Arrogance & Narcissism Of The Highest Order ?

.Michel Bras’ gargouillou, which René Redzepi has called one of the most copied

Michel Bras' gargouillou, which René Redzepi has called one of the most copied dishes of all time [Photo: Entre Les Bras/Facebook]

Michel Bras’ gargouillou, which René Redzepi has called one of the most copied dishes of all time [Photo: Entre Les Bras/Facebook]

Dear  Friend’s
If you think the picture above shows a pretty presentation and is worth to pay a few bucks for in a nice restaurant, so that you have something to nibble on until the real food arrives, then we speak the same language.
If, on the other hand, you think this represents culinary art, innovation, and groundbreaking plating technique, we might not be from the same planet.

Here is what has started to tick me off lately:
A spectacle is being made by a bunch of chef’s about copy protecting recipes, cooking techniques, plating details, and styles. One recent headline on “Eater” read:

Inspiration and Attribution in Cooking:
How and When Should Chefs Credit Their Sources?

What a tremendous load of bullcrap !
It is one thing to credit your sources for a “unique”  recipe, technique, idea and/or influence out of respect and good manners.
It is a whole other story to, as some donkey’s now do, “demand” credit for something that has been around for years, decades or even centuries.
Lot’s of chef’s nowadays call themselves innovators, visionaries, inventors, when all they do is change,  grow, and, hopefully, refine established ideas, techniques, method’s and ingredient’s.

– Fried Hollandaise ? Hollandaise has been around for a long time, folks. Frying ,  too !
– Foraging for food ? Come on guys, even my great great great great great… grandfather was foraging for food.
– Food trucks ? Been around for decades in Europe, (See also food carts in other parts of the world)
– Elaborate presentations? Medieval cuisines started that trend.
– Use of the whole animal? Come on, really?
– Sprinkle a few leaves, herbs and edible flours on a plate “painted” with a sauce or coulis? Ask your twelve-year-old to give you a hand.

While there are without a doubt a few (very few) chefs’s out there who are true innovators, artist’s and culinary visionaries, the majority of dishes, techniques, presentation, ingredients, and combinations, have been around forever. Some have come and gone, some have looked and tasted a bit different, some have not been as popular and many have come from other parts of the world and simple been introduced to an unknowing group of people who did not travel or frequent ethnic restaurants (or food trucks) and were therefore never introduced to stuff which was already well established elsewhere.

Now, just imagine to take this nonsense a step further and contemplate the following:

Every time you write a menu, you give credit to the creator of the tomato soup, baked potato, grilled steak, poached fish, lemon wedge, compound butter, turning spaghetti with a fork, sprinkling cheese on top of pasta, a ham & cheese sandwich, blanching and shocking in ice water, decorating your pudding with whipped cream (EXTRA credit if you add vanilla, extra-extra credit if you add sugar, extra extra extra credit if you call it Chantilly) Where would it start? I certainly could never end and be nothing but a pointless exercise. Professional chefs are well aware of the names of the creators of certain dishes, techniques, even garnishes (Melba, Célestine, Grand-Mère, Café de Paris), but in my humble opinion the names of these creators and innovators are still alive today because what the have created was worthwhile to cherish, admire, look at and most of all, eat, eat and eat again !

Ahhh, a little venting does one good  🙂
Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

Legal: Automatic Weapons. Illegal: French Cheeses. Go Figure :-(

Is our society all screwed up ?! 
You be the Judge  🙂

Image Source: Facebook



“ America’s 8 Worst Food Trends “

Americas 8 worst food trend’s
by Larry Olmsted on “Forbes”
Having covered food, wine and spirits for more than 15 years, I’ve seen a lot of trends come and go. Some recent developments have been great, like the increased availability and usage of natural meats and grass fed beefs, and the increased reliance on seasonality, rather than using bland out of season fruits and vegetables that are shipped vast distances and bred to have long shelf lives.

But not every food trend is good, and not every food trend lasts. I remember the rise and fall of nouvelle cuisine, and the short but rabid preoccupation among chefs with food layered into towers on the plate.

