Bar chef and cocktail consultant Don Horrigan has turned a passion for cocktails into a business, including a line of artisan simple syrups and bitters under the Sumptuous Syrups of Vermont brand, with which he creates such cocktails as the Thai Basil Slip and Winter Old Fashioned. Horrigan hopes to form a Vermont Bartenders Guild to lobby for the ability of bartenders to create their own bitters and serve drinks in volumes of alcohol exceeding four ounces, such as the traditional Philadelphia Fish House Punch, which is served in a communal bowl.
Many of the 30 London chefs and restaurant owners interviewed expect a slow start to 2010, though they predict that restaurants offering good value will do well. "People are going to go down a much simpler, more accessible route," said Mark Hix of Hix. "That's the key."
Several restaurants in China are offering imperial feasts that cost thousands of dollars and are linked to an ancient culinary tradition. One restaurant's feast includes 268 dishes, not including appetizers and desserts, which can be sampled over the course of a year.
New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and members of his administration are leading a national effort designed to persuade restaurant chains and packaged food makers to use less salt. The plan, a voluntary effort, sets a 25% reduction goal over the next five years, which health agencies say should be gradual enough to go unnoticed by consumers.
With the opening of Maialino, Danny Meyer now has 11 restaurants in New York City. The writer visits them all in one day, starting with Shake Shack at 10:45 a.m. and finishing with the new Roman-style trattoria, which offered excellent service even though it was packed.