Thursday, July 10, 2008

Woolworths Menu, circa 1950s


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Friday, June 06, 2008

Vegetable Porn

Burger King Veggie Porn



Digital Frog via boingboing

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Monday, May 26, 2008

Annoying Starbucks People

Very funny -- (go read the full thing)

8 Types Of Annoying People You’ll Find Inside Starbucks

8. Manager Who Refuses to Recognize the Words Small, Medium, and Large

7. Intern Who is Buying for the Entire Office

6. The Writer Who Wants You to Know They’re a Writer

5. Overly Happy Line Greeter/Order Taker

4. Complicated Order Guy Who Needs his Coffee Right The F*&K Now.

3. The Guy Who Hates Starbucks But Goes There Every Day

2. Study Groups

1. The Person Who Peruses the DVD Section As If They Might Purchase.

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Monday, April 21, 2008

Mexico Reconquers California

The latest advertising campaign in Mexico from Swedish vodka maker Absolut promises to push all the right buttons south of the U.S. border, but it could ruffle a few feathers in El Norte.


Mexico reconquers California? Absolut drinks to that!
LA Plaza
L.A.Times, April 03, 2008

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Freaky, frozen pickle juice:  Pickle Sickle, a/k/a Bob’s Pickle Pops



via NYT

A box of 16 is $17.95 and one of 32 is $27.95 from

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A $20,000 Cup of Coffee

Ahhh, that's the good stuff!


WITH its brass-trimmed halogen heating elements, glass globes and bamboo paddles, the new contraption that is to begin making coffee this week at the Blue Bottle Café here looks like a machine from a Jules Verne novel, a 19th-century vision of the future.

Called a siphon bar, it was imported from Japan at a total cost of more than $20,000. The cafe has the only halogen-powered model in the United States, and getting it here required years of elliptical discussions with its importer, Jay Egami of the Ueshima Coffee Company.

“If you just want equipment you’re not ready,” Mr. Egami said in an interview. But, he added, James Freeman, the owner of the cafe, is different: “He’s invested time. He’s invested interest. He is ready.”

Professionals have long been willing to pay prices in the five figures for the perfect espresso machine, but the siphon bar does not make espresso. It makes brewed coffee, as does another high-end coffee maker, the $11,000 Clover, which makes one cup at a time. Together, they signal the resurgence of brewing among the most obsessive coffee enthusiasts.

At Last, a $20,000 Cup of Coffee
January 23, 2008

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Tuesday, January 08, 2008

What we can learn from spaghetti sauce

In this witty monologue, Malcolm Gladwell follows the career of a food industry consultant who uncovered a key secret to what eaters like. Running huge focus groups to find customers' truest tastes, Gladwell's hero draws a radical conclusion, an epiphany that has defined food marketing ever since. Note: The theme of the 2004 conference was "The Pursuit of Happiness" -- hence the talk's quirky presence

click to play

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Thursday, December 27, 2007


via NYT

Right about now we need a break from winter: How about some tropical recipes?

Zombie Punch:


Adapted from Jeff Berry Mr. Berry believes that this recipe, found in a waiter’s notebook, is the original Zombie introduced at Don the Beachcomber’s in 1934.

3/4 ounce lime juice

  1/2 ounce white grapefruit juice

  1/4 ounce cinnamon syrup (see note)

  1/2 ounce falernum (see note)

1 1/2 ounces dark Jamaican rum, such as Appleton Estate V/X

1 1/2 ounces gold rum, such as Cruzan 5-year-old

1 ounce 151-proof Lemon Hart Demerara rum

Dash Angostura bitters

6 drops ( 1/8 teaspoon) Herbsaint or Pernod

1 teaspoon grenadine

3/4 cup crushed ice.

  Put everything into a blender. Blend at high speed for 5 seconds. Pour into a highball glass and add ice cubes to fill. Decorate with sliced fruit or berries and a mint sprig.

Yield: One drink.

Note: Cinnamon syrup from Sonoma Syrup Company is sold at Dean & DeLuca, Whole Foods and other retailers. To make it, boil 1/2 cup water with 1/2 cup sugar and 2 cinnamon sticks pounded in a mortar or with the back of a knife; stir until sugar dissolves, remove from heat, let sit for 2 hours, then strain. Excess can be kept refrigerated for a month. Names of retailers selling falernum, a syrup tasting of lime juice, almonds and ginger, are available from Fee Brothers at (800) 961-FEES.

Beachbum Berry’s Zombie 

Adapted from Jeff Berry This recipe nearly matches the flavor of the 1934 Zombie, but it is simpler.

