If You Can’t Stand The Heat…Ban The Critic

This is apparently the motto of the Red Medicine restaurant in Beverly Hills. According to the LA Times, the restaurant manager spotted Irene Virbila waiting for a table in the restaurant and kicked her out. Apparently not satisfied with that move, he snapped her picture and it’s since been posted on several blogs and Web sites. Virbila isn’t nearly as upset about being kicked out (although she wonders why they made her wait 40 minutes for a table before they actually booted her) as she is with having her cover blown. Food critics are a little unique in that respect. If a restaurant knows the critic is in the house, it can alter its service, portion sizes and quality to affect the review. So the outed critic can’t report on the “typical” experience. A movie critic, for example, doesn’t have that concern. And if other restaurants follow Red Medicine’s lead, Virbila may find it hard to get a table anywhere!