The changing face of media has made food trends more pronounced than ever, for better or worse. This includes the bevy of food-related television shows, and the new need to fill specialized channels with hours of vapid programming. Ditto for social media that brings other people’s meals to your phones and desktops and the dramatic rise of food blogs and chat rooms dissecting every aspect of food culture. Nonetheless, despite increased attention to what, where, and how we eat, and increased social criticism, some astonishingly stupid trends have thrived. Here are the worst offenders:

1. Food Trucks: There is nothing wrong with the individual food truck per se, but the overall trend is both ridiculous and in some cases, morally reprehensible. The food media continues to treat these as a new form of cuisine and some sort of breakthrough invention when they are nothing more than a way to deliver food to consumers, akin to the “invention” of home delivery, takeout containers or the drive through.  When grouped together in lots, as is the case in Austin and Portland, food trucks become an outdoor version of a longstanding American culinary tradition – the shopping mall food court, and nothing more. Food-wise, there is nothing new about trucks, which serve foods you can already get in countless restaurants, albeit it with much more limited menus. People act as if tacos, dumplings, or brick oven pizza have somehow been “discovered” by food truck cooks. One major magazine recently suggested that food trucks had brought affordable ethnic cuisine to the people of Los Angeles – seriously? LA has always had hundreds of brick and mortar eateries serving exactly this kind of ………….
Read more HERE


Some artisanal house cured meats, like these from Salume Beddu in St. Louis, are delicious. But most are not.


” To All Fellow >LinkedIn Groups<


Dear Friend’s

Unfortunately,  yesterday  >LinkedIn<  has decided to remove the  >Share With Groups<  link  from it’s site.
I am sure they had a good reason for that and don’t  want to be critical about it.
However, all of the comments and discussions which pertained to articles, opinions, recipes & pictures about food and the hospitality industry originated from
links I posted in various groups on  >LinkedIn<  originated on my own blog,  >ChefsOpinion<
If you would like to continue to participate and  be part of our lively and interesting Food & Hospitality community, you must now go directly
to the website   >ChefsOpinion<  since there will be no more links from  >LinkedIn Groups>  to  >ChefsOpinion<

Thank you all for your participation in the past.
I hope to see you in the future as well on  >ChefsOpinion<

Life is Good!

” So, Are You A Sucker Too ? “

Food’s Biggest Scam : The Great Kobe Beef Lie !
By Larry Olmsted on Forbes

These are cuts of the famous Kobe beef from Hyogo prefecture in Japan.
Note the exquisite marbling of fat throughout.
To see it in person, you need to go to Japan,
because real Kobe beef cannot be found in the U.S.
Photo: Wikipedia


Think you’ve tasted the famous Japanese Kobe beef ?   Think again !

Of course, there are a small number of you out there who have tried it –
I did, in Tokyo, and it is delicious. If you ever go to Japan I heartily recommend
you splurge, because while it is expensive, it is unique, and you cannot get it in
the United States. Not as steaks, not as burgers, certainly not as the ubiquitous
“Kobe sliders” at your trendy neighborhood “bistro.”That’s right. You heard me.
I did not misspeak. I am not confused like most of the American food media.
I will state this as clearly as possible:
You cannot buy Japanese Kobe beef in this country. Not in stores, not by mail,
and certainly not in restaurants. No matter how much you have spent, how fancy
a steakhouse you went to, or which of the many celebrity chefs who regularly
feature “Kobe beef” on their menus you believed, you were duped.
I’m really sorry to have to be the one telling you this, but no matter how much you
would like to believe you have tasted it, if it wasn’t in Asia you almost certainly
have never had Japan’s famous Kobe beef.You may have had an imitation from
the Midwest, Great Plains, South America or Australia, where they produce a
lot of what I call “Faux-be” beef.
You may have even had a Kobe imposter from Japan……….

Read the whole article HERE


” Are Rare Steaks Really Better? A Butcher’s View “


I found this interesting story on “Huffpost”

Are Rare Steaks Really Better?: A Butcher’s View

Plus: A guide to different cuts’ ideal doneness

by Tom Mylan  June 19, 2012

In the game of food dork one-upsmanship, the rarer you order your steak, the more of a real gastronome you are—it means you like your meat good and a little dangerous, like it was meant to be. I always took this carnal orthodoxy as gospel; I mean, people who order their steak well-done deserve their own circle of hell. But…as much it pains my old, snobby self, I’ve started to prefer some of my steaks a little more towards the medium end of the spectrum than I’m completely comfortable with.

