CHOW is probably the largest and liveliest gourmet site on the mobile web. It’s the mobilized version of the full web CHOW.com which was created in 2006 when CNET acquired the popular foodie message board Chowhound.com and the high end print magazine CHOW and combined them into online only CHOW.com
CHOW Mobile seems to be targeted at high end mobiles, the 99KB front page is too large to even load on most feature phones. If your handset is capable. you’ll find a site that has lots of recipes, a directory of restaurants by region and read-only access to the regional forums of the Chowhound message boards. The boards are very active with lots questions and debates on topics like the best burger in Palo Alto or the ultimate Napa Valley wine tasting itinerary.
Much of the excellent editorial content of the full site is hidden behind the slow and quirky interface of the “Stories” section. To get to the articles you pick a category from a dropdown, press a confusingly named “Search” button and wait. There are about 100 articles, columns, reviews and product comparisons divided into 20 categories. This portion of the site seems quite slow and some of the categories frustratingly come up empty after a noticable wait.
Mobile CHOW also has a selection of videos including cooking shows, chef interviews and tours. I wasn’t able to watch any of them as the site insisted that my N95 “…does not support video”. Source: Oh! Mobile Directory
Ratings: Content Usability
Ready.mobi Score: 2 “Bad”
Mobile Link: m.chow.com