From Too Many Chefs -

February 25, 2005
Food Digest

With the Oscars just days away, even the food sections have caught Hollywood fever. As you might guess, plenty of articles look at Sideways' impact on the wine industry. Food writers also give tips for planning the perfect Oscars party. There's lots of other tasty information this week, so follow us on our weekly stroll through the food news that was.

Zinfandel and Petitie Sirah, two grape varietals that seem to thrive only in California, both have their fans, according to the Napa News.

The Oregonian, getting an early jump on the Oscars, hands out their own awards for the best food scenes in movies this year.

The whole world loves pasta, even the Rio Grande region, where the dish is called fideo. Lynn Brezosky of the AP has the whole story and several tasty recipes.

The New York Times reports that Americans are eating more chicken but cooking it less. No surprise when you can find great roast chickens sold at grocery stores and food marts. Eric Asimov looks at the response to Sideways in the Napa region. Southern France challenges the pizza supremacy of Italy. Next thing you know, the French will be making better boiled beef than the British. The French are also on the march in America, with the first ever Michelin guide to New York will soon be published. The former president of the Red Lobster chain has been named the new head of the James Beard Foundation. Is this a good thing? Angry British chef Gordon Ramsay performs for the press and hawks his new Fox television show. In one of his final acts, music legend Ray Charles endowed a chair of African-American Culinary Studies at Dillard University in New Orleans.

The L.A. Times discovers the joys of winter wild mushrooms. They also think that people throwing Oscar parties should create a theme menu that reflects their favorite film. Sure, I'll get my personal assistant right on that. On a more serious note, a hot group of young chefs is shaking up the kitchens of Mexico City. Columnist David Shaw thinks animal rights activities are going too far when they threaten people.

The Washington Post finds truffles in North Carolina, of all places.

The Chicago Tribune defends merlot from Miles' snide comments in Sideways. The paper also offers some simple tips on how to open oysters.

When the French get their hands on sauerkraut, the humble hot dog codiment becomes a luscious choucroute. San Fracisco get its first taste of dining in bed. I sure hope this trend of restaurants with beds doesn't spread. For Marlena Spieler, nothing says New York like a good pickle.

According to the Denver Post, restaurant in the Mile High City don't follow national trends. Waiters tell the paper that diners should treat them a little better.

The U.S. is fast becoming one of the top wine consumers in the world, according to the Miami Herald. The growing quality of affordable Latin American wines might be one factor for this rise.

At the Village Voice, Nina Lalli steps bravely into the "pizza wars" and tries Pizza Hut's Dippin' Strips. It's because of that kind of bravery that the big city reporters get paid the big bucks.

Last week I complained about a lack of interesting food news. This week, we had a bounty. Maybe the editors were holding back some stories. We're always looking for interesting food sections, so let us know if we're not covering your favorite.

Posted by at February 25, 2005 5:22 PM