A few weeks back, I saw Jared Koch, author of CleanPlatesNYC, read at the inaugural Enlightened Eaters series at The James Beard House. (PS: This new series is going to be very cool, “...featuring readings, workshops and other programs focusing on health, nutrition, sustainability, and environmental issues.” Can’t wait to see more.) After the event, I had a chance to correspond with Jared about his first year, what’s he’s learned and what’s coming up for CleanPlatesNYC (Here's my review of the book from last year).
Allergic Girl: What’s one thing you’ve learned through publishing CleanPlatesNYC?
Jared Koch: I learned a lot throughout the whole process and continue to learn. One thing that stands out is the diversity of people that are interested in and concerned about the health and sustainability of the food they are eating.
AG: What’s one restaurant that didn’t make the book during the first go around but might make it now and why?
JK: We are in the process of working on the next edition and one restaurant we are reconsidering for the featured list is Jane. Their sourcing has improved and I have eaten there a few times over the past several months and it is consistently very good.
AG: Where have you been dining lately?
JK: I really like variety and my schedule is really varied so I find myself all over the city. I try and eat at a lot of the places in CleanPlatesNYC. That being said, lately I have been enjoying Peacefood Cafe (a fairly new UWS vegan spot), Counter (new chef and menu), and Northern Spy (a new spot we just reviewed and it should be going up on our online database soon).
AG: What changes are you seeing in the restaurant industry that affect your listings?
JK: I have been very pleased that more and more restaurants are concerned about the quality of animal foods they are sourcing and more are at least taking steps to source better animal foods free of hormones and antibiotics and preferably grass-fed etc. There is definitely a growing demand for it.
AG: What's one change can we expect from CleanPlatesNYC in year two?
JK: I think you can definitely expect a much greater web presence and more timely and informative data to make it easier to find what you are looking for when dining out. And a lot more!
Thanks Jared. Check out CleanPlatesNYC for more.