Writer Arthur Schwartz of The Food Maven - Biography

New York, NY

November 2011

Arthur Schwartz aka The Food Maven was the restaurant critic and executive food editor of the New York Daily News for 18 years. Perhaps what he’s best known for is as a chameleon—he’s successfully worked in radio, print media, cookbook publishing, TV, and teaching.

Over the course of his career, he has continuously written critically well-received cookbooks. One of the earliest was Cooking In A Small Kitchen, published in 1979. In 1992 his practical What To Cook When You Think There's Nothing In The House To Eat was published. Two short years later, the best-selling paperback full of main course-sized soup recipes, Soup Suppers came out. In 1998, his Naples at Table: Cooking in Campania, hit the Los Angeles Times "Hot List," establishing Schwartz as a specialist in Southern Italian cuisine. The Italy-America Chamber of Commerce and the region of Campania honored him as such at a gala dinner, and he has been honored several times, including at New York City's City Hall, for his contributions to the Italian-American community of his city.

In 2005, Arthur Schwartz's New York City Food: An Opinionated History with Legendary Recipes was named both Cookbook of the Year and best book on an American subject by the IACP. It was also nominated for a James Beard book award. When Jewish Home Cooking: Yiddish Recipes Revisited came out in 2008, it won the IACP’s Best American Subject Cookbook award and was nominated for both a James Beard book award and the Sophie Brody Medal of the American Library Association. His most recent book, The Southern Italian Table: Authentic Tastes from Traditional Kitchens, was published by Clarkson Potter in 2009.

Schwartz also teaches extensively, both demos and hands-on classes. He has a cooking school in Paestum, Italy, just south of the Amalfi Coast, where he conducts week-long classes that also include cultural touring. He’s taught at various locations in New York City, Long Island, New Jersey, and Connecticut. He has also lectured at metro New York synagogues, as well as at events benefiting many charities, including Jewish Federation, Hadassah, National Council of Jewish Women, Rotary Clubs, and Chambers of Commerce.

He was a visiting lecturer in Southern Italian cooking at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, and a lecturer on food writing and editing at the Culinary Institute of America in Greystone, California. He has also lectured at New York University, New York City Technical College, and at the Institute for Culinary Education (ICE). He was also named Cooking Teacher of the Year by the New York Association of Culinary Professionals. He still works as a restaurant consultant and lecturer.

His work in radio and television is critically acclaimed. For 13 years, Schwartz did a daily broadcast on WOR, receiving the IACP's Award of Excellence in Electronic Media for his work in radio. He left the station in 2004. He was the food critic on Fox network's (WNYW-TV) local morning show, Good Day New York, and he has appeared on Martha Stewart's national broadcast, appeared many times as a guest on the Food Network, on The Today Show, Good Morning America, and Live With Regis. He continues to make frequent TV appearances on PBS and the Food Network.