Arts & Literature Column
Written by Nathan Mattise
Syracuse University (probably like most media savvy schools) offers interested students a variety of media options to pursue. There’s a daily newspaper, campus television network, NPR-affiliated radio and now a strictly web outlet if general news, politics or sports is your thing. There are separate campus magazines for health, fashion, music/entertainment, alternative features and social/cultural identities. Folks who want to write technology even have an outlet since the D.O. has recently sought op-ed writers in that field.
However, this week the NewsHouse launched a new blog devoted to filling a surprisingly unaddressed niche on campus: food journalism.
Hill’s Kitchen has thus far featured recipes and local food media spotlights but I’m sure more is coming (especially based on the facts that the site has previously done restaurant reviews and helped launch SyracuseDiners.com). I know individual student food blogs exist (I have one of my own even) and the Syracuse community at large features some well-established ones, but no established media entity devoted to food existed on campus to this point.
Consider that for a second. Isn’t that odd?
I’m not sure I can think of anything as universal as food. On a college campus, the sentiment is even stronger (nothing except maybe class is as universal, but who wants to follow a blog devoted entirely to classes. Anyone?). Not even sports at SU is as universal to students. Dining halls act as breeding grounds for relationships and also social capital to discuss. Ask someone about the best late night eats and you’ll get different answers each time about a Marshall or Wescott location, maybe even a local delivery joint. We have Wegmans and Dinosaur BBQ, local downtown favorites like Empire Brewery or Pastabilities and a diner scene that can rival any campus in the country. Hell, even the official university mascot can be perceived as edible.
Food culture is becoming increasingly popular with the rise of more food television and new food magazines. If more food journalism training opportunities creep up and communities show a desire for them, maybe newspapers will even devote some resources there (got it, this is where the post is losing control). The bottom line is 2011 makes it seem like we’re awfully late to the game for food journalism at SU, but clearly it’s an area with tremendous potential for growth. The staunchest of journalism professors would agree there’s never a bad time to serve a community need, and the most average of college kids would agree there’s never a bad time for Oreo filled cookie recipes either.
(Links today from media outlets listed above, BeckyBakes and TheNewsHouse.com)