The Week In Food [1-9-2017]

Muffins lie, a 17-year legacy comes to an end, and more.

January 12, 2017 ● 3 min read

For the week of January 9, 2017.

Sprinkle, sprinkle.

#SaltBae, or That Dude With The Meat

Like we could lead with anything else. Unity and world peace may still be possible after all — because every last one of us fell in deep, animalistic amour with a Turkish chef this week. 

GUH. Annisa. 

On Thursday, The New York Times reported the impending spring closure of West Village titan Annisa, home to Chef Anita Lo's masterful contemporary creations for 17 years. The culprit, as usual, was real estate taxes, which Lo says have risen $80,000 in the last two years — effectively crippling any ability to conduct business as usual. 

“I always wanted to have a restaurant that takes care of its employees, and I felt like we did that for many years,” Ms. Lo said, sitting in the restaurant on Barrow Street. “But I can’t do that anymore.”

“Front-of-house staff was making three to four times what the back of the house was making,” she added, which is why she switched to a no-tipping model a year ago. But since raising menu prices, Ms. Lo said, she has lost almost a quarter of her diners each night. “We just can’t raise our prices anymore,” she said.

Lo, for her part, says she's looking forward to a break.

Gorgeous Gluttony

In photographic food news, this glorious spread (see lead image) from Brutal Mag came to our attention this week. Take a break from the frantic pace of 2017 and swim around in Andrew Harrington's visual homage to the mid-century packaged food revolution. Brutal's calling card is the juxtaposition between "the beautiful and the weird" — a perfect, interruptive salve to this thing we call modern life. 

Image via Everywhere We Shoot

Filipino Food 

Two intriguing takes on Filipino food — the perennial front-runner for "hot new food obsession" — were floating around this week. If you believe Bloomberg, this is the year (for real this time) that the public will fall for the best of the Philippines, while over at Esquire, a more existential debate was going on — an examination of the cultural insecurities and self-ascribed worth coursing through the roots of an entire cuisine. Rather than chasing the world's affections, it wonders, "when will we be good enough for ourselves?"

Muffins are Dirty Liars

Bruh, muffins are basically cake. This week, Lucky Peach's Emily Johnson shatters your entire world with a chart that will show you that muffins, the double agent of the breakfast world have more calories than literally everything else. More calories than CUPCAKES. They basically are cupcakes. 

"I’m not here to add another layer of guilt to the already fraught mental calculus we must make every time we choose what to eat. I don’t want to shame muffin lovers; I am one of you. I just want muffins to stop lying to America and come out proudly as the unhealthy, diet-destroying treat they are."

Nothing is sacred anymore.

Because You Gotta Spend That Paycheck Somewhere, and Rent is Boring Or Whatever:

Do you secretly believe classic pizzas are for pussies? Do you have a palate you describe as “the child of Jackson Pollock and Evel Knievel?” Did you find $2000 in an old coat pocket the other day? Maybe this is what your Friday night looks like. Insider released a look at this outburst of luxury-edition Chatroulette masquerading as pizza on the menu at Industry Kitchen in New York City this week: where squid ink meets Stilton meets foie meets truffles meets caviar meets gold in a collision of literal and figurative richness. 

Sigh. All we have to say is:

See you next week.