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mcdowell

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    Austin Texas
  1. I'm not so sure. It's not just state codes that vacillate. Go browse around ttb.gov (treasury's alcohol tax division) and you'll find that there's a pretty even split between spellings, though where definitions are offered it seems that "whiskey" outweighs "whisky" in the code. ATF is similarly confused. I'm not sure I know where to look for the "official American spelling", given the rampant inconsistencies in the federal code. Wikipedia, I think, is using authoritative tone where it might not be so appropriate (imagine that).
  2. Note the spelling. Much of the pertinent legal regulations may be found here, in 27 C.F.R. PART 5—LABELING AND ADVERTISING OF DISTILLED SPIRITS. ← Unless, of course, you're in Kentucky and looking at the language of the code there, where "whisky" doesn't seem to be the preferred spelling, as example: Note the spelling. As in most things language, ambiguity and inconsistency rule. Keeps it fun.
  3. If you're on the Terlingua side, there's a little place called the Starlight Diner on the hill with the ghost town and the general store. The menu was surprisingly sophisticated and the food surprisingly fresh (given where we were). It's called the 'starlight' because part of the roof is missing and you can see the stars. The night I was there, they had live jazz. The night before, when I tried to eat there, I found a hand written sign "gone exploring in Mexico, back in 2 days". Your mileage may vary. You don't say where you're coming from, but try and travel through Marfa. If you hav
  4. To force a fresh & hot fry at McDonald's, ask for an order without salt.
  5. For what it's worth, I loved your original write-up. I think it's asinine that any of us here, in these forums, would stoop to critiquing anybody's dinner party based on pictures and ingredients. I'm a little embarrassed for the writers of some of this feedback. Food, when not used as fuel, should be about pleasure. And a dinner party should be about creating a shared experience that brings both emotional and sensual pleasure. If you were paying for the experience, then the host might have different obligations. But this guy was there to share the night and help you indulge in a little dist
  6. I've fallen asleep in front of a computer screen more often than I'll ever admit, but then I work in technology. I work on the the side of the business that is enabling these sorts of gadgets, getting paid to live five and ten years in the future. I'm a fan of these sorts of devices, and I think they really will change the way we go about the business of living. If I were simply reading, I can easily see a day in the very near future where an eBook reader might be my primary choice. And if I were just using a text as a reference, looking for a recipe, say, then I often use the internet, an
  7. Forget the food, anything public to share, from the dinner, on why he's out at Bloomberg?? And, FG, your visit made gawker.com yesterday (so says my girlfriend, as I'd -never- read a gossip site) w/ the headline "sad restaurant critic burns food": http://gawker.com/5002921/sad-restaurant-critic-burns-food
  8. It's not clear where you're located, but here's a list that might get you started: http://killtherestaurant.com/findings.html
  9. There's an interesting exchange w/ Anthony Bourdain on-topic in this past weekend's "The Onion", full text online here: http://www.avclub.com/content/feature/anthony_bourdain, and excerpted by me, below: ... AVC: Do you ever feel like your sense of taste or smell was diminished by your drug use? AB: Who knows? I think, technically, male palates start to decline very early anyway, around 27 or 28. That's what God made salt for. AVC: Do you feel like your smoking has affected it? AB: Oh, I'm sure it has. But most chefs smoke. I always love reading on the foodie blogs, these complete idiots who
  10. Matt's is to Tex Mex as Salt Lick is to BBQ. Something like that. Trying to categorize all of this is a slippery slope, I really hate that term 'authentic', and I'm usually dragged kicking and screaming to places like Matt's or Maudies (unless tequila is involved at some level)... all that said, my two favorite places in town for Mexican-inspired fare are: Curra's Grill, Oltorf just west of I-35 (think there's a north location as well, but have never been) is a favorite lunch place, modestly priced, but with a really good selection of moles, and more variety and surprises than you might fi
  11. By and large relationships are about sharing passions, especially this passion that many of us have around things epicurean (almost by definition a shared experience). My partners don't have to have tastes that match mine, or even what I judge to be a sophisticated/educated palate, but they do have to have a willingness to indulge and experiment. And to not be judgmental. Two quick anecdotes: I lived with a woman once, not long ago, who initiated and took me to an amazingly innovative Thai restaurant just outside of San Francisco. She had the pad thai (of course), and I ordered a spiced fr
  12. I buy nearly all of my tools at local Acemart Restaurant Supply. For non-mainstream stuff it usually comes in extremely competitive, and lasts forever. Recent example, needed a new chinois (china cap). $20 bought me a 10" steel tool at the restaurant supply store, whereas at the more traditional outlets they start north of $50USD (you can do this experiment yourself online). Also a goldmine for things like baking hardware and squeeze bottles... wander the aisles and you'll find things you never knew you needed. My pans & knives are high end and pretty, but stockpots, etc, all from rest
  13. Totally agree with melkor. And while I find Bourdain (one example in the original slate article) oft projects a little too much affected machismo, I can read John Thorne or Jim Harrison all day long, satisfying my urges. In fact, Harrison & his Raw and Cooked column in Esquire back in the late 80's heavily influenced my early culinary attitudes, while I'd only flip through Gourmet, looking at the pretty pictures. Even so, browse the food-heavy section at the local Barnes & Noble and you'll find that flowery prose still far out-numbers the macho writing by a couple of orders of magn
  14. [edited to say Whoops - wrong London]
  15. I agree - I'm not a big fan of the Clay Pit. It's not bad, but mediocre. I think it attains its hype level strictly on the merit of it's location. One place I do like is Sar-o-Var on Burnett, just south of 183. It's in a strip center on the west side of the road. I've eaten there 3 or 4 times this year and have always been satisfied. There's another place on Anderson, in strip mall adjoining the Alamo Drafthouse. I don't remember the name, but had the lunch buffet there a few weeks back. It's passable, but not a destination. Sadly, I've not found a place on the south/soutwest side of town,
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