Culinary no-no #672


In the history of the Milwaukee Journal, now Journal Sentinel, I believe it’s fair to say that the paper had no columnist that was as popular as my friend, the late Dennis Getto, the widely-read restaurant critic. Getto‘s columns were always interesting and highly anticipated.

I met Getto when I worked at WTMJ Radio. He was a regular guest on another friend’s program, Gordon Hinkley. Getto died in 2007.

His successor, Carol Deptolla has never done much for me. Not my cup of tea. I find her columns to be rather unexciting. The times I’ve heard her on the radio her delivery has been a snoozer as opposed to Getto who had a winning personality. No surprise. Most print people usually don’t transition well to broadcasting.

It’s undeniable the pandemic has taken its toll on the Deptollas of the world. Can’t review a restaurant when the government has shut it down.

Recently our family dined at The Packing House in Milwaukee where we had a chance to chat with owner Chris Wiken. I mentioned to Chris that I wish writers would do stories on the owners and workers whose lives have been torn apart by brutal restrictions. While there have been such features, in my view there haven’t been enough.

Daniel Vaughn is the Barbecue Editor for Texas Monthly. In an interview on, Vaughn said “Nowadays, I hardly find a use in writing about a restaurant if I’m not writing something about the story of the people who operate it. Without those stories, [the reviews are] just not as interesting. Honestly, how many adjectives can you give for a smoky brisket?”

Critics have had to adjust due to COVID-19 and it can’t be easy diverting from age old methodologies like rating numbers and stars. Then again some might be happy to dump antiquated systems. That’s a debate now going on.

When it comes to dining out I’d prefer not to be influenced by some subjective reviewer. I’ve been jaded over the years to the point I don’t find those folks to be trustworthy. I’d rather test a place by myself and make my own judgment call. Haven’t read too many old-fashioned restaurant reviews in the past seven months and quite frankly haven’t missed them. Would you?

Read more from InsideHook.


I’m a Bar Manager, and COVID-19 Has Permanently Altered My Sense of Taste

This Is a Server’s Worst Nightmare

Why some onions were too sexy for Facebook

One thought on “Culinary no-no #672

  1. Pingback: Culinary no-no #673 | This Just In… From Franklin, WI

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