pumpktoberfest #43 -
treat yoself.

spice up yer nuts.

pumpktoberfest 2010!

#195 - links &
drinks 2011.

Entries in trends (3)


snackdown! - 1.15.10

as part of the ongoing changes here at eat!drink!snack!, this week, i'm introducing a new friday column...the snackdown! every friday, i'll be providing you with a rundown of my favorite snack/food/drink related stories from the week past. this week, we've got a contest for snacking genius, a ban on pork rinds, free cookies, salt chugging & predictions for 2010. enjoy!

  • on tuesday, brooklyn's ici hosted "the next big small brand contest for culinary genius," where bklyn batch craft jerky took home the people's choice prize for their "orange-ginger strips of smoke-cured, grass-fed beef" jerky & kombucha brooklyn won the judge's prize for their "pleasantly mild iteration of [their] fermented tea." personally, i'd vote for orange-ginger beef jerky over fermented tea any day of the week. (ny times)

  • lovers of authentic mexican pork rinds had their hearts broken this week when the u.s.d.a. announced that starting this thursday, pork rinds not accompanied by an official government certificate will be seized at the border. drug, gun & human traffickers who have always dreamed of getting into the food business rejoiced. (abc news)

  • since travel basically sucks these days, companies like doubletree hotels & midwest airlines are trying to ease the pain of travel by baking cookies & dispensing them to their customers. they've both been doing so for around a quarter of a century, but if there was ever a time in history that called for free cookies, it's now. (ny times)

  • yesterday, to protest nyc mayor michael bloomberg's latest health crusade--salt--awesome-hatted radio host curtis sliwa decided that it'd be a good idea to call bloomberg "the health care nazi" & then chug a bunch of morton's salt. the results...sodiumtastic hilarity! the "salt crackdown" segment starts just after the nine-minute mark. (ny1)

  • it's a new year & with that comes new food trends. "out with the cupcake in with the new," i like to say. the detroit free press looked at some possible trends for 2010, specifically the rise of "umami," the fifth taste. too bad that they misspelled it "unami" in the headline. i'm pretty sure nobody's going to reintroduce an extinct native american dialect in an effort to spice up the food world. (detroit free press)

#118 - bacon bacon bacon!

back at the beginning of june, upon the exciting announcement of an amazing new bacon jerky, i opined about how the popularity of bacon was seriously spiralling out of control. there were bacon tattoos & bacon donuts & bacon dresses & bacon salt & bacon bacon bacon! since then, peeps' bacon obsession has continued to get more & more insane. bakon (the bacon flavored beer) has hit the market. andy richter did not approve. brooklyn brewery is working on a bacon beer. they even have a bacon exhibit at the met (for three more days). it's everywhere! don't take my word for it though. take baconbaconbacon's word for it...or maybe bacon unwrapped's. they've both sort of got a thing for bacon.

seriously, what's the obsession with bacon? how did it get elevated to such a status, something that's gone way beyond an ironic hipster fad? i have three possible theories as to why:

theory #1 - after years of the national pork board's attempts to woo the average joe pork-eating crowd with their "the other white meat" ads, the national pork producers' council (whose website appears to be porked at the moment...oh, back up! unporked!) decided to go after the hip crowd by going all viral. bob in marketing decided it was time to think big & think big he did. he & his team slowly inserted bits of bacon into the culture & folks started to be all "oh yeah, bacon. let's grab hold of that bus for a while." economic downturn & all, they've since laid bob off & he's been laid off for some ten months now, but that ad campaign that was his bacon baby has already been born. in fact, that bacon baby is now all grown up & driving that bus himself, speeding around town & doing blow off the chests of hookers as he does. the law's helpless to do anything. some drunk guy on the corner in the village once told me that cops love bacon, so i guess that could have something to do with it too.

theory #2 - hipsters were desperate. the yeah yeah yeahs & strokes had become lame & heroin was so passe & moustaches itch! & bushwick was becoming "too yuppie" & hipsters tried to fill the void with skinny jeans & big sunglasses & keffiyehs & trips to IKEA, but it just wasn't enough. we were living in a post-9/11 world & they needed to turn their irony toward america in order to heal. american food felt like a funny target. hamburgers were too boring. tv dinners were too cold. apple pie was too cumbersome. coca-cola was too evil...so they went with bacon. now they're just keeping it up to slight the cupcake people.

theory #3 - it's a combination of the two.

win rosenfeld (who worked with nova sciencenow for a while) seems to think that the bacon craze is finally over...

