Dispatches from the NY Times

By Jim Sullivan | On May 26, 2015

Dispatches from the NY Times Travel Section (Sunday, May 25, 2015)

  • Smithsonian, that venerable old institution of natural history and all things science, has announced plans to start publishing a quarterly travel magazine, entitled Smithsonian Journeys  The editor is Victoria Pope, and the angle on the magazine, according to the Q&A with Pope, is that it will be destination-driven. “We’re not writing about hotels,” she said. 
  • Another major feature in the Times explored Vietnamese street food  The writer, Peri Klass, allows that the best street food can’t be had in places of great ambiance, like Quan An Ngon. You’ve got to go gritty in the little out-of-the-way noodle shops where you have to "sit down on a plastic stool at a table covered with oilcloth. "What is oilcloth? I’ve never eaten at a Vietnamese street stall with oilcloth. The tables are always plastic. The writer does pay tribute to the Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi in this story. “Lobster thermidor is on the menu, and guests are advised to dress appropriately for dinner.” The writer stops at Ernest Hebrard’s masterpiece of a museum in Hanoi, the Museum of Vietnamese History, and then finishes the piece with a great line, sourcing the secrets of Vietnamese street food: “The narrowly focused menus, a devotion to the subtle and complicated combinations of the ingredients, and a commitment to the culinary traditions of the street.”

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