THE PIZZED OFF PART
(Since initial writing Eater has become a National read offering all of $25.00 to each blogger if they were to quit blogging – Eater, the cost of my server is more than that – at least cover the cost of the server for a year…)
At any rate, Eater N.Y. sent me an email inviting me to a Sake Event on Thursday, September 24 which just happens to be my birthday. Should anyone feel Eater N.Y. is sending spam emails be assured that I am on their mailing list to receive all their posts. New York is the bees knees for the best of everything: shopping, food, Broadway – you name it and New York has it and they flaunt it better than any other city in the States. New Yorkers know how to walk the cat-walk walk and still shake their booties.
I happen to love Sake. I love the shitty sake that you’ve got to drink warm because it reminds me of my dating years when Sukiyaki at a Japanese restaurant was what I always craved. I love the fine Sake and I love the medium and not so fine Sake. Sake2Me (I love that name) and not in this sense, but rather the Laugh-in kind of way.
SAQ est une entreprise du gouvernement . Même si j’étais un maître sommelier je ne pouvais pas ouvrir mon propre magasin de détail vendant les meilleurs des meilleurs dans le vin ou les spiritueux
Since 1921, Quebec alcohol is a government run business, regulated by the SAQ – Societe de l’alcohol du Quebec. The government has the first, final and only say as to all things related to any kind of alcohol one is able to buy in Quebec. Their website reads as follows:
“Since its creation in 1921, the SAQ has lived through a world war, the Great Depression, the advent of radio, television and computers, and even the landing on the Moon! It has also lived through enormous changes: name, mandate and status, the beginning of self-service stores, the introduction of wine in grocery and convenience stores, labour disputes, economic recessions and many privatization attempts. Fortunately, the 80th anniversary of the SAQ coincides with the most prosperous period in its history. The SAQ is now enjoying its moment of glory*, its peak years. And this trend may be for keeps, because the foundations of the state-owned corporation have never been as solid—a story of well-earned success.” (I am choosing not to speak of Bronfman and prohibition except to say I should’ve been born a Bronfman or at least married one).
And that glory* is a limited supply of any one kind of alcohol be it wine, sake, spirits and beer. If I missed any, they restrict that too. I don’t know why it is this way but obviously as long as I know Alcohol in Quebec it is always bought at any one of these stores- the grocery stores can carry the cheapest brands of whatever is brought into Quebec and trust me: you wouldn’t want to cook with these wines.
Big deal that our drinking age is 18- sure because at 18 you’ll drink anything alcohol – all you want to do for the next 2 years is get drunk every weekend and who needs a $50 bottle of good Sake when you can get a $50 bottle of bad sake that has a 300% markup. Tell you what, raise it to 21 and let us have all the brands and wineries in the world breaking down our doors.
To Make Matter Worse: we now have to buy our own booze bags that decorate each cash register, otherwise we are hauling bottles by the neck. Which I thought was illegal to do. But they’re not stupid – each bag holds up to 4 bottles of booze enticing one to at least make the trip worthwhile.
Plus, it makes quite the fashion statement on the streets of Montreal: Louis Vuitton slung over the shoulder, Prada Sunglasses over the eyes and the North Face Triple C long coat,(hey it’s cold here!) in black of course, Fendi scarf tucked into collar and two cashmere gloved hands clutching the neck of a wine bottle one side, the other an Absolut; hip to hip. If it was a really good day a Holt’s shopping bag could be slipped onto a few loose fingers, still clutching those booze bottles. Chez Paris. I think not.
This is why, when crossing the border, Quebecers use their allotment for the day or week to bring back booze. We buy it on the way there and on the way back. This is why Quebecers will always ask friends in Toronto to bring them back booze of a specific name – we do our research. Toronto has no problem in letting their citizens in on choice. Quebec does not allow us much in the way of choice. No Sake2Me here.
In fact the Japanese Food Report has an article on Sake tasting and I searched each bottle and each Sake maker and Quebec carries not a one. Makes you wonder who gets paid off and how much seed money goes into pockets just to get shelf space in Quebec Liquor Outlets? Wine is a whole other sad story.
If only I could get my hands on a decent bottle of Artisan Sake.
Whole Foods, when are you coming? I know there is tremendous controversy, but Montreal is very limited in our grocery stores. Besides, Toronto has one, and on that note what about a Williams Sonoma or a Crate and Barrel? Damn language laws and Bill 101 that stipulates stores must be bilingual with French being the predominant size. It is too expensive for large sized retailers to bilingualize so they stay English and out of Quebec.
Now this does not affect us Canadain bloggers but oh oh, the FTC is now going to regulate bloggers eminating out of the states. http://bit.ly/1967Pn
“The revised guides specify that while decisions will be reached on a case-by-case basis, the post of a blogger who receives cash or in-kind payment to review a product is considered an endorsement. Thus, bloggers who make an endorsement must disclose the material connections they share with the seller of the product or service. If the “connections” are not disclosed and the FTC finds out, the blogger could be fined up to $11,000, according to a TechCrunch piece in The Washington Post.”
Hey, the Canadian government taxes the tips our waiters and waitresses make: all’s equal in the eyes of those greedy tax-tors
Rest in Peace Gourmet Magazine.
THE ROCKS PART
Orangette is a blog I subscribe to, and since it goes directly to my inbox I get to scan it quicker than the ones on my Reader and most recently she has been highlighting the opening of her restaurant called Delancey. I love blogs about food, but more I love blogs about food not necessarily relating to recipes…of course my blog isn’t going that route so thankfully there are people who love blogs that cater to just about recipes. Orangette’s, on the other hand, is really like reading a first hand diary account of opening her restaurant and if anyone remembers the series (when the Food Network had great programming) called Opening Soon, these past few posts of Molly’s has been just like that. It reminds me loosely of Eric Ripert’s On The Line which has to be the best and most indepth account of how a top level restaurant runs and the stars behind that success, ever written. Not only are the pictures beautiful art, but the layout of the book ingenious: the eye keeps moving and dancing from one side to the other making turning the page something you don’t want to do. Whosever concept this was deserves a bonus, not an IAG bonus, perhaps a Michael Moore bonus.
Starchefs Congress: What can I say about Starchefs? They have kept me busy all weekend and week long from September 20-22 reading up on their 4th annual International Chefs Conference – the schedule looked amazing so I can definitely commend the rave reviews I have been reading from Dirt Candy, the Feedbag and every other foodie newsletter online. Starchefs is an amazing website with amazing and informative industry news that for me, not of the industry, just gobbles up. Sometimes I think, in another life, I have been in some way shape or form, in the food industry. The flip side of that is not attending the Blogher convention, which I wish I could have. There are so many conventions now for the blogger that food bloggers are creating their own directly relating to food blogging and how to get more than 3 readers….ahem ahem. Yes, I really need to go to one.
101 Cookbooks posted a recipe for Roasted Corn Pudding in Acorn Squash. http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/roasted-corn-pudding-in-acorn-squash-recipe.html Just the name is enough to salivate on, it conjures up oomph to the taste buds. I am including this in my Rocks part because this post rocked me so hard I actually made it and posted it on Tuesday step-by-step.
Lastly and by fluke on Thursday, My Birthday, I channel surfed upon Avec Eric on PBS. Avec Eric is going to be another PBS hit and I am happy that in Montreal it is being shown on Thursdays prior to prime time programming. It was enthralling, he is enthralling, and the audience was treated to a dinner at ook me right to the Manressa website. Thank goodness for intellectual PBS programming because life is just not long enough or rich enough to visit all that is out there. And that pizzez me off.
IT’S OYSTER SEASON:IN CANADA
Tags: 101 Cookbooks, Acorn Squash, Avec Eric, Beausoleil, bees knees, Blogher, Blue Point, Caraquet, Delancey Eric Ripert, Dirt Candy, Eater, Fendi, Holt's, Japanese Food Report, Louis Vuitton, Malpeque, Micahel Moore, North Face, On The Line, Orangette, Oyster Season, Prada, Raspberry Point, Roasted Corn Pudding, Sake, Sake2Me, SAQ, Societe de l'alcohol du Quebec, Starchefs, The Feedbag, Whole Foods