Hillary Eaton

Originally appeared on Food & Wine

The Hottest New Caviar Service Is … Vegan

When the day calls for you to treat yourself, there’s really no better way than to indulge in caviar service. From those delicate, mother-of-pearl spoons to the perfectly bronzed blinis and the shiny little beads of onyx-colored sturgeon eggs looking up at you (just beggin’ for that ‘gram), it’s an experience known to evoke a happy dance in even the staunchest of reserved restaurant-goers.

While the ornate experience itself is classic, the latest in caviar isn’t about tapping into your inner-tsar, instead it’s all about saying by to the Old World and embracing your inner plant-based-loving Angeleno and going … completely vegan.

Originally appeared on Food & Wine

Five-Story Rubik’s Cube Will House the World’s Most Immersive Wine-Tasting Experience

Driving through the rolling hills of South Australia’s McLaren Vale wine region, surrounded by vines planted by 19th-century European settlers and cellar doors of Australia’s oldest wineries, the last thing you’d expect to find is a multi-dimensional, five-story-tall Rubik’s cube. But at d’Arenberg winery, that’s exactly what you’ll find. The architectural marvel of bold shards of mirror and glass and metal is home to one of the world’s most immersive, anticipated wine-tasting experiences, and it is set to finally open this November.

Dubbed the d’Arenberg cube, this $14 million AUD project dreamed up by d’Arenberg’s lovably eccentric, fourth-generation winemaker, Chester Osborn, will be equal parts cellar door, art gallery, immersive tasting room and fine-dining destination. Each of the elements have the explicit intent of shattering your senses and heightening them to the optimal sensory place for wine tasting.

Originally appeared on VICE (MUNCHIES)

Why Dominique Crenn Wants to Plant a Million Trees in Haiti

Dominique Crenn—she of the poetic tasting menu at Michelin-starred Atelier Crenn— has long been known as a chef that’s as talented as she is tireless. But the chef’s latest endeavor just might be the most impressive project she’s worked on thus far.

It’s Root Project, an aid project put together by Crenn and Zesa Raw co-founder Michelle Jean with the goal of helping farmers in Haiti replant coffee and cocoa plants after the complete devastation of local crops following Hurricane Matthew. The project’s goal is to plant 1 million trees alongside Haitian farmers and chefs. We caught up with Crenn to see what this project could mean for the farmers of Haiti and to discuss chefs’ social and environmental responsibilities.

Originally appeared on VICE (MUNCHIES)

How a Former Porn Star Found a New Life in Hot Sauce

There’s a lot of masochism in hot sauce. When you move beyond the relative safety of Tabasco, Sriracha, and Tapatío, much of the market is made up of small-production sauces with gimmicky names and labels promising every conceivable level of delicious pain.

Take hot sauces like the Reaper Sling Blade—made with one of the world’s hottest peppers, the Carolina Reaper—or The Black Mamba, which boasts a rating of 2.5 million on the heat-rating Scoville scale. (For reference, a standard jalapeño falls somewhere between 3,500 and 10,000 Scoville units.) The problem with most of these super-hot sauces, however, is that while they effectively set your mouth on fire, they contain little in the way of real flavor.

Originally appeared on VICE (MUNCHIES)

Why Vegas Is Embracing a New Wave of Restaurants

For years, the food scene on the Las Vegas strip could be largely divided into two categories: fine dining or chain-casual. Screaming Eagle in Zalto stemware or a liter of boozy neon slushy through a sippy straw. Celebrity chefs or mega chains. Joël Robuchon or Hooters. 

But as more and more people begin to plan trips around memorable food experiences, Las Vegas’ strip has begun to shape-shift around the fact that a huge number of their potential visitors are of a new breed. They can’t (or don’t want) to drop $445 per person on a tasting menu but they also appreciate good food and want more than just cheese-covered drunk food—except when that’s exactly what they want, of course.

They’re the type of people who watch Chef’s Table and Instagram their food. They’re Millennials who are happy to wait in wind, rain, or snow for the cruffins, Nashville-style hot chickens, and top-rated xiao long baos of the world. They’re the kind conscientious eaters who think about the politics of the James Beard Awards, the dilemmas of included gratuity, and the demise of Lucky Peach.

