Sam Sifton to head new ‘Food’ desk at Times

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Sifton. (ABC News)
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The New York Times is creating a new department called Food to be edited by former national editor and restaurant critic Sam Sifton.

The department will include the dining section and the new NYT Cooking site and app that Sifton has been working on, which is scheduled to debut in the fall. Dining editor Susan Edgerley will be Sifton's deputy.

"The new department will produce the weekly print and digital report, as well as the content that will appear on the Cooking app," executive editor Dean Baquet wrote in a staff memo announcing the news.

You can read the full memo below:

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To the staff: Take the Dining section. Add the new NYT Cooking site and app. Mix the ingredients together – a vast menu of easy-to-search recipes, restaurant and wine reviews, food and restaurant news – and you have a great buffet of offerings for Times readers. That is why we are combining the two enterprises in a new department bearing the name it had in the days of Craig Claiborne: Food. The editor of this new department will be Sam Sifton. Susan Edgerley will be his deputy editor, helping to oversee the expanded group.

Joining them will be the Dining staff, as well as the team of journalists working on NYT Cooking. Collectively, the new department will produce the weekly print and digital report, as well as the content that will appear on the Cooking app. The group will work closely with editors of the NYT magazine, T Magazine and the Well blog to provide a central location for all Times readers’ cooking and dining needs, by integrating their recipes into NYT Cooking and providing links to their food content, which they will continue to feature in their sections.

The section front for Dining will be rebranded as Food, and will deliver articles devoted to cooking, restaurants, wine and spirits, and of course to general food news. (Our social media handles will follow suit.)

The Times has long been a leader in covering all aspects of food and dining. The launch of the new Cooking app, along with combining the newsroom’s editing and reporting talent in one team under the direction of Sam and with Susan's editorial and managerial help, will enhance our coverage and make it even more delightful and useful for readers.

Dean