In addition to being a big eater, Joanne Drilling, our dining editor, is a big reader and thinker. How do I know this? I think it was the edition of José Ortega y Gasset’s The Revolt of the Masses on her office bookshelf—cozied up next to Hannah Arendt’s Eichmann in Jerusalem and Kathe Lison’s The Whole Fromage—that tipped me off. Joanne knows her way around a professional kitchen and can butcher a side of pork with the best of them (more on that in a few months), but it’s books that fire her mind. Which explains how she came to discover the trove of cookbookery squirreled away at the Mercantile Library, and how a mighty stack of them ended up in this issue on page 88.
Jason Cohen is another big eater and thinker. He came to work for the magazine in the fall of 2004, stayed for about a year, then moved on to Austin and Portland and points in between. But he’s never really taken his eyes off Cincinnati and the ways in which it intersects with the larger world. Hence his in-depth interview with Michael Anthony (page 94), the James Beard Award–winning chef who oversees two of the best restaurants in Manhattan (Gramercy Tavern and Untitled), recently put out his second cookbook (V Is for Vegetables), and was raised on five acres out in New Richmond (where he ate a lot of beets).
The only thing I know about Justin Williams’s eating habits is that he’s got a long-term love affair with breakfast cereal. But he too thinks hard, in particular about sports, and even more particularly the subcultures that develop within the sporting world. When he first started going to watch the University of Cincinnati dance team’s practices back in the fall, he could not have foreseen the journey that would take him from coaching turmoil and courtside tsuris at Fifth Third Arena to an end-of-season resurrection of sorts in Orlando, where the girls (as they proudly call themselves) took home trophies in the national collegiate dance championships. But he happily takes us along for the whole bumpy ride on page 98.
Curiosity. Doggedness. Smarts. Three qualities that these writers share and that we do our best to share with you in the pages of this magazine each month and on our website every day. Go on, feed your head.