What really makes whiskey taste like whiskey? If flavor truly just came down to a simple formula of distilling ratios of grains plus time spent in a barrel, then there wouldn’t be an infinite range of tastes, profiles and qualities.
There were only about three or four ramen shops on Oahu when Hidehito Uki founded Sun Noodle in 1981. Ramen in America was pretty much just a cup of noodles you cooked in the microwave.
Taco Bell is the best Mexican food I ever ate. I will say this to your face over a plate of enchiladas suiza. You will shake your head at such transparent provocation. What a shocking thing to say at a restaurant that has the best tacos in New York City! I won't even correct that assertion.
For a long time, Ina Garten was a Hamptons shopkeeper who waited upon the wealthy. She has been, for a shorter time, a celebrity chef of some wealth. "Am I a billionaire? Of course not!" she told me recently over tea on the Upper East Side, and then she laughed.
Mark Gardiner was a former VP of marketing and an advertising consultant before taking a job as a crew member at a Trader Joe’s store in Kansas City six years ago.
In the fall of 1889, when he was 41 years old, the painter Paul Gauguin was brutally, furiously alone. Famous now for his saturated, almost hallucinatory paintings of life in Tahiti, at the time he was living in Brittany, still two years away from his first visit to French Polynesia.
This story was originally published on Civil Eats. By now, the images of shelves full of perfect greens in hulking warehouses, stacked floor to ceiling in sterile environs and illuminated by high-powered LED lights, have become familiar.
Anthony Bourdain had just returned home for the holidays, stepping off a plane that had delivered him from the balmy heat of Muscat and walking directly into one of those wintry New York snaps where the frigid wind fires through Manhattan’s crosstown canyons like rubber bullets.
“If one were offered dinner for two at any price, to be eaten in any restaurant anywhere in the world, what would the choice be? And in these days of ever‐higher prices, what would the cost be?” the critic Craig Claiborne once asked in a restaurant review for the New York Times.
Last summer, I was at the beach when I saw a plane towing a banner for Vintage seltzer, the stalwart bodega brand. Not long before that, I was accosted by photographs of Topo Chico bottles sweating so lasciviously that the pages of the magazine almost stuck together.
This is Eater Voices, where chefs, restaurateurs, writers, and industry insiders share their perspectives about the food world, tackling a range of topics through the lens of personal experience. First-time writer? Don’t worry, we’ll pair you with an editor to make sure your piece hits the mark.
There are many local legends about how saffron came to Kashmir. One goes back to the 12th century, and says that Sufi saints Khawaja Masood Wali and Sheikh Sharif-u-din Wali presented a local chieftain with a saffron bulb after he cured them of an illness while they were traveling.
In May of 1995, Ruth Patras realized that something was wrong with her 5-week-old daughter, Ciara. Initially happy and healthy, about a month after Ciara was born, the whites of her eyes started to turn yellow. Over the next few days, the color deepened, and her appetite diminished.
One week to the day after he won the 2016 Presidential election, Donald Trump slipped away from his handlers — as well as the journalists assigned to cover him — for an off-the-books dinner at 21 Club in New York, where he ordered a steak, cooked well-done.
That's it. And that's strange, really, considering the pitch of the media coverage surrounding those revelations.
Tsukiji is the most exalted fish market on earth, the sort of humbling place that causes the likes of globally worshipped god-chef René Redzepi to deem it one of the “seven culinary wonders of the world.
“I was thinking of giving this place five stars, but I’m kind of teetering on five stars or one star,” says South Park’s Eric Cartman, surrounded by half-eaten plates of food in a 2015 episode. Visibly concerned about an impending online review, a manager asks what he can do to help.
It should be common knowledge that when dining out in America, you tip your server. Sure, tipping is inherently exploitative, but as long as tipped minimum wages exist, you don’t get to opt out.
In 1878, a group of jailed Russian dissidents decided to stop eating. They had recently been tried for treason and were being held indefinitely in an island prison. With no certain end to their confinement, they made a gamble: Starving to death couldn’t be worse than how they were living.