For better or worse, if you’re reading this, they’re you and me.

Originally appeared on Food & Wine

You Can Now Turn All Your Food into Unicorn Food

Finding someone who hasn’t heard of unicorn food might be rarer than finding an actual unicorn. While 2017 may technically be the year of the rooster, we all know it’s really the year of the unicorn. Did you know unicorn ramen is a thing now? Because it is.

Coffee houses, restaurants and even mega-chains have embraced the trend, attracting foodies that flock in masses for that unicorn-colored ‘gram. Starbucks ruled social media the week they served the limited-edition Unicorn Frappuccino, thanks to fans of the mythical, horned creature’s namesake food.

But for those who like their food best served in photogenic layers of pinks, purples and blue—we have some good news. Thanks to Pearl Butter, a new line of unicorn food in a jar, you can now transform everything you eat into unicorn food in the comfort of your own home.


Originally appeared on Food & Wine

Here’s How Michelin Stars Actually Affect the Restaurant Business

The Michelin guide has long been the defacto authority on the world’s best dining. But as gourmet culture reaches peak mainstream popularity and old culinary hierarchies remain in flux, how does gaining, losing and (gasp) renouncing a star actually affect a restaurant’s business?

Historically, receiving a single Michelin star has led to an increase in customers for restaurants. Take chef John Fraser, whose New York restaurant Nix joined the Michelin star rankings this year (and whose website features “Proud new owner of a Michelin star” as a central banner). He said that receiving a Michelin star “has drastically increased business at both Nix and Dovetail.” An added bonus? “With the stars, I do feel now we are able to retain a higher level of staff than before.”

Originally appeared on Food & Wine

7 Rock Stars’ Hangover-Curing Breakfasts

There’s a stereotype about musicians that they know how to party. And while we’re reluctant to generalize, we suspected that rock stars might have some insight into one of Saturday morning’s oldest questions: What should I eat to cure this raging hangover? So to get some professional, definitely scientific insight, we asked some of our favourite musicians about what sort of greasy breakfast bomb they crave to dull the pain and what restaurant does it best.

Originally appeared on Food & Wine

A Guide to Melbourne’s Booming Craft Beer Scene

Over the last few years, the craft beer movement has completely taken over Melbourne thanks to a handful of young beer makers across the city. With an over 1,000 percent increase in the number of local breweries (reaching at least 60), the craft beer scene in Melbourne and surrounding areas have made the city one of Australia’s greatest destinations for beer. What’s more, one in three craft beers in Australia now comes from Melbourne.

 From beers brewed with hybridized wild yeasts and infused with native herbs and bugs to the cross-influence of British and West Coast American-style beers, breweries are putting Melbourne on the map as a brew city to rival the likes of Portland.So where does a beer lover get into it and taste the best of the best that Melbourne’s beer makers have to offer? We’ve got you covered: from the brewery bars to craft beer watering holes, here’s how to do it right, down under.

Originally appeared on Why Attica’s Somm Jane Lopes Is Mixing Wine and Decanting Champagne

Why Attica’s Somm Jane Lopes Is Mixing Wine and Decanting Champagne

We’ve all been there —the waiter accidentally pours someone else’s Pinot Noir into your Barolo, ruining your perfectly good glass of wine. You smile and tell them it’s okay while silently seething, reminding yourself that we all make mistakes. And while it’s something that just happens sometimes, it’s not something you’d expect to happen at Melbourne’s Attica, one of the best restaurants in the world. That is, unless it’s being done on purpose.

Jane Lopes, Attica’s new sommelier, is used to guests freaking out when she tries to pour a Chikuma Nishiki “Kizan Sanban” sake into a half-full glass of 2011 Crawford River “Noble Dry” Riesling. “We’ve had people cover their glasses, try to move their glasses out of the way, yell, ‘What are you doing?!’,” she said of her mixed-in-the-glass wine pairing for the restaurant’s abalone with seaweed butter and black garlic cream course.