...i respectfully disagree.

#118 - bacon bacon bacon!
snack: vosges mo's dark bacon bar
drink: black sheep riggwelter yorkshire ale

last month in chicago, ms allison introduced me to the wonder of vosges, a line of gourmet chocolates with retail locales in chicago (we visited lincoln park), nyc & vegas. while there, it was revealed to the extremely friendly girl working there that i dabble in snack blogging, so she offered me some badass, probably expensive truffle. it ruled my face. super chicago friendly customer service! since we were en route to the pitchfork festival & they had a no entry with drink/food policy (although allison managed to smuggle in an avocado like a ninja), i had to forgo getting one of their crazy-ass chocolate bars for the time being. luckily, much to my surprise, during her travels the next day, allison picked up one of their black pearl bars for me. yay good host! it ruled my face.

since returning to nyc, i hadn't found the time and/or energy to travel to a vosges, but the other night, at a random park slope fancy bodega, they had a rack of gourmet chocolates. among them was the vosges mo's dark bacon bar. i'd sampled it in chicago & was completely intrigued that bacon & chocolate could taste so good together. i suppose reese's peanut butter cups got started in a similar "should we?" sort of way. i couldn't resist, especially after that sample. it's so good. since the bar ran me six & change, i've been taking my time with it, treating myself to a square or two at a time. tonight, the bacon bar comes to an end...a chocolatey, salty, occasionally crispy end. don't hate, people. this is one of the few good things to come out of the bacon craze.

one night this weekend i took in a pint of black sheep riggwelter yorkshire ale with a few squares of the bacon bar. the black sheep comes to us from the u.k., an area where folks have historically been huge fans of sheep...meadows & whatnot. it sort of explains why they also brew a monty python's holy grail ale. those blokes loved sheep. according to the back of the bottle, riggwelter is "from the old norse; rygg - back and velte - to overturn. when a sheep is on its back and can not get up without help, local dales dialect says it's rigged or riggwelted." silly helpless sheep...just like the ones i see while i fall asleep...but with less blood.

the flavor apparently contains "hints of coffee, bananas and liquorice." i tasted the coffee. not so sure about the other two. since the beer's a brown ale, it had a fairly typical english brown ale flavor, sort of like a newcastle but not really. it made for a rich & filling pint of ale, a nice complement to the bacon & the chocolate...which makes me wonder about the combo possibilities. can you make bacon out of sheep? yep. apparently you can...& when you're done, you can coat it in chocolate. done & done. bacon...is there anything you can't do?


nosh nook #35 - friday, may 1, 2009

snacks gain consumer clout (link)
04.30.09 - adweek - by convenience store news staff

what a time to be a snack!  snacks are totally popular!  i mean, they went from totally geek...to totally chic!  of course, people have always loved a little nosh & nibble here & there, but these days, people demand more from their snacks & in return, their snacks have not let them down.  in an effort to cater to our increasingly divergent needs, they've become healthier & fancier & definitely more EXTREME.

as adweek explains, a recent study by the center for culinary development (ccd) & packaged facts (convenience store news) showed that the importance of snacks has increased along with the go-go pace of the american lifestyle.  with less time to prepare foods & more need for sustenance to keep us go-go-going, snacks often step in to fill the between-meal void.  the study also found that while there's recently been an explosion of healthy snacks flooding the market, members of generation y go for "highly nutritious seaweed snacks," while their parents go for the less exotic whole grain snacks.

i definitely utilize snacks as a part of my a diet, as i prefer a bunch of snacks & small meals throughout the day rather than a couple huge meals that make me want to explode.  living in nyc, it's often hard or impossible to make it home & prepare a meal at "normal" meal hours, so rather than blow all my money eating out, i use snacks as a way to delay my meals until i can get home...the healthier, the better.  so yeah, i don't play by the rules, but i guess a lot of other people don't either.  usda recommended three balanced meals & food pyramid be damned!