3/4 ounce lime juice

1 ounce white grapefruit juice

  1/2 ounce cinnamon-infused sugar syrup (see note)

  1/2 ounce Bacardi 151 rum

1 ounce dark Jamaican rum

Sliced fruit and mint for garnish.

Shake all ingredients well with ice cubes. Strain into a highball glass filled with ice. Garnish with fruit and a mint sprig.

Yield: One drink.

Note: Cinnamon syrup from Sonoma Syrup Company is sold at Dean & DeLuca and Whole Foods. To make it, boil 1/2 cup water with 1/2 cup sugar and 2 cinnamon sticks pounded with the back of a knife; stir until sugar dissolves, remove from heat, let sit for 2 hours, then strain.

Beachbum’s Own

Adapted from Jeff Berry

3/4 ounce lemon juice

  3/4 ounce pineapple juice

  3/4 ounce orange juice

  3/4 ounce passion fruit syrup (see note)

  3/4 ounce Cuarenta Y Tres liqueur (Licor 43)

1 1/4 ounces smoky, medium-bodied rum such as Lemon Hart Demerara, El Dorado, Pampero or Mount Gay Extra Old

1 1/2 ounces light rum, such as Cruzan 2-year-old.

  Pour all ingredients into a shaker with plenty of ice and shake well. Pour, ice and all, into a double old-fashioned glass.

Yield: One drink.

Note: Passion fruit syrup is available from Finest Call ( and Funkin ( To make it, dissolve

1/4 cup sugar in 1/4 cup boiling water, then stir in 1/2 cup thawed frozen passion fruit pulp, made by Goya and sold in many bodegas and supermarkets.

Cracking the Code of the Zombie
NYT, November 28, 2007   

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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Nomura Jellyfish


Until 2002, these giant creatures were seen only occasionally in Japanese waters. But for the past five years, they have been swarming every year into the Sea of Japan, the water that separates Japan from mainland Asia. During the biggest invasion so far, in 2005, an estimated 500 million jellyfish -- not yet mature -- drifted in each day.

It's hard to calculate financial damage to fishermen, but the Japanese government last year counted about 50,000 incidents of jellyfish trouble. Fish poisoned by jellyfish tentacles die with their mouths agape. That mars their appearance and reduces their value by as much as 20%. "When their mouths are wide open, it means they've died going, 'I'm in pain! I'm in pain!' " explains Mr. Yoshida.

Scientists have various ideas about what causes the outbreak. One has devised a computer model of ocean currents that suggests the jellyfish are breeding off the Chinese coast near the mouth of the Yangtze River. One theory is that pollution, perhaps linked to industrialization in China, is helping create more algae in the sea. The algae are food for plankton, which is food for jellyfish.

Invasion of Jellyfish Envelops Japan In Ocean of Slime
Pink 450-Pound Blobs Clog Nets but Spur New Recipes;
Pointing Fingers at China
WSJ, November 27, 2007; Page A1

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

A few Thanksgiving factoids: 

-Thankgiving Myth: Turkey Makes You Sleepy

- Black Friday is not the busiest shopping day of the year: Between 1993 and 2002, it cracked the top five just three times, never rising higher than the fourth-busiest day of the year. Americans love to procrastinate: Eight years out of 10, the busiest day fell on the Saturday before Christmas.

- The Pilgrims never ate corn on the cob, apples, pears, potatoes or even cranberries -- and no one knows if they had turkey. All we know for sure is they had deer and fowl.

- The song "Alice's Restaurant Massacree" (aka "Alice's Restaurant") by Arlo Guthrie's is based on a true story that began on Thanksgiving Day. The song lasts 18 minutes and 20 seconds, and occupied the entire A-side of Guthrie's 1967 debut record album, titled Alice's Restaurant.  (full lyrics here)

- Another myth: The US invented Thanksgiving. Turns out that humans have been holding harvest festivals for ages. In ancient times, Middle Eastern peoples offered wheat to "The Great Mother" or "Mother of the Wheat." In medieval times, central Europeans celebrated their harvests at Feast of Saint Martin on November 11th.

-The original feast in 1621 occurred sometime between September 21 and November 11. Unlike our modern holiday, it was three days long. The event was based on English harvest festivals, which traditionally occurred around the 29th of September. President Franklin D. Roosevelt set the date for Thanksgiving to the fourth Thursday of November in 1939 (approved by Congress in 1941). Abraham Lincoln had previously designated it as the last Thursday in November.

-And if you think your family is crazy, remember this: each year, the Aztecs would behead a young girl representing Xilonen, the corn goddess.   



via GreenTaxi

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