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LorenzoGA's Profile

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Chile wars heating up as Hatch farmers take on national distributor

The Hatch/NM issue is indeed a bit different from, say, Vidalia onions, since it seems that multiple chile varieties that are quite distinct from each other are grown in NM. At least in Vidalia, to the extent that different hybrids are being sold as "Vidalia," they are all more or less similar in characteristics.

The low-sulfur soil contributing to the Vidalia onion's sweetness may very well be more marketing hype (making its way into published articles) than science. I don't know. I believe that onions sold under the Vidalia brand have included some that were shipped into the state from elsewhere (Texas?) and packaged in Vidalia. I don't know whether that practice continues. But if so, talk about a brand name that has been rendered meaningless!

about 2 hours ago
LorenzoGA in Food Media & News

Chile wars heating up as Hatch farmers take on national distributor

I'm not taking a position one way or the other, but we should recognize that Hatch, NM has made efforts to NOT become just another Puebla--they are doing all they can to market themselves as the terroir of the Hatch chile.

Here in GA, the local analogy would be the Vidalia Onion. It is not necessarily a specific varietal/hybrid of sweet onion, but rather its defining characteristic is that it is grown in the Vidalia region of GA. It's my understanding that the grower's association and state of GA have been very successful in protecting the name.

about 4 hours ago
LorenzoGA in Food Media & News

Chile wars heating up as Hatch farmers take on national distributor

Although I'm a trademark geek--especially food and beverage-related--I admittedly didn't take the time to wade through the documents to get a sense of what the points of contention are. (But thanks for the link.) The trademark at issue seems to be for processed chiles, salsas, etc., rather than whole, fresh, chiles, which is an interesting factor. I'm not sure whether I would think the same way about a bottle of salsa that said HATCH on the label as I would about fresh, whole chiles piled in a bin that said HATCH. Would I really think that HATCH brand salsa is made in a processing/bottling plant in Hatch, NM, the way I most certainly believe that whole, fresh chiles in a bin that says HATCH are from Hatch, NM? This isn't a factor in Champagne or tomatoes, since we're never (at least in the US) talking about Champagne grapes or fresh, whole San Marzano tomatoes.

about 5 hours ago
LorenzoGA in Food Media & News

Seeking advice: Week long foodie trip from Japan to somewhere else.

I've been to Tokyo once and Seoul once--both for short, food-centric excursions. Tokyo felt intimidating--huge, fast, crowded, etc. Seoul somehow felt more manageable. However, I realize I did quite a bit of research/planning before the Seoul trip.

about 5 hours ago
LorenzoGA in China & Southeast Asia

Fresh soft shell crabs and best preparation?

The precise dates apparently don't matter too much, thanks to modern distribution systems, as even over on the West Coast forums they're currently talking about where to get soft shells. I believe they do not come from the Pacific, so the people out West are looking at crabs that have been shipped in.

about 22 hours ago
LorenzoGA in Home Cooking

Chile wars heating up as Hatch farmers take on national distributor

It would be interesting to take a poll of CH users to see how many of us believe Hatch chiles come from Hatch, NM. I suspect one of the parties in this proceeding would not like the answer.

about 22 hours ago
LorenzoGA in Food Media & News

Fresh soft shell crabs and best preparation?

"The less you mess with them, the better."

Agreed. My preference is dredged in flour seasoned with nothing but salt and pepper--no Old Bay at all--and then pan-fried/sauteed in butter. Maybe a squeeze of lemon to serve. Nothing more.

I have to admit that when I had them battered and deep-fried in a po'boy in New Orleans I was tempted to change my preference. But the thing is, I don't think I can duplicate that po'boy at home.

A Thai restaurant near me does a soft shell dish. Although it's a pleasant variation, I still prefer them plainly fried as first stated.

1 day ago
LorenzoGA in Home Cooking

Fish Tacos

"Can somebody please point me in the right direction."

West. About 2,500 miles.

Seeking advice: Week long foodie trip from Japan to somewhere else.

Glad to know that it was not just me, and even a world traveler like you could have a similar experience.

Sriracha: Is it a Hype?

