Welcome to BiteoftheBest.com—our website featuring restaurant reviews plus outstanding products that we’ve tried and recommend, items that we feel you should try too.
“We” refers to me—Bonnie Tandy Leblang—and my two sons.
I’ve been covering food and related products for more than a quarter century; I wrote the world’s first daily syndicated food column, co-authored six cookbooks and have been a columnist in many magazines. My sons—Bryan and Eric—have been testing foods their entire lives and spent many years reviewing products with me.
Most items on BiteoftheBest.com are food related; others are Just for Fun, a catchall category to include interesting goodies we’ve discovered along the way.
We’d love to hear your thoughts on the Bites we’ve written and restaurants we’ve reviewed.
Thanks for visiting!
Bonnie Tandy Leblang
I eat for a living!
Not a bad job, I know – although often a bit inflating on the hips. It’s something I’ve created for myself.
Although I’d prefer being known as a food writer, cookbook author or culinary agent, a product guru is what I’ve been. Seriously. I’ve covered products—food and otherwise—for more than 25 years. That’s over 20 years for Supermarket Sampler (Universal Press), 15 for Parade magazine, three for Better Homes & Gardens, a couple for Good Morning America and many for other lesser known media outlets.
I created BiteoftheBest.com to share those products that I actually like! Without exaggeration, that’s about one in every 1000 items I’ve tried. My extra refrigerator, freezer and 2-foot deep food closet bulged at the seams with food samples waiting for me to test. And the items in each of these changed constantly. Nothing was wasted as I donate literally carloads of samples to local soup kitchens and shelters.
And then BiteoftheBest.com morphed. Although we still include products mainly to just share those of interest, I began eating out more and reviewing restaurants. That’s much more of my focus. With a smidgeon of travel review and reporting on Around The World radio. I also do a quarterly theatre report there.
For those interested in more details about my food background, I’ve had my finger in most every food pot (with the exception of farming and manufacturing). I’m a registered dietitian with degrees in food science and nutrition. I’ve run restaurants and airport kitchens, worked for a food distributor, hosted a food radio show, taught food service management at Brooklyn College and University of New Haven and cooking at The Cooking School in New Haven, CT, and implemented a computer system into a hospital food service in the 70s when computers were the size of a small room.
As for writing, I’ve been a newspaper food editor, co-author of six cookbooks* with my dear friend Joanne Lamb Hayes, had columns in Better Homes & Gardens Diet, Better Homes & Gardens Heart Healthy Living, Caring Today, Fitness, House Beautiful, and Lamaze Family magazines and written for many other media outlets including Associated Press, American Health, Cooks, Connecticut, Family Circle, Los Angeles Times, McCall’s, Parade, TV Guide, Woman’s Day, Working Mother, Yankee, and The New York Times.
My recipe column Express Lane Cooking® is the world’s first daily syndicated food column (also with Universal Press), and at its height, was seen from Dubai (UAE) to cities in California.
And, as a professional speaker, I’ve presented at many conferences and events, either as a keynoter, facilitator, workshop leader or panel moderator covering topics that include:
- Opening Doors That Don’t Exist: Strategies for Achieving Your Goals
- 101 High-Impact Low-Cost Marketing Ideas
- The Art of Successful Networking
- Organizing Your Time Into Dollars
- Making a Positive Impression: Basic Public Speaking
- Food Marketing and the Media: Can This Marriage Be Saved?
- A Recipe for Getting Press: How to Get Heard Above All the Noise.
For the naysayer among us (and others interested in more controversy): If you’re one of those folks who love to read negative reviews, you’re in the wrong place as the Featured Bites are all products I’ve tried and recommend.
You may want to visit www.supermarketsampler.com where you can read my weekly syndicated column written in two voices—mine, the registered dietitian (the right one of course), and Carolyn Wyman’s, a professed junk foodie, who touts the merits of Spam and other processed foods.
For really negative ones, search in our annual Golden Shopping Cart award column for our “Double Forks Down” section listing the worst products we tried each year. That list usually appears the first week of each year.
The Golden Shopping Cart was given annually to the one product that Carolyn and I agree is both good for you and tastes good. You can be sure that many of those past winners will appear in one of my Bites in the “Fabulous Food: Oldies but Goodies” category.
A tiny posting disclosure: I’ve tried to recall the details of each of the happenings I write about. But with my Teflon brain, some of that’s a bit fuzzy as many years (sometimes decades) have passed since the events I’m trying to recollect. I’ve attempted to recreate each as best I could.
* Cookbooks: My six cookbooks are currently out of print, but still available on Amazon.com.
Food culture has been a part of my life since I could talk and food business a part of my life ever since I could walk. A product of a registered dietitian/food writer and restaurant owner, I’ve been in and around kitchens my entire life. From working as a young line cook at a beach bar to managing a luxury New York restaurant, from the subs at my local Italian delis to fine prix fixe Parisian cuisine… food remains a central figure in my life at home and on the road.
I studied Hospitality Management in The Netherlands, and have grown-up in the shadow of the world of food & beverage. Both of my parents have raised me with an intimate knowledge of food, and living in my mother’s house provided me with the platform for testing new products on a daily basis. I have worked as a waiter, as a sous-chef, and in a patisserie. I have also helped chefs during various culinary events. I have been the guinea pig for some of the worst products produced and have had the opportunity to dine in some of the finest restaurants, and still, I am always won over with a simple home-cooked meal.