Sing Along Snacks: Volver en Vino (Return as Wine)

It's never to early or late for a snack so turn up the volume on your computer.

From Madrid we are sending out our thoughts and prayers to those affected by the fires in California, Spain and Portugal. It's a sad close to a lovely summer. Let us hope that new life sprouts from the ashes to return as wine. (English lyrics translation below)

Return as Wine

If wine comes, life comes: I come to your vineyard, beloved land.

I want to die singing under your ripe vine and to be buried at the dawn my grave watered of wine.

If wine comes, life comes: I come to your vineyard, beloved land.

I'd like to leave my bones under the Mendoza sky, for my blood and my ashes return in the wine way

How sad must be dying and never returning, but life is so beautiful, but the way is so stunning, that if I die someday bury me in Mendoza, in San Juan, there at La Rioja, in the beautiful Cayafate, that I'll return as wine!

And when the vines cry for the men to laugh, I'll be filling the glasses, and I'll be kissing the mouths of the old partners or maybe the one I love and couldn't love me.. and in a party night when you take the guitar if you see the wine crying let it cry its sorrow that a brown tear as never I'll be singing!

Life is a bitter wine, sweet in a shared jar: those who swim inside drown only in life.

If wine comes, life comes:

 

 

 

Friday Faves No. 190

our favorite finds from the front lines of food

"You put so much oil in this, the US wanted to invade the f**king plate!" - so beautiful that it brings a tear to the eye. John Legend & Chef Ramsay duet for the new album: 'Gordon' "...OK It's not new but I love it just the same!  (The Nightly Show)

Speaking of food-based insults....food coming in and out of the UK could come to a screeching halt if there is no Brexit deal. Ummm...duh! (BBC)

Sebastien Bras, third-generation chef based in Laguiole, France, has just renounced the coveted three Michelin star ranking. He will continue to cook, but "without wondering whether my creations will appeal to Michelin's inspectors." According to the Munchies article he is not the first to do so. In previous years Olivier Roellinger and Alain Senderens (who passed in June) gave theirs back over a decade again. And let us not forget the amazing Marco Pierre White who said, "I was being judged by people who had less knowledge than me, so what was it truly worth? I gave Michelin inspectors too much respect, and I belittled myself.  I had three options: I could be a prisoner of my world and continue to work six days a week, I could live a lie and charge high prices and not be behind the stove, or I could give my stars back, spend time with my children and reinvent myself." (Munchies)

Here is a nice autumn read - Fasting and Feasting by Adam Lederman.  This biography of the "almost forgotten culinary star", Patience Gray.  She did Slow Food, off the grid living and self sufficiency before it was a "thing". A must read. (Guardian)

Sing Along Snacks: Ojala que llueva café

With new digs in Madrid, Sing Along Snacks are now being enjoyed in Spanish as well. It's good to have a varied snack menu!

This is an incredibly charming song by Juan Luis Guerra. Check out the translated lyrics below (original and translated) and I dare you all to not start swaying around the kitchen with this playing on repeat.

Ojalá que llueva café en el campo
que caiga un aguacero de yuca y té
del cielo una jarina de queso blanco
y al sur una montaña
de berro y miel
oh, oh, oh-oh-oh,
ojalá que llueva café. 
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
and a shower of yucca and tea would fall,
from the sky a sprinkling of white cheese,
and in the south a mountain
of cress and honey.
oh, oh, oh-oh-oh...
If only it would rain coffee.

 

Ojalá que llueva café en el campo
peinar un alto cerro (d)e trigo y mapuey
bajar por la colina de arroz graneado
y continuar el arado con tu querer.
oh, oh, oh-oh-oh...
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
combing a high hill of wheat and mapuey,
descending the slope of grained rice
and continuing to plough with all your love..
oh, oh, oh-oh-oh..
.

Ojalá el otoño en vez de hojas secas
vista mi cosecha de pitisalé
sembrar una llanura
de batata y fresas
ojalá que llueva café.
If only autumn would clothe my harvest
with pitisalé instead of dry leaves, 
sowing a plain with
sweet potato and strawberries,
If only it would rain coffee.

Pa'que en el conuco
no se sufra tanto, ay ombe
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
pa que en Villa Vásquez
oigan este canto
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
ojalá que llueva,
ojalá que llueva, ay ombe
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
ojalá que llueva café.
oh, oh, oh-oh-oh...

So that on the small farms
they won't suffer so much, oh man.
If only it would rain coffee in the fields
so that in Villa Vásquez
they will hear this chant.
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
If only it would rain, 
If only it would rain, Ay, man,
If only it would rain coffee in the fields.
If only it would rain coffee. 
oh, oh, oh-oh-oh... 

