Amuse Bouche

by Brian Clarey

You thirsty? I’ll just bet you are. It’s hot enough to fry steaks on the pavement out there and make the first moments in your car before lunch feel like therapeutic sauna time – except, of course, you’re dressed for work and when you come back from lunch you have a big sweat stain on the back of your shirt.

Our rainfall is 8 inches below average at this time of the year, according to a City of Greensboro press release, and they’re asking us to voluntarily stop watering our lawns every day and postpone the planting of fall seeds and flowers to stave off mandatory water restrictions, which may lie just a piece up the road.

Fine by me. If I can have a scorched front yard by the end of August that means I can put my lawnmower away for the season.

In other beverage news, the price of American milk hit a record high in July due, according to a Chicago Tribune article, to increasing demand in Asia and the rising cost of feed grain. The piece coincided neatly with a New York Times story on the growing culinary trend of consuming raw milk, and a police raid on Newville, Pa. dairy farmer Mark Nolt, who had been ordered by the state court to stop selling raw milk products. It also dovetails with a press release I got last week from – what? The Southeast Dairy Association? – citing a new study that links milk to fat loss and muscle gain.

I’m on to you, Big Dairy. Dots are being connected as we speak.

Wine is also a beverage, and if you go to Lucky 32 on Wednesday at 6 p.m.. you can get a taste of some labels in the Caymus Vineyards collection. Caymus began selling one of their signature imprints, the Conundrum, with a screw top, a responsible move. Also, a great wine. The tasting is free, but reservations are required. E-mail to see if you can still get a seat.

Also on Wednesday, learn how to grill pineapple at an installment of the culinary series at Earth Fare. Apparently there’s more to it than just throwing it on the fire.

In fat-kid news, M&M/Mars has created a new line of candy-like “nutritious snackfoods” to comply with restrictions on foods sold in schools. “Mars made the decision to sub-brand the new products with the popular Mars snack brands,” the press release reads, and then goes on to list the new, “better-for-you” products, which include SNICKERS¨ Cookies, TWIX¨ Cereal Clusters, 3 MUSKETEERS¨ S’Mores Brownie Bars and COMBOS¨ Pizza Crackers.

We’ll get this childhood obesity thing licked yet.

To have your food news listed, e-mail it to Brian Clarey at