Sam Sifton Feels 'Pleasant Terror' About His New York Times Promotion

The food critic-turned-national editor says not eating out every night is a "drag"

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New York Times restaurant critic Sam Sifton isn't quite ready to lay down his fork. He's still got a few reviews to write, and his replacement on the dining beat hasn't been named yet. But he told Adweek's Dylan Byers he was looking forward to the move over to national editor, despite a feeling of "pleasant terror" about the unknown.

I would be crazy to say that I know exactly what I'm doing, and exactly what I’m going to do. I don't. I'm filled with a pleasant terror about the unknown, about what's going to happen—a pleasant terror that, I think, is similar to the one reporters and editors and journalists feel every day about what's going to happen tomorrow. I certainly am familiar with running a news desk—not a national news desk, not even a metro news desk—but a large and serious culture desk at the Times that supported a lot of reporters and a lot of critics in a lot of parts of the country.

Sifton told Byers it would be a "drag" not going out to eat every night, but worth it to move to the national desk. But he did point out one of the drawbacks he's found with being a critic, which will disappear with the new job: "I'll get to be a regular in a restaurant again, which is the thing that you really miss."

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.