My second job ever was as a food demonstrator at Williams-Sonoma, the California-based cookware store founded in the 1950s.
Women in bars don't always have the best experiences. Yes, we have fun and drink and dance on tables, or sit down and have good times with friends, or play skee-ball or win quiz games or hook up or have interesting conversations, or do any of the things that humans do in bars.
The first place we were allowed to go to alone was the McDonald’s around the corner. Our family went so often that my parents eventually allowed us to walk there and back by ourselves.
Consider the chipotle. It’s an icon of Mexican food, renowned for its chameleonic charms. Its dexterity in the kitchen outshines that of its pepper peers, and inspires cooks to create salsas, soups, rubs, and desserts.
California is now the most influential force in American dining. That’s right, it isn’t New York. Not any longer. Sure, the great city will always produce blockbusters and occasional, wonderful novelties; Queens is an undervalued wonderland of cuisines.
The kitchen of the future is here, and it’s one that no one asked for.
Tsubasa Tamaki was concerned with the state of the pizza in his new oven. Wearing his uniform of white t-shirt, faded blue jeans, and white Converse sneakers, he had stopped talking and began to watch the dough, eyeing the fire; a second too long and the pizza would be ruined.
F. Nephi Grigg had an unbeatable scheme. Nephi and his brother Golden had travelled 2,883 miles from the tiny Oregon border town where they ran their frozen potato company to the white sparkling sands of Miami Beach. This was 1954.
It’s Friday night. You walk into one of the city’s hottest restaurants and, like a wave, it hits you: There’s a 45-minute wait for a table, a mob at the bar, servers zigzagging across the dining room, and plates rolling out of the open kitchen.
Talk to a fisherman anywhere in the world and it won’t be long before you’ll hear the tales: the first catch, the one that got away, the really big one. On Tonle Sap Lake, the largest body of freshwater in Southeast Asia, the fish stories are divided into then and now.
Afriend of mine, I'll call her Elena, worked for many years for one of New York's top restaurants, rising over time to the position of maitre d' — a very huge deal (monumentally huge, actually) for a woman in the hospitality industry.
Stop me when this sounds scary familiar: A historic boomtown becomes ground zero for a feverish technological revolution that promises to transform life as we know it. Shaggy-haired software developers suit up in blazers and T-shirts to preach the gospel of e-commerce.
The first time I went to Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack, I was 12 years old, and I didn’t even eat the chicken. My dad, though, ordered his “hot” — one of six heat levels spicy enough to force beads of sweat from one’s brow onto the table, one soft drop at a time.
Tendrils of pasta, slick with butter and meaty ragù, tumble onto a plate in slow motion amid rising steam. A shower of grated Parmesan dusts the dish. Samin Nosrat twirls a forkful of pasta from the edge of the mound, and lifts it to her mouth. Her eyes widen. The music crests.
Julia Turshen has long been a sought-after cookbook writer, collaborating with big names like Gwyneth Paltrow and Dana Cowin and famously turning in book drafts an entire year before their due date (unheard of in the cookbook world).
NYC restaurateur, Shake Shack founder, and millionaire Danny Meyer is having a good week.
“You know what this place needs,” I said to myself this morning, as I went into the little store around the corner where I buy my daily coffee, my breakfast sandwiches, my late-night potato chips, and my emergency tampons.
I didn’t know what to expect as I merged from Interstate 5 onto Highway 99, the 425-mile road that serves as the scruffy spine of California’s Central Valley.
“I don’t tip because society says I have to,” says Mr. Pink, the crook played by Steve Buscemi in the 1992 Quentin Tarantino film Reservoir Dogs. “Alright, I mean I’ll tip if somebody really deserves a tip. If they put forth the effort, I’ll give them something extra.
No one would have described Mizu Sushi Lounge in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico as nondescript. It wasn’t a traditional Mexican restaurant by any means. Patrons dined on deep-fried sushi rolls, and washed the quasi-fusion food down with icy glasses of sangria.
