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Mouthing Off

By the Editors of Food & Wine Magazine

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Expert Party Tips

Dana Cowin's Dream Concession Stand

Dana Cowin's Dream Concession Stand

Here, produced by F&W's Julia Heffelfinger, a makeover of the movie-theater concession stand. No popcorn machine necessary.

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Editor Picks

Dana Cowin on the Best Times Square Restaurants

Times Square Restaurants: BXL Café

Here, F&W editors' guide to the best Times Square restaurants, perfect for visitors to New York City.

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Chef Intel

Andrew Zimmern's Top Airport Food Spots

© Julia Rothman
© Julia Rothman

© Julia Rothman

I asked my very favorite frequent flier and F&W Contributing Editor, Andrew Zimmern, who travels the world for his show Bizarre Foods on the Travel Channel, for his favorite dining spots in airports. He obliged by giving me his favorite places to eat in 12 airports around the country. From now on, I’m booking all my flights with stopovers in Minneapolis. 12 great airport restaurants. »

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Editor Picks

Great Soup Spots to Help You Forget the Flu

Classic Chicken Noodle Soup

Classic Chicken Noodle Soup from F&W's Grace Parisi; © Stephanie Foley

The flu is still wreaking havoc across the country. If you’ve already high-fived the wrong person and come down with the flu, there are ways to make yourself better. One is to get out your soup spoon and dig into a bowl of supremely satisfying soup. Here, fantastic soups across America.>>

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Editor Picks

Best Super Bowl Drinks, or How to Hide in the Kitchen Eating Nachos and Lighting Fruit on Fire to Avoid Football

Super Bowl Cocktail: Cradle of Life

Cradle of Life © Tina Rupp

Food & Wine editors aren’t necessarily sports experts, as you will see admitted below. So if you’re wondering whether to bet on Baltimore or San Francisco for the Super Bowl on Sunday, don’t ask us. But for an answer to that burning question regarding what to pair with loaded nachos, we’ve got you covered. Here, editors’ game-day-perfect cocktails, wines and beers for serious football food fans. MORE »

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Trendspotting

6 Must-Eat Foods & Drinks for 2013

Cornmeal-Crusted Chicken-Fried Rabbit

© Fredrika Stjärne

What do you want to be eating more of in 2013? Right now, in the midst of my post-holiday food hangover, my answer is “nothing.” My follow-up answer is “anything that’s associated with the word cleanse.” But I’ll get over that. So I looked in the crystal ball we have lying around at Food & Wine in anticipation of moments like this, and I discovered five foods and one kind of drink that will be on fire in 2013. On to the must-try foods. »

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Editor Picks

Studying the Nuances of Cocktails in DC

Cocktail Cartoon

Cocktail Cartoon by Adam Bernbach.

Most people who order a cocktail just by its name might not realize they’re being pretty vague. “I’ll have a Manhattan,” we’ll say, then go back to our conversation, leaving the nuances of each drink up to the person behind the bar. Bourbon? Rye? Dolin vermouth? Angostura bitters? That’s handing over a lot of decision-making power to the bartender. At the spectacular cocktail spot Proof, in Washington, DC, bar manager Adam Bernbach is helping guests discover exactly how different a drink can be, depending on the answers to these sorts of questions.

“There’s a certain handwriting to cocktails,” Bernbach says. “Your handwriting is slanted in a certain direction, your L’s curl a little more than somebody else’s, your P’s are a little straighter than others. In the same way, when you’re making a daiquiri, maybe you choose to use a South American rum and you might add a touch more lime juice because your preference is for something a little bit more tart.”

This month, Bernbach is exploring this mixology philosophy during his weekly Remastered Editions. For each Sunday (aside from the 20th, because of Inauguration Day insanity) he’s selected a classic cocktail and is presenting it using four different recipes. Last week, he did a study of the Manhattan. The fan favorites that night were the ones made with Eagle Rare bourbon, Cocchi vermouth and Angostura bitters; and another with Templeton rye, Carpano Antica and a combination of Angostura and Regan’s Orange bitters. On Sunday, January 13, daiquiris are in the spotlight. The varying styles of rum—Spanish, English, rhum agricole from the French West Indies—and the vast assortments of sweeteners that can be used in the classic, from Demerara syrup to simple syrup to plain sugar, give Bernbach a lot of flexibility. “I think the sweet, herb, spice quality of the rhum agricole will be very visible to guests. And I think the funkiness of the Jamaican Blackwell rum will be really obvious.”

To drive home this idea of the personalized nature of these cocktails, Bernbach has handwritten each of the menus and even made a little drawing (above) for each week. For the final installment of Remastered Editions, Bernbach will tackle the whiskey sour—including one drink that involves a whole egg yolk and that intriguingly tastes like, in Bernbach’s words, “lemony nut cake.” Perhaps it’s time to book a seat on the Acela, destination: Washington, DC.

Related: 50 Best Bars in America

Editor Picks

PDTs Brand-New Mission Chinese Dog

PDT's Mapo Tofu-Topped Mission Chinese Dog.

PDT's Mapo Tofu-Topped Mission Chinese Dog; Photo © Nick Brown.

“Mapo tofu and I have quite a history,” says Mission Chinese Food’s Danny Bowien. “It’s the inspiration behind the whole MCF project.” I consider it the perfect dish; the only thing I’ve wished for is a supersonic cocktail to wash it down with. Lucky me: MCF in Manhattan now has a sparkling new liquor license and a team set on perfecting the most perfect version of Sex on the Beach.

