First came the parent-and-toddler dining club at Michelin-starred restaurants — and now, kids can ditch the adults for a children-only meal at restaurants like Per Se, Del Posto, and Blue Hill, part of Danish culinary star Claus Meyer’s new New York project Kid’s Table. At the event, children aged 7 to 14 eat a three-course meal for $30, sans parents. Meanwhile, each restaurant incorporates rhubarb, lamb, and turnip in the dinner and treats the tots and teens like regular diners. You can read the story about how Meyer, the co-founder of Noma, is trying to bring in a new generation of food-aware people.
How food became pop culture: Mario Batali writes that pp until the late ’70s/early ’80s, nobody in America thought of dinner as much more than something they did before they went out to a game or the opera or the movies. Gastronomy was only important to, maybe, a small group of people, and even then, it was a frippery. No one cared about consuming the information as well as the food.
Ever since Charles Dickens wrote about a crumb of cheese affecting Ebenezer Scrooge’s sleep in his popular book, A Christmas Carol, myths have abounded stating that eating cheese before bed can affect our dreams. In fact, there are almost as many stories about how cheese can affect dreams as there are types of cheese. However, the interesting thing is, there has only ever been one study about cheese and dreams and it wasn’t by a sleep expert, dream expert or university department specialising in sleep disorders. The study was undertaken by, wait for it, the British Cheese Board, in 2005. Does cheese affect dreams? To find out you need to read this interesting article.
René Redzepi’s Message to Chefs in 2016: “Don’t Panic: If there is a chef that is more revered, referenced and seemingly omnipresent, it’s René Redzepi of Noma, the restaurant which has been voted the world’s best four times. He and his skilled, charismatic team have just finished their 10 week tenure in the new development on Sydney’s western waterfront Barangaroo; a pop up that received 25,000 inquiries before it bookings even properly opened.
This study 40 years ago could have reshaped the American diet. But it was never fully published: It was one of the largest, most rigorous experiments ever conducted on an important diet question: How do fatty foods affect our health? Yet it took more than 40 years — that is, until today — for a clear picture of the results to reach the public.
Plastic waste covers our oceans and landfill. The past 70 years of plastic waste have resulted in pollution so ubiquitous scientists say it’s a marker of a new geological epoch, the manmade Anthropocene. Plastic cutlery is a contributor to this enormous problem – estimates suggest the US alone uses 40bn plastic utensils a year – but the founder of Indian cutlery company Bakeys thinks he might have a solution. Cutlery you can eat. Read about it here.
There are many cookbooks but not many people are cooking these days. Rachel Cooke says that there are times when she looks at the lovely cookbooks that are being published and feels ‘mournful’. She says if we each knew eight proper, wholesome recipes by heart, the world would be a better, happier place.
The art of service: secrets of the maitre d’: Fred Sirieix knows exactly where his interest in service comes from: his parents’ careers in the French equivalent of the NHS in Limoges, where he grew up. “Every day before going on the night shift my dad would shave,” he says now. “I asked him why he did that. He told me it was to make the patients trust him. The conversation around the dinner table was all about patient care. It was about making sure people had a good experience.”
A new California cuisine: Travis Lett is a bearded, hippie-chic chef who runs a trio of popular restaurants in the beachside community of Venice, Calif. The flagship is Gjelina, a loud, fashionable and vegetable-centric neighborhood spot as well known for the attractiveness of its clientele as for its pizzas and salads, slathered toasts and smoky pastas. The restaurant is an aspirational lifestyle camp, replete with fire pit and sloe-eyed waiters. Thankfully, little of that scene is documented in ‘‘Gjelina: Cooking From Venice, California,’’ Lett’s excellent cookbook, which came out in the fall.
What does it mean when a wine is given a medal? Who decides a bottle deserves that little commended, bronze, silver or gold sticker that prods you to pick it up in a shop? And can you trust them? Or are the organisations that run these competitions too focused on profit – at your expense?
Best sommelier of the world: Tips from the top. Read how some of the world best’s sommeliers train for the competition and what they think about it.
The women who rule Napa: Many of Napa Valley’s greatest wineries are led by women. Kelli White profiles eight of the local legends whose names bestride the world stage of fine wine and discovers what makes them unique.