Department of Agriculture Sued Over Beef; Skip Wine Pairings in Top RestaurantsThe Humane Society filed a lawsuit on Wednesday against the Agriculture Department, alleging the bureau has created a legal loophole that consistently permits potentially sick cows to enter the food supply. [NYT]
The City Council’s bill to place more fruit-and-vegetable street vendors in poor neighborhoods could hurt business for grocery stores and bodegas in those neighborhoods. [NYT]
Even with a reservation, dining at hot spots in L.A. can be just as bad, if not worse, than in New York. [Diner’s Journal/NYT]
Ask a Waiter
Jonathan White of the Tasting Room Loves His Weeds
Jonathan White was a server at Perry Street before he started work at the Tasting Room last year, when the Haute Barnyard fixture moved to its larger location. “The main reason,” White says of his job change, “was to get into that relaxed environment where you have more autonomy and you can interact with the guests” — to the point, apparently, where they feel comfortable telling him he looks like Fidel Castro (he’s also gotten Lenin, Chekhov, and Shakespeare). We asked White (who is actually a writer) to give us just a little taste of his day job.
Tippling and Tinkling at the Tasting Room Café
The Tasting Room may have moved to bigger digs, but its venerable espresso machine remains at its old location, which was rechristened the Tasting Room Wine Bar & Café in February. It’s unlikely that the best espresso in the city will do Starbucks-style damage, but just in case, we sussed out the restrooms.
The Underground Gourmet
It’s Alive! The Tasting Room’s Kimchee-and-Cheese Sandwich
When Slow Food practitioner Colin Alevras, the chef-owner of the Tasting Room and as familiar a Greenmarket presence as corn in August, sets out to make a cheese sandwich for his new Tasting Room Wine Bar & Café, you don’t expect him to slap together some Kraft singles between two slices of Pepperidge Farm whole wheat and call it a day. No, what you expect is great, local ingredients, cleverly combined. What you expect is what our colleague, Adam Platt, would undoubtedly call a sandwich conceived and crafted in the Haute Barnyard style.
The Other Critics
Chef Goes From ‘Gag’ to GreatThis week, the food scribes turned in more raves than rants. Naturally, we lead with a rant.
• Frank Bruni, bucking the beau monde and betting odds, comes down with both feet on Freemans, the hipster hideaway beloved by downtown boulevardiers. (NYT)