The Birth of an Amateur Icon

January 14, 2004 | By | COMMENTS

Are you sick of competency?

Of food blogs run by competent people with flawless track records and no history of salmonella?

Are you tired of not having salmonella?

You’ve come to the right place.

I’m The Amateur Gourmet: a completely untrained, unaccomplished culinary lout with absolutely no expertise in anything having to do with food. I have an immature palate, an understocked pantry and a penchant for purchasing food that’s already been prepared. In my defense, I watch Martha Stewart religiously.

Why, then–you may be wondering–have I sired a website dedicated to food? Mightn’t I have sired a website seeking the removal of the word “sire” from everyday parlance? Removing “parlance” from the parlance as well?

The answer is easy. Despite my lack of knowledge, I have a great deal of curiosity when it comes to all things food related. A piddling passion, so to speak. My friends, unfortunately, think this is silly.

“This is silly,” my friends say. “Can’t you focus on something interesting? Like trashy romance novels?”

[In their defense, my friends have a trashy romance novel reading club. On second thought, that doesn't really work in their defense.]

But my passion is persistent. Already, I have made several meaningful contributions on established food sites like Chowhound and eGullet. The time has come for a forum of my own. A place where I can hang my hat and say: “Thanks for holding my hat.” And I think this is it.

The Amateur Gourmet (that’s me) has three major goals with his site:

Goal #1: To encourage young people (ages 2 through 7) to dine out at really nice restaurants. Too often, young Americans (David Bowie included) think of fine dining as something their parents do. They don’t realize how exciting and invigorating a really great meal can be. Thus, The Amateur Gourmet will feature a section titled “Youth Culture Out To Dine” in which he takes his unsuspecting peers out to nice restaurants, recounting the experience in great, almost annoying detail.

Goal #2: To encourage young people to cook more. Using my digital camera and my stove, I will serve as your very own private Lewis and/or Clark; stalking my way across the knotty kitchen terrain, attempting recipes your own mother wouldn’t dare and then reporting back. Hopefully, you will be so inspired by my derring-do that you will drop the computer you’re reading this on and go cook something yourself. (NOTE: I am not responsible for any dropped computers).

Goal #3: To become an internet phenomenon. Look, I’m not going to lie. I’m a third year law student without any desire to practice law. When people ask me what I’m doing next year, I stare at them dumbly and mumble hoping they think I’ve swallowed a chromosome. The truth is that the one thing I’m good at, the one thing that I care most about is writing. And this website allows me the opportunity to wrap my words around something that we all care enough about to do several times a day: masturbation. I mean: food consumption. Thus, my third goal is selfish. Love me, love me, love me!

We have now reached the end of my long, eye-numbing introduction. Hungry yet? I hope you will join me in making The Amateur Gourmet the greatest website the internet has ever known. Please post comments in the comments section and forward the site on to your friends. Happy Reading!

Sincerely,

The Amateur Gourmet

Categories: Uncategorized

  • j phillipson

    Dear Amateur Gourmet:

    As a long-time reader, first-time contributor, I thought it time to step-in and help you out with Goal #1: “I will take my friend Josh out to an expensive (possibly over-priced) dinner.” Your pre-Icon gesture of inviting me to a chili cook-off was nice but weak. I would like to see more, higher numbers on the bill and possibly a table-cloth. Please contact me to arrange an evening for me to help you out. Maybe next week?

    J

  • Carrie

    Dear Amateur Icon, I am proud to be a witness of this momentous occasion. Keep those cookies comin. I don’t know why you think cooking will be better than trashy romance novels, though; what dish can compare to the sentence, “Seconds later, in a heated rush, they climaxed in an agony of jubilation.” I mean, HONESTLY.

  • Mortimer A. Rugula

    Dear Mr. Would-Be “Gourmet:”

    While I applaud your intention to develop your immature palate, I find myself approaching your forays into food criticism with dread. Must you subject the rest of us to your infantile views on one of life’s most elusive and complex pleasures?

    I would give serious consideration to graduating law school, turning thirty, or fathering a son before you attempt any opinion on gastronomy. Even then, you should tackle a question of modest ambition, e.g. was this polenta or was this fois gras? Do not aim too high.

    I like to think the gastronomer is the Galileo of the digestive system, looking out for unmapped starfruits and sorbet orbits. Ergo gastronomy should not be untertaken lightly. It should be undertaken heavily, in the sense that one must bear both excess body weight and a weary-hearted knowledge of the burden you are carrying for developed palates everywhere. It boils down to this: there is a big difference between a gastronomer and a gastrologist. Chew on that for a while, young man.

    And please, for the sake of mature palates, consider turning back. Perhaps years from now this “web log” might be an appropriate venture for you. By then, of course, I shall be dead. Meanwhile, there is no shame in daily masturbation for a man your age. No shame at all.

    Sincerely,

    Mortimer A. Rugula

  • Sweet Jimmy

    At last! No longer will I have to meet up with the Amateur Gourmet at a local bar, have him whip out his digital camera and show me pictures of his newest baked goods. Now I can escape the embarassment of scrolling through pictures of souffles & crumpets with techno music thumping in my ears. I can just come to this site & see them in the privacy of my own home. I don’t even have to hang out with the Amateur Gourmet to get this satisfaction! Bonus.

  • Kelli LUVS AG!!!!

    OMG!!!! You are HILARIOUZZZ!!! Are you singel seriously because I LOVE GUYZ WHO ARE FUNNY AND ALOS I LOVE FOOD!!!! Do you mind if I write about you on my blog because I think you are seriously SO SO SEXXXy. Keep UP THE GOOD WORK for real SWEETEE-PIE!

    Kelli

  • mike

    did someone say chili cook off? where is my le creuset?

  • http://vidiot.typepad.com Vidiot

    Hey, congrats on the new site. I’ve enjoyed your writing at MetaFilter (and the links you provided to eGullet and Chowhound), and it’ll be fun to follow your blog. (Yup, I’m blogrolling ya.)

  • http://www.fiftyfivehundred.org matty

    Adam! You’re smiley even with flour all over your face! I love you, and I need to figure out what the RSS feed of this is so I can add it to my livejournal friends list and keep track of your forays into the world of culinary craziness. What is it?! TELL ME!

  • Patrick Corrales

    I wish I had discovered you 10 years ago. That would’ve made me an internet sensation by now as well. Haha! Awesome writing sir! :)

  • mikhl

    Dear Amateur Gourmet:

    I came to this blog via “Secrets of the best chefs”. I’ve only started reading it but once you mentioned this blog i had to come check it out (you’ve noticed that yes i’m still at the VERY beginning :P) But as soon as i read some of the articles here i must say i’m hooked! I must have laughed 5 times just reading this particular segment, you’re hilarious! and to fulfill your goal number 3 :P i still have a lot more to read but i already know i love the way you write and what you write! ^^