'Why I quit as a barrister to follow my dream job' – BBC News

‘Why I quit as a barrister to follow my dream job’ – BBC News

‘Why I quit as a barrister to follow my dream job’ By Gaggan Sabherwal Business reporter, BBC News 8 April 2019 These are external links and will open in a new window Close share panel Image copyright Mowgli Street Food Image caption Nisha Katona was a barrister before she became a restaurateur The BBC’s weekly The Boss series profiles business leaders from around the world. This week we speak to 48-year-old Nisha Katona, founder of Mowgli Street Food – a contemporary Indian restaurant chain in the UK.
When Nisha Katona decided to quit her successful career as a barrister after 20 years to open a restaurant, her friends and family thought she was having a mid-life crisis.
Nisha knew the move would come with risks as she would be giving up a well paid job and had a mortgage to pay.
But she had long had a dream to become a professional chef and it was starting to give her sleepless nights. So while she was still working full time in 2014, as a family and child law barrister in Liverpool, she decided to take the plunge and opened Mowgli. Image copyright Mowgli Street Food Image caption Nisha says the food at Mowgli is a “far cry” from what’s served at traditional curry houses
The Liverpool restaurant, which specialises in “authentic” Indian cuisine, quickly took off and has since grown into a UK-wide chain with sales of £10m.
“Mowgli is a pet name I have for my two teenage girls which literally means feral child,” Nisha says of the name, which is not, as some people think, linked to the famous Jungle Book character.
“My daughters chose the logo and the restaurant was named after them.”
The daughter of Indians who emigrated to Lancashire in the 1960s, Nisha was always obsessed with Indian cuisine and even used to plan her holidays around trying new foods.
She says she has taken cookery lessons all around the world, but never from professional chefs, only home cooks and “usually grandmothers”.
Before she launched Mowgli she gave cookery lessons herself, launching her own Youtube channel. And she did lots of market research – for instance, standing in the corner of restaurant kitchens at night to see how they operated. Image copyright Mowgli Street Food Image caption There are now seven Mowgli restaurants across the UK
Nisha says Mowgli is about showing how Indians eat at home and on the streets, which is a “far cry” from what you find at traditional UK curry houses.
She says her dishes, which are all based on family recipes, are “simple, fresh and delicate” while having a modern twist.
“What I want is people to understand how my grandmother cooked. This is how we, as Indians, eat at home. We don’t have a balti or a bhuna, and we don’t have naan breads and poppadoms.”
Her passion for Indian cuisine has also led her to write three of her own cookbooks – Pimp My Rice, The Spice Tree and Mowgli Street Food. Image copyright Mowgli Street Food Image caption Nisha has written several cook books
“I still remember when I wrote my first cook book. I’d never written a book in my life, so I thought how do I publish this? I looked in the Jamie Oliver cook book and Googled some of the names in his acknowledgments.
“One was his agent and so I sent her my proposal, and within 10 minutes she wrote back to me and said ‘can we meet on Monday’? And she signed me on.”
But despite her success, Nisha says starting her first restaurant wasn’t easy. As a second-generation immigrant living in 1970s Britain, she had developed “a thick skin” early on in life, and she had been the first female Asian barrister in Liverpool.
But she was still unprepared for the pressures she faced as a woman entering the male-dominated restaurant scene.

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Brew Hall to bluegrass: 10 Things About Minnesota United’s Allianz Field

Brew Hall to bluegrass: 10 Things About Minnesota United’s Allianz Field April 8, 2019 4:06PM EDT
Last week I got a sneak peek into the newest stadium in MLS. No wonder tickets to Minnesota United ‘s home opener (Saturday, 5 pm ET | ESPN2 in USA; MLS LIVE on DAZN in Canada) sold out in 90 seconds! