Nuts & Honey
Surprise: The crop that hires the largest number of bee colonies to pollinate it is almonds: 650,000 colonies, all in California. By comparison, there are only 250,000 bee colonies servicing apples all around the country. So where’s all the almond blossom honey?
Get Your Red-Hot Beer
Beer anthropologist Alan D. Eames (“the Indiana Jones of Beer”) reveals in Chile Pepper magazine that there is more than one connection between chile and beer. Both the Aztecs and the Incas made a pepper-flavored beer (hot chicha is still brewed in Peru), and the Arawaks of the Caribbean did the same, probably using the fiery habanero pepper. Three years ago the Pabst brewery tried out a hot Cajun Beer in the Midwest (Eames loved it: “crisp, full-bodied and with a lovely mild afterburn”), but it flopped. Its developer, Eames says, is now trying to introduce Cajun Beer to Japan.
Let’s Eat Small
In case you haven’t noticed, snacks and cereals have been shrinking. Keebler now makes Town House Jrs. crackers, Bite Size Chips Deluxe and Elfkins sandwich cookies. Kellogg has a sweetened cereal called Cinnamon Mini Buns. Nabisco makes Ritz Bits, the tiny bear-shaped cookies called Teddy Grahams, and Mini Chips Ahoy--inch-wide, low-sodium, low-saturated-fat chocolate chip cookies you can eat by the handful.
Inquiring Mouths Want to Breathe
The National Enquirer’s diligent research has turned up an all-garlic restaurant in Stockholm. The Olsson brothers put garlic in or on everything they serve, says the Enquirer, from steak to cheesecake and very much including chocolates. You can order more garlic on anything in their restaurant, but not less.
A New High in Environmental Correctness
The Organic Wine Company in San Francisco specializes in certified organic French wines “free of synthetic chemicals.”
Whatever Happened to Just Leaving it in the Refrigerator for a Week?
USDA food scientists report that explosion puffing, the technique used to produced puffed wheat, also works well on some fruits and vegetables. You partially dry a strawberry, for instance, and then violently reduce the air pressure until it pops from vaporizing internal moisture. Et voila: a dried strawberry.
Don’t Count Your Chardonnays
Either a Wine Hubris Award or a course in remedial math to the Los Angeles restaurant that announced “the second of its popular ‘Wine-Maker Dinner’ series” last month.