First things first.
Do you know what swag is? Are you swagged out?
In case you were wondering, here’s the real talk: swagu goes great on swaghetti.
The evidence below is what happened this past Saturday night as I teamed up with the illustrious Jen Pelka, (Tumblr Food & Drink Evangelist) and Details Magazine to take a blinged out culinary journey into the true meaning of all things swag.
Think massive tins of caviar (that would have Rick Ross shedding a tear (or a river of sheer joy), magnums of champagne (Jen Pelka is pro enough to saber them) appropriate for your dream yacht, and who could forget, prrrrrrple drank.
You can check out lots more on what went down at this dank party (and the dank people involved) if you bounce over to Details Mag.
Big ups to Sky Dylan-Robbins (of Tumblr’s Storyboard), all around photo boss for these bangin’ images.
In the words of Rihanna, pour it up pour it up (or down) on tonight’s episode of U Look Hungry radio as I dive into the epicenter of the New York cocktail and beverage scene with my guest, Eamon Rockey. A serious heavyweight champion/tour de force in this industry, Eamon’s worked at spots like Eleven Madison Park, Atera and most recently, Aska in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
Tune into U Look Hungry LIVE at 6pm (EST) tonight, Thursday March 21, 2013, on the Heritage Radio Network as Eamon and yours truly discuss the contemporary trends in the cocktail/wine/spirits world, how he came to be one of the signature forces behind the current pulse of the drink scene and a slew of other topics like homemade redbull, how to build a restaurant drink program, and so much more.
If you’re too busy cutting your own cocktail ice cubes with a chain saw, I get it. Take your time and listen to the interview at your leisure by downloading the free iTunes version of the podcast here.
Today, I chat with Rachel Crawford, the creator behind Made Weekly, one of the most popular food sites on Tumblr.
Here’s the deal: five days, five recipes, one ingredient.
For those of you who have burned more than an eyebrow off in the process of cooking your mom’s favorite recipe, this show’s for you.
Rachel’s gonna give you the run down so you don’t burn the house down.
I’ve never been to Chicago. I love rap music. I love to eat.
So you can probably imagine how psyched I was to recently discover ThisHeresOverrated, But I love Your City Baby, a rap video based guide to eating in Chicago.
Run by an anonymous source that we’ll refer to as “Ted Overrated,” this dude has a rain main type ability to pinpoint every single food joint located in some of the quintessential Chicago rap videos that he features on his site. He even has a Google map of Chicago with every spot perfectly marked like your very own virtual tour guide.
So naturally, I figured that I needed to chat with this person A.S.A.P. on the radio. Tonight, Thursday February 28th, 2013, tune in to U Look Hungry LIVE at 6pm (EST) as I discuss rap, food, and take a mind bending tour of Chicago with “Ted Overrated.”
As a little something extra, “Ted” provided me with some of his favorite Chi-city tunes to get your earbuds warmed up for what’s going down later tonight:
Get it ready.
What is a mushroom? It’s not a plant or an animal. Technically, it’s a fungus that produces a fleshy body. This earthly gem’s elusive arrival into the woods, cemeteries or unexpected spots (like your front yard) can appear so quickly, so mysteriously, that it’s generated seriously opinionated public discussions over the course of the past three hundred years and beyond.
Yes, some folks instantly think of the hallucinogenic varietals, the ones that thrive on the tops of stinky cow patties found in open pastures after a fresh rain. Would Led Zepplin and Pink Floyd exist without stumbling upon a toadstool or eight? Even Alan Ginsberg was known to consume them for inspiration when writing poetry. But beyond taking that type of trip, there are thousands of others, a few deadly, many delicious, and some that stink beyond the bottom of a pig’s trough.
I love mushrooms and their mysterious place in the giant cubicle of culinary/cultural history, yet I can’t help but notice the choice words that some of my favorite poets and writers from the 19th and 20th centuries composed when symbolically describing those “fruiting bodies.” Herewith, my literary journey through the turbulent rabbit hole of epic opinions from some of our most famous word Smiths.
Take the Scottish bloke, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes (and the dude who rocked a serious hipster mustache until old age) for example, who once composed this ditty:
“…A sickly autumn shone upon the land. Wet and rotten leaves reeked and festered under the foul haze. The fields were spotted with monstrous fungi of a size and colour never matched before-scarlet and mauve and liver and black-it was as though the sick earth had burst into foul pustules. Mildew and lichen mottled the walls and with that filthy crop, death sprang also from the water soaked earth.”
True, some mushrooms do grow and sprout from dead and/or decaying matter (you can find some of the tastiest mushrooms at the cemetery, near grave stones.) At this point, I’d forgive Sir Arthur a pass for the low blow commentary since he created one of our cornerstone detective characters, Sherlock Holmes. But then I discovered that even Percy Bysshe Shelley, British poet and heartbreaker, had a mixture of feelings surrounding them when he wrote,
“And agarics and fungi, with mildew and mould
Started like mist from the wet ground cold
Pale, fleshy, as if the decaying dead
With a spirit of growth had been animated…”
I really started to question my literary heroes as I spotted this bit from D.H. Lawrence, early 20th century novelist, poet, painter, bearded babe, and all around lady-killer:
“How beastly the bourgeois is
especially the male of the species-
Nicely groomed, like a mushroom
standing there so sleek and erect and eyeable-
and like a fungus, living on the remains of bygone life,
sucking his life out of the dead leaves of greater life than his own.
And even so, he’s stale, he’s been there too long,
Touch him, and you’ll find he’s all gone inside
just like an old mushroom, all wormy inside, and hollow
under a smooth skin and an upright appearance.
Full of seething, wormy, hollow feelings
How beastly the bourgeois is!
Standing in their thousands, these appearances, in damp England
what a pity they can’t all be kicked over
like sickening toadstools, and left to melt back, swiftly
into the soil of England.”
Clearly, if I invited him over for dinner, chanterelles are out of the question. My fantasies of long walks in the woods with him might head south the moment I pluck a musty morel from the ground.
In my quest, I started to wonder if it was all geography. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was from Scotland and Shelley and D.H. Lawrence were both British lads. I know that the mushroom was their three point shot for a slam-dunk in Debbie downer metaphors, but I continued to wonder if they ate them in real life after gutting them on the page. Perhaps British mushrooms and Scottish ones weren’t as tasty as the ones found in North America because of the climate and alkalines in the soil.
So I turned my hopes to my American pal, Emily Dickinson, a gal who was rumored to rarely leave her house, to turn the negative opinions around. Surely, she would flip the script and have some positive feedback on these special edibles that seem to have grim reaper social status. Besides, she grew up in a state that has some decent mushrooms, if you look hard enough.
Here’s what she had to say:
“Had nature any outcast face
Could she a son condemn
Had nature an Iscariot
That mushroom—it is him.”
It makes me wonder if much like D.H. Lawrence, she too, would potentially run for the hills if she came over to my house for dinner the moment linguine with black trumpets was served. Then again, she might have been the kind of person that was inseparable from Purell hand sanitizer on the New York City subway system, or might have struck up a love-affair with my favorite neurotic New Yorker, Woody Allen.
At the end of my research, I came to the conclusion that I guess I couldn’t invite any of them to go out foraging with me.
D.H. Lawrence is still a babe.