Restaurants & Bars 9

Chef Holly Smith and salty food

Tom Armitage | Oct 7, 200901:26 PM

The “Most Overrated Restaurant in Seattle” thread (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/649486) raised, yet again, the continuing debate about Holly Smith’s cooking at Café Juanita. The most common criticism of Chef Smith’s cooking is that it is too salty, epitomized by equinoise’s comment that “it’s not terrible, just way too salty across the board.” I have defended my affection for Chef Smith’s cooking by acknowledging that I like my food more aggressively salted than most folks. But equinoise and others sharing his “too salty” assessment got some validation on a recent Food Network broadcast of “The Nest Iron Chef.” Holly Smith is one of the contestants, but came close to being eliminated in the first round. The main criticism of her cooking by the judges was that it was way too salty – in the words of one judge, “almost inedible.” Since most folks, including equinoise, think that Chef Smith’s cooking is otherwise pretty wonderful, it occurs to me that one approach for dealing with the saltiness issue is to inform your waiter at Café Juanita that you would like restraint used on the amount of salt used to prepare your selected dishes.

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