20 May 2010

NYC Restaurant Deja Vu

Photo: Piotr Redlinski for The New York Times

There are so many great (usually small) New York City restaurants that have disappeared over the last few decades, they are too numerous to mention. Usually nostalgic New York epicurean; food from another time. What we imagined existed, but nevertheless, real sensory experiences of New York that we carry, and occasionally long for: the ambiance especially, and in many cases, only secondarily, the food. Anyone who has spent any amount of time in the city has undoubtedly been to one of these venues that lingers in memory.

So it's inevitable that there has been an attmpt to resurrect some of them. "A Vision of the City as It Once Was", by Diane Cardwell, in The New York Times describes some of these efforts in some of the original venues.

"Back in 1960, Barbra Streisand — then still Barbara — was 18 and unable to find acting work when a friend told her about a weekly talent contest at the Lion, a gay club in the West Village. Uninterested in singing but hungry, she gave it a try, as much for the free dinner (they had a great London broil, she recalls) as for the paid gig that came with placing first. She won that prize, a standing ovation and her first big break."

Read the story at The New York Times.


Another related story of New York's past, found in its once ubiquitous architectural ornamentation, is in The Atlantic. Though not related to food, it is about the Brooklyn Museum's quest to rid itself of a great collection it has received over the years.

"Ghosts of New York", by John Freeman Gill, is also worth reading at the The Atlantic

Image credit: Photography by John Bartelstone

09 May 2010

Edible: A Celebration of Local Foods

Local produce is beginning to find its way to roadside stands and better supermarkets. The annual bonanza of fruits and vegetables is one of the delights of Spring, Summer and Fall. And timely to the season, Edible: A Celebration of Local Foods, by Tracey Ryder, Tracey Ryder, Carole Topalian, has appeared on bookshelves:

"A gorgeous full-color celebration of America's local food heroes and traditions, Edible is for anyone who cares about delicious, safe, sustainable food being cultivated and created every day by people in our own communities. The book offers engaging, inspiring profiles of farmers, artisans, chefs, and organizations that are making a difference, and shares eighty seasonal recipes that highlight the very best local foods across the country."

'The Edible magazines are at the forefront of today's food revolution, celebrating the work of local farmers and food artisans and inspiring us to get involved. Edible tells terrific stories about the making of delicious food, but it's really about American democracy and sustainable community food systems. Read this book and join the movement!'

—Marion Nestle, Professor of Food Studies, New York University, and author of What to Eat"

Edible: A Celebration of Local Foods

by Tracey Ryder, Tracey Ryder, Carole Topalian
Pub. Date: April 2010
Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
Format: Hardcover, 336pp
ISBN: 0470371080

Available online at Barnes and Noble and Amazon.

More on High Fructose Corn Syrup

More people seem to be catching on (finally) that HFCS is not so good for you. This ubiquitous ingredient deserves to be banned outright. And manufacturers are finally catching on that more of the public does not want it. This article, "For Corn Syrup, the Sweet Talk Gets Harder", by Melanie Warner, from The New York Times, highlights the growing movement against HFCS.

"For much of 2009, Michael Locascio, an executive at ConAgra Foods, watched with concern as the bad news about high-fructose corn syrup kept coming.

In January, there were studies showing that samples of the sweetener contained the toxic metal mercury. Then came a popular Facebook page that was critical of the syrup. By year-end, there were about a dozen spoofs on YouTube mocking efforts by makers of high-fructose corn syrup to show that science is on their side."

Go to The New York Times to read the entire article.