Ojalá que llueva café en el campo
sembrar un alto cerro de trigo y mapuey
bajar por la colina de arroz graneado
y continuar el arado con tu querer.
oh, oh, oh-oh-oh...
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
sowing a high hill of wheat and mapuey, 
decending from the hill of grained rice,
and continuing to plough with all your love.
oh, oh, oh, oh

Ojalá el otoño en vez de hojas secas
vista mi cosecha de pitisalé
sembrar una llanura
de batata y fresas
ojalá que llueva café.
If only autumn would clothe my harvest
with pitisalé instead of dry leaves, 
sowing a plain
with sweet potatos and strawberries.
If only it would rain coffee.

Pa que en el conuco
no se sufra tanto, oye
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
pa que en Los Montones
oigan este canto
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
ojalá que llueva, ojalá que llueva, 
ay ombe
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
ojalá que llueva café.
So that on the small farms
they won't suffer so much.
If only it would rain coffee in the fields
so that in Los Montones
they would hear this chant.
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
If only it would rain, if only it would rain,
Ay, man,
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
If only it would rain coffee

Pa que to(dos) los niños
canten en el campo
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
pa que en La Romana
oigan este canto
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
ay, ojalá que llueva,
ojalá que llueva, ay ombe
ojalá que llueva café en el campo
ojalá que llueva café...
So that all the children
will sing in the fields,
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
so that in La Romana
they will hear this chant.
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
Ay, if only it would rain
If only it would rain, man,
If only it would rain coffee in the fields,
If only it would rain.

Friday Faves No. 189

favorite finds from the front lines of food

Looking for disruptive dining? Just go to some dinner theater. No, that's not a cheeky suggestion, it's truly a thing. New productions such as Beauty and the Feast, put on by The Vaults, are offering a fun on three-course delightfully eccentric theatrical culinary performance where the audience participates in the Beauty's journey through the initially bleak foodscape. These are much more than your ol' murder mystery dinner productions!

We kindly request to amuse your bouche with some fine art feasting. It is with the most sincere pride and overwhelming pleasure that eloquent designers Darling & Edge invite you to be their guest for a palatable pantomime.   Your Godmother, Fairy Liquid, has invited you to attend the Beast’s palace to help break the spell. Fairy Liquid is tired of regal dancing, mute dinners and the same old conversations; she needs you to help get the party started. This re-telling sees you follow in the footsteps of Belle, arriving at the Beast’s grey palace where the serving staff, desperate to satisfy, transport you into this modern fairytale. You’re invited through to dinner, where the Beast, and the Feast, awaits. As the booze flows and dinner goes, you are more and more integral to the breaking of this romantic curse. Except, you should expect, this is not a fairytale task. Should you manage to break the spell, the celebration will go on late into the night. The thigh slapping will begin, disco balls will spin and the chandeliers will swing. Forget sipping on soup, abandon regal dances and leave your manners at the door. Come as a beauty, leave as a beast. (Suitable for ages 16+) official description of the production - The Vaults

We kindly request to amuse your bouche with some fine art feasting.

It is with the most sincere pride and overwhelming pleasure that eloquent designers Darling & Edge invite you to be their guest for a palatable pantomime.   Your Godmother, Fairy Liquid, has invited you to attend the Beast’s palace to help break the spell. Fairy Liquid is tired of regal dancing, mute dinners and the same old conversations; she needs you to help get the party started. This re-telling sees you follow in the footsteps of Belle, arriving at the Beast’s grey palace where the serving staff, desperate to satisfy, transport you into this modern fairytale. You’re invited through to dinner, where the Beast, and the Feast, awaits. As the booze flows and dinner goes, you are more and more integral to the breaking of this romantic curse. Except, you should expect, this is not a fairytale task. Should you manage to break the spell, the celebration will go on late into the night. The thigh slapping will begin, disco balls will spin and the chandeliers will swing. Forget sipping on soup, abandon regal dances and leave your manners at the door. Come as a beauty, leave as a beast. (Suitable for ages 16+)

official description of the production - The Vaults

Network, a performance put on by the National Theater, based in London, has a ballot system where winning participants will actually dine onstage during the performance (the audience gets to eat too). This production, which stars Bryan Cranston from Breaking Bad fame, even has a name for this on-stage restaurant, it's call Foodwork.  Diners will be directed through a secret passage and enter the scene as if entering into an actual restaurant.  You can enter here.

Gingerline is producing the Chambers of Flavors v2.0, where the audience experiences five parallel realities and each is a different course. 


