Remembering the "Cheap Gourmet"

Apr 21, 2017

Doug Smith, a well-traveled member of Buffalo media, best known for his clever, insightful perspective, died Thursday after a brief illness. He was 81.

The list of Smith's accomplishments and media positions is long, with his greatest exposure coming from his time with WIVB-TV and the former Courier-Express. In a conversation with WBFO's Michael Mroziak in April 2016, Smith discussed his decision to relocate to Cortland with his wife Polly.

Doug Smith

“When you get to be 80…you find that stuff happens to you. And our daughter said ‘why don’t you be down here closer to us for when the time that that stuff happens?’ She proposed that last September and said ‘why don’t you do it in a couple of years?’ And I said ‘let’s do it now.’”

Smith was best remembered as the “Cheap Gourmet,” a colorful food critic who brought a humorous, entertaining style to his regular segments on WIVB-TV. He later wrote a wrote popular weekly newspaper column that appeared for many years in the Buffalo Rocket and other weekly publications.

During the 2016 interview, WBFO asked Smith why he thought his work resonated with so many people.

“I always tried hard to write something that would cause somebody to say ‘Gee, I never heard it said that way before,’ and clip it outand put it in their wallet. Evidently, I succeeded more than I thought that I had."

Funeral arrangements have not been announced.