Monday, October 26, 2009

Detroit Wildlife

My mother grew up outside Detroit and I have visited the city many times to see relatives. It is the poster city for American urban decay. This short film by a Frenchman explores the re-ruralization of the Detroit area and how the heyday city of the 1870s-1950s is slowly eroding away and returning to prairie. Haunting and beautiful. See also: the Fabulous Ruins of Detroit and Flint Expatriates.

Detroit Wildlife from florent tillon on Vimeo.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

RIVER COTTAGE: Urban Smallholding, from Britain's Channel 4

Part 1: Beginnings

Part 2: Pigs

Part 3: Chickens

Part 4: First Harvest

Part 5: Pig Show

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Does Being a Crazy Jackass Make Mike Voltaggio a Top Chef?

Is Mike Voltaggio a genius because he’s a temperamental diva, or is a temperamental diva because he’s a genius?

During this week’s Restaurant Wars episode of Top Chef, Mike Voltaggio succeeded in intimidating Robin, irritating his brother and organizing the best restaurant in the history of the show. We can’t help but think Tom Colicchio was right when he said the Blue Team failed for lack of leadership, and wonder if Mike V.’s General Patton-style bullying and snarking was what pushed the Red Team, aka “Robin-Eli-Volt = Revolt” over the edge to victory.

What do you think: Is it OK to be arrogant if you have the goods to back it up, or is Mike V. merely an overgrown child operating one notch above the walking personality disorder that is Mike I.?

Food Word of the Week: ''Pithivier'', as in Robin/Michael's pear pithivier, is basically fancy pop-tart, i.e. puff pastry with filling inside. Man, that looked just delicious. I'll be looking for the recipe on Bravo's site tomorrow when I hit Tom Colicchio's recap blog.