07/19/2010 10:31 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

What Makes Jonathan Gold A Great American Food Critic

Sitting at a barside table in Cole's downtown, one of his favorite cocktail spots, Jonathan Gold swirls a rye old-fashioned, pontificating on all things gustatory--truly, ALL things.

A steady stream of insight ensues. On libations: "With cocktails, if the dilution is correct and it has the proper chill, it almost doesn't matter what's in it. It's going to be great." On local Mexican food: "Los Angeles has always had the reputation of having great Mexican food, but we really didn't have great regional Mexican until about 15 years ago." And on the ethics of eating octopus: "I have read a f--k of a lot about octopus intelligence. It does not have a centralized brain."

Read more on LA Times Magazine