Posts for May 30, 2012

Drink Dr. Ruth’s New Wine So You Don’t Fall Asleep on Your Mate

Aged, like a fine wine.Photo: Patrick McMullan

Really, it was only a matter of time before geriatric sex guru Dr. Ruth Westheimer came out with her own line of mood-loosening libations. Her Vin d'Amour (translation: Wine of Love) hits shelves in early July, just in time for summertime trysts. One thing, though: Ruth's wine has half the alcohol content than most (6 percent to the typical 13), because that's the sexually prudent way.

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Mad Men-ish Tavern Will Be Called Sterling's

The restaurant we mentioned earlier—the one modeled after Mad Men—will be called, fittingly enough, Sterling's.

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Google and Zagat Make First Big Move Together, Announce Google+ Local

Today Zagat and its parent company Google announced Google+ Local, which sounds a heck of a lot like their answer to Yelp. In fact, it's the same thing, user reviews on local restaurants with photos and a map, but you need a Google+ account — you do have one of those, right? Citizen reviews will also follow Zagat's famous grading scale, with 30-point ratings for decor, service, cost, and food. It's the first major move from the two since Google bought Zagat last fall, and it sounds like it will potentially mean more for Zagat than for Google.

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Doritos Versus Drugs: Literal War on Snack Food Erupts in Mexico

Temperature-hot, not spice-hot.

A drug cartel firebombed a snack-food company's warehouses and parking lots in the Mexican states Guanajuato and Michoacán over the course of the weekend. The manufacturer Sabritas is owned by PepsiCo; dozens of delivery trucks were destroyed in the attacks, said to be the "first time a multinational firm has been targeted in long-running drug wars." Members of the Knights Templar cartel have been arrested and while the Daily Mail reports the attacks resulted from extortion attempts, ABC reports that widely circulated e-mails suggest the drug cartel believed that the trucks — used to deliver Fritos, Doritos, and Cheetos — were also used to spy on their activities. Chester Cheetah was always a bit shady, but we never pegged him for a narc. [DailyMail UK, ABC]

At Taco Bell, ‘Mixology’ Means a Horrific Breakfast Beverage

Don't cross the streams!Photo: Reddit/AllenJacoby

After pole-vaulting its public image with the introduction of co-branded Doritos tacos (that Cool Ranch–flavored shell was confirmed last week, by the way, along with the promise of "cookie sandwiches"), Taco Bell has outdone itself once again by rolling out a breakfast drink called MTN DEW A.M. in its Fresno and Southern California markets. Let's face it, Fresno needed this. Photos of a drive-through card billing the "Mixology of Mtn Dew and OJ," hit Reddit the other day, and have since ignited our imaginations and captured our immobilized hearts. Fox News, thanks be, got word from a company spokesperson that if MTN DEW A.M. does well, the company is threatening planning to "roll it out to all our restaurants that serve breakfast." [Reddit, Earlier]

A Nookie Update

Yesterday we posted about the BCAE's awesome weekend event, CREATE: Six Artists, Six Chefs, One Canvas. (You should go!) In it, we referred to guest chef Steve "Nookie" Postal as an Around the World in 80 Plates winner. And while he certainly is a winner to us, Nookie e-mailed to remind us that the deal hasn't been sealed quite yet: "While I'm still alive and did totally dominate Barcelona, I have not won," he wrote. But we're not too worried about the guy. Also in our inbox: "Crazy busy over here. Lots happening for me. It's good to be Nookie right now." Cheers, sir. And best of luck. [Earlier]

Finding Grace: How a Sommelier Builds a World-Class Wine List

In the second installment of our video series "Finding Grace: The Making of a Restaurant," chronicling the creation of Michelin-starred chef (and former Alinea chef de cuisine) Curtis Duffy's highly anticipated Grace in Chicago, we meet sommelier and general manager Michael Muser. In a frank and funny nine-minute interview, Muser and Duffy talk about putting together a wine list for a menu that doesn't exist yet, finding the right balance between what customers expect and a sommelier's own wine geekiness, and the one wine that sommeliers wish they could drop from their list (and why customers won't let them). Check it all out, straight ahead.

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Mad Men-Style Tavern, With Downtown's Largest Patio, Slated for Faneuil Hall

Grub Street hears that the folks behind the forthcoming Grain Exchange (who also own Clery's) will open a "Mad Men"-style tavern in Faneuil Hall. Not sure quite what that means, exactly, though we're imagining lots of free-flowing hard alcohol, dapperly dressed businessmen on the prowl, and perhaps post-acid-trip Roger Sterlings/tourists staggering about in Hawaiian shirts.

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Sloshed: How to Make the Perfect Summer Drink Out of Anything

Requirements: Bubbles, booze, lots of ice.Photo: Hannah Whitaker

I gauge the turning of the seasons by which drinks I desire, and my strong yearning for daiquiris and mint juleps is as accurate as any calendar for telling me it's summer. Normally, I'd be stocking limes, mint, and soda. But my summer drinking plans have been disrupted by the fact that I am moving cross-country to San Francisco, so I need to use up all the leftover specialized booze that I bought, made a drink or two with, then stuck back into my liquor cabinet: things like Bénédictine and Crème Yvette that I don't want to lug to the West Coast. You probably don't have quite the same dilemma, but everyone has bottles of random booze sitting around. So, I wondered, is there a single technique that I can apply to any booze to make a great summer drink? Little did I know frat parties would end up inspiring the solution.

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WTF: Travel + Leisure Ranks NYC Ninth, L.A. Tenth on ‘Best Burger Cities’ List

America's Best Burger Town is ... Providence? That's what T&L says. New York ranks ninth, and L.A. is tenth, which seems ... off. Congrats to Philly, however, in No. 2. [Travel & Leisure]

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Huge Beef Producers Would Like You to Reconsider Your Feelings on Pink Slime

It just looks so tasty!Photo: Francois Nascimbeni/Getty Images

Summer grilling season is here, but demand for ground beef is down, according to a report in USA Today. It's because of that whole pink-slime thing! Consumers are moving away from pre-ground beef produced by huge companies like Cargill in favor of beef that's ground at butcher shops and in-store. (Lots of people are choosing ground bison, too.) That's a good thing! Unless of course you work at Cargill, which according to the story "saw 80% of its customers for finely textured beef [the industry term for pink slime] disappear after the controversy erupted in March." Pink slime isn't that bad, they say. In fact, according to Cargill spokesman Mike Martin, "There's no legitimate reason why it shouldn't be part of ground beef." The emphasis there is ours, because, dude, really? [USAT]

Michelle Obama Talks Vegetable Feasts on The Daily Show

FLOTUS hit The Daily Show last night to talk up her brand-new book, American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America, the latest effort in her campaign to get America eating healthy. "The garden is a good way to start the conversation," she told Jon Stewart. "When I grew up, you cooked broccoli until you could cut it with a fork." Adding, "It's not supposed to be that way." No, no it isn't. Check her tips on vegetable feasts, engaging kids in growing, and more on conscientious eating, straight ahead.

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