Justin Chen has a passion for dim sum, chinese baked goods, fine whiskey and barely cooked meats. Since co-founding Menuism in 2006, he's eaten out way too much but continues to try to help others eat better.

You might have seen we recently launched the Menuism Q&A section.  Here’s a few highlights from the past week.

Photo by avlxyz

What are some good suggestions for making meatballs?

I am making meatballs today, but don’t have anything in mind yet. Any recipes, food combos, drinks that might work together well?


  1. I hate to cook, so I never actually make my own meatballs. I use Mama Lucia’s Italian Meatballs, from the freezer section (they’re really good). But I do have a super simple (but gross sounding) recipe for delicious party meatballs. Just throw the meatballs (they can even still be frozen) into a crock pot with one jar of grape jelly and one bottle of Heinz Chili Sauce. As the jelly melts down, stir to combine. Cook until good and hot.
  2. I love to make meatballs with ground turkey. I put in minced garlic, finely chopped onion, chiffonade of basil, and parmesan cheese along with salt and pepper.
    Then I use them in soup. I make an Italian minestrone style soup with chicken stock, spinach or other greens, pasta, canned tomatoes, diced onion, diced zucchini, and sometimes cannelini beans.
    Or I serve the meatballs with zucchini ribbons (as pasta) and sauce.

See all the meatball answers >>


Posted by on September 17th, 2010

Menuism Q&A

Here at Menuism, our goal is to help you eat better.  This summer we launched our Experts Dining Blog (if you haven’t yet, meet our experts) to bring some of the brightest minds of the food blogosphere straight to you.  But since there are more questions than our experts can answer, we’ve been working with the guys at Fluther to launch Menuism’s Food & Dining Q&A.  We’re hoping that Menuism Q&A will help further enlighten you on your quest to become the all-knowledgeable foodie!

Have a question about dining etiquette?  Want to know more about a certain style of cooking?  Ask it here and help your fellow diners by answering questions you know the answer to.  Don’t be shy — remember, there’s no such thing as a stupid question (or answer)!

Check it out and let us know what you think!

John & Justin
Menuism Founders

Posted by on September 12th, 2010

Users can keep track of their food and dining experiences with greater ease

You may have noticed some changes when you logged in to your Menuism.com account recently, right? Brighter colors, a few buttons in different places? We’re really excited about this redesign – but not because of the colors changes! We actually did this redesign so that users, like you, can keep track and recall your dining experiences more easily.

Obviously you already know that Menuism.com is the largest compilation of menus on the web and that we are more detailed than other restaurant sites – especially since we encourage you to rate and review both the restaurant and the specific dishes that you ate. Now, however, we are taking this to a new level with a new “dining journal” feature.

dining journal

A dining journal? What’s that?

So glad you asked! The dining journal emulates a Roladex filled with restaurant business cards. The idea is that when you have a business card, you would write short notes on it, like ‘Ask for Bob’ or ‘Delicious lasagna!’ But with Menuism.com’s new design, you can write as much as you want and always refer back to your notes and photos when you want to remember what you thought about that restaurant.

And now all of your reviews and photos will be in this one online “dining journal.” You can search the journal to find all past reviews of one particular restaurant by searching for that restaurant, but you can also search based on cuisine, tag, or description. If you’re looking for Chinese food one night, search “Chinese” and all of the restaurants you reviewed that are tagged “Chinese” will come up in your search.

Because of this new design and simple search feature, you’ll never forget what you thought of a particular restaurant – and particular menu items. Plus your reviews will now appear at the top of each restaurant’s page, making it much easier for you to recall your experiences. You’ll be able to use your reviews for your own benefit!

We really want you to be able to use Menuism.com as a one-stop shop for all things restaurant-related. And we are really excited about our redesign! We hope you like it as much as we do.

Happy eating!
The Menuism Team

Posted by on September 20th, 2009

If you had to name a restaurant, what words would you use?

Well, you’d probably have the words “restaurant”, “cafe”, “pizza”, “grill” or “bar” in it. Here are the top 20 words found in restaurant names based on a quick analysis of our listings (excluding things like “the”, “la”, “el”, etc).

Random, but I thought it was somewhat interesting. 🙂


Posted by on May 29th, 2008

We’ve got some of the most passionate foodies on the web, and they’re eating coast-to-coast and writing from the front lines. Take a look at these 10 mouthfuls, detailing eating adventures in everything from melon sodas and truffled fries to fried chicken; they’re the longest reviews on Menuism to date.