In other food news, Costco is expanding into China through the Alibaba subsidiary Tmall.  While Costco in China is not new per se, this deal almost doubles the number of SKUs. This includes wine and food products as well as furniture, electronics, huge teddy bears and the like. Another aspect to this new arrangement, it now means that Costco is licensed in China and can now set up brick and mortar locations throughout the country.

Interesting note, Costco set a Guinness World Record for selling 7,238 tons of mixed nuts during singles day in 2015.  (Alizila)


The sky is falling! The sky is falling! 

Well, yeah, kinda. We have seen all kinds of disasters these past few weeks, including natural, man-made and political. (the salt - NPR)

Hurricane Irma ruins crops

Smoke from wild fires in the PNW could damage this years vintage

French fishermen who catch 70%+ of their fish in British waters are scared of Brexit

Sing Along Snacks: Man No Sober

It's never too early or too late for a snack so crank up that volume on your computer.

This is in honor of our resident Plaza San Miguel drunkard, wino, whatever you want to call him. We have been living in Madrid for a month now and have gotten to "know", or rather become recognized by, our local beggars and drunks. What that means is that we are no longer solicited for our spare change. Instead we get a snear and they just move on....and I'm O.K. with that.

 

Woooh! Man no sober
The drunkard he staggers around
The alleys of cities and towns
His sorrows he tries to drown
Solution to his problems
Can never be found
Booze is what he choose
Like a gipsy he's tipsy
He drinks too much whiskey
Like a gipsy he's tipsy
He drinks too much
A Mr Winehead stagger deh
Booze is what he choose
Watch him how topples over

Man no sober

In and out of discotheques
In and out of wine bars
Burnt out shell looks a wreck
Got to help him somehow oh
Greets bartenders drink firewater
Dance bossanova he topples over

Sing Along Snacks: Anotha (BBQ)

Yo...what!? We are in the second half of another August which means we better get in another BBQ before summer is over and we all go back to the daily grind. Who can help? PUTS, that's who.

You bring the beef and I bring the brew
Oh shit anotha barbecue
You bring the links and I bring the brew
Oh shit anotha barbecue
You bring the wings and I bring the brew
Oh shit anotha barbecue
You bring the ladies and I bring the brew
Oh shit anotha barbecue

 

 

Friday Faves No. 188

favorite finds from the front lines of food

 

"Live your life as if everything you were going to do could be put on a cake." - Kat Thek, Troll Bakery & Detective Agency

No, it's not a light summer read, the Troll Bakery & Detective Agency really exists.  Baker/Detective Kat Thek makes internet trolls eat their words literally by turning posts into actual cakes and sending it to the troll in question through the mail.  Kat has a great little piece of advice on her site: "See something? Cake something." (Cnn Money - video-, NPR, Troll Cakes)

CHEERS! Well at least I think that is the saying du jour chez Clooney.  George and his partners just sold their boutique tequila brand Casamigos to Diageo for beaucoup de dinero.  Word of caution-  enough of this tequila and you start mixing up words and languages.  (Bloomberg BusinessWeek)

Big news this past week about the possible Amazon-Whole Foods acquisition, but those in the supermarket industry are now asking all sorts of questions and taking a hard look at their business model. One thing we are looking at is how Gen Z will react. Will they purchase groceries online? (Supermarket News)

Here is a good news story from Morro Bay.  We have been aware of this effort since the beginning but it is great to see some national coverage. These fishermen are working together and that is encouraging. (Marketplace)

 

 

 

Friday Faves No. 187

favorite finds from the front lines of food

Its been a very busy spring and this just shows how busy we are feeling lately! 


Happy Mother's Day weekend folks!  Find you mom, a friend's mom or just a girlfriend and head out for brunch and/or cocktails! Seriously...it will be better than this Mother's Day gift from the Colonel.  That's right, KFC has done it again. We have seen and documented the "Extra Crispy Sunscreen", the fried chicken room candle and now its the publication of "Tender Wings of Desire", a Colonel Sanders romance novel. Just in case you thought we were joking....here is what the cover looks like. (AdWeek



We knew it! Cheese is not bad for you and we have the science to prove it! 

