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Worst Food Trends of 2007?

Worst Food Trends of 2007?
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  • Post #31 - January 12th, 2008, 2:19 pm
    Post #31 - January 12th, 2008, 2:19 pm Post #31 - January 12th, 2008, 2:19 pm
    Justin,

    I agree with you completely. A couple times max for a well balanced menu. Preferably, once.
    "In pursuit of joys untasted"
    from Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata
  • Post #32 - January 13th, 2008, 1:41 am
    Post #32 - January 13th, 2008, 1:41 am Post #32 - January 13th, 2008, 1:41 am
    figjustin wrote:If you need bacon, as a chef to make people eat your food than you are using it to much. I have seen menus that use bacon in everything from a bacon wrapped scallop, bacon mac and cheese, bacon stuffed crab cake and bacon sauteed greens just for the apps. This is boring, unimaginative and easy. You could easily remove bacon from three of those apps and have a more balanced profile of flavors in your portfolio.

    Do you have the same opinion about sauteed onions and garlic? Extra-virgin olive oil? Lemon? Bacon often plays a similar supporting role.

    I think it always has. Part of the reason it's become a "trend" is that where once it did so quietly, now restaurants feel obliged to trumpet it every time it appears, due to the clamor of some segments of the public for restaurants to list every single item in every dish. Years ago, those bacon sauteed greens would just have been called "greens" and bacon-wrapped tournedos would just have been labeled "filet mignon."

    I agree that if a menu has too many dishes where bacon plays an extraordinary starring role -- a bacon martini, pork belly entree and bacon ice cream -- the chef might be taking the piggy thing too far, but using bacon in multiple dishes as a fat or seasoning seems no more of a crutch than frequent use of sofrito.
  • Post #33 - January 13th, 2008, 7:52 am
    Post #33 - January 13th, 2008, 7:52 am Post #33 - January 13th, 2008, 7:52 am
    LAZ wrote:...due to the clamor of some segments of the public for restaurants to list every single item in every dish...

    LAZ, I hardly think your link--which is to the food allergy thread--is an appropriate example. There is a pejorative tone to your sentence, as if the "clamoring" of "some segments of the public" were a silly trend. If I didn't follow your link, I never would guess that you were actually referring to a thread that was about the listing (or not listing) of potentially deadly ingredients. I thought we had laid that conversation to rest--or at least fully agreed to disagree, if not respect the other side, on that issue.
  • Post #34 - January 14th, 2008, 3:29 pm
    Post #34 - January 14th, 2008, 3:29 pm Post #34 - January 14th, 2008, 3:29 pm
    riddlemay wrote:LAZ, I hardly think your link--which is to the food allergy thread--is an appropriate example. There is a pejorative tone to your sentence, as if the "clamoring" of "some segments of the public" were a silly trend. If I didn't follow your link, I never would guess that you were actually referring to a thread that was about the listing (or not listing) of potentially deadly ingredients. I thought we had laid that conversation to rest--or at least fully agreed to disagree, if not respect the other side, on that issue.

    riddlemay, you are reading things in to my tone that aren't there. In no conversation on the subject did I ever imply that the concerns involved were silly.

    But add people with allergies to people on other sorts of diets to people with religious issues to people with concerns about additives like nitrites (i.e. "some segments of the public") and you have quite a lot of demands (i.e. "clamoring") that menus detail ingredients that might never have rated specific mention in the past.

    That I think these laundry lists constitute an unfortunate trend is partly due to frequent disappointment in ordering a dish because a favorite ingredient, like bacon, was detailed -- only to discover that it makes up only a tiny garnish.
  • Post #35 - January 14th, 2008, 3:46 pm
    Post #35 - January 14th, 2008, 3:46 pm Post #35 - January 14th, 2008, 3:46 pm
    There seems to be a trend by waitstaff to ask if you have ever dined with them before ordering. I can appreciate this if it is a steakhouse and I need some guidance, such as "our sides serve two to three people", but in a place like May Street Market, where the menu speaks for itself just seems so unnecessary and condescending. I can read a menu, and if I have a question, I will ask. Our waiter this weekend at MSM even asked us how we heard about them.
  • Post #36 - January 14th, 2008, 4:22 pm
    Post #36 - January 14th, 2008, 4:22 pm Post #36 - January 14th, 2008, 4:22 pm
    nicinchic wrote:Our waiter this weekend at MSM even asked us how we heard about them.

