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  1. Well, for one, they're widely available, not too fussy, and allow viewing of the leaves. But secondly, even with the leaves on top, the device still allows you to separate the leaves and the water (once some water has been poured out). I'm not suggesting it's unique (obviously, other brewing devices can also allow this). I mentioned before that this is not really a preferred method of tea brewing for me, but I think if you're going to use a French press to brew tea (as many shops seem to do, whether because they already have one or because they think it's stylish), this would be the way to do
  2. I got a set for my folks' house, and I think it's great for the price.
  3. I also don't love the "French press for tea brewing" thing, but one suggestion I saw recently that was really good is to put the leaf on *top* of the press portion. That serves two functions -- 1, makes it easier to take the leaf out of contact with the water, and 2, prevents the user from actually pressing on the tea leaves.
  4. Yeah, I think loose leaf is basically a given in a case like this. And definitely offer loose tea and good teaware for sale in addition to serving it at the shop.
  5. I think tea service in a setting like that is just tricky to do right. Tea has a lot of variables (and a lot of personal preference) in terms of how it can be made. I would start with figuring out your approach to water. Good water is very important to tea -- that includes the water itself, as well as how it's heated. A good spring water with not too high TDS would be ideal, but I understand that's not practical in most shop settings, so I'd say an industrial strength carbon filter system (not RO) would be ideal. If you can use some Zojirushi water boilers and some smaller electric kettles, th
  6. Yeah, Paul Qui's current truck is called East Side Kings; there are a few different locations. I went recently, and the food was excellent (price is not the cheapest and portions are small, but certainly falls within the constraints mentioned above). Lots of great food trucks around, and most of them are clustered in little semi-permanent "trailer parks". I think most of the food I had from the trucks there was good to excellent, and I like the way the city has really helped to encourage, rather than stifle the whole food truck thing. I live in LA where the whole upscale food truck thing seeme
  7. I think the way has been alluded to several times -- a lot of practice / know-how. The specific composition of the dough isn't as important as that. The reason more people can't do it (myself included) is because they haven't spent the time to master the skill, which is not easy. And to be honest, most people don't need to know how to make these at home. Personally, I usually just go out if I'm craving handmade noodles, but more rustic hand-cut ones are fine in a pinch too.
  8. Overall, 00 flour isn't especially high-gluten, is it?
  9. So, looking at the description again, this is a riff on a dish from a contemporary restaurant on the outskirts of Taipei; the dish is definitely "fusion". The original dish it's based on was fresh tofu with uni (sea urchin) on top, soy sauce, a hint of wasabi, and a wedge of avocado. Whatever the origin, the dish is pretty tasty. She has the more usual variant with soy sauce, green onion, sesame oil (and optional pidan) on the previous page (41).
  10. The portable butane ones that run of canisters work pretty well, and can be bought fairly cheaply at Asian supermarkets. But I think some of the ~ $70 induction burners are also supposed to be decent, assuming your cookware's induction capable.
  11. Not mind-blowing to me - the whisky taste didn't really come through that strongly, and the bitter-sweet / spice flavors of the Gran Classico and vermouth were a bit strong. I'm not the biggest Negroni fan to start with, though, so maybe I'm not the best person to comment. I did enjoy this more than a standard Negroni, because the bitterness was a little more balanced.
  12. I was seated at a table, so I didn't watch it being made, but guessing you could make it as you'd make a Negroni, so 1:1:1 might not be a bad starting point. I'm guessing that's a nerdy enough question that one of the bartenders might answer if you give them a call. Here's an article with a bit more about the drinks there. http://www.lamag.com/lafood/digestblog/2013/01/17/hinoki-and-the-bird-cocktails-sam-ross-david-myers-century-city I'm a bit skeptical about the suggestion that "Tokyo cocktail style" would be more of a fresh program - most of the cocktail bars I know about in Tokyo are much
  13. Foil-lined wok , with the food on top of chopsticks going across the top, works pretty well for me.
  14. btw, a restaurant here in LA has an entire section of negroni variations on their cocktail menu. http://hinokiandthebird.com/wine-list/ Classic Negroni Gin, sweet vermouth & Campari, rocks, orange twist White Negroni Amère sauvage (bitter gentian), bianco vermouth, rocks, grapefruit twist Harajuku Hakushu Single Malt Whiskey, Gran Classico, Maurin Quina & Chocolate bitters Kingston Negroni Smith + Cross Jamaican Rum, Gran Classico, sweet vermouth, rocks, orange twist I tried the Harajuku recently; I wasn't blown away, but it was definitely interesting and had potential.
  15. Yes and no. Yes, the food has to taste good, but your friendly neighborhood vegetable curry won't cut it for the feel of these meals. The standard for these feasts is five to six courses (including cheese and sorbet interludes). The things mentioned in the original post are not meant to be all implemented (or indeed any of them), it's just what was in my head when I wrote the post. But I have to find some idea to develop the menu around. I think there is a wide area between "your friendly neighborhood vegetable curry" and "Pressure-cooked mustard seeds" as "caviar" (though I think there are fi
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