  1. Coi by tommers
    One user’s thoughts on an olive oil milkshake.
  2. Giardino Restaurant by XiaoGo
    “I’ll not bore you with my own version of what happens to me when I go food shopping when hungry. Anyone who digs cooking will be all too familiar with what happens.”
  3. Fogo de Chao by JinYo
    “Our main waiter’s previous job was probably in espionage or some high ranking government position.”
  4. Dinner’s Ready by allybth
    “No alcohol! No wine. WTH? Please.”
  5. Aqua by cliff
    “My mom even had difficulty reading the menu due to the darkness of the restaurant, and our waiter brought reading glasses for her! What a nice touch!”
  6. Kyoto Japanese Restaurant by JDFIII
    “After Hurricane Rita skimmed by The Woodlands when the area was experiencing blackouts, there were no restaurants open. Eric and Eva decided to open for business. Even though most of their staff could not make it to work, Eric and Eva fed a standing-room-only crowd all night long.”
  7. Canlis Restaurant by shaomai
    “I do have to say that I was really impressed by the restrooms – when you’re washing your hands, you’re looking out onto an indoor zen garden. It’s really pretty!”
  8. Beaver’s by neverfull
    “For dinner, I ordered the Texas cross quail which was served on wax paper in a red plastic basket, like the kind your food comes in at Dairy Queen.”
  9. Stroud’s by hippo2
    Martha Stewart’s favorite fried chicken. Does this user agree?
  10. California Beach Restaurant by mercurialvapor24
    “They claim to charge you 5 dollars extra if you waste food.”

Keep up those great dining experiences! If you need more inspiration, here are some tips on writing a restaurant review.

Next up: the 10 restaurant reviews with most individual dish reviews.


Posted by on May 25th, 2008

It’s national hamburger month how are you going to celebrate?

If you’re a fan of white castle burgers, then put this in your calendar:

What: 27 cent hamburgers (limit 10)

When: May 27 – 2:00 pm to 3:27 pm

Where: All White Castle locations in Chicago, Cincinnati, Detroit, and New York and select locations in Columbus, Indianapolis, Louisville, Nashville, Minneapolis, Northeast Ohio, New Jersey, and St. Louis 

Sure they may be steam-grilled and soggy, but sometimes they just hit the spot.  If there isn’t one around you, you can also find them at your local grocer.

For more info, check out www.whitecastle.com for more info.

Happy Hamburger Eating!



Posted by on May 24th, 2008

One of the hardest things about writing reviews is simply remembering what you need to review.

Cheesesteak fan and Menuism user Dynamyk had a practical idea for keeping track of which restaurants to review – automating a link to any restaurant mentioned in a Gutcheck. If you’re twittering what you’re doing all day long, this is an easy way to further record your dining experiences.

See It In Action

We’re often able to match the restaurant you’ve typed into Twitter with its corresponding profile on Menuism.

Dynamyk gutcheck

Justin gutcheck - direct match

But if there are multiple matches, or possible matches, we’ll provide a link to a search for the restaurant, so you’re able to identify the exact location.

Justin gutcheck -search

How To Do It (It’s Easy!)

In your Gutcheck, you’ll want to format your Twitter as follows:

  1. write “at” or “from” in front of the restaurant name (example: “ate at Food Hut” or “ate a burger from Food Hut”…)
  2. “in” in front of the city (example: “ate a burger at Food Hut in Los Angeles”)

More Examples

I’ve highlighted the key terms to include to help us match.

If you’re using direct Gutchecks on the Menuism site:

  • at sushisamba in new york, ny
  • chicken sandwich from chickfila in irvine, ca

Gutchecks via Twitter – be sure to include “eat”, ate” or eating” at the beginning of your tweet.

  • eating a burger from shake shack in new york, ny. it’s awesome.
  • ate mahi mahi at moto in chicago, il

If you’re on Twitter, you can link your account by entering your Twitter screenname on your Menuism settings page.

Let me know if you have any feedback or other suggestions!


Posted by on May 21st, 2008

Dave Jensen

Dave Jensen
Craft Beer

David R. Chan

David R. Chan
Chinese Restaurant

Nevin Barich

Nevin Barich
Fast Food

Justin Chen

Justin Chen
Menuism Co-Founder

John Li

John Li
Menuism Co-Founder

Kim Kohatsu

Kim Kohatsu
Managing Editor