No more anonymity for Houston Chronicle restaurant critic

“Here I am in front of you. I’ve never done this before,” Houston Chronicle food critic Alison Cook told a cooking show audience last Sunday.

After years of using disguises, the veteran critic says “my newspaper wants and needs me to be more visible, and I have honored that request.” Cook tells Eater’s Eric Sandler:

It’s not a comfortable situation for a critic who has tried to keep a low profile for many years, and whose photo is not online. But times have changed for journalists,and for newspapers, and I’m willing to adapt to new circumstances as long as I can keep my ethical standards intact. I think I can.

Cook tweeted early this afternoon: “The upside to Eater running my photo? One less thing to dread. Onward.”

* Chronicle critic Alison Cook goes public, sheds anonymity (
* “The anonymous restaurant critic was an innovation of the 1960s” (
* “Restaurants know who the critic is,” says a food writer (