May 27, 2019

  • Aussie Wine Advocate

    Many people in the wine industry can recall a moment early in their career when they tasted something absolutely memorable. My moment happened in the Barossa Valley, Australia during the 1997 Culinary Festival, a now defunct event that brought together the best of Adelaide cuisine with Barossa wine. I was at the Elderton Winery and it was their 1995 Barossa Shiraz. It tasted like someone had taken a pepper grinder to my glass. I’ve been a wine geek ever since. I’ve also been an Aussie advocate ever since. Australian wines enjoyed a boom during the 90s food culture revolution here…

  • Beer: The Other Food Pairing

    The dragon the wine world forever chases is food pairing. It started with the simple mantra of white wine with fish, red wine with meat. Now there seems to be a whole industry searching out all the flavor nuances of a particular dish and what wine matches best with that. It’s been a boon for the culinary world as the diversity of tastes from cuisines around the globe has caused a food renaissance in the United States that has taken us from the bland meat and potatoes of years past to vibrant, bold flavors that enhance the pleasure of eating…

  • The Science of Taste

    I read an article from a colleague in the wine industry recently that lamented the state of the American palate. He was basically frustrated by the desire to have everything big, rich, fat, salty and sweet. He, of course, is not from the United States, so he didn’t grow up eating McDonald’s and drinking Coca-Cola. It got me thinking though about how little the average person understands when it comes to flavor and taste. I experience this on a regular basis with customers that can’t identify, or explain, the basic flavors in the foods they eat. So, let’s look at some…

  • The Coming of the Can

    The current be-all and end-all package of the beverage industry is the can. Cans are sturdy when filled, lightweight, air tight, block light from the contents inside, can hold carbonated backpressure if designed properly, are easily recycled, and with the proper internal sealant are virtually non-reactive with the contents they hold. Cans take up less space. Thin metal is very conductive, so cans heat faster if pasteurization is required, and cool quicker for your enjoyment. Plus, a shiny metal surface is the ideal canvas to paint your logo and product brand for display. The brewing industry caught on to this…

  • Family Reunions!

    Guess what? It’s time to start planning for that event that strikes a chill in the heart of every true guy. The dreaded Arizona Family Reunion! WOW, what a thrill. Here we go again, or do we? Remember last year when the kids had the famous lemonade fight in the back seat of the car? How about the time you took the wrong turn because your wife was holding the map upside down and you ended up in the middle of the desert?All those memories pale in comparison to the time you waited three hour detour in 100-degree heat to…

FEATURED WORLD EDITION

On Politics

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj”un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Sir, I would rather be right than be President.” — Henry Clay “Washing one’s hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral.” — Paulo Freire “Politics is not the art of the possible. It consists in choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable.” — John…

More on Politics

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj”un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.” — Mark Twain “We contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.” — Winston Churchill “A government which robs…

Aging and Death

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj”un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “First you forget names, then you forget faces. Next you forget to pull your zipper up and finally, you forget to pull it down.” — George Burns “So my choice is ‘or death.’” — Eddie Izzard “I was with this girl the other night and from the way she was responding to my skillful caresses, you would…

Commentary

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Those are my principles. If you don’t like them, I have others.” — Groucho Marx “She had lost the art of conversation but not, unfortunately, the power of speech.” — George Bernard Shaw “The nice thing about being a celebrity is that if you bore people they think it’s their fault.” — Henry Kissinger “Camping is nature’s…

Virtue vs. Decadence

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Nobody is more dangerous than he who imagines himself pure in heart; for his purity, by definition, is unassailable.” — James Baldwin “Every man knows his follies and often they are the most interesting thing he has got.” — Josh Billings “The good people sleep much better at night than the bad people. Of course, the bad people enjoy…

Stealing Not Done by Clown

May 12, 2016

CRIME WAVE NEWS: Ronald MacDonald, an employee at a Manchester, N. H. Wendy’s Restaurant has been charged with stealing money from a safe. The 22-year-old MacDonald was detained at the store until police arrived after the crime was witnessed and reported by the manager. The sad part is the local paper felt it necessary to say he wasn’t related to Ronald McDonald, the clown. INDIANA INTELLIGENT DESIGN NEWS: Indiana Police were trying to determine the origin of a runaway ostrich that led officers on chase through neighborhood streets and yards. The bird eluded officers in St. John for about two…

Love

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “I recently read that love is entirely a matter of chemistry. That must be why my wife treats me like toxic waste.” — David Bissonette “Love is foolish…but I still might try it sometime.” — Floyd, Age 9 “You can’t buy love, but you can pay heavily for it.” — Henny Youngman “Ah, sweet pity. Where would my love…

Hold Up!

May 12, 2016

CRIME NEWS: A robber who used a rusty pitchfork to stick up a South Carolina bank got away– and so far, finding him has been like looking for a needle in a haystack. The man, wearing sunglasses and a mask, entered Security Federal Bank and threatened employees with the 4-foot-long rusty pitchfork. The man took an undisclosed amount of money. The robber dropped the farm tool as the man got into a white van driven by a woman. No customers were in the bank during the holdup, and no one was injured. Locals are calling the event the American Gothic…

Getting Older

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “In the old days, it was not called ‘the Holiday Season’; the Christians called it ‘Christmas’ and went to church; the Jews called it ‘Hanukka’ and went to synagogue; the atheists went to parties and drank. People passing each other on the street would say ‘Merry Christmas!’ or ‘Happy Hanukka!’ or (to the atheists) ‘Look out for the wall!’”…

Alternatives

May 12, 2016

BUSINESS NEWS: The value of Taser Company stock has been lost because of increasingly negative news coverage of the Taser gun, which uses 50,000 volts to stun its victims. There has been a heavy focus on incidents where suspects died after the gun was used on them. Taser contracted pathologist, Dr. Cyril Wecht, to review the cases and issue an independent opinion that other factors, such as drugs, caused the 40 so-called in-custody Taser-caused deaths. ALTERNATIVE REMEDIES NEWS: A new Excentric survey of adult Americans found that 36% of us use some kind of alternative or complementary therapy. The number…

Marriage

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “The world has suffered more from the ravages of ill-advised marriages than from virginity.” — Ambrose Bierce “Insurance is like marriage. You pay, pay, pay, and you never get anything back.” — Al Bundy “I hate work. That’s why I got married.” — Peg Bundy “If variety is the spice of life, marriage is the big can of leftover…

Imprisoning

May 12, 2016

CRIME NEWS: One year ago, officials from Mexico City launched an ambitious crime-busting project crafted by Rudolph Giuliani. The former New York City mayor earned a $4.3 million dollar consulting fee. After implementing his strict law enforcement changes, Mexico City has seen a 28% reduction in squeegee windshield washing, a whopping 36% reduction in jay-walking and the prostitutes have relocated to a better section of the city. PRISON NEWS: The nation’s first faith-based women’s prison opened a couple of months ago near Tampa, Florida. The program combines vocational classes with worship, and creates an environment that allows and encourages self-reflection,…

Politics and the Status Quo

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “There is no Energy Shortage. There is no Energy Crisis. There is a Crisis of Ignorance.” — R Buckminster Fuller “To be a great politician you need the ability to foretell what is going to happen tomorrow, next week, next month and next year. And to have the ability afterwards to explain why it didn’t happen.” — Winston Churchill…

Extreme Weight Loss

May 12, 2016

EXTREME DIET NEWS: A man who once weighed more than half a ton has lost 321 pounds under the care of doctors and hopes to lose 450 pounds more. Patrick Duel, 42, of Valentine, Neb., weighed 1,072 pounds when he was admitted to Sioux Falls, Avera McKennan Hospital eight weeks ago. Subway sandwich shops is looking for a new sponsor and hopes to use Duel whenever he is able to actually fit into one of their shops. GENETICS NEWS: Procrastinating monkeys were turned into workaholics using a gene treatment to block a key brain compound, researchers report. Blocking cells from…

Relaxing

May 12, 2016

There are so many kids here, all looking hale and hearty, And in a moment of weakness, I thought I’d throw them a party. Okay, got to think of the problems. Would the fuzz come cruising by, maybe, to complain about the noise? Would all the girls be holding hands, or worse, with all the boys? I rather hope so, because a certain amount of Gallic frivolity Always adds a little something to the evening’s jollity. Rolling around in the hay is a pleasure that comes to mind – Boys and girls having the fun that’s so very easy to…