The findings, from an international team of experts, contradict the view that dairy products can be harmful because of their high saturated fat content. The experts dismiss that fear as “a misconception [and] mistaken belief”. (Guardian)

So if a daily dose of cheese and exercises is the order of the day, one can always try their hand at Stilton Cheese rolling. That's right, cheese rolling. Every year, in May, people congregate in the village of Stilton to watch teams made up of 4 persons roll a whole stilton down the street. Each team member must "roll" the cheese during the course. You know what, just watch the video! (BBC)


Earlier this past April, the Aquarium of the Pacific came out with a short film about perspectives on the state of California Aquaculture. It features prominent scientists and experts on the topic of marine aquaculture in California and the U.S. In this film the experts discuss marine aquaculture’s role in the global food supply and as a conservation tool, the state of domestic marine aquaculture, and the future of marine aquaculture in the U.S. and California. Experts featured are:


And last but not least, don't become an avocado statistic! Stay safe out there folks. (Munchies)

 

 

Friday Faves No. 186

favorite finds from the front lines of food

Yup...it's an actual recipe folks! 

Bon Appétit Baby!



Congrats to all the 2017 James Beard Award winners! While we are sad that A Year In Port didn't make it to the win, it was an honor to be nominated.  In case you were wondering The Birth of Saké walked away with the win. (James Beard Foundation)

And just because I think more people should be watching documentaries about wine - here are the two trailers for your viewing enjoyment.


Film is a great way to communicate, it's almost like having a seat at the table...at least it gets the conversation started.  The good people over at Perennial Plate know this and make it their business to bring people together while bringing attention to issues that concern us all. Each short film will showcase a family originally from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America or the Middle East. 

Francisco and Lucia are Guatemalan refugees who came to Colorado in the 80s, through farming with their community and growing certain plants indigenous to Guatemala, they are able to hold on to a piece of their home.

British retailer Co-op has starting to sell only British bacon and has thrown down a real challenge to other UK retailers to do the same.  That means that their almost 5,000 outlets have removed Danish bacon and New Zealand lamb making them the first supermarket chain to sell fresh meat exclusively from the UK. The National Farmers Union is pretty excited about it as one can imagine. (Munchies & Farming UK


And here is an article of how San Francisco chefs are navigating the intersection of food and politics. (SF Chronicle)

Friday Faves No. 185

favorite find from the front lines of food

Well now Starbucks has gone and done it again. The new "available while supplies last" Unicorn Frappuccino is causing quite a stir.  The article in the Washington Post reports that it tastes like sour birthday cake and shame. Indeed, it only exists for Instagram.  (Washington Post)  BuzzFeed has gone so far as to list the ingredients for the elusive concoction and guess what, it contains the most magical ingredient of all- SUGAR! Check out these pix! (BuzzFeed


While Unicorns may or may not be a real problem, we do know that the fantastical lionfish is causing havoc in the Caribbean.  Just this past week there was an amazing "Eat Lionfish Chefs Throwdown" in the Bahamas.  Our friend and godfather of sustainability, Rick Moonen, MCed the chef competition and it looks like it was a lot of fun.  (Bernews)


Desperate times mean desperate measures.  Failing malls are turning to the foodie crowds and food trucks to draw customers to their parking lots. Now, there is no guarantee that customers will go inside....but it's worth a try. (Bloomberg)


And last but not least, we are proud to showcase one of our amazing clients, Scottish Seas. (Seafood Source)

 

 

 

 

Sing Along Snacks: Bad Day of Fishin'

We are done with winter and looking forward to a great season full of wild salmon and steelhead. This sing along snack is dedicated to all  you commercial and recreational fishing folk out there, with a special shot out to my expert mom up in the Columbia River Gorge!

'Cause a bad day of fishin' beats a good day of anything else!

Friday Faves No. 184

favorite finds from the front lines of food

 

Great work on these chocolate geodes! Impressive.

If you ever doubted the old saying "You are what you eat" look no further than this incredible story about how scientists are turning spinach leaves into beating human heart tissue. No kidding. This heart cells beat up to three weeks in this unusual environment. (Washington Post)

Here is the video!

This is not meant to be a political blog but food is big business and big politics. We just cannot afford to avoid what is happening so here is a quick round up of some of the latest items we need to keep on our radar screen: 

  • Will affordable produce be a thing of the past if we have no one to pick it? (Washington Post)
  • Despite evidence of being a health risk - the EPA decided not to ban the use of chlorpyrifos. (NPR)
  • Meals-on-Wheels subject to budget cut (Business Insider
  • Same goes for children's nutrition programs (Mother Jones)
  • Fisheries are getting harder to manage (Saving Seafood)
  • Your breakfast table might be more expensive in the near future as well - from the article:

    “General Mills imports most of the oats used in most of our products, like Cheerios,” CEO Ken Powell said during a panel discussion Thursday morning. “They come from Canada because [oats are] a northern crop. Geographies have natural advantages when it comes to producing certain things. So we bring oats in from Canada, we make a bunch of Cheerios in Cedar Rapids Iowa, and then a large portion of it gets exported back to Canada,” he explained. 