But why? Aren’t rare steaks juicier and more tender? Well, not necessarily. I started doing some experimenting—I’m no scientist, but even a knuckle-dragging son of a construction worker like me can learn a thing or two—and it turns out in some cases, cooking your meat a little more can make for better texture and flavor. Blame fat, collagen, and chemistry.

Ribeyes, for example, are downright gross when cooked black-and-bleu. I know there are probably a lot of old French guys rotating in their graves right now, but hold on—ultra-rare ribeyes are gross because all that luscious fat that rims the meat, the best part of the steak, doesn’t really render when barely cooked, making it weird and pasty.

In contrast, the prime ribs of my Reno, NV youth were slow roasted………. Read more HERE

WOWWW ! No ” good eat’n ” here :-(

Worst Meal Ever: 21 Tales of Disastrous Dinners

Excerpt’s from Zagat:

A Funky Asian Disaster

As a food writer it’s a bit embarrassing to admit that I’ve never been a fan of, well…stinky ingredients. (I’m just being honest.) I mean I’m not the kind of person who’s going to sit there and pretend I snack on durian and fermented fish paste just because it sounds cool. One night I was eating dinner at a hot spot known for its inventive Asian fare. The dishes sounded really good on the menu so we ordered close to an entire menu’s worth of the goods. Basically, if you want to stink worse than a batch of hard-boiled eggs dipped in vinegar, you should eat here. I watched in shock as my dining companions ooh-ed and ahh-ed at the “deliciousness” of the meal, which had actually made me physically nauseated. Also the desserts were some of the worst things I’ve ever put in my mouth and included flavor combos that while inventive, did not work in the slightest. One dish tasted like spiced gravel doused with orange marmalade. I’ll say no more, but I can tell you that I won’t be returning to this joint ever again.

-Kelly Dobkin is an editor for the Zagat Blog

20 more dinner diaster’s HERE 

” Dirty Dozen: EWG Reveals List Of Pesticide-Heavy Fruits And Veggies “

An Apple A Day……..

Excerpt from the HUFFPOST :

….. And while the list is comprehensive, the ranking doesn’t capture all information:
For example, though apples were ranked as the most contaminated overall,
imported nectarines had the unique distinction of having a full 100 percent
rate of positive pesticide test results, above any other product. Bell peppers
and grapes were both commonly contaminated with 15 different pesticides
in a single sample — the highest overall diversity of contamination.

Still, even the researchers who conducted the pesticide exposure studies
don’t recommend giving up the “Dirty Dozen” outright.

Read more HERE 

” Sharpsville, Pennsylvania, Cafeteria Workers Win Right To Eat Free Expired Food “

Excerpt from an article in the Huff Post :

“Under the agreement, food items that are past their expiration date
or reheated in a way that they can no longer be served to students
may still be eaten for free by the cafeteria workers.”

This raises so many questions for me ! How about you ?
What’s wrong in a country where this can even be considered an issue ?

To read the full article, click HERE



” Why are chefs so poorly compensated? “

Wow folks, this discussion is really heating up !

Arno Wilson says :

Hi Patrick, maybe I come across a bit severe. But this is my feeling. Cooking food throughout history has been a low level activity and whilst everybody since we can tell has always enjoyed a “good feed” it remains a fact that the kitchen has been relegated “out the back” downstairs” or otherwise “out of sight”. As much as people these modern times try to glorify cooking it remains an act of applying heat to dead things – usually animals or other creatures. It is the art of transforming dead animal flesh and in some cases organs into something else that appeals to the modern sense of beauty.
I am a chef myself and have worked in many different arenas of food production. I have been Executive chef, Head chef, and all other positions in Australian kitchens. I have acted as a restaurant consultant and am versed in management techniques and financial aspects. In the course of my work I see many chefs I now run a chefs agency finding work for other chefs. Many chefs are pretty clueless and some are downright dumb. A smattering are excellent and could be successful in any occupation. A small number are outstanding individuals with admirable skills and ability and intelligence. I am sorry but the average run of the mill chef that crosses my radar is more commonly described in less flattering terms.
If you have any specific questions I would be happy to answer them.

Follow / participate in  the discussion  Here: