John Mariani, The VIrtual Gourmet, on BBQ Styles & Myths!

Yes there are many varieties of BBQ sauces and styles and quite a few false ideas have cropped up about them. In this video Food and Travel Writer and Publisher of The Virtual Gourmet newsletter addresses regional styles including those based on vinegar, mustard and ketchup as well as rubs and smoking! It’s a mouth-wateringly … Read more

John Mariani’s 2nd Online Novel, “Capone’s Gold’

Celebrating Act 2™’s contributing expert for Food & Travel, John Mariani, is also an author with over a dozen books to his credit–including 4 novels! During the Pandemic he offered weekly installments of his latest novel, “Love & Pizza.” NOW, the Virtual Gourmet is turning his hand toward a mystery based on historical fact about … Read more

10 Things Airlines MUST Change After The Pandemic

As the COVID Pandemic slowly recedes due to vaccines, more people are beginning to use air travel again. Celebrating Act 2™ turns to our regular contributing expert, Food and Travel Critic John Mariani, for ideas and useful suggestions for changes which airlines should make to benefit travelers. The industry has become notorious for practices and … Read more

What’s Up? A Big Deal NY Restaurant Goes Vegan

It made big news when NYC’s famous fine dining restaurant Eleven Madison Park announced it was going completely plant-based and meatless starting in June 2021! Celebrating Act 2™ turned to their regular contributor, respected food and travel critic, John Mariani, for a reaction. Was this a PR gimmick or start of an important trend? The … Read more

What’s With All The Famous Absentee Chefs?

Does anybody really expect to be greeted by a world famous chef at one of the many restaurants in his name? Once upon a time it wasn’t such and odd thought, but with the trend of chefs seeking renown, starting a corporation and opening dozens of restaurants, it’s become standard. Celebrating Act 2™’s Art Kirsch … Read more

Italian Trattoria vs Pizzeria

What can you expect at a good Italian Trattoria…and what’s the difference between that and a Pizzeria? The Virtual Gourmet, John Mariani, explains not only the delicious distinctions but the changing social history of these two favorite types of Italian eating places. You’ll enjoy this! Buon Appetito!

What Defines A French Bistro?

Lots of restaurants in the US use the name, ‘Bistro’, but are they? Celebrating Act 2™’s knowledgeable Food & Travel expert, John Mariani, publisher of the online newsletter, The Virtual Gourmet, not only defines the true French Bistro by food but also by decor…and he throws in some culinary history as well! It’s a fun … Read more

Have Italian Wine Laws Become A Farce?

Have Italian Wine Laws Become A Farce? We all know that wine production in places like Italy and France are carefully regulated –at least in terms of accurate labeling for the public. It’s long been the case that you could expect the wine to match the description on the label, thanks to the authorities. But … Read more

Does Today’s Food MEDIA Demonize Food with P.C.?

Since Covid-19 has turned the world of dining upside down we wonder what the Food Media is doing! our expert Food and Travel writer, John Mariani, has the inside track on what’s happening in the restaurant industry as well as the media that report on it. Simultaneously there’s been a rush to political correctness by … Read more

How NOT to Get Sick while Traveling!

Who would know better how to avoid getting sick while abroad than world traveler, food and travel writer, John Mariani, publisher of The Virtual Gourmet newsletter? In this video John Addresses both the danger of COVID while traveling as well as the usual “Montezuma’s Revenge.” This is filled with good tips and solid information from … Read more