5@5 - Paolo Novello, Bryan Burnett and Aaron von Rock
June 8th, 2011
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.

Unless you're living under a severely air-conditioned rock, you may have noticed summer has recently made the executive decision to go from zero to full throttle.

As the masses sweat in places we'd rather not know sweat could permeate from, it's easy for our minds to linger to breezy coasts and ice-cold beverages.

As a cool reprieve, the wine team from New York City's Lincoln Ristorante - General Manager Paolo Novello, Sommelier Bryan Burnett and Wine Director Aaron von Rock - has come up with a list of the essential Italian spirits and cold cocktails to make with them at home.

With a little imagination, you'll be living la thirst-quenched dolce vita on the coast of Amalfi in no time.

Five Essential Italian Spirits: The Lincoln Beverage Team

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Filed under: 5@5 • Cocktail Recipes • Sip • Spirits • Think

June 8th, 2011
02:45 PM ET
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We're all for wacky ice cream flavors and can sorta wrap our heads around insect eating, but the combo of the two kinda bugs us out.

This recipe for pumpkin ice cream seems a tad more savory, no? Stay cool and you may live to see your 112th birthday!


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Filed under: Dishes • Ice Cream • Insects • Taboos • Weird News

Even in tough times, there's always beer money
June 8th, 2011
01:00 PM ET
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Alcohol sales climbed with little interruption throughout the recent recession, and have continued to expand in recent months.

This is in spite of - or maybe because of - the stagnant job market. So the old adage - that the booze industry survives in a recession because people drink even when they're broke - appears to be true.

"I wouldn't say it's recession proof," said Esther Kwon, an alcohol industry analyst for Standard & Poor's. "People will buy less and they will move to different venues, meaning moving to home instead of a bar. But people will continue to drink, regardless."

Read the full story on CNN Money - "Alcohol sales thrive in hard times"

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Filed under: Business and Farming News • News • Sip

Scorpacciata: On ramps
June 8th, 2011
12:45 PM ET
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Scorpacciata is a term that means consuming large amounts of a particular local ingredient while it's in season. It's a good way to eat. Let Mario Batali pronounce it for you.

"Ramps...huh?" "What the heck is ramp puree?"

As soon as we posted the menu for last night's White House State Dinner, the question began rolling in from my colleagues, commenters, folks on Twitter - and I realized I oughta get my head out of my ramp patch and explain.

Ramps are a member of the allium family (Allium tricoccum if you care to get all categorical about it) and are akin to a wild onion. The flavor is pungent and slightly nutty - somewhere between garlic and leeks, and both the leafy tops and tender bulbs are edible.

Food fanatics get all het up about them because they're, well, incredibly delicious - but also because they're somewhat of a rarity. They're difficult, if not impossible to cultivate, so they must be foraged from the wild or as is often the case, bought at a premium from someone else who's gone out to do the dirty work.

Box lunch
June 8th, 2011
12:00 PM ET
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Sink your teeth into today's top stories from around the globe.

  • Pie is back - except we weren't aware it ever went away. - My San Antonio

  • When you're a restaurant critic, sometimes you have to grin and bear it - especially when your least favorite food is the main event. - Village Voice

  • If you're looking for a job this summer, it's a good time to become a waiter. - NRN

  • Are antibiotics necessary to ensure healthy farm animals? Contrary to popular government belief, some say 'not at all.' - Huffington Post
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Filed under: Box Lunch • News

June 8th, 2011
11:00 AM ET
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iReporter Lulis Leal travels the world with a keen eye, an open heart and an empty stomach. Here, she shares the visual flavor of a trip to a Mexican market where vendors hawk fruit, vegetables, elote (roasted corn with cream and chile powder), tacos and musch more.

Submit your own street food photos and sample more iReports from around the globe. (Yes, it says Maine right now, but last week, it was street food. Just go with it.)

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Filed under: Buzz • Cuisines • Food Trucks • iReport • Mexican • Restaurants

June 8th, 2011
10:15 AM ET
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Fruit and vegetable company Werder Frucht has to bring in additional workers these days or risk falling behind. But the workers are not busy selling the company's tomatoes: they are busy throwing red, ripe produce in the trash.

Workers empty crate after crate of vine-ripened vegetables into a giant garbage container on the company's premises in Werder near Berlin.

For the past four weeks - since an E. coli scare caused European consumers to all but abandon eating raw vegetables - demand in tomatoes has plummeted, says Petra Lack, Werder Frucht sales manager.

Read - "Tons of fresh produce trashed in Germany"

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Filed under: Health News • News • Tainted Food

Celebrity at table 148 - but don't you dare stare
June 8th, 2011
10:00 AM ET
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Celebrities have been frequenting restaurants for a while now—the Algonquin Round Table was in full effect in the 1920s. So we won’t pretend it's news to see a famous person sitting in a dining room. But it’s quite amazing to see how far some restaurants go these days to protect their more recognizable guests.

Here’s Ken Friedman, co-owner of such NYC celeb hang-outs as the Spotted Pig and the Breslin, sounding like Brad Pitt in Fight Club. “The first rule at my restaurants is don’t talk about who’s eating at my restaurants.”

Here are some other rules we've seen NYC restaurants employ.

Visitors to the U.S. - avoid these tipping pitfalls
June 8th, 2011
09:30 AM ET
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Jim Boulden is a CNN Business 360 correspondent

I've just gotten back from a ten day holiday trip in the U.S., which included a lot of meals, bars, baseball games and hotel rooms – which means, of course, a lot of tipping, or not as the case may be.

I may be American by birth, but I have spent 20 years overseas and so I have to re-learn when to tip, how much to tip, and how to get out of tipping when it feels right.

I am also cheap. I hate the pressure to tip but I am quite happy to tip well when the service warrants. I also know well that many an American teenager survive off the tips, something non Americans don't seem to readily understand.

Read Jim's tipping tips at Tipping traps in the U.S.

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Filed under: Restaurants • Service • Tipping

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