[Hong Kong] Susan Jung's interview with Hong Kong food critic Chua Lam, and the curious editing

In print, Susan Jung (South China Morning Post food editor) wrote that she edited out Lam’s sexist comments ‘for space reasons’. The online version has everything. But Susan Jung, too deferential with the questioning and the editing? Not much new information about Lam that isn’t already known?

You also arrange travel tours to Japan and South Korea. How would you compare the two places? I like to go to South Korea where there are many beautiful women. If you walk on a street for an hour in South Korea, you will see at least three beautiful women. In Taiwan, you may see one beautiful woman in an hour. In Japan, I am not sure you will see any beautiful women in a hour.

What do you like the most about South Korea? I like that they are very keen on beauty. Even if they are born beautiful, they will still use skin care and cosmetic products or do plastic surgery to enhance their beauty. And if even plastic surgery fails to make them beautiful, they develop mobile phone apps to enhance their photos and make them look beautiful. This is why there are many beautiful women in South Korea. I like beautiful women!

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gag What the heck does any of this have to do with food? Given the guy’s age, it’s gross that he is still ogling women probably half his age (not that it’s ok at any age!). I get that he’s a well-recognized food critic, but I remember catching him on some show once and I found him to be off-putting, and he wasn’t even going on a sexist diatribe. Many of his remarks seemed downright condescending.

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Susan Jung was probably asking about food, and Lam answered about women…

That he loves women is well known. After all, I have one of his books, and in the intro about him on the sleeve, that’s mentioned.

What did he say in his remarks? Directed at certain eateries?

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This was a from an old, old program, so I barely remember his words. We was just offering his criticism of a chef’s cuisine, and I remember his remarks being borderline rude and coming across somewhat arrogant vs any real constructive criticism of the food itself. I just think he’s not my cup of tea.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold