Michael Pollan, author of the "Omnivore's Dilemma" and other books on food culture, says mass-produced foods are artificially inexpensive because of subsidies. He says consumers in California's Bay Area are "willing to pay more for better food," unlike most Americans who are "conditioned by artificially cheap food to be shocked when a box of strawberries costs $3."
Business in British Columbian restaurants was down by an average of 10% in July following enactment of a 12% tax. "Our customers are just ordinary folks, and they are not happy," said Perry Bourpoulas, owner of the Slocan diner in Vancouver, and one of 700,000 citizens signing a petition that calls for the tax's repeal.
Portland, Ore., is one of several U.S. markets that is home to a vibrant and diverse street food scene, a fact that Canadians can only envy, the National Post reports. Layers of red tape and costly regulations have stalled efforts in Toronto; a pilot project in Vancouver looks more promising but its size is frustrating to many. This year, Vancouver authorities received 800 applications for a lottery to award a mere 17 sidewalk spots.
Winemakers are introducing blends of whites that combine fruity and spicy flavors with a smooth texture and pair well with Asian food. The trend began with the successful 1989 launch of Conundrum, a five-grape blend from Caymus Vineyards in Napa Valley, Calif.