    Market research.
  • Post #37 - January 14th, 2008, 4:38 pm
    Post #37 - January 14th, 2008, 4:38 pm Post #37 - January 14th, 2008, 4:38 pm
    LAZ wrote:
    figjustin wrote:If you need bacon, as a chef to make people eat your food than you are using it to much. I have seen menus that use bacon in everything from a bacon wrapped scallop, bacon mac and cheese, bacon stuffed crab cake and bacon sauteed greens just for the apps. This is boring, unimaginative and easy. You could easily remove bacon from three of those apps and have a more balanced profile of flavors in your portfolio.

    Do you have the same opinion about sauteed onions and garlic? Extra-virgin olive oil? Lemon? Bacon often plays a similar supporting role.

    I think it always has. Part of the reason it's become a "trend" is that where once it did so quietly, now restaurants feel obliged to trumpet it every time it appears, due to the clamor of some segments of the public for restaurants to list every single item in every dish. Years ago, those bacon sauteed greens would just have been called "greens" and bacon-wrapped tournedos would just have been labeled "filet mignon."

    I agree that if a menu has too many dishes where bacon plays an extraordinary starring role -- a bacon martini, pork belly entree and bacon ice cream -- the chef might be taking the piggy thing too far, but using bacon in multiple dishes as a fat or seasoning seems no more of a crutch than frequent use of sofrito.
    Without getting too far into it, I think you have to list the "trigger" ingredients as I'll call them. Things that if they appear in a dish would cause a decent sized group to not order them, AND they aren't obvious. Nuts and pork products are what come to mind promptly.

    Also, I absolutely adore bacon (and I'm Jewish), but I think I'm sick of chefs using bacon in every dish to impart a smokey salty flavor. Get a little more creative, especially if you're just using ho-hum varieties of bacon.
    is making all his reservations under the name Steve Plotnicki from now on.
  • Post #38 - January 14th, 2008, 6:33 pm
    Post #38 - January 14th, 2008, 6:33 pm Post #38 - January 14th, 2008, 6:33 pm
    jpschust wrote:Without getting too far into it, I think you have to list the "trigger" ingredients as I'll call them. Things that if they appear in a dish would cause a decent sized group to not order them, AND they aren't obvious. Nuts and pork products are what come to mind promptly.

    I agree that they should be listed -- but the fact that they are more often listed today than they used to be causes them to seem a much bigger part of a dish or a menu than they may actually be.

    jpschust wrote:I think I'm sick of chefs using bacon in every dish to impart a smokey salty flavor. Get a little more creative, especially if you're just using ho-hum varieties of bacon.

    The other common options for smoky and salty flavors are liquid smoke and smoked salt. I don't see them as more creative than bacon. If you're sick of smoky and salty, that's another matter. I'm not.
  • Post #39 - January 15th, 2008, 8:55 am
    Post #39 - January 15th, 2008, 8:55 am Post #39 - January 15th, 2008, 8:55 am
    LAZ, what is your least favorite food or food item to eat?
    Justin Hall
    FIG Catering
    FIGcatering.com
    MMMMM, Moon Waffles.
  • Post #40 - January 15th, 2008, 10:46 am
    Post #40 - January 15th, 2008, 10:46 am Post #40 - January 15th, 2008, 10:46 am
    Whatever any of you do, for the love of bacon, please don't click onthis link.
    Writing about craft beer at GuysDrinkingBeer.com
    "You don't realize it, but we're at dinner right now." ~Ebert
  • Post #41 - January 25th, 2008, 3:45 pm
    Post #41 - January 25th, 2008, 3:45 pm Post #41 - January 25th, 2008, 3:45 pm
    BLESS YOU! :D
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #42 - February 6th, 2008, 9:17 pm
    Post #42 - February 6th, 2008, 9:17 pm Post #42 - February 6th, 2008, 9:17 pm
    Mini-Burgers

    Just because you can make burgers small doesn't mean I want them. I can too. White Castle does it best. Stop Trying.


    P.S. Stop using the term slider.
  • Post #43 - February 9th, 2008, 5:56 am
    Post #43 - February 9th, 2008, 5:56 am Post #43 - February 9th, 2008, 5:56 am
    Foam.

    I hate when people f**k with my food.

    Give it to me straight. The worst I might do is puke. Now that would be foam.
    Chicago is my spiritual chow home
  • Post #44 - February 9th, 2008, 7:33 pm
    Post #44 - February 9th, 2008, 7:33 pm Post #44 - February 9th, 2008, 7:33 pm
    figjustin wrote:LAZ, what is your least favorite food or food item to eat?

    Sorry to be replying so late. I just saw this question.

    I'm not sure how my personal tastes are relevant to this topic, but my general philosophy about food is that if I don't like something, it's probably because I haven't come across a good preparation. For example, I'm not very fond of most liver dishes, but I love my grandmother's recipe for chopped liver (and I adore seared foie gras). And I used to think I didn't like brussels sprouts until I tried a dish in which they were sliced and quickly sauteed and I realized that what I don't like is mushy, overcooked brussels sprouts.

    Elsewhere on this site I've admitted that I've yet to taste a pleasing preparation of shad roe. (Not that I've been looking too hard.)
  • Post #45 - February 10th, 2008, 2:34 am
    Post #45 - February 10th, 2008, 2:34 am Post #45 - February 10th, 2008, 2:34 am
    LAZ wrote: ... my general philosophy about food is that if I don't like something, it's probably because I haven't come across a good preparation.


    Agreed.

    In my other life when I was traveling quite heavily, I was often treated to dishes of local pride and origination. It was not unusual to visit several restaurants and homes to find yourself treated to variations of the same dish. It became abundantly clear who prepared the dish made all the difference in the world. If they had the skills and sensitivity to prepare a dish well, then I was in luck.

    Every time I think about these types of situations, I recall a visit to a folkloric restaurant in Sofia, Bulgaria. I was presented a soup that looked like dirty dishwater with chunks of meat and vegetables lurking below. I really disliked this dish, which I never had since. I keep wondering if I might have liked it if made by somebody else.

    We're on the same wavelength LAZ on this one.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #46 - February 10th, 2008, 6:07 pm
    Post #46 - February 10th, 2008, 6:07 pm Post #46 - February 10th, 2008, 6:07 pm
    Whereas I must disagree with you, LAZ and Cathy2.

    The only two foods I can honestly say I have NEVER enjoyed are bananas and beets, and I have made a point of trying them at places where I figure if anyone will prepare them right, it's these people.

    Bananas have been tried in banana breads and puddings as well as in dishes at Tru, French Laundry, and Erwin. Beets have been had at French Laundry, Lula Cafe, and Chez Panisse.

    There are certain flavors that just don't work for some people; it's like people who think cilantro tastes like soap or green bell peppers like metal ( fall into neither camp).
  • Post #47 - February 23rd, 2008, 9:35 pm
    Post #47 - February 23rd, 2008, 9:35 pm Post #47 - February 23rd, 2008, 9:35 pm
    Mhays wrote:Black Napkins? :lol:


    From the Feb. 22, 2008, Chicago Tribune business section:

    Northern charm : Northern Trust Corp., which caters to the wealthy, has a new strategy to ensure that visitors to its executive dining area don't leave with unsightly white-napkin lint on their dark clothes.
    The Chicago-based company recently began stockpiling napkins in about a dozen colors so diners can match them to their apparel. The bank plans to add even more colors.
    "Life is a combination of magic and pasta." -- Federico Fellini

    "You're not going to like it in Chicago. The wind comes howling in from the lake. And there's practically no opera season at all--and the Lord only knows whether they've ever heard of lobster Newburg." --Charles Foster Kane, Citizen Kane.
  • Post #48 - February 25th, 2008, 12:35 pm
    Post #48 - February 25th, 2008, 12:35 pm Post #48 - February 25th, 2008, 12:35 pm
    LAZ, I was asking your least favorite food to make a point. If for instace if you said you hated brussels sprouts I would have injected my oppinion that I could cook brussels sprouts with bacon and they would taste much better to you. This can be said for allmost all things and bacon. It can not be said for all things and brussels sprouts.
    Justin Hall
    FIG Catering
    FIGcatering.com
    MMMMM, Moon Waffles.
  • Post #49 - February 26th, 2008, 9:44 am
    Post #49 - February 26th, 2008, 9:44 am Post #49 - February 26th, 2008, 9:44 am
    figjustin wrote:I could cook brussels sprouts with bacon and they would taste much better to you. This can be said for allmost all things and bacon.

    That argument could just as much apply to, say, onions, or garlic.

    But it isn't true at all. For example, liver and bacon is a classic combination that I don't care for, and the bacon makes no difference. I also think bacon (as much as onions and garlic) can overpower delicately flavored foods, so it isn't appropriate in all dishes.

    I just don't see anything wrong with chefs using it as ubiquitously as onions and garlic as part of their arsenal of seasonings.

    Are there other everyday foods whose frequency of use you object to? For a while, a few years back, there was a vogue for vanilla in savory dishes that I got tired of very quickly, but that's because I never thought seafood in vanilla sauce was an appealing combination to begin with.

    I must admit I'm beginning to tire of the trend for hot-and-spicy-for-the-hell-of-it dishes. I enjoy spicy foods, but I want to taste flavor, not just fire, and I don't think adding red pepper necessarily elevates everything.
  • Post #50 - February 27th, 2008, 3:52 pm
    Post #50 - February 27th, 2008, 3:52 pm Post #50 - February 27th, 2008, 3:52 pm
    That argument could just as much apply to, say, onions, or garlic.


    I do appreciate what your trying to say and on a certain level agree. My point from the begining was to say that as a trend the over menunizing of bacon can be used as a crutch. And if someone decided to make all of there menu items with so much garlic, onions, celery, beets, whatever that you could make a point of saying all of there dishes tasted of thoes items and they made a effort to point that out that you would be 100% correct. I just don't see that happening anywere with anything but bacon.
    Justin Hall
    FIG Catering
    FIGcatering.com
    MMMMM, Moon Waffles.
  • Post #51 - February 28th, 2008, 2:12 pm
    Post #51 - February 28th, 2008, 2:12 pm Post #51 - February 28th, 2008, 2:12 pm
    figjustin wrote:And if someone decided to make all of there menu items with so much garlic, onions, celery, beets, whatever that you could make a point of saying all of there dishes tasted of thoes items and they made a effort to point that out that you would be 100% correct. I just don't see that happening anywere with anything but bacon.


    OK. I understand where you're coming from. I guess I haven't encountered the over-baconned menus that you have.

    Although I can't say I'd object to a restaurant where all the dishes tasted of onions, unless it was in the ice cream. There's a lot of scope in onions.
  • Post #52 - February 28th, 2008, 2:30 pm
    Post #52 - February 28th, 2008, 2:30 pm Post #52 - February 28th, 2008, 2:30 pm
    Damn you, LAZ. Now I have to figure out a recipe for onion ice cream.
  • Post #53 - February 28th, 2008, 2:46 pm
    Post #53 - February 28th, 2008, 2:46 pm Post #53 - February 28th, 2008, 2:46 pm
    Been done... :)
  • Post #54 - February 28th, 2008, 2:59 pm
    Post #54 - February 28th, 2008, 2:59 pm Post #54 - February 28th, 2008, 2:59 pm
    I remember an issue of Gourmet magazine that featured menus for each decade -- taken from their own recipes from that decade. Viewed in that way, the trendiness of certain foods became more apparent. Now that doesn't mean that fondue isn't good or that nothing should be glazed with balsamic vinegar (or wrapped in bacon); a trend isn't necessarily a bad thing.

    But ingredients and preparations are like words; when a particularly useful or fresh or intriguing one comes along, it gets used, then it gets overused (think of "nano-"whatever right now, or "green technology" and so on). Eventually, people get sick of it, and its use starts to shrink back down to a more reasonable size.
  • Post #55 - February 28th, 2008, 3:48 pm
    Post #55 - February 28th, 2008, 3:48 pm Post #55 - February 28th, 2008, 3:48 pm
    MariaTheresa wrote:I remember an issue of Gourmet magazine that featured menus for each decade -- taken from their own recipes from that decade. Viewed in that way, the trendiness of certain foods became more apparent. Now that doesn't mean that fondue isn't good or that nothing should be glazed with balsamic vinegar (or wrapped in bacon); a trend isn't necessarily a bad thing.

    But ingredients and preparations are like words; when a particularly useful or fresh or intriguing one comes along, it gets used, then it gets overused (think of "nano-"whatever right now, or "green technology" and so on). Eventually, people get sick of it, and its use starts to shrink back down to a more reasonable size.


    "Nano" is an especially-egregious misuse since "nanotechnology" is at best in it's nascent stages.
    Being gauche rocks, stun the bourgeoisie

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