And Philly Mag’s Next Food Editor Is….

Hi. Tom McGrath here, editor of Philly Mag. For a couple of months now — ever since the very smart, very funny, very talented Kirsten Henri announced she was stepping aside as the magazine’s food editor — we’ve been searching for someone to take over our food coverage both in the magazine and here at Foobooz. Someone who understands food; who’s as passionate about restaurants as you, our readers, are; and who might be able to give us a fresh perspective on Philadelphia’s ever-growing, ever-more-exciting food scene.

I’m happy to announce we’ve found our editor: he’s James Beard Award-winning journalist Jason Sheehan. Jason comes to us, most recently, from Seattle Weekly, and he brings with him a perfect blend of restaurant and writing experience. After spending a dozen-plus years as a chef, he jumped to the journalism side of the street a few years ago and proved himself to be a natural. In addition to the James Beard Award (which he won in 2005 while the food critic at the Denver newspaper Westword), Jason is the author of Cooking Dirty, a memoir of his years as a chef that Time magazine named one of the 10 best nonfiction books of 2009. I’m incredibly excited about Jason’s arrival, and as you can see from this email he sent me yesterday, he’s equally fired up:

“I’m already getting prepared for the new job — poring over maps of the area, plotting my routes to and from the office by the maximum number of hoagies, dumplings and chicken croquettes I can score along the way. At this point, I’m not even sure if I’ll be able to wait until the plane lands. I might just end up pulling a D.B. Cooper, popping a hatch in-flight while the plane circles low over Race Street and drifting down to earth with my mouth wide open.”

Jason will oversee all restaurant coverage in Philly Mag (where Trey Popp will continue to be our food critic) and here at Foobooz (where he’ll work side-by-side with Foobooz founder Art Etchells). Jason starts early next month.