The Unbearable Lightness of Being Hungry | A Sydney Food Blog


LTL_portrait-001Hi there, my name is Lee Tran Lam. I had my first story published in a magazine when it was 15: it was probably terrible and incriminating – so I’m glad no one has a copy of it to blackmail me with (so far).

Since then, I’ve written (hopefully less terribly?) for Gourmet Traveller, Rolling Stone, The Big Issue, AFR, Sydney Morning Herald, SBS Food, The Guardian, plus various publications that sadly no longer exist (print media, it’s indestructible!).

I started The Unbearable Lightness of Being Hungry blog in 2007 – and it’s led to many surprising things, like Turkish Vogue printing my restaurant recommendations (my inclusion in a fashion magazine is pretty funny, considering the daggy state of my wardrobe). In 2012, I started my podcast of the same name. SBS called The Unbearable Lightness of Being Hungry a “Podcast We Love”, Bon Appétit listed it as a “Chef’s Favourite”, and it’s also been recommended by Broadsheet and Concrete Playground and chosen to be archived by the National Library. It even was a top 3 food podcast in Slovakia and Turkey for a brief time! (I also do Crunch Time, a weekly podcast and newsletter available on Patreon, where I recap the most fascinating food news, podcasts and stories I’ve consumed, recommended eats, plus get in depth about work I’ve done.)

I co-founded Diversity In Food Media with fellow journalists Colin Ho, Candice Chung, Aleksandra Bliszczyk, Yvonne C. Lam, Nicholas Jordan, Sofia Levin and Andrew Levins. As part of that project, I edited New Voices On Food, which showcases talent from under-represented communities, and continue to profile diverse writers, photographers, stylists, TV presenters and podcasters who cover food on the Diversity In Food Media Instagram account. Bri Lee wrote a very kind profile about this here and it was very nice of Time Out to name me as a Future Shaper for my work promoting diverse voices on food.

I’ve been working full-time in the media for the last 18 years – as editorial assistant, staff writer, feature writer, deputy chief sub-editor and managing editor. Most recently, I was a writer/producer for Good Food. Currently, I’m freelancing as an editorial gun for hire (so feel free to contact me here (or here) if you’d like to work on an editorial project or event).

Here are some examples of my published stories.

I didn’t expect this blog to lead to a career – or a sandwich named after me! – but because I spend my working hours on freelance stories, the majority of blog updates are now about new podcast episodes I’ve uploaded.

Thanks to the following legends for their help on the blog over the years:

Will Reichelt kindly provides most of the pictures – the slick ones that are in focus that is (the dodgy ones can be credited to the writer!). He’s an awesome photographer and I’m very lucky that he will patiently take so many photos at a dinner table for me.

Grace Lee drew the lovely banner image for me twice – once when this blog began in 2007 and again when it was updated in 2014. She’s a talented illustrator working in Tokyo, see her work on her blog and Behance profile.

This website would not be possible without the amazing generosity and html-savviness of Daniel Boud. He’s a brilliant photographer – one of Australia’s best – and has a way of framing moments like no one else. See his work at Boudist.

This is a blog I do for pure fun and zero influence – there’s no sponsorship, sneaky advertorial or advertising. I pay for all the food mentioned, ‘cos it seems the ethical thing to do.

You can get in contact with me via email if you like – ltlam AT tpg DOT com DOT au.

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This is a blog about eating and drinking in Sydney, Australia (with the odd cross-border or off-topic detour). BYO appetite.

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