In May, Dr Pepper challenged Guns N' Roses to release its famously delayed album "Chinese Democracy" during 2008. If the album was issued, the soda company promised it would give away a free can of Dr Pepper to "everyone in America."
Now that "Chinese Democracy" will officially be released at the end of November, Dr Pepper plans to make good on its bet with the rock band and give away soda by using coupons. It may turn out to be a brilliant marketing move, but it could cost Dr Pepper several million dollars, according to Ad Age, which put the total at $165 million in the extremely unlikely event that every American claimed his or her free can of soda.
These ingenious Corner Colanders are designed to fit in the corner of the sink, freeing up some precious sink space while draining your just-rinsed berries. They're also designed for one-handed use. $10 each in red, green, or white at Sur la Table. [via Charles & Marie]
"Once, at a restaurant called Babylon, I was served a chicken sausage that, even the waiters agreed, looked like a severed penis on a plate."
On the heels of her PBS road trip through Spain with Mario Batali and Mark Bittman, Gwyneth Paltrow seems to be cementing her reputation as a gastrolebrity. Adopting the guise of a lifestyle guru, she is dispensing her thoughts on cooking (along with shopping, fashion, and other activities that "nourish the inner aspect") on her oddly-named new web venture, GOOP.
So far, GOOP's main product is a weekly subscription-based email newsletter published in the mode of Daily Candy -- only here written in the first person and signed simply as "Gwyneth." The first email dedicated to cooking shipped today, with healthy recipes for vegan pancakes (they look better than they sound), tuna sandwiches, soy/sesame mayonnaise, and caramelized black pepper chicken (courtesy of San Francisco's The Slanted Door).
Overall, the food looks fine and the first-person instructions are straightforward, save for some chirpy aphorisms like "Cook with love!" and "Make it Great!" There's a plug for Jamie Oliver's cookware in the mix and this puzzling comment: "[the chicken] is so easy and tastes like what you always imagine take-out will taste like (but sadly never does)." And I always had such low expectations for take-out food.
Tales of Tofu
EN Japanese Brasserie (435 Hudson Street) is presenting "Tales of Tofu," an afternoon dedicated to understanding bean curd -- its history and how to cook it. The event will be moderated by food writer Harris Salat. Chef Yasuhiro Honma will guide guests on how to prepare their own tofu and dishes using tofu at home. The event will take place on Sunday, October 26, at 2:00 p.m. Seating is limited. Tickets: $85/person. Reservations: 212.647.9196, ext. 204.
Did you know that Anthony Bourdain has his own talk show? Apparently, it premiered earlier this week on the Travel Channel (if you saw it, let us know what you think).
On the TV talk show scale, it appears to be less like Oprah and more like Charlie Rose, as "Tony hosts a no-holds-barred dinner with four featured guests" (the first episode included writer Bill Buford, nightlife impresario Amy Sacco, TV personality Ted Allen, and Maxim editor Chris Wilson. "At the Table with Anthony Bourdain" airs Mondays at 10 p.m. on the Travel Channel. Below is a promo.
A new report by Consumers International, a UK-based umbrella for consumer groups, has found that although cereal makers are reducing the amount of sugar in kids' cereals, they increase the amount of salt to improve flavor.
According to Consumers International, "manufacturers are likely to add salt to boost the flavor of the product, and may use salt to maintain customer appeal when sugar levels are reduced." In the study, a sampling of Kellogg's Frosties Reduced Sugar cereal was found to contain, on average, 1.5% salt, an amount that is larger than you would find in potato chips.
Moreover, the reduced sugar cereal compared unfavorably to a sample of a full-sugar kids' cereal, Kellogg's Smacks, which averaged less than 1% salt.
Kids' Cereals Saltier, Report Says [Wall Street Journal]
Actor Josh Brolin said that during one of his scenes playing President George W. Bush in the new movie W., he ate 15 sandwiches. Based on his research into the role, he said he believes Bush's compulsive eating habits are connected to an "attention deficit disorder thing."
"It's a diversion tactic, it's something to do. It's like an actor who needs props until they don't need the props. He just never got to the point where he didn't need the props," said Brolin. "He quit smoking and drinking; then what? You run, you bike, you eat, you go to war. He would eat like two or three tins of Altoids a day."
Brolin Developed an Appetite as Bush [contactmusic.com]
When in China, do slurp your soup, but please don't eat with your mouth open, burp, or clean your plate, advises Condé Nast Traveler. The guide to dining in China is part of the magazine's series of country guides to dining etiquette around the world.
Etiquette 101: China [Condé Nast Traveler]