    “We bring cocoa in from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, vanilla from Madagascar. These are the only places you can get these things,” he continued. “We have to be careful that we’re not tariffing these kinds of import/export [relationships]. All it will do is result in higher costs on basic needs for American consumers.”

    (Forbes)

Friday Faves No. 183

favorite finds from the front lines of food

March 22, 2017 - World Water Day

The NGO WaterAid published their report called Wild Water: The State of the World's Water 2017 and the findings are not great.  "Across the world 663 million people still do not have access to water and the vast majority of them - over half a billion- live in rural areas."  That's right folks. It's time we all step up and do what we can to ensure access to potable water around the globe. (Guardian & WaterAid)

They are not the first but they are the biggest! Escondido, California-based Stone Brewing has stepped up to brew delicious beer out of waste water.  The epic California drought has challenged them to rethink how they use water and explore more ways to be responsible brewers. Want to know the name? Full Circle Pale Ale. After all it is a well known fact that we never own beer we just rent it.  (Grub Street)

The Economist reports that this year the sales of bottled water outpaced sales of soft drinks in America. It turns our that the bottled water market worth $147bn and has been growing 9% annually in recent years. Premium water is not new and it seems like everyone is in the game, but this is downright ridiculous.....You can now but Svalbardi, harvested from Norwegian icebergs that are up to 4,000 years-old for $99 a bottle.  It looks like an expensive vodka but actually gives new meaning to water of life. (Economist)

Farmers in California have had one of the wettest winters on record but that doesn't mean they will be getting 100% of their water allotment.  This coming year these farmers up and down the San Joaquin Valley will get two-thirds of their water allotment from the federal government, 65% to be accurate.  (Sacramento Bee)

And finally - In honor of World Water Day, Waves for Water and Red Bull have released an hour-long documentary recounting Jon Rose's story of how he is becoming the "new face" of social entrepreneurship. This is a great story of how this former professional surfer has been able to provide clean water to over 7 million people around the globe. (GrindTV

Watch it here on Red Bull TV

 

 

Friday Faves N. 182

our favorite finds from the front lines of food

Special Celebration Edition

I have never heard such an eloquent celebration of the humble cucumber! Thank you, thank you, thank you Macka B for such fine words and delicious respect. 


Next up - a huge congratulations to A Year In Port on the recent James Beard Foundation nomination for the Best Food and Wine Film of 2017.  The other films nominated are The Birth of Sake and The Coffee Man. We are very proud to have been part of the InCA team for all of the Year In...films and have our fingers crossed! 

A Year In Burgundy (on iTunes, Netflix, Amazon & more)

A Year In Champagne (on iTunes, Amazon & more)

A Year In Port (on iTunes)


March 21st we celebrate Persian New Year and the coming of Spring. Time for new beginnings, friendship and a most delicious meal. Thank you to Samin Nosrat for such a fine collection of words in the NY Times: The Verdant Food of Iran Entices at Persian New Year.  (NYTimes)


And finally a personal celebration about a career milestone. This Coming Sunday I will be moderating a panel of chefs at the Seafood Expo North America keynote session.  It is called Delicious & Profitable: Chefs Discuss the Business of Seafood.  I am thrilled to be joined on stage with chefs Rick Moonen, Jeff Black, Ned Bell and Richard Garcia. 

Sing Along Snacks: Fish Stew

In honor of the Seafood Expo North America show taking place from March 19 to 21st in Boston, we have a special snack from one of our favorite chefs- the one and only Jamie Oliver.  It's not like our other snacks in that it is part music video and part recipe video.....and while it is fun and cute, Jamie, don't give up your day job!

Instead of lyrics, here are the ingredients:

Jamie Oliver's Fish Stew

  • 2 cloves garlic , peeled
  • 1 small pinch saffron , optional
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 250 ml low-fat mayonnaise , made with free-range eggs
  • lemon juice
  • 12 mussels , from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger
  • 20 clams , from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger
  • olive oil
  • 1 small wineglass white wine
  • 400 g good-quality tinned plum tomatoes
  • 2 small fillets of sea bass or bream , from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger, cut in half
  • 2 small fillets of red mullet or snapper , from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger, cut in half
  • 2 small fillets of monkfish or other firm white fish , from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger
  • 4 langoustines or tiger prawns , from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger, shell on
  • 2 thick slices crusty bread
  • 1 small handful fennel tops
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small bunch fresh basil , leaves picked and stalks chopped