Ciao, Chowhound

Coming back from Montreal last week, I made two discoveries that were disappointing and just plain annoying. One was a relatively new restaurant downtown, called Pho Saigon VIP, my review of which you can read here. The other was the discussion forums at the food site Chowhound.

Now, while I’d heard mention of CH before, I had never ventured on to the site, mainly because I had tired of the atmosphere of discussion forums quite a while ago. I only registered and posted on the CH site last week mainly because I was so disappointed and incredulous by some of the positive customer reviews of the aforementioned restaurant (the reviews being the only reason that compelled us to try that restaurant), that I felt I had to burst that bubble. But after I and one of my dining companions posted negative reviews of the restaurant, our motives were called into question by another user (his/her point of contention being that we were first-time posters, and everything we said should be taken with a grain of salt). And lo and behold, before you could say “Ciao”, the entire thread was deleted.

After that thread was deleted, I decided to Google the words “Chowhound” and “post deleted”, and found results aplenty of web sites and blogs mentioning how much people hate CH. Phrases popped up detailing “the Nazi-like censorship practices at Chowhound” and how “Chowhound is just another symptom of a very dumbed-down and mediocre America”, or to put it simply, “Chowhound sucks”. I’ve now discovered a whole community of users who were also deleted by CH, and have since moved on from it, as I did, after only two days of registration.

But don’t take my word for it. Read for yourself at the following links, and discover what CH is all about.