August 16th, 2010
07:30 PM ET
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Beer has taken us to some weird places today. Now we're bringing it on home with a couple of beer-swigging Scotsmen who decided to make a difference.

Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow was enjoying a pint at his local pub in the Scottish Highlands when he got an idea that would change his life - and the lives of thousands of others.

It was 1992, and MacFarlane-Barrow and his brother Fergus had just seen a news report about refugee camps in Bosnia. The images of people suffering in the war-torn country shocked the two salmon farmers, who'd visited there as teenagers and remembered the warmth of the Bosnian people.

"We began saying 'Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could just do one small thing to help?' " MacFarlane-Barrow says.

CNN Heroes has the FULL STORY

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Filed under: Charity • Food Politics • Hunger • News

Heirloom tomatoes explained
August 16th, 2010
06:00 PM ET
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Food writers - myself definitely included - are frequently guilty of being so far inside our precious little world of edibles that we can't see the arugula for the amaranth. This hit home last weekend as I was trawling my local farmers market, found a stand selling heirloom tomatoes for $2.99 a pound and started fist pumping like I'd hit the Powerball.

It's not too much of a stretch to say that it's been nearly two years since I had a really smashing tomato. Last year, my own garden succumbed to the blight that wiped out major portions of the Northeast's heirloom tomato crop, and the few available for purchase were priced to gouge. This isn't to say I have led a tomato-free existence since 2008. It's just that, as I noted to a nearby shopper, once you eat a Wapsipinicon Peach, a Black from Tula or a Cherokee Purple, there ain't no going back to the grocery store.

5@5 - 'Next Food Network Star' Winner Aarti Sequeira
August 16th, 2010
05:00 PM ET
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5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.

Spoiler alert all you TiVo devotees: Aarti Sequeira is the "Next Food Network Star."

The CNN producer (Editors' Note: woot!) turned culinary school graduate turned blogger was crowned the winner of season six on last night's finale. Born in Bombay, India and raised in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Aarti's recipes spruce up American classics with unique Indian influences. No time to dilly-dally on the victory though: Aarti's new show, "Aarti Party," is set to premiere Sunday, August 22 on the Food Network.

With the NFNS title now under her belt, Aarti is sharing her menu to celebrate. Don't be tardy to the Aarti Paarti!

5 Things I’ll Make Now That I Won "The Next Food Network Star": Aarti Sequeira

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Filed under: 5@5 • Next Food Network Star • Television • Think

Blogger Spotlight: La Tartine Gourmande
August 16th, 2010
02:30 PM ET
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Every so often, we're highlighting a local or regional blogger we think you ought to know about. We can’t be everywhere at once, so we look to these passionate eaters, cooks and writers to keep us tapped into every facet of the food world. Consider this a way to get to know a blog’s taste buds, because, well, you should.

Who: Béa Peltre, of La Tartine Gourmande
Where: Boston, Massachusetts
Twitter: @tartinegourmande

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Filed under: Blog Spotlight • Blogs • Think

Fresh worries surface as Gulf shrimp season opens
August 16th, 2010
01:45 PM ET
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With Monday's start of the fall shrimping season came new worries about the Gulf of Mexico's seafood and the industry's ability to lure not only business but fishermen back in the water.

For the past few months, BP contracted with thousands of fishermen to help with the cleanup of oil from the sunken Deepwater Horizon rig. But officials said Monday that many fishermen had yet to jump back in the water to resume their livelihoods.

"Right now, part of our challenge is to get the shrimpers back in the water," said Harlon Pearce, chairman of the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board. "A lot of them are working for BP, and we're having trouble getting them back in the shrimping business."


See all Gulf Coast seafood coverage on Eatocracy and full coverage throughout CNN

August 16th, 2010
01:00 PM ET
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Pietro Polles, owner of Sorrisi Ristorante, is finding creative ways to boost business and save his bottom line in the tough economy - including hiring his entire family and offering weekend pizza-making classes.

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Filed under: Bite • Restaurants • Think • Video

Lunchtime poll – dinner no-shows
August 16th, 2010
12:30 PM ET
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A Chowhound message board commenter with the handle "violin" started a bit of an online kerfuffle, posting about a $100 no-show fee he'd been slapped with for missing a restaurant reservation.

The restaurant in question was Chicago's molecular gastronomy mecca Alinea, where multi-month waits for reservations are the norm, and where a single no-show table for four can mean a loss of 5% of the night's take.

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Filed under: Buzz • Lunchtime Poll

Box lunch
August 16th, 2010
12:00 PM ET
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Sink your teeth into today's top stories from around the globe.

  • Blue Moon was the beer of choice for flight attendant Steven Slater. - Eater

  • A group of Rikers Island inmates bake up sweet success. - New York Times

  • Randall Grahm, of Bonny Doon Vineyard, offers a taste of his latest vine hybrid project. - San Francisco Chronicle

  • Despite its popularity, a few great vintages of Pinot Grigio are worth tasting. - Wall Street Journal

  • Wherein Juli Weiner attempts to be evicted from Starbucks ... for science. - Vanity Fair
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Filed under: Box Lunch • News

Ice, ice, beery
August 16th, 2010
11:00 AM ET
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Seeing as it's veering into Beer Travesty Day here on Eatocracy, we've gotta ask - do you put ice in your brewski?

We wonder, because we ran a poll last Friday on favorite drinking formats (from a tap, by a landslide, if you're keeping score) and noticed in the comments that a certain percentage of you like ice in your beer.

Yes, we're well aware that more than a dozen of the posts were from the same person (oh, those pesky IP addresses!), but there were so many similar responses that we're looking for corroboration.

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Filed under: Beer • Buzz • From the Comments • Sip

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