hickory-flavored maple syrup on a bed of southern grits with porcupine gravy.’ They called the waiter back and complained loudly. Looking at the menu, the waiter shouted to the owner who was by the bar, “hey, Mr. Anderson, that’s the second time those stupid printers forgot to translate our menu into French.”

In the soup
Geoffrey invited his mother over for dinner. During the meal, his mother couldn’t help noticing how beautiful Geoffrey’s roommate Hannah was. For some time she had suspected there was a relationship between Geoffrey and his roommate, and this only made her more curious. Over the course of the evening, while watching the two interact, she started to wonder if there was more between Geoffrey and the roommate than met the eye. Reading his mother’s thoughts, Geoffrey volunteered, “I know what you must be thinking, but I assure you, Hannah and I are just roommates.”
About a week later, Hannah came to Geoffrey and said, “Ever since your mother came to dinner, I can’t find that beautiful silver soup ladle. You don’t suppose she took it, do you?” Geoffrey said, “Well, I doubt it, but I’ll write her a letter just to be sure.” So he sat down and wrote, “Dear Mother, I’m not saying you ‘did’ take a soup ladle from my house, and I’m not saying you ‘did not’ take a soup ladle. But the fact remains that one has been missing ever since you were here for dinner. Love, Geoffrey”.
Several days later, Geoffrey received a letter from his mother which read, “Dear Son, I’m not saying that you ‘do’ sleep with Hannah, and I’m not saying that you ‘do not’ sleep with Hannah. But the fact remains that if she was sleeping in her own bed, she would have found the soup ladle by now. Love, Mother.”

small_382472240Chop Phooey
Two ladies were having lunch in a Chinese restaurant. They noticed that the table had been equipped with forks rather than chopsticks. When one of the ladies asked why, the waiter replied, “chopsticks are only supplied on request.”
“But if you gave your guests chopsticks, you wouldn’t have to pay someone to wash all the forks,” said the other lady.
“That’s true,” the waiter said, “but we would have
to hire four extra people to clean up the mess.”

While you’re here, don’t forget to stop by my Bookshop…books and eBooks to help you write better – and to give to friends and family – from just $2.50 (less than £2.00!)

photo credit: Mike Licht, via photopin cc
photo credit: Tilley441 via photopin cc
photo credit: Jerry7171 via photopin cc

Food and eating in the UK, 1950s: what it was really like

Grateful thanks to my good friend Eleanor S. who has handed down this not-all-that-old gastronomic overview of Britain. What a long way this country has come since those days … but do any remnants still hang around in your life, if you’re here in the UK?

Food and eating in the UK, 1950s: what it was really like

In the 1950s a Big Mac was what they wore when it was raining, and a Pizza Hut was an Italian shed…

It’s only around 60 years since…

* Pasta had not been heard of.
* Curry was an unknown entity.
* Olive oil was kept in the medicine cabinet.
* Spices came from the Middle East where they believed that they were used for embalming.
* Herbs were used to make rather dodgy medicine.
* A takeaway was a mathematical problem. [Read more…]