Martin Cizmar's attempt at a review of Nick's Italian Cafe and its recent national recognition as a James Beard American Classic ["Nick's Big Beard," WW, March 5, 2014] was so inane and inaccurate, the reader questions if the "writer" has ever attended a journalism class, much less basic English. Incomplete sentences and juvenile cuteness, i.e., pastramidom, aside, the careless disregard for any factual background knowledge of his subject insults the reader as well as the subject.

Cizmar gives no indication he has any concept of the central historic and vital role Nick's and the Peirano family continue to contribute to the Oregon wine industry. As Cizmar should know, wine is the magnet of Oregon tourism, brings billions into our state annually and has preserved countless acres of farmland. Nick's has always been a face, focus and foundation of this success. Since 1977, the food, wines, friendships and support have been the reasons for Nick's esteemed, now national, regard; never for competitions involving chicken wings or car-washed tacos.

Amazingly erroneous descriptors abound; his unsubstantiated swath dismisses venerable, beloved restaurants everywhere fated to "those unfortunate wrinkles restaurants develop after passing to a second generation."

It's unfortunate Cizmar didn't care for his "undercooked, translucent pink and mushy" sausage. I suggest he venture into some of the world's revered culinary regions, such as Piedmont, the heart of the Slow Food movement, where exquisitely seasoned sausage is served in its elemental glory: raw.

By the way: "Husband" Eric Ferguson is a formally trained, internationally experienced and acclaimed chef.

Buon appetito,

Nancy Ponzi



I've been to enough punk, metal and rock shows to tell you from firsthand, eyewitness experience that brawls happen there as well ["Hip-Hop Stopped," WW, March 12, 2014]. The cops' routine of targeting rap shows hasn't a damned thing to do with "safety." It is deliberate and meant to send a message to certain people.

—"Flintoc Kroobs"

The right approach would be for the city to send someone from building inspection, point out the overcapacity to the club's manager and let the club decide how to safely and respectfully remove patrons to comply with building capacity. It doesn't seem to fall under "protect and serve." It's more like high-school hazing.

—"Lester Garrison"


Jiggles makes a better statement than some big-box retailer selling overpriced crap from China and guns ["A Requiem for Jiggles," WW, March 12, 2014]. How crazy is this world that selling guns and creating more traffic is considered an improvement over looking at boobs? That's the suburbs for you.


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