Crab Sandwiches, KFC, Jay-Z
This week in Food News:
Tokyo Ale Works, a brewery in Tokyo, debuted its Kani Burger. Kani means crab in Japanese and the burger swaps out deep fried soft shell crab for buns, and crabmeat, lettuce, and tomatoes in between the 2 crab “buns”. This is essentially the KFC Double Down, on steroids and fancy. The burger looks so good that Bettina Makalintal from Munchies declared that “All burgers should have entire deep fried crab instead of buns” and I would have to agree. Tom thinks all burgers should have buns and a crab inside of it.
Kentucky Fried Chicken in Indonesia is beginning to sell Fried Chicken Skins for $1 a bag. They are capitalizing on unhealthy snack food, and this is for sure going to be a hit. Hopefully, they decide to bring it to the US. If they do, I’ll definitely have to try it. Source
“I’m not a businessman. I’m a business, man” Famed Brooklyn rapper Jay-Z has become Hip-Hop’s first Billionaire. The vast majority of his net worth has come from his investments in Ace of Spades Champagne and Dusse Cognac. He is also an investor in the 40/40 Club, The Brooklyn Nets, Tidal, and has many other business ventures. Source
Who Cares About Michelin Stars?
Michelin made its triumphant return to Los Angeles and no one was happy with it. They didn’t award a single restaurant 3 stars, even though many believed that some of the restaurants in LA are the best in the world. Tom and I talk about Michelin Stars, the validity that they bring, and the issues we have with them.
The one example that I have used multiple times for Michelin in NYC is the Steakhouse example that I called “The Peter Luger Standard”. Steakhouses in NYC are all pretty similar, some are definitely better than others and some are not as traditional. That all being said, the only Steakhouse in the entire 5 Boroughs of NYC that has a Michelin Star is Peter Luger. By Michelin recognizing Luger as being worthy of a Star, why are the handful of other NYC Steakhouses that serve more varieties of steak and sides, as well as the Porterhouse, Cream Spinach, Mashed Potatoes staples not awarded with stars? Luger is not the best Steakhouse in NYC, it is incredible and I believe it is one of the most important restaurants in NYC, but not the only one that deserves a Michelin Star
My next point is the obvious Nepotism and borderline Xenophobia with 2 vastly different 2 Starred Restaurants. Gabriel Kreuther in Bryant Park has 2 Michelin Stars. They are a fancy French restaurant with an interior very similar to Le Bernardin. When I went there, they served me a cocktail with 2 types of ice, and fish that had been expired. Neither of these should be acceptable at a restaurant of any caliber much less one with 2 Michelin Stars. I’ve also eaten at Gaggan which has been voted the #1 restaurant in Asia for something like 5 years in a row. Where I had probably the worst seafood of my life at GK, I had the absolute best piece of seafood at Gaggan. A Tandoori Prawn that was perfect in every way. Gaggan has only 2 Michelin Stars and is not only the best meal I’ve ever had but on a different planet than Gabriel Kreuther.
My final point is comparing 2 Mexican Restaurants in NYC. Oxomoco is across the street from our studio in Greenpoint and Cosme is in Flatiron. Oxomoco is a wonderful restaurant and deserving of their Michelin star, but Cosme was literally the best a la carte dinner I have ever had(Gaggan is a tasting menu) and they were not awarded one. They are also famously run by a female chef Daniela Soto-Innes. This one just confuses me, but then again there is no Michelin guide for Mexico
Let me know what you think about Michelin and your experiences in the comments below
A Rant: Parmesan vs Parmigiano Reggiano
This rant is a long time coming, and I’m actually surprised that Tom and I have never talked about it before. Next time you go out to dinner at an Italian Restaurant, do not ask for Parmesan Cheese. Parmesan Cheese is not Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese. Parmesan Cheese is not even cheese, there have been traces of wood pulp and cellulose found in it when tested.
Parmigiano- Reggiano Cheese is the “King of Cheeses” must be aged a minimum of 12 months. It can only be made in a handful of cities(The “Parma-Reggio” region), and only has 3 ingredients, milk, salt, and rennet.
Parmesan Cheese comes in a green cylinder and has no rules of its production. Parmesan Cheese tastest nothing like Parmigiano Reggiano.
Check out this segment to hear even more about the two, as well as Pecorino Romano and Grana Padano.
Singapore Sling and A Cocktail to Be Named Later