Tragedy as Marketing

I grew up in a town that knew tragedy. On the night of November 15, 1970, a chartered jet airliner carrying the local university football team, coaches and a number of prominent residents crashed in flames on its approach to the airport. The weather conditions were poor, and there was a light rain. There were no survivors. I was 8 years old. We lived a few miles away, on a hill just over from the site […]

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The Local Food Movement

“I know that if I ever go looking for my heart’s desire, I’ll never go any further than my own back yard. For if it isn’t there, I never really lost it.” – Dorothy Gale (Wizard of Oz) Eat and drink local seems to be the meme everywhere you turn these days. It’s not so much that I disagree with this movement, it is that it has its limits, but the advocates for all things […]

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Beware of Wine Bloggers!

Steve Heimoff knows a lot about wine, and he is a pretty decent writer. So, when he warns us about a new threat to the wine community we should heed his words. Here are the aforementioned words of wisdom and warning: The worst thing a wine blog can do is to shill, however inadvertantly, for a winery or region. The minute I read about someone’s “delightful” visit to so-and-so, they’ve lost me. Visits may indeed […]

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Best Moment of an Overwhelmingly Good Trip

This trip to California is winding down, we are packing to leave. Instead of thinking about returning to my cage tomorrow, I am focusing on the amazing memories this journey has provided. There are so many things that I will remember for all of my days, but one thing stands out overwhelmingly to me above everything else. I am not easily starstruck. In a previous life I was a union stagehand and either met or […]

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Restaurant Review: Pope’s Pairings Protect Plonk

The brainchild of Chef Monica Pope t’afia promises “coastal Mediterranean cuisine inspired by local ingredients.” Let me just summarize up front by saying the decor is trendy cafeteria-cool, our waiter was friendly, the food is good, but the place is very loud. Acoustics in t’afia are not conducive to quiet conversation. At least not when sitting on the long communal bench. I could hear the conversations from the tables behind me and beside me, but could not hear my dinner partner sitting across from me.

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Flavor Profiles – Food and Wine

Approaches to Food & Wine: Are You a Mad Scientist or Methodical Scholar? When learning to cook or to pair wine with food, I am of the opinion that Jacob’s scholarly approach is the best way. Once a good foundation is laid, let the mad scientist Alex loose. Over the years I have taken the opposite approach when learning a new skill and have regretted it, despite having some success.

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