Lucky Dip – Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

In Toronto:

Chef Anthony Rose announced yesterday via The Grid that he’ll be leaving The Drake Hotel (1150 Queen Street West) at the end of the month to open a place of his own. Darren Glew, who has been at The Drake for the past five years, will take over the kitchen.

Simple Bistro (619 Mount Pleasant Road) had rolled out a new spring menu. Chef Matthew Cowan is offering up lots of tasty local fare such as rainbow trout, Grey County rabbit with prunes (put this in my belly now!), venison tartare and mushroom crepe. And brunch offers something called “The Cure” which is not Fat Bob singing Lovecats, but looks instead like the ultimate fry-up with eggs, bacon, sausage and duck confit hash.

Emma’s Country Kitchen (1108 St. Clair Avenue West) is not open yet, but hopes to be serving salads, sandwiches, soups, brunch and pastries to the folks of Corso Italia within the next couple of months.

The folks at Slow Food Toronto are looking for volunteers to help out at The Green Living Show (April 13th – 15th) at the Farm Fresh Fare area they run each year. People who help out and work a 3-hour shift will get a free pass to the show and some food tickets to try some of the food prepared by local chefs.

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Faux Foodies

“Why would you go to Spain with that one bitch who refuses to eat ham?” – Anthony Bourdain

I normally avoid celebrity-related gossip or news, but this article about Gwyneth Paltrow speaks to a couple of issues. Firstly, is Paltrow a “faux foodie”? A better question than Bourdain’s is – why would you be part of a food show if you won’t/can’t eat half of the food featured on the show? I was vegetarian, nearly vegan, for many years, and when I started writing about food, I determined that it was my job to eat what is put in front of me, whether it’s ham or testicles or brains or kangaroo. I knew I couldn’t get all squeamish about what was served to me, and I seldom make a fuss.

The deal here though, is that Paltrow is coming out with a cookbook of stuff she rarely eats. Why? Like the NY Post, I don’t really get it.

On the other hand, from my time being a vegetarian, I know full well that it’s totally possible to love food, even if you only eat half of what’s out there. We tend to have a very narrow view of what is good, so Paltrow’s stance on not eating pork shouldn’t raise too many eyebrows (heck, some of the best cooks/biggest foodsters I know are Jewish; lack of pork hasn’t stopped them from enjoying a meal).

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Ditzy Food Yapping

I suppose I’m as guilty as anyone else.

No, I take that back, I’m not.

I’ve loved everything to do with food and cooking since I was a young thing (see user pic), but I’d like to think that I’ve never bent anyone’s ear about it, that I haven’t bored anyone to death with minute details of a dish I’ve cooked, or eaten. Or that, to the outsider, all I seem interested in is food.

That’s hard, as someone who is a food writer and has worked in restaurants and done catering. It’s my job to be obsessed with food.

But there’s a line where it becomes obnoxious and ruins the fun for everyone else.

Maybe it’s some kind of early-adopter elitism, the idea that those of us who have been involved in something for a long time know more, do more, deserve more than the newbies. Or maybe I’m just too much of a cool-ass curmudgeon to enjoy someone else’s enthusiasm over discovering something new.

But the keeners (aka “foodies” [said with a derisive sneer], or “foodiots” according to The New York Observer) are ruining it for the rest of us.

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