Last year it was a craft beer guru, Slow Food USA's voice, and a pastry chef. This year it's a wine punk, a Brooklyn butcher, and a made-up Twitter persona that's one part Ruth Reichl and one part Tony Bourdain.
The Chow 13, a baker's dozen of influential foodistas, is back for 2010, bringing with it a ragtag collection of way-out-there chefs, wine makers, brewers, writers, and purveyors. Chief among them is Ruth Bourdain
, the Twitter phenom that started as an experiment and turned into the must-follow Twitter account of recent memory. The character melds Anthony Bourdain's snarky wit with Ruth Reichl's hippie sensibilities and seems to have struck a chord with foodists everywhere. I particularly like Chow's take on the character (left)... it's much more fun to look at than the disturbing Photoshop of its two influences' faces
All said, Chow 13 is at least worth reading for its clever prose. But you might learn a thing or two about what's going on in the food-o-sphere too.