In his restaurant gossip column Espresso, inside Tuesday food supplement Epicure of 23 Dec 2008, John ends with the below:
A parting word of thanks
ON A personal note, this is my last Espresso column for Epicure after nearly 11 years of attempting to bring readers an insight into the restaurant scene of Victoria and abroad.
Indeed, this week's review of Mirka is my last for The Age too. It has been a privilege to work for Epicure over that time.
Thank you for reading.
According to 1001 Dinners, he was escorted out of the building, and Necia Wilden, his co-editor for the Good Food Guide 2009 as colleague in Epicure, has also resigned.
Word has it (see Tomatom) that they're both going to The Australian. Hmm...
John Lethlean used to be the reason I subscribed to The Age, but his reviews of late have been weird, to say the least, and the Good Food Guide 2009 was quite frankly a disaster. At first I was still so confident about it that I went (and dragged all my friends with me) to Punch Lane, which was awarded one hat this year. Needless to say it was a total disaster. (23 Mar 09 - re-reading this I realised I wrote 'disaster' twice - I guess it was one then). Now, it would be unfair to judge on this event alone, but I'm not the only one who's noticed the drop in the quality of the once-great JL's reviews, many a loyal reader within my circle of friends have felt the same way too. (Okay, so it's not the fairest sample, but what can I do - conduct a survey and write a thesis?)
In any case, I'll be interested to see how it pans out. Good luck to them.