Could you be more clear, please? What "name" are you referring to? The word "sriracha"? Where did you hear this story about what his attorneys advised him? I am a trademark attorney, and I think it is urban legend that his attorneys advised him that he could own trademark rights to the word "sriracha" by itself. Not possible, anywhere in the world. I suppose some irresponsible attorney could have urged him to go for it, when the attorney knew it would not be a valid claim. But I do not believe he could ever have successfully made a case that he owned the trademark rights to the word "sriracha" in the US or anywhere else.

May 19, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

Sriracha: Is it a Hype?

Incorrect. Huy Fong's roostered logo as it appears on the bottle is most certainly trademarked--I took a look at the registration once. It is not possible for anyone to claim the mere word "sriracha" as their trademark because it is the generic term for the condiment and certainly pre-dated Huy Fong's sriracha.

May 19, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

Seeking advice: Week long foodie trip from Japan to somewhere else.

Next time I find myself heading to Penang, I'm going to ask your advice. I couldn't seem to find my way to the right places and ended up just eating wherever. I left slightly disappointed. After hearing so much about Penang food, I guess I expected the food to find ME and hadn't done any research in advance. To me, Singapore was easier to navigate my way to the places I had heard so much about.

Seeking advice: Week long foodie trip from Japan to somewhere else.

I say Singapore--it couldn't be easier for a Westerner to find their way around to all the great places you've heard about.

In comparison with Singapore, I was almost disappointed with Penang--probably had my expectations raised too high. It's indeed supposedly a foodie's city--and I did eat well--but it didn't seem to me to be all that easy to locate "the good stuff."

NPR: Sheep Ranchers Count On American Muslims To Keep Lamb On Menu

My mom made lamb chops every so often for our family when I was a kid in the '70s, and I remember liking them enough to order them in restaurants. I still like lamb and eat a heck of a lot more than the half pound this article says is average for an American. My wife and I buy boneless shoulder from a halal place several times a year. Did lamb really go out of style?

May 19, 2015
LorenzoGA in Food Media & News

Sriracha: Is it a Hype?

I'm pretty sure I saw Huy Fong Sriracha in pho houses in California in the late '80s or early '90s. So your question of whether it's hype is indeed quite analogous to the ramen hype question thread you mentioned, in that you will get replies from people who say it can't be "hype" if it's been around for more than X amount of time. They define hype mainly by time. To me, whether something is popular as a result of "hype" doesn't depend so heavily on the amount of time it's been around. To me, whether something is popular because of "hype" turns on whether people are consuming it mainly because they heard something that makes them feel they ought to be eating it, whether that is to make themselves feel knowledgable, cool, or whatever. I have seen Huy Fong Sriracha t-shirts, so I suspect there is an element of that. Someone must think it's cool. As far as I'm concerned, sriracha is no more "cool" than ketchup, mustard, mayo, other hot sauces, or any other such condiment. There are hundreds of hot sauces out there, and I enjoy many of them.

Sriracha: Is it a Hype?

But Multifoiled, the cupcakes in our day were a different animal entirely. They were not sold in upscale bakeries--they were pedestrian cakes aimed squarely at children--and they came in simple flavors, not exotic tropical fruits, Red Velvet, wine, chocolate "ganache," etc. What I ate as a kid decades ago bore almost no resemblance to the trendy "cupcake" people are talking about today.

May 19, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics
1

Who owns the doggy bag in a host's refrigerator?

It seems your two threads have been combined, and the information in your original post that the fridge in question is that of your adult child and that other family members believe the food you stored there is not yours to keep has been lost.

May 19, 2015
LorenzoGA in Not About Food

Japanese Ramen: Is it a Hype?

I meant it as a general observation, not a reply specifically to what you said. But I do believe we are all "guilty" of posting through the lenses of our regional and temporal experience.

May 19, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

Who owns the doggy bag in a host's refrigerator?

The thought of eating uneaten food from someone else's plate is indeed kind of disgusting. I certainly would never do it. But I figured the whole question of hygiene and WHY someone would want to eat someone else's leftovers seemed beyond the scope of the question--not my business.

May 18, 2015
LorenzoGA in Not About Food

Who owns the doggy bag in a host's refrigerator?

Can't you just mention to your family what you wrote here?--that you are planning to eat it tomorrow? Write your name on the bag/box. If after explaining that, your family still insists the food is no longer yours to eat, then I think you have some odd family.

