Serious Eats: Chicago

Meet & Eat: Amber Gibson, 'Vegetarian Option' Writer

Editor's Note: Since Amber started with us back in January, she's covered a little of everything. Though she started with sandwiches, she also took over the Vegetarian Option column. Somehow, she's also found time to write about where you should eat during Restaurant Week and where to find American caviar. I'm so thrilled to have her on the team, even if food writing is only one part of her busy career. But I'll let her tell you all about that. Take it away, Amber!

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Name: Amber Gibson
Location: Evanston, IL
Occupation: Student, freelance writer, model, tour guide
Website: www.ambergibson.me
Twitter: @ambergib

Guilty pleasures? Ice cream sandwiches. Even though I normally try to avoid processed foods and high fructose corn syrup, I'm a sucker for Good Humor ice cream sandwiches.

Describe your perfect meal. My mom's oxtail soup with soba noodles for dinner after I've been outside on a cold winter day.

What food won't you eat? I'll try everything once, but after giving it multiple chances, I've realized I'm not a fan of uni. I also dislike raw onion.

Favorite food person? I love watching Giada De Laurentiis with my mom for cooking inspiration. Her daughter is adorable. Scott Walton, John des Rosiers and Curtis Duffy are some of my favorite chefs in the city.

When did you first realize you were a serious eater? When I backed up my hard drive and saw that 80 percent of my memory was dedicated to food photos.

What do your family and friends think of your food obsessions? My mom loves exploring new restaurants with me but my dad is not so adventurous. Most of my friends love food, but a few think I'm a snob when I decline invitations to grab dinner at Burger King or Chili's.

Favorite food sites or blogs? LTHForum

Everyone has a go-to person they call for restaurant recommendations. Who's yours? My friend Lu (@luyaozers) eats out as much as I do, so I stalk her Facebook food photo albums for recommendations.

What is your favorite meal of the day and where do you get it? Dinner because I usually have the most time to enjoy it. I am always trying new restaurants and Chicago has such a vibrant culinary scene that I rarely get the chance to go back to a restaurant twice, even if I had a great meal. There are just so many places I still need to visit!

Do you ever cook? What's the best dish you make? I do cook, but not as often as I'd like to. I make a mean bread pudding and almond butter French toast. I have no intention of going to grad school once I get my bachelor's degree in June, but maybe I'll go to culinary school.

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