No Plaza for Graydon; Mr. Rachael Ray Drops $35K for Lunchbox

Graydon Carter won’t be taking over the Plaza’s Oak Room, so you’ll still have to head downtown to the Waverly Inn for that truffled macaroni and cheese. [NYP]

Jean-Georges Vongerichten seeks the elusive fifth taste by serving “umami bombs” at his restaurants. [WSJ]
Related: Waiter, There’s a Fifth Element in My Soup

It’s possible that locally grown products have a comparable or even greater carbon footprint than food that travels long distances, so you can stop patting yourself on the back for being a greenmarket fanatic. [NYT]
Related: Local Schmocal [NYM]

Rachael Ray’s hubby dropped $35,000 for Michael Stipe’s lunchbox at last week’s Food Bank event. [Snack]
Related: Heatherette, Batali Take Away Lunchbox Stigma for Charity

If you’re not feeling David Chang’s porky New Year’s Eve bash at Ssäm Bar, try nabbing a seat at Del Posto, Gotham Bar & Grill, or Gilt. [Restaurant Girl]
Related: Ring in the New Year With David Chang!

A Brooklyn thief has been targeting Bensonhurst eateries like Papa John’s and Dunkin’ Donuts. [NYP]

The trend of kiddie gastronomes makes a creepy turn with this miniature Misono knife designed for little hands. [Eat for Victory/VV]
Related: More and Weirder Trends From Restaurant Guru Michael Whiteman

If you’re looking for a New Year’s Eve culinary adventure, head to Camaje where you’ll slip on a blindfold and eat a mystery meal. [Gothamist]

In case you didn’t already know, there’s a good crop of tasty restaurants just south of Madison Square Park. [NYT]

No Plaza for Graydon; Mr. Rachael Ray Drops $35K for Lunchbox