Japanese Ramen: Is it a Hype?

I'm a relative newcomer to CH, but I often get the impression that members from San Francisco and New York have a distorted view of the overall food scene in America.

May 18, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

Japanese Ramen: Is it a Hype?

How long can something last and still be called a "fad"?

I would have to agree with you that something still going strong after three or four decades is a tough one to call a fad. Nevertheless, I can't help but think that when the average non-foodie American says "Let's go out for sushi" and his dining partner's eyes light up with anticipation, it's more about the novelty of the whole experience than the quality of the fish. How can something that's in seemingly every other strip mall in town still be perceived as a novelty? I don't have a good answer.

May 18, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

Japanese Ramen: Is it a Hype?

I almost want to argue that sushi could be called an exceptionally long-lived "fad." We Westerners may have been eating it since the '70s, but novelty--the fact that it is such a unique eating experience--still remains a big part of the draw for a great many of us.

May 18, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

is salt really heated to 1200 degrees F?

Good point about water. No, I can't tell the difference between most tap waters. A few of course do have discernible flavors, but to me, the vast majority taste more or less the same. As in, tasty enough. Just like salt. If you buy expensive bottled water, you are probably also the type who buys special gourmet salt.

May 11, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

is salt really heated to 1200 degrees F?

Iodine isn't an impurity in iodized salt, if you're referring to iodized salt.

May 11, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

Japanese Ramen: Is it a Hype?

Good points. I cannot imagine that ramen in the West will attain the status that it has in Japan. But I do think ramen will outlast many other food fads here because it is not a Western craze to begin with. Westerners will continue to travel to ramen-crazed Japan and return with a new appreciation for ramen, which will keep ramen prominent for a long time. It may fade from "craze" or "fad" status, but I think ramen has legs that other food fads do not.

I suppose we're getting into splitting hairs over pinpointing when a fad becomes so successful that it loses fad status and becomes routine.

May 08, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

MillerCoors sued for marketing Blue Moon as craft

I understand, Jim. Different issue, though important to some folks, as you say.

May 08, 2015
LorenzoGA in Beer

"Can I transfer these drinks to my table"?

Well said. I've explained the concept of tipping pretty much the same way to people who still think of tipping in its historical context--as a reward for extra good service--rather than as an integral component of the cost of the meal and thus as an integral component of the server's compensation.

As you put it so succinctly: "Effectively we've created a situation where the employer doesn't have to pay the employee and the customer does it directly."

May 08, 2015
LorenzoGA in Not About Food

Japanese Ramen: Is it a Hype?

The soft egg, bbq pork, etc., in tonkotsu ramen would indeed be tricky for many of us, but just making the fatty pork broth looks difficult enough to deter me from making ramen at home. I am content to pay the $10+ premium price.

The Serious Eats "The Food Lab: How to Make Tonokotsu Ramen Broth at Home" recipe involves simmering for 10-12 hours! Food Lab guru Kenji writes of the time it takes for the process of gelatinization and the breaking down of other matter to occur in all the boiling and simmering: "I've read reports ranging anywhere from an hour and a half in a pressure cooker up to 60 hours at a low boil on a stove-top." Kenji's ramen broth recipe looks like twice as much work as his recipe for pho broth (which is very good), involving a mere five hours of simmering.

If we're talking a well-made ramen, I believe it should command a premium price compared with pho.

I can't say I know much about other Asian noodle soups other than that they are all delicious, so I'll limit my comparison to ramen and pho.

May 08, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics

is salt really heated to 1200 degrees F?

I wish my palate could tell the difference. We've brought home fancy salts from all over our travels--we have accumulated more bags of salt than we can possibly use--and neither my wife nor I can really tell a difference among them, or with--egads!--iodized salt. We dutifully fill our Peugeot grinder with a nice salt from France, though we can't tell the difference between that and the Morton's box of Kosher Salt.

The only characteristic that really matters to us is the crystal shape or grind fineness. Tossing flaked salt on a steak and watching it "melt" is fun. I'm not sure the flavor is different, but we enjoy using flaked salt.

May 08, 2015
LorenzoGA in General Topics