black holes and gray matter. in one thousand tangos.

             

"Myhrvold’s recipes can be so scientific that they seem self-defeating, like a sex guide on how to achieve the perfect orgasm that instructs its reader to stop every 45 seconds during intercourse to check his pulse and pupil dilation."

After 45 courses, I was lowing like a cow. In my food- and wine-altered state, I began to meditate on the notion of death by senseless beauty. By the fifth hour, Adrià was openly taunting me. He called out for second helpings while I groaned. “The kind of people who mock long tasting menus,” Adrià said, “are the same people you see lining up at the hotel breakfast buffet, dumping 30 different things on their plates.” Adrià’s future plan is to begin cooking only about 20 nights a year. “Cooking at this level is like giving a concert,” he said. “No one in their right mind gives 300 concerts a year.” The one piece of advice he has given Myhrvold: “Never open a restaurant.”

The final dish, an absinthe cocktail topped with a swirling sugar mold made with a 3D printer, arrived after 6 p.m.”

"And yet well after midnight, I ducked out of my hotel room for a greasy cheeseburger at Dick’s.”

The End of Cuisine

Go to the goddamn grocery and get steak. Yes, the grocery. A little ammonia is not going to kill you, you pussy. You want to be all fancy and grass-fed and environmentally conscious, go ahead, I don’t give a shit, just get a fucking steak. Ribeye is good. And, yes, bone-in. Schmuck. Take the steak home. Get a bigass frying pan and put the shit on the stove, cranking the heat up as far as that fucker will go. Take a shitload of salt—rocksalt, you dumb motherfucker, none of that fine-grained crap here—and toss it around the bottom of the pan. When the pan is hot as all fuck—it should scorch the shit out of your finger if you’re stupid enough to touch it—put the fucking steak on there. You can crack some pepper on the top of the steak as the bottom is searing, but don’t even talk to me about garlic or onion powder or COMPOUND FUCKING BUTTER, asshole. This is steak, all you fucking need is salt and pepper. After a bit (3 minutes for pink, 5 for cooked good), flip that shit over and do the same fucking thing you just did with the other side, i.e. sit on your ass and wait for your motherfucking steak to be ready, you useless assbag. When you’re done, sling that shit on a plate. Beringer’s 1996 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Private Reserve makes an absolutely delightful accompaniment, particularly if you’ve taken care to let it breathe a bit before quaffing. Also, make some fucking potatoes, because that’s what you eat with a fucking steak. God, sometimes I just want to smack the shit out of you.”

Alex Balk

Also: NYT.

George Steinmetz: Was It Worth Getting Arrested for National Geographic Cover Story Photos? [bottom two]

"Caught in the political crossfire between animal rights activists and agribusiness interests trying to make it illegal to photograph factory farm operations, [Steinmetz] wound up in jail in Kansas while on assignment to shoot the story, called The New Food Revolution.

'It was quite a surprise to me,' says Steinmetz, who is renowned for the beautiful aerial landscapes he shoots all over the world, and who is used to encounters with authorities. ‘I’ve been detained in Iran and Yemen, and questioned about spying, but never arrested. And then I get thrown in jail in America.’

The premise of the May cover story, which kicks off an 8-month series about food, is that crop production will have to double by 2050 in order to feed the growing world population and satisfy its increasing appetite for protein.

But images of US pig, cattle, and chicken farming operations are conspicuously absent from the story, largely because those producers have all but shut out the media.

So Steinmetz ended up photographing meat and egg operations in Brazil, where owners are proud of their state-of-the-art facilities…”

Read on.

Congrats to the 2014 James Beard Winners:

Best Chef Northwest: Naomi Pomeroy, Beast, Portland, OR

Best Chef South: Sue Zemanick, Gautreau’s, New Orleans

Best Chef New York City: April Bloomfield, The Spotted Pig

Best Chef Southeast: Ashley Christensen, Poole’s Downtown Diner, Raleigh

Outstanding Restaurateur: Barbara Lynch

Outstanding Chef: Nancy Silverton

Chef Silverton joins Alice Waters, Lidia Bastianich and Judy Rodgers as the only women to win this award since the program started.

Chef Lynch is the second woman in a row to win this award, after Maguy Le Coze, who was the first ever last year.

Americans love Mexican food. We consume nachos, tacos, burritos, tortas, enchiladas, tamales and anything resembling Mexican in enormous quantities. We love Mexican beverages, happily knocking back huge amounts of tequila, mezcal and Mexican beer every year. We love Mexican people—as we sure employ a lot of them. Despite our ridiculously hypocritical attitudes towards immigration, we demand that Mexicans cook a large percentage of the food we eat, grow the ingredients we need to make that food, clean our houses, mow our lawns, wash our dishes, look after our children. As any chef will tell you, our entire service economy—the restaurant business as we know it—in most American cities, would collapse overnight without Mexican workers. Some, of course, like to claim that Mexicans are “stealing American jobs”. But in two decades as a chef and employer, I never had ONE American kid walk in my door and apply for a dishwashing job, a porter’s position—or even a job as prep cook. Mexicans do much of the work in this country that Americans, provably, simply won’t do. 

We love Mexican drugs. Maybe not you personally, but “we”, as a nation, certainly consume titanic amounts of them—and go to extraordinary lengths and expense to acquire them. We love Mexican music, Mexican beaches, Mexican architecture, interior design, Mexican films.

So, why don’t we love Mexico?”

"In the service of our appetites, we spend billions and billions of dollars each year on Mexican drugs—while at the same time spending billions and billions more trying to prevent those drugs from reaching us. The effect on our society is everywhere to be seen. Whether it’s kids nodding off and overdosing in small town Vermont, gang violence in LA, burned out neighborhoods in Detroit— it’s there to see. What we don’t see, however, haven’t really noticed, and don’t seem to much care about, is the 80,000 dead—mostly innocent victims in Mexico, just in the past few years. 80,000 dead. 80,000 families who’ve been touched directly by the so-called “War On Drugs”.   

Mexico. Our brother from another mother. A country, with whom, like it or not, we are inexorably, deeply involved, in a close but often uncomfortable embrace.”

Bourdain: Under the Volcano |  PARTS UNKNOWN

©2011 Kateoplis