Now there’s more great booze-and-tofu news: the exceptional bar PDT has just put the Mission Chinese Dog on their menu. It’s an all-beef hot dog covered with Bowien’s exhilarating, Szechuan peppercorn-packed tofu, plus onions, cilantro and American cheese sauce. The Mission Chinese Dog is spicy and messy and requires a knife and fork. And, of course, a cocktail. PDT’s Jim Meehan recommends the Alambic Fizz, a mix of Cognac, lemon juice, Landy's 5-Year-Old Bual Madeira and pimento bitters. It’s also got peach lambic. Peach schnapps is key to Sex on the Beach; I expect this drink is as close as I'll get to having the Spring Break staple at PDT.

Related: Cocktail Party Tips from Jim Meehan
Best Hot Dog Recipes
22 Classic Cocktails

Editor Picks

Editor Picks: Top 5 Coffee Splurges of 2012

Heart Coffee Roasters Ethiopia Yukro. Photo courtesy of Heart Coffee Roasters.

 

By liquid volume, I don’t drink a tremendous amount of coffee. More than a cup or two is usually overkill for me, caffeine-wise, so I’m fanatical about finding the best to brew each morning by pour-over or AeroPress.

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Editor Picks

Top 10 Food Products of 2012

Nine Sons Rising Frozen Biscuits

Biscuits! Courtesy of Nine Sons Rising.

F&W executive food editor and Supermarket Sleuth Tina Ujlaki names the year's best products for home cooks and last-minute gift givers.

1. PASTA: Molino e Pastificio Poschiavo
This is my favorite pasta at the moment, and everyone I’ve introduced it to has been equally smitten. Both the high price tag and the pretty, modern packaging kept me away until earlier this year, when I was looking for vermicelli and couldn’t find another brand. It definitely takes longer to cook than other pastas, but the wait (and the cost) are well worth it. The flavor is amazing and it's very easy to cook it just right. pastificio.ch

2. BREAD MIX: Dumbo Delicious from Baked Better
I love hearty, rustic super-grainy/-seedy bread, but a lot of the loaves I buy are too sweet for me. What I love about this organic mix, aside from the fact that it produces a hefty, grainy loaf with just a 5-minute time investment, is that I can sweeten it—or not—to suit my taste. bakedbetter.com

3. CHEESE: Challerhocker
Stocked by Murray’s, Challerhocker translates to “sitting in the cellar,” and this rich, wine-washed wonder is one of the most delicious Swiss cheeses I’ve ever had. It’s nutty and caramelly, with incredible depth and the most luscious texture you’ll find in a firm cheese. murrayscheese.com

4. CHOCOLATE: Dandelion Bars & Askinosie’s Black Licorice CollaBARation
Nothing tricked out about the bean-to-bar chocolate made by Dandelion in San Francisco, just deep, dark, pure chocolate flavor and a luscious mouthfeel. As for bars with add-ins, a week in Iceland convinced me that chocolate and licorice are actually great partners. The collaboration between Missouri’s Askinosie Chocolate and a licorice artisan in Ramlösa, Sweden, led to the incredibly balanced Dark Milk Chocolate + Black Licorice CollaBARation. The licorice is made with rice instead of the more typical wheat, so it’s also gluten-free! dandelionchocolate.com; askinosie.com

5. FROZEN BISCUITS: Nine Sons Rising
One of my favorite finds at the Natural Foods Expo last summer was the frozen biscuits from Nine Sons Rising company. Available in plain, buttermilk and cheese varieties, the small, square biscuits bake up super-tender, flaky and moist all at once, with a wonderful buttery flavor. 9sonsrising.com

6. POPCORN: Halfpops
Popcorn is certainly having a moment right now—we’ve had popcorn in every size and flavor it seems. My favorites of all have been Halfpops from Seattle, and they taste (and crunch) like a cross between a piece of popcorn and a CornNut, without the Styrofoam-like white portions. halfpops.com

7. FLAVORED SYRUPS: Morris Kitchen
Syrup is easy enough to make, for sure, but I just don’t do it. That’s why I love having the fantastically pure-flavored syrups from Morris Kitchen in my pantry. Made by a brother-and-sister team in Brooklyn, in flavors including rhubarb, ginger and spiced apple, the syrups are great in cocktails or sparkling water, in/on desserts, and I’ve used them in sauces for pork. morriskitchen.com

8. FISH SAUCE: Red Boat
The small batch, bourbon-barrel-aged fish sauce from Red Boat is amazing. I first tried it in Aspen this year at the F&W Classic, and I’ve been using it ever since in dishes that traditionally call for fish sauce, as well as in many Western dishes that don’t. It’s like my own personal secret ingredient! redboatfishsauce.com

9. CARAMEL SAUCE: Spoonable
I love the chewy sesame caramel sauce from this company—it has a deep roasty sesame flavor that is so nice with the rich caramel—I’ve even used it to make Bananas Foster. The peppered orange caramel sauce is great as well, especially with fresh strawberries and butter pecan ice cream. spoonablellc.com

10. PANFORTE: Marabissi Italian Panforte
Perfect for the holidays, and excellent on its own with coffee or Cognac or even paired with some cheeses, this particular panforte has it all in balance—it’s super-fresh tasting, not too dry or too moist and the nut-to-fruit ratio is just right. It’s best enjoyed in thin slices, so a good, sharp knife is key, whether you’re snacking or serving. marxfoods.com

Related: 2013 Restaurant Preview: Biggest Trends, Openings and Recipes
Year's Best Fast Recipes
Best Easy Food Gifts

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Congratulations to Nicholas Elmi, winner of Top Chef: New Orleans, the 11th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Join celebrity chefs, renowned winemakers and epicurean insiders at the culinary world’s most spectacular weekend, the FOOD & WINE Classic in Aspen, June 20-22.