This is the story of two entrepreneurs with two very different interests. One thing they have in common: Both took major risks and started a business in the middle of the global financial crisis. What was the motivation?
Several years ago a houseguest visiting me in New York said, "You've taken me to four bars and two restaurants, and none of them have been marked. What is going on?" It was the height of Manhattan's speakeasy craze, and although it may have gotten (and may still be!) a little out of hand, there was something irresistible about exploring an underground New York just for New Yorkers.
A ubiquitous Olive Garden TV commercial shows a picturesque cooking school in Italy as a voice croons words like "artisanal" and "fonduta" and smiling chefs in starched whites coats taste tomato sauce straight from a simmering pot and kiss their fingertips with glee.
When celebrity chef Jamie Oliver sat down for an interview with CNN -- just after giving a speech in which he railed against America's unhealthy food system -- he remarked that he was tired and wished he had a beer.
The ubiquity of the "Joy of Cooking" is staggering. More than 18 million copies have sold since the Great Depression -- when a Midwestern widow named Irma Rombauer published her recipes and anecdotes in the hope of lifting America's spirits.
In the starry universe of books about food, the dominant galaxy is occupied by the works of celebrity chefs -- men and women who perpetrate cookbooks gloriously illustrated with photographs that rev up your salivary glands and lavishly produced on paper so thick and creamy you could eat it.
This week in iReport, we've received visually beautiful photos and a culturally beautiful story. See iReporters' gourmet home cooking, and take a look at the images that signal autumn's arrival. And be sure to take in the story of a small barbershop where customers can find common ground on controversial political issues. Check out the video here, or get a better idea of the stories below.
If our Best Places rankings were based on availability of muses, New York City, with its cultural diversity and dynamic arts scene, would probably take first place. Other highlights include its status as the world's financial services capital and its steady influx of ambitious, educated workers.
If you were a TWA first-class passenger traveling from Washington, D.C., to San Francisco, California, in October 1970, your menu read more like a feast for the Sun King than a precooked meal heated in a convection oven.
I'm standing with 140 other ravenous diners outside a pigpen on Devil's Gulch Ranch, about 30 miles north of San Francisco, looking at an exhausted 350-pound sow named Penelope. She's resting, having given birth to seven five-pound piglets a few hours earlier.
When Alice Waters opened Chez Panisse in Berkeley in 1971, she wasn't trying to start a food revolution. But long before buzzwords like organic and locavore entered the popular lexicon, she was preaching the gospel of sustainable food to her customers.
I recently learned that my total cholesterol and triglycerides are very high, and my doctor recommended oatmeal, which I do not like. I did find a way to make it palatable, though. It's such a pain to make it every day. My question is this: If I make a large batch of it at once, will it lose its benefits by reheating? And what about instant oatmeal? Are the benefits the same?
Budget-conscious celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has been hired to cook for G20 leaders in London next week, nearly a year after they provoked outrage by eating an eight-course meal while discussing the global food crisis.
Watching Jean-Georges Vongerichten working out the kinks on the afternoon before he opens his latest restaurant, you might think Market by Jean-Georges was his first. As the chef walks through the kitchen, perched above Vancouver, British Columbia, in the new Shangri-La tower, his team is stirring sauces and filleting whole fish. The restaurant's manager swings by to report on the servers' uniforms. "I had to send them back," he says. "The shirts were too translucent."
You have access to more nutrition information than ever -- from magazines like Cooking Light to the Internet, newspapers, and television. When you add to that the hype about fad diets, the resulting information overload creates more confusion than clarity.
Last year, the Michelin guide's first foray into Tokyo left the city with some 190 Michelin stars, compared with 95 in Paris and 50 in London and New York. Of course, that's partly down to the sheer number of eateries in Tokyo -- estimated at more than 180,000 establishments -- but it's also testimony to the reverence Tokyoites have for fresh ingredients prepared with the utmost care.