From his faint, trembling voice on New York City's WQXR most mornings, you might think he is hiding something. Even searching for Eric Asimov online results only in references to his taste bud reviews -- plus the advertisements for his "late relation," Isaac Asimov's, books. But Eric Asimov is about as difficult to spot in person as a summer cloud in the Saharan desert.
Other than lurking past "Philip Marie's" in the Village, and hiding behind a tree at "I Trulli," the curtain shrouding Asimov's stakeouts wait closed. Those are only two of the restaurants from his list of prey.
Acting as one of The New York Times' food critics, Asimov, 46, is the newspaper's "darling," and he is quite a catch. If you can snare him. Good looks, intelligence, high-paying salary, even by Manhattan standards -- he fits the shoes of a very eligible partner (with two sons in toe.) The problem is, he knows it.
Restaurant owners in the boroughs of New York City have tried to get the dirt on Asimov in case they needed to, lets say, muscle him Soprano-style, away from trashing their food to 14 million potential customers. Living as an elite in Manhattan, Asimov settles comfortably into his role as one of The New York Times' camouflaged writers, slipping past security cameras and paparazzi -- unnoticed.
Asimov moved up the ladder in 2004 to become The New York Time's "wine critic." Although Asimov leaves behind his reports on good eats in Gotham, he does not hold a culinary (or wine) degree; and by profession he is only news writer, who branched out at the The New York Times in 1991 as an editor. (A step up from writer six years earlier.) He felt his way around the office during the mid-1990s, eventually taking a drag on Ruth Reichl's apron strings as she fluttered about the city tasting chocolates. If we used "anonymous" sources in our news, like Liz Smith will, we could reveal other facts about gangly Asimov; but it isn't possible, to attribute that he isn't likely to operate a restaurant; or that if he were to critique his own dinner parties he'd be disappointed.
Side to Asimov's columns at The New York Times, he published books on cheap eats around Manhattan; although, you'd best save yourself $25 at Barnes & Noble, or Amazon.com and spend it tasting food at a Manhattan restaurant you've not yet tried. So, walk down stairs, open the door to our world; walk six blocks in any direction and pick a new restaurant, and try it. You might find a delicious meal, you might find a tolerable meal, and you might find Eric Asimov.