Cheflebrity Smörgåsbord: Hello, Joe!


BS’s recent mac & cheese article reminded me:  There’s a Trader Joe’s opening about two miles from my house this Friday!

You probably think it’s funny that the mac jogged my memory, but it illustrates a bigger point about TJ’s, which is that I love shopping there despite the fact I’m not 100% sure the stuff there is head-and-shoulders better than my local supermarket.

For instance, they have an organic shells and cheese that uses the ubiquitous packet-o-cheeze powder, yet I feel so much better about eating it.  Recently, there was the case of the canned tomatoes that I used for my quick marinara the other day.  They were a bit tinny and kind of scrawny, with a bad tomato to juice ratio.  I’ll be sticking with my Muir Glen.

And yet I just love shopping there, with the energetic, brightly-clad staff, copious samples and bell-ringing code that I can never quite decipher.  And, hey…most of the stuff there is pretty good.

I’m excited about the new Princeton store despite the fact that I could literally throw a baseball from my desk at work and hit the TJ’s in Philly.  The fact that I’ll no longer have to pack a fully-outfitted cooler in order to buy the frozen products has me downright giddy.

Now, if only I can convince them to change their mind and sell alcohol at the Princeton location, I’d be in heaven.

Free samples of smörg served by Hawaiian-shirted foodies below!

Mario has some advice for the pharmaceutical industry?  Oddly enough, it has nothing to do with his close contact with the pharmaceuticals traditionally used in large amounts to fuel kitchen staffs.

– From the ES “Been There, Done That” File:  In 1995, former Russian President Boris Yeltsin tried to hail a cab in his underwear outside the White House because he wanted a pizza. He was drunk, of course.  The difference is that Yeltsin had Secret Service there to wrangle him back inside whereas I had my equally drunk friends reminding me to bring them pepperoni.

After the jump, yet another reason to love that cuddly Brit on Top Chef and fresh news from some old adversaries.

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Toby Young: Jealous of Padma’s Scar?


Do you know what makes for a really disappointing meal?  Concrete.

That’s what our buddy Toby Young discovered when he was part of a car/bicycle collision.  I’ll let you guess which vehicle Toby was occupying in this little get-together. At least they didn’t have to shave his head to put in the stitches.  Get well, brother, and start wearing a helmet…we wouldn’t want you to injure the part of your brain that comes up with snappy put-downs.

Toby’s full Twitterfied run-down of the event after the jump.

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