"Twenty years is a long time to review restaurants in one city that also happens to be my hometown," Koeppel says. "I really loved doing it, but The Commercial Appeal is restructuring some sections and I wont be part of the Playbook team anymore."
Instead, Koeppel will write non-food related features for the new 'Lifestyle' section. Although a resurrection of the wine column isn't planned, Koeppel anticipates more stories about the subject.
"Our wine tastings are very popular, and it's obvious that there is a demand for wine-related stories," he says.
Response to news about Koeppel's retirement as food critic was mixed. Some commenters on the CA's Whining and Dining blog accused him of accepting free food and lacking knowledge. Others thanked him.
"I'm looking forward to not having to eat out when I'd rather stay at home and cook," Koeppel says. "But I also really like eating out in Memphis, and I will certainly be seen doing just that."