This is the sixth installment of "Eat This List" - a regularly recurring list of things chefs, farmers, writers and other food experts think you ought to know about.
I'm a good cook. I'd go so far as to say I'm a damn good cook - not fussy or haute, but you could tell me that a James Beard-nominated chef was coming over to eat and I wouldn't panic. (They have, and I didn't.)
I also write about food for a living, which leads a lot of of people to infer that I've mastered a lot more in the kitchen than I actually have. I'm adventurous and fearless, but I still have a lot to learn. So, in the spirit of honesty (and letting the rest of you feel like Alton Brown in comparison), here's a handful of common cooking tasks on which I'd grade myself a C-minus or worse.
Ah, fermentation. And distilling.
Where would the world be without them? Yes, the Irish might have taken over the world had God not invented whisky, but what about rum, gin, vodka, beer and wine?
Ray Isle (@islewine on Twitter) is Food & Wine's executive wine editor. We trust his every cork pop and decant – and the man can sniff out a bargain to boot. Take it away, Ray.
Once again it is upon us: National Beer Can Appreciation Day (not to be confused with National Beer Appreciation Day, which I believe is actually every day of the year).
People first got the bright idea of putting beer in cans back in 1933, when the Gottfried Krueger Brewing Company teamed up with the American Can Company to produce a test run of 2,000 cans of Krueger’s Special Beer. If you’re wondering how it worked out, consider this: In 1941, people in the U.S. consumed roughly a billion cans of beer.
Despite the success of the beer can, in recent years, the craft beer industry has been wary of the allure of metal. Until a few years ago, most independent small brewers have been resolutely pro-glass.