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How does one get to be restaurant critic for a major daily newspaper and get paid to pig out on her favorite food and drink?

Dumb luck.

Maureen Clancy was an associate producer at KPBS-TV in San Diego – doing political programming, of all things – when she was tapped to be the first restaurant reviewer for the La Jolla Light, a weekly newspaper serving a community of 30,000 affluent eaters.

That was 28 years, and millions of calories, ago.

In between there were 27 years as Food Editor, Food Columnist and Restaurant Critic for the San Diego Union and the San Diego Union-Tribune; a stint as editor of the original Zagat Guide San Diego; a book with Los Angeles party-planner Colie Cowie (“Colin Cowie’s Effortless Elegance”), dozens of travel articles in major dailies, features in “Cooking Light” magazine and a bunch of awards from the Association of Food Journalists and the San Diego Press Club. Oh, yeah. She left the politics gig after just 6 months of freelancing for the Light. Think about it: Interview the same guy you interviewed two years ago about the same tax issue, or share with readers the highlights of dinner at Le Grand Vefour in Paris? Not a tough decision.

This Web site,, is the next step -- leap actually -- along a road paved with memorable meals, terrific bottles of wine, outrageous food personalities, and culinary adventures.