This weekend I caught a special on the Food Network, Food Network Unwrapped 2. In amongst the backstage secrets of Iron Chef America, Paula Deen, and Tyler Florence was a brief segment on Jonathan Milder.
Milder is the research librarian for the Food Network. The show had him showing off the cookbook stacks (over 4,000 titles!) and making some calls to verify key information (is there a difference between rice vinegar and rice wine vinegar?) for an upcoming Food Network show.
A little digging also found me an interview with Milder at the StarChefsJobFinder website (scroll down a screen to see it). Here's a snippet:
I can't imagine there's any direct route to doing this sort of thing. This position is an odd mix of food writer, journalist, trend-watcher and librarian. The next person to hold this position will have trodden an entirely different path from the one I traveled. This is a position for voracious readers, bookworms, and aspiring polymaths, a position for people who find nearly as much pleasure in reading about food as in eating it. And those people can be found in the most unexpected places.
The show will air again on May 19 and 20, in case you want to catch it.