The Cheesecake Factory, in all of its gold-hued, dark-wood opulence; romance novel-length menu; and ancient-Egypt-meets-Vegas-Strip vibe, might not be the American dream, but certainly an American dream. It’s America’s No.
Millennials are murderers! Or so you’d think, if you believe the headlines. Which I do, for the most part — though in the case of Young People Today, most of the things that are dying seem to have been destined for the grave in the first place (paper napkins? ugh).
More people than ever are chasing a dream of running a kitchen or flipping an omelette on television. Culinary school enrollment has swelled in recent years, while tuition rates — and student loan debt — rise alongside it.
Eater sent Top Chef recapper and comedian Max Silvestri to Top Chef: The Cruise. He made it back in one piece to file this report: Over four days at sea, I see no one happier than Hubert Keller.
It's Delivery Week here at Eater, five glorious days celebrating staying put and having your food brought right to your door. Except for today, because maybe you shouldn't get delivery. My aversion to food delivery started, like all good pathologies, in childhood.
When I was maybe 8 or 9, my dad ordered mussels at a restaurant. This was his first time ordering any sort of bivalve, and when the creatures arrived, glistening in their alabaster shells, he grimaced. My family’s relationship to meat has always been complicated.
On a cold, rainy afternoon last fall, Brandon Chonko showed me how to herd a gaggle of geese. The lesson came at the end of a long day spent building a new fence on the western side of his thirty-acre enterprise, Grassroots Farms, two hundred miles southeast of Atlanta.
When I ask a diplomat friend — a crisis-management guy who spent a few years representing U.S. interests in Bogotá — where I should dine in Colombia, his first response is Andrés Carne de Res, a restaurant as famous for its stellar empanadas as its all-night, alcohol-fueled benders.
As a proud New Yorker, I was not supposed to like Pizza Hut's pizza, reconstructed from a third-hand dream about Little Italy. It was pizza distilled and distorted for white middle states, with doughy crusts and sweet sauce and something that just felt off. Liking Pizza Hut was just not what we did.
“There are kind of two types of cookbooks out there,” chef Jet Tila, frequent Food Network contestant, host, and judge says. “There is the ‘Yo, slap a bunch of this on this, pow, bang, zoom,’” the succession of onomatopoeias suggesting a set of haphazard, 15-minute recipes.
The first steamed crab I pluck from the pile feels heavy in my hand, and I'm already content. The act of grabbing the shell smears my fingers with clumps of spices and coarse salt, but I don't mind. As a native Marylander, everything about being here at L.P.
When a night at a restaurant or bar finally comes to a close, most Americans engage in an instinctive ritual. They dig into their wallets, fiddle with their smartphone calculators, and then decide how much money to give their server or bartender for a job well done.
A gentle breeze slid in the doorway of Rosa Abdu’s restaurant and escaped through the spaces in the walls.
With seasonal produce, impossibly clear hand-chipped ice, and precise yet fluid movements, bartenders in Japan elevate the act of building a cocktail into an art form, sometimes asking as much as the cost of a wagyu dinner in return.
On the top floor of @home cafe in Tokyo’s geek-friendly Akihabara district, in a low-ceilinged, brightly lit room that smelled of a poorly ventilated deep fryer, a coterie of frilly aproned maids were delivering wobbly, abstractly decadent Jell-O towers to their eager guests.
It's Delivery Week here at Eater, five glorious days celebrating staying put and having your food (and in the case of this story, perhaps a little bit more) brought right to your door. A note: Many of the links in this story are not safe for work.
When was the last time you used Yelp? If your attention (and/or ire) has wandered more toward instantly accessible Google reviews or meticulously curated Instagram feeds in recent months, you’re not alone: Yelp revealed during an earnings call last week that the review site is struggling to attrac
This article was originally published October 23, 2014.
The walls of the bar are covered in old art, photographs of Ireland, and yellowing posters in frames. A pair of hurleys, the flat ash stick of the Gaelic game, are tacked above the door frame.