Frank Bruni: ‘As a Human Being, Your Heart Knots Up’

Frank Bruni will be on Turn & Burn tonight, chatting with Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert. Martha Stewart Living Radio has released a couple of preview clips. In one, Bruni discusses his most “awkward” experience as The Times’ restaurant critic:

I was in a restaurant–and I think a lot of people have figured out which restaurant this was. I’ve never said. At the end of a meal, the owner actually came to the table and began showing me iPhone pictures of his children. I’m not kidding! And talking about how much money he’d sunk into the restaurant and how important his kids were. And it was horrifying, because as a human being, your heart knots up, because you’re reminded “Oh, this person thinks I have a lot of power,” and I knew I didn’t like the restaurant much. That was so awkward. And apparently–not “apparently”; I know this also to be true–this was all captured on cameras, because it was a restaurant that has cameras, and servers and people throughout the restaurant were watching it. I subsequently ran into one of the workers there, who said everyone that night was like “What’s he doing? What’s he doing? Oh my God”–watching it happen in real time.

“These are my four stars,” the owner said when he showed the pictures. Bruni won’t say how many stars he gave the restaurant. Frank Bruni: ‘As a Human Being, Your Heart Knots Up’