Recent Blog Posts

Along with Uncle Sam, Civil War daguerreotypes, and hot apple pies on Thanksgiving, diners are one of those nostalgia-inducing cultural artifacts that somehow get under the skin of millennials and baby boomers alike. Diners have long been a quintessential element of Americana, but along with bottomless coffee and the time-honored […]

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In the United States, Cinco de Mayo is a day synonymous with tequila, recurring ethnic and culturally charged controversies, and more tequila. Long regarded by Americans as the boozy day in which both we and Mexico celebrate the independence of our neighbor to the South, many might be surprised to […]

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The holidays are often a time of overindulgence, especially when it comes to food. From Thanksgiving through New Years, Americans tend to stuff their faces with holiday mainstays. But it’s fair to say that a plate topped off North Dakota won’t look like one topped off in Alabama. Southern food […]

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The weekends are often a time of culinary decadence—a respite from the long working week, at which time many people celebrate with candlelight, nice dinners, wine, etc. Some of us, though, aren’t so different from Clarence Worley in True Romance, and when we’re done with the week’s struggle, we want […]

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Only a few days have passed since Halloween, but some of you might already be reaching for the last few sweet treats in your (or more likely your child’s) candy bag. Among all the delectable chocolates, hard candies, and gelatinous goodies, you’ll surely find some form of corn syrup residing […]

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As a food writer, chef, and television guru Anthony Bourdain often points out during his show, No Reservations, that every culture has their “meat in tube form,” and, that more often than not, this meat product (i.e. hotdog, bratwurst, sausage of some form, etc.) is delicious. One of these meats […]

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It’s hard not to have fun when newspapers roll out with brand new words like the 2008 recessionista , the “style maven with a budget,” or, more recently, the femivore, a stay-at-home mother who finds empowerment through feeding her family organic and locally sourced food. The latest neologism is hegan. […]

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Liqueur and liquor may both stem from the same Latin verb liquere meaning “to be fluid” and the Old French noun licour meaning “liquid.” Nevertheless, liqueurs are entirely different liquids from their counterpart spirits. According to Stuart Walton, the author of The Bartender’s Guide to Cocktails and Mixed Drinks, liqueurs […]

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There are few things that I love more than finding out that two seemingly very different words share the same root. Like the shared history of pomegranate and hand grenade, these connections between word origins sometimes surface in decidedly non-linguistic places. Today’s strange linguistic history comes from Harold McGee’s On […]

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Over the past year or so I’ve noticed a strange phenomenon: people are showing up in cafeterias and break rooms carrying tiny plastic boxes or tins filled with elegantly arranged or cutely flourished lunch items. Their sandwiches may look like mice one day, cats another; the fruit resembles a bouquet […]

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