The Joy of Gingerbread

May 12, 2016

Kath works in New York City in The Carnegie’s sweet dell. She plays a little music for A maestro named Maazel. But, each December moment she Can steal from bed and bow, She fiddles with molasses over Bowls of ginger-dough! She kneads it with her fingers, and She throws it on the floor! She rolls it out on hands and knees From kitchen sink to door! She cuts out walls and windows, and Bakes gables, doors and roofs, Then sticks them all together with The glue of reindeer hooves! This year she’ll craft a Gothic church With Handel in a…

Success

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Success is simply a matter of luck. Ask any failure.” — Earl Wilson “If we do not succeed, then we run the risk of failure.” — Dan Quayle “Success is the child of audacity.” — Benjamin Disraeli “Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value.” — Albert Einstein “The Lord gave…

Leash-free

May 12, 2016

POOCH CORRECT NEWS: The town of Hillsboro, Oregon has built a leash-free dog park named for Hondo, a police dog killed ten years ago chasing a suspect. A fire hydrant was painted as an American flag, as a further tribute to him. The hydrant had to be removed after a number of people complained that dogs did not respect the flag, refusing to salute and by doing what they normally do on fire hydrants. HAUTE CUISINE NEWS: Tim Janus, of New York City, has won the world burrito-eating championship by eating 10-3/4 eighteen-ounce burritos in 12 minutes. Other competitors included…

Ruined for Good

May 12, 2016

There’s something to be said, I think, For living in a place That’s been completely ruined by The lofty human race. Take trees. Yes, trees! Please take them all! Their worth is under par! Once gone there’d be no leaves to rake Or sap upon my car. And birds. Yes, birds! Just beaky nerds! They’re dirty, loud, and mean! I’d love to walk in silence on A sidewalk that stays clean. And, flowers! What a crock they are! Without their lurid blooms, No allergies, or killer bees, Or sweet and cloying fumes. I’ve had enough of all this stuff. And,…

Government Solutions

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Laws are like sausages, it is better not to see them being made.” — Otto von Bismark “When George Washington threw the dollar across the Rappahannock River, he didn’t realize he was establishing a precedent for government spending.” — Harold Coffin “The government solution to a problem is usually as bad as the problem.” — Milton Friedman “Now more…

Inside The News

May 12, 2016

BIRD FLEW NEWS: A spokesman for the NJ Transit said train officials reported a dozen or so wild turkeys waiting on a station platform in Ramsey, about 20 miles northwest of New York City. A spokesman for NJ Transit said, “Clearly, they’re trying to catch a train and escape their fate.” The only question was why the birds would want to head for Suffern, NY. FONDER FODDER NEWS: Thailand has come up with yet another, seemingly unlikely way to capitalize on this globally loved, bamboo-munching animal: panda poop, turning it all into notebooks, fans, bookmarks and key chains. Now when people read stories…

Creationism Proved

May 12, 2016

  I know it sounds ridiculous, But stay with me a while, And see the vast potential that Arises with a smile. They’re tossing out the science books In grades from one through nine, Replacing Evolution with ‘Intelligent Design.’ They say the science was a scam? A vast conspiracy? To hide Divine Perfection from The likes of you and me. But their behavior proves they’re right!? Their straits are not so dire! No need to run around and throw Those textbooks in the fire!     Had we evolved from chimps and apes With our opposing thumb, There is no…

Government

May 12, 2016

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.” — P.J. O’Rourke “The taxpayers are sending congressmen on expensive trips abroad. It might be worth it except they keep coming back.” — Will Rogers “Folk who don’t know why America is the Land of Promise should be here during an election campaign.”…

Weight Loss Helper

May 12, 2016

WEIGHT LOSS NEWS: A man from Coon Rapids, Minnesota, noticed he lost a considerable amount of weight. Wanting to help his fellow man, he started offering neighbors the opportunity to freely mow his lawn to better their health. In the near future, he plans to offer a host of household chores to all of his neighbors and friends. SPACE NEWS: Discovery spotted some whitish splotches on its black right wing edge that NASA officials said appeared to be bird droppings that withstood Florida thunderstorms, a mighty launch and a burst upward through Earth’s atmosphere. Perhaps NASA engineers could use the…

The Petting Zoo Diet

May 12, 2016

                                                 The girl sat down across from me And gave her mane a swish. She opened up her menu as She crowed, “I can’t eat fish!” “You can’t?” I asked. She mooed, and said, “Nor cheesecake anymore, Or anything like brownies or The things that I adore. No sugar, lard, or olive oil, No beef or bird or pork, No albatross or crocodile will Ever grace my fork. Now, rutabagas I can eat, But I don’t see…

Astrology for the Weak

Horoscopes for December 7-13, 2014

ARIES (March 21 – April 19) Holidays are coming and relatives are on their way to invade your home. This time, you’ll be prepared. Gift certificates to restaurants and hotels are great ideas. TAURUS (April 20 – May 20) A small piece of dust will land on one of your eyes, leaving trails and triggering flashbacks from the 60s. You’ll recover with a love for tie-dye and paisley. GEMINI (May 21 -June 20) You will be questioned this month in the disappearance of your senile uncle-in-law. You’ll stick to your story that you dropped him off to shop at Super…

Horoscopes for November 30-December 6, 2014

ARIES (March 21 – April 19) Two new moons have been found around Pluto, the planet astrologers want demoted to a star. Pisces will support Pluto by mooning everyone Dec 23rd. TAURUS (April 20 – May 20) You’ll learn of Festivus, dash out to find an undecorated aluminum pole and spaghetti, practice wrestling and airing your grievances. You’ve never been so happy. GEMINI (May 21 -June 20) December is traditionally a month for celebrating friends and family members home. Your family, resembling the Grizwalds, will hit the casinos for days. CANCER (June 21 – July 22) You’ll start wearing a…

Horoscopes for November 16-22, 2014

ARIES (March 21 – April 19) Once again, things will take a turn for the worse in November. And, once again, you will blame everything on a co-worker, a neighbor, a relative or a pet. TAURUS (April 20 – May 20) Your Halloween costume was such a big hit at the office party, you will think it fun to wear it once a month. Others will think cross-dressing is more disturbing. GEMINI (May 21 -June 20) You will find that the older you get, the more you want to take a nap in the late afternoon. For most government workers,…

Horoscopes for November 9-15, 2014

ARIES (March 21 – April 19) You’ll learn of Festivus, dash out to find an undecorated aluminum pole and spaghetti, practice wrestling and airing your grievances. You’ve never been so happy. TAURUS (April 20 – May 20) December is traditionally a month for celebrating friends and family members home. Your family, resembling the Grizwalds, will hit the casinos for days. GEMINI (May 21 -June 20) You’ll start wearing a large silver cross around your neck after Christmas. Everyone will think you found religion. Little will they know, you just found the cross. CANCER (June 21 – July 22) Chanukah, Christmas,…

Horoscopes for November 2-8, 2014

ARIES (March 21 – April 19) Your Halloween costume was such a big hit at the office party, you will think it fun to wear it once a month. Others will think cross-dressing is more disturbing. TAURUS (April 20 – May 20) You will find that the older you get, the more you want to take a nap in the late afternoon. For most government workers, this is fine, but not for taxi drivers. GEMINI (May 21 -June 20) You will recall your parents saying “Your day will come.” Well, it’s coming this month. If not this month, soon. But mark my words,…

Horoscopes for October 26-November 1, 2014

CAPRICORN (January 19 – February 16) In October, you may be of two minds about something. This will come as a great relief. Until this October, you were of three or more minds about most things. AQUARIUS (February 16 – March 11) You going to fall in love with yourself all over again this October. Like before, you will get along well for a while, then fight, leading to a painful breakup. PISCES (March 20 – April 18) Some forecasts show that your fashion choices, your musical taste and your overall style have everyone buzzing with admiration. Other forecasts say…

Horoscopes for October 12-18, 2014

ARIES (March 21 – April 19) You will find happiness in October. Unfortunately, this will happen right before you lose your keys, your mate, your job and finally your sense of self respect. TAURUS (April 20 – May 20) People say they can tell a lot about a person from their handshake. While you may want to strengthen yours, you will definitely want to get rid of the curtsy. GEMINI (May 21 -June 20) You will describe yourself as a take charge kind of person. You will be more successful when you are also a take cash and checks kind…

Horoscopes for October 5-11, 2014

CAPRICORN (January 19 – February 16) You going to fall in love with yourself all over again this October. Like before, you will get along well for a while, then fight, leading to a painful breakup. AQUARIUS (February 16 – March 11) Some forecasts show that your fashion choices, your musical taste and your overall style have everyone buzzing with admiration. Other forecasts say “nah.” PISCES (March 20 – April 18) This month, you could have a flash of inspiration that illuminates the potential future in a profound way. Not to worry – like a kidney stone, this too shall…