Nosh Pit Reading List
The evils of grapefruit, a dangerous holiday punch, and the "best" food inventions of 2012.
Esquire: Cocktail historian David Wondrich accomplishes a lot in just 370 words (plus a recipe sidebar), informing us that from approximately 1700 to 1830 “the preeminent English social drink was a bowl of punch… guaranteed to unite any gathering in jollity and boozy good cheer”; that Charles Dickens preferred punch over just about any other beverage, going as far as flanking his jovial Ghost of Christmas Present with “seething bowls” of it; and that, finally, a punch bowl (along with a quick Dickensian disquisition for guests and some pyrotechnics) is the most surefire way to grease the merriment at your holiday party this year. —James Ross Gardner
BuzzFeed: Since I know Gardner will write about some lofty piece from Esquire, here is a ridiculous list of the most bizarro fast food inventions of the year. Pass the KFC shrimp stars. —Allecia Vermillion
Slate: Perhaps it’s just that I’m a restaurant critic and can’t flog my pet gross-out foods in print (cough cough *eggplant* cough cough), but I derived ridiculous satisfaction from one journalist’s withering assault on grapefruit. I know, right…grapefruit. You thought the fruit was kinda juicy, kinda inoffensive…but noooo. Here in 1,200 amusingly earnest words you learn how grapefruit has let civilization down, in every area from healthfulness to flavor, (“like a bad-tempered orange soaked in kerosene.”) If the very thought of the fruit doesn’t represent a personal affront to you by the time you’re finished—you weren’t reading closely enough. —Kathryn Robinson
NY Times: Conservation group Oceana looked into New York menus and markets and found 13 different types of fish being passed off as red snapper. And 94 percent of fish sold as white tuna was really something else. The group with the most accurate labeling practices—national grocery chains. Please tell me this would never happen in Seattle. —Allecia Vermillion
BBC: In freaky conspiracy news, BBC reporter Anna-Louise Taylor argues that we are manipulatable suckers for drink companies and their "science." Taylor also hints that children are already getting hooked due to artificial alcohol flavoring. Soylent Green, anyone? —Katie Vincent
Seattle Weekly: Those who find these dark days insufferable: Take heed and read Hanna Raskin's fawning review of Rumba, the new rumcentric bar on Capitol Hill. Even if drinks like daiquiris aren't your thing, and even if the decor sounds a tad cheesy (it is), you gotta admit: a place like Rumba, with its Caribbean flair and sunny disposition, sounds pretty great right now. —Christopher Werner