Banjo Blues

A Chronicle writer gets canned for running a Web site

Coleman's publicist says the chef never talked to DeMers.

A spokeswoman for publisher Clarkson Potter couldn't track down any press release with that quote included. But the quote shows up verbatim on a food Web site called Site editor Kate Heyhoe says the page has been up since December, and consists of a Clarkson Potter press release. (The page notes that information was "provided by the publisher.")

DeMers didn't return our calls, but he did e-mail a statement to Cleverley Stone, the editor of a local food-industry Web site, "The Houston Chronicle and I have amicably decided to go in separate directions, leaving each free to pursue what each is most passionate about," DeMers wrote.

One thing DeMers is apparently passionate about is cookbooks: Chronicle folks say that when he cleaned out his office, he really cleaned out his office. Along with review copies he received during his tenure, classic books left by Criswell were gone, too.

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