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Are You Ready For Some Football?

January 30, 2015

Sunday is the one day a year that I watch football. It will probably be the longest stretch of live over-the-air television that I will watch all year. Young Master Fussy has somehow gotten into the spirit of this quasinational holiday of mass consumption. He’s dismayed that the game happens on Sunday and that he has school the following day.

I explained to him that he wasn’t alone.

In the past, my carnival of excess has led me to say year after year that I’m too old for this shit. Monday mornings I’ve felt terrible. Actually, last year I felt terrible for the whole day. Heck, I felt terrible on Sunday night. But I kept on eating and drinking anyway.

It would be wrong to say that I haven’t learned anything from past experiences. I have. It’s just that the lessons I’ve internalized do nothing to solve the ongoing problem of my body being less and less able to recover from gastronomic abuse.

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Ice Cream in February

January 29, 2015

New Yorkers are soft. In Massachusetts they eat ice cream twelve months a year. Do you think Vermonters stop eating ice cream in winter? That’s ridiculous. But here in The Empire State, many of us want nothing to do with the stuff until spring.

I remember the first time I ate an ice cream cone in a Boston winter. It was miraculous. There I was, walking with my chocolate cone, and for the first time in my life, I could eat the thing as slowly as I wanted. It was never going to melt! How brilliant is that? Those New Englanders are onto something (but I’m still going to be rooting for the Seahawks).

Which isn’t to say there aren’t a few winter ice cream holdouts in New York. The Ice Cream Man is open during these frozen months, and closer to home we’ve got Emack & Bolio’s.

Well, I have a plan. Maybe it’s a crazy plan. Really, it’s a small handful of crazy plans all being rolled together into what should be a fun event.

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The Cost of Good Food and The Sysco Problem

January 28, 2015

Originally posted on chefsday:

You get what you pay for,  generally.

I’m fascinated by commenters on Steve Barnes’ Table Hopping blog that complain about the cost of food in some restaurants as compared to others. The complaining is clearly done by people who are comparing apples to oranges, or actually frozen salmon portions from Sysco to fresh Copper River salmon. Also from people who fail to see the difference between the work of an inexperienced kitchen worker and the effort and design of a well-trained and experienced chef. I ask myself why these people do not see the difference. I think I’ve figured it out, and it’s not the fault of low-end dining establishments. It’s the fault of Sysco-driven apparently high-end dining establishments.

Don’t get me wrong, using Sysco does not mean you’ll have a bad restaurant with cheap, poor quality food. In fact, there are some very good restaurants in the area that…

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Time

January 28, 2015

Four years. That’s how long it took to get through college. Man, that felt like a long haul at the time. Four years is longer than I spent at any one of the advertising agencies I worked for in California.

Time feels like it’s moving faster and faster as I get older (and older). Thankfully we have Facebook, and I can see that this same feeling is common among many of my contemporaries. So that’s comforting. Additionally, as I’m in the ramp up phase of this new job, the hours of the day just zoom by.

All of this is to say that I got caught up in a couple of different projects last night, so I’m resorting to desperate measures.

As it turns out four years ago today, I wrote a pivotal post. Well, it may not have been pivotal to you, unless you are the person who lives out in Los Angeles and recently wrote a book on classic cocktails. Because I’m told, this was a very influential post to that project.

Given the way readers continually cycle in and out of this blog, and how rarely anyone delves into the archive, it’s probably not the end of the world if I repurpose this manifesto. Incidentally, it has nothing to do with time. Although if after all this talk of life flittering away has made you glum, the post below contains instructions for a suitable antidote.

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A New Era for the FLB

January 27, 2015

I first started writing about food on Chowhound about a million years ago, when it was all just message boards. Then I discovered Yelp, and prefered how this new platform aggregated people’s experiences into a starred rating system.

My most prolific Yelping spell to date was in those first few years after moving to Albany when I was desperately searching for something resembling good food. I was kissing a lot of frogs, and I wanted to make sure that those who came after me would have a clear path of places to try, and spots to avoid. It was through this writing that I began to establish a voice and a reputation.

Even in those early days, Yelp had a small but active community, and I met some of those writers in real life for drinks, trivia, and bowling. Through these new friends I learned about the Roxbury Farm CSA and a whole host of other gems. Yelp also played a role in the launch of the FLB.

“Hey Profussor! What gives with the history lesson?” Well, if you were paying attention to social media yesterday, you already know the answer.

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TNT is Dynamite

January 26, 2015

Can you feel the excitement? Have I told you I’m keeping a secret? Do you realize that after today, everything is going to be different?

Things are so busy, I can’t even tell you. But there has been a lot of preparation for the big announcement happening later today. I’m pumped, but in all honesty, could probably use more sleep.

Which is a great segue into why I drink so much coffee. I love coffee. My kids will tell you that “coffee makes adults go.” I need coffee, but I’m okay with that. I also appreciate really really great coffee and all the time and attention that needs to go into making something truly special. It’s one reason I’m thrilled that the Capital Region has a burgeoning coffee culture.

If you’re not convinced about that last statement, give me a few minutes and let me show you.

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Funday: Weird and Wonderful Things

January 23, 2015

It’s been a long time since my last Sell Out Funday post. Perhaps it’s been so long that I’ve forgotten how to do them.

In fact, this doesn’t feel like a Sell Out Funday at all.

The idea was that periodically, I would take all the collected press releases sent to the FLB and post them without much commentary. Maybe the PR community wasn’t so keen with that approach. Maybe we’ve just hit a slow patch of the year. But for whatever the reason, it’s been a long time since I’ve had a critical mass of stories to share.

Today’s post does start out with a press release. But then it kind of degrades into a patchwork of things that I think you should know about. And ends with a jumble of words. But somewhere in here, I’m sure you’ll find something wonderful that you didn’t know about just a few minutes ago.

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