Terroir Talk: Tasting the Earth in Your Wine

Vineyard 002

photo: Caliterra

In wine jargon, terroir is a term that is trending amongst oenophiles and befuddling wine novices. Though the frilly French pronunciation (ter-wahr) may scare you off, it’s actually a useful term that will help you become a savvy wine drinker – and earn a few wine vocab points along the way.

Terroir comes from the Latin root meaning “earth” and refers to the collection of environmental elements that give wine a sense of place. Read the rest of this entry »

No Chinatown? No Problem! Part I: Atlanta & Dallas


photo: photo_blog

Once upon a time it was easy to find a good Chinese restaurant. If your city had a Chinatown, that’s where you went. If your city didn’t have a Chinatown, you were out of luck. But now things are different. Chinatown might not be the best place to go for Chinese food, and even if your city doesn’t have a recognized Chinatown, there still may be concentrations of good Chinese restaurants. The problem is that quite often in cities without a Chinatown, even most locals may not know about these Chinese restaurants, which will usually be in some suburb completely on the other side of town. Indeed, there are a number of American cities that follow this pattern. In this article, I’ll cover Atlanta and Dallas. Read the rest of this entry »

Vegan Foods You Already Love—and Didn’t Even Know It
comment 2 Written by in Vegan Food

Black Bean Soup

photo: basykes

So you’re not much of a salad person. Believe me, I get it — neither am I. Some people adore a bowlful of chopped raw vegetables. Personally, I would rather opt for starvation. Fortunately, for me, it’s easy to be vegan with nary a salad bowl in sight. In fact, even before I decided to do my health, the planet, and animals a favor and stop eating meat and dairy products, I was already eating a lot of vegan food, and *gasp* enjoying it! Chances are, you are, too. So here are some of my (and maybe your) faves: Read the rest of this entry »

Why All the Fancy Bread at Fast Food Restaurants?
comment 1 Written by in Burgers, Fast Food


It was the strangest thing: There I was in the drive-thru of my local Carl’s Jr. waiting to place an order when the following recorded voice greeted me:

“Hi and welcome to Carl’s Jr.! Would you like to try one of our Six-Dollar Burgers on our new fresh baked buns today?”

I was completely confused. Why all of a sudden was Carl’s Jr. offering fresh baked buns? When did it get so uppity? What was wrong with my usual $2.50 burger under a heat lamp? I didn’t want fresh baked buns, especially if I had to spend $6 or $7 for them. Who would buy this? Read the rest of this entry »

The New Breed of Upscale Authentic Chinese Restaurants
M Y China. All photos by David R. Chan

M. Y. China. All photos by David R. Chan

Last year I wrote about the dilemma of Chinese restaurants in the United States being categorized as cheap food and unable to charge premium prices for food of equal caliber to other cuisines. I ended my article on the hopeful note that the beginning winds of change had come with a handful of upscale and authentic Chinese restaurants in the past two years. Let’s take a specific look at this new breed of Chinese restaurant. Read the rest of this entry »