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Bret Thorn

Senior Food Editor, Nation's Restaurant News

Senior Food & Beverage Editor

Bret Thorn is senior food & beverage editor for Nation’s Restaurant News and Restaurant Hospitality for Informa’s Restaurants and Food Group, with responsibility for spotting and reporting on food and beverage trends across the country for both publications as well as guiding overall F&B coverage. 

He is the host of a podcast, In the Kitchen with Bret Thorn, which features interviews with chefs, food & beverage authorities and other experts in foodservice operations.

From 2005 to 2008 he also wrote the Kitchen Dish column for The New York Sun, covering restaurant openings and chefs’ career moves in New York City.

He joined Nation’s Restaurant News in 1999 after spending about five years in Thailand, where he wrote articles about business, banking and finance as well as restaurant reviews and food columns for Manager magazine and Asia Times newspaper. He joined Restaurant Hospitality’s staff in 2016 while retaining his position at NRN. 

A magna cum laude graduate of Tufts University in Medford, Mass., with a bachelor’s degree in history, and a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Thorn also studied traditional French cooking at Le Cordon Bleu Ecole de Cuisine in Paris. He spent his junior year of college in China, studying Chinese language, history and culture for a semester each at Nanjing University and Beijing University. While in Beijing, he also worked for ABC News during the protests and ultimate crackdown in and around Tiananmen Square in 1989.

Thorn’s monthly column in Nation’s Restaurant News won the 2006 Jesse H. Neal National Business Journalism Award for best staff-written editorial or opinion column.

He served as president of the International Foodservice Editorial Council, or IFEC, in 2005.

Thorn wrote the entry on comfort food in the Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America, 2nd edition, published in 2012. He also wrote a history of plated desserts for the Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets, published in 2015.

He was inducted into the Disciples d’Escoffier in 2014.

A Colorado native originally from Denver, Thorn lives in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Bret Thorn’s areas of expertise include food and beverage trends in restaurants, French cuisine, the cuisines of Asia in general and Thailand in particular, restaurant operations and service trends. 

Bret Thorn’s Experience: 

Nation’s Restaurant News, food & beverage editor, 1999-Present
New York Sun, columnist, 2005-2008 
Asia Times, sub editor, 1995-1997
Manager magazine, senior editor and restaurant critic, 1992-1997
ABC News, runner, May-July, 1989

Tufts University, BA in history, 1990
Peking University, studied Chinese language, spring, 1989
Nanjing University, studied Chinese language and culture, fall, 1988 
Le Cordon Bleu Ecole de Cuisine, Cértificat Elémentaire, 1986

Email: [email protected]

Social Media:
Twitter: @foodwriterdiary
Instagram: @foodwriterdiary

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