Jay Rayner talks about restaurant criticism, coronavirus, and confronting his own mortality.

By Kat Kinsman
Updated January 23, 2020
Courtesy of Jay Rayner

Chefs and restaurant workers take great care of everyone else, but often they need a little help themselves. Each week, Food & Wine senior editor Kat Kinsman talks with hospitality pros about they manage their business, brain, and body for the long haul. Is there a topic you'd like to know more about or a guest you'd love to hear from? Tell us at fwpro@foodandwine.com or tweet to Kat @kittenwithawhip, and subscribe to the weekly Food & Wine Pro newsletter. Subscribe to the new Communal Table YouTube page and never miss an episode. Catch up on previous episodes here.

Episode 55: Jay Rayner

In addition to writing books, playing gigs as a professional musician, hosting podcasts, performing one-man shows, and appearing on TV shows like MasterChef and Top Chef, Jay Rayner has served the last 20 years as restaurant critic for The Guardian. The question he has received with extreme regularity: "You’re about to die. What would your final meal be?" Rayner made it his business to contemplate that question, and embarked on an intercontinental journey to explore the foods that brought him the most pleasure. Rayner was recently in New York City as the first cases of coronavirus were being reported in the United States, and he sat down for a conversation about his new book My Last Supper, the role of restaurant criticism, and supporting your local Chinatown.

Buy the Book: My Last Supper

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Previous episode: Sarah Robbins talks about vulnerability while traveling and what the military taught her about hospitality.

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