Bests of 2010

by fritzg · 1 Comment ·

2010 was in many ways a year I am glad to see in the rear view mirror, but there were some bests. Got to meet my son’s new family over Derby in the ‘Ville, Mary and I actually lived in the same city for the first time in two years and we’re settling in as we’ve made new friends and found new communities to join.

On to the list. Those of you who know me will smile at the theme. I used my love of food and cooking to get through what was a pretty tough year.

Best author: Michael Ruhlman. He didn’t have a new book this year, but I discovered him for myself and thoroughly enjoyed his Elements of Cooking and Ratio. These put me on a path of a bit more simplistic cooking style with an emphasis on technique over recipes.

Best seasonal cookbook: Recipes from an Italian Summer collected by the folks at Phaidon, who brought us the mammoth Silver Spoon. With a hot summer in Greenbelt and no a/c we embraced the food and drink of the season. Which brings me to the next item.

Best regional drink: The Lee Bros.’ “Garden and Gun” from Simple, Fresh, Southern. Named for a Charleston nightclub, pickled watermelon rind is the garden and bourbon is the gun. I figured these southern boys knew something about drinks that keep you cool. A close second was their “Cel-Ray Mint Julep.” We broke out my mother’s silver julep cups for these.

Best nonfiction book: Salt by Mark Kurlansky. This book turned me on to the micro-history genre. Plus, it’s about food.

Best tv show genre: Cooking competition shows. I think “Next Iron Chef” is my favorite, but “Top Chef” is fun as well, since Anthony Bourdain is now a judge.

Best tv show that hasn’t aired: Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations Haiti show. He filmed it in 2010 and it will be broadcast in 2011. Here’s hoping he does Haiti justice by showing both the beauty of the land and the people as well as the injustices that abound.

Best eccentric cooking show: Food Jammers. These three Canadians come up with some wonderful cooking inventions. It’s on the Cooking Channel.

Best new tv network: The Cooking Channel. From Michael Symon’s Cook Like an Iron Chef to the original Iron Chef it’s a joy. Plus Food Jammers is on it.

Best new dish in my repertoire: Paella. I bought a pan. Broke it in over an open fire outside and see this as a regular dish at the Gutwein home.

Best idea for a backyard addition: We want to build a screen porch with a wood-fired oven in the corner. Runner-up is a wood-fired hot tub.

Best iOS Lifestyle App: Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything.

Best food from the CSA: Lots of great fruits were a real surprise. Loved the berries and the apples.

Best new to us casual dining restaurant: The Mussel Bar in Bethesda. Always a pleasure.

Best new to us casual eating: Faidley’s in Baltimore’s Lexington Market. I love the raw half-shell bar and Mary loves the crab cake.

Best DC lunch spot: The lobster truck. Discovered it in the Post and keep up with the location via twitter.

Tags: awareness · food · walk

1 response so far ↓

  • eileencan // Jan 4, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    Yay for food. I am thankful to have consumed much delicious food and drink with you last year. Double Yay for LobsterTruckDC. I can’t wait for my DC food-on-foot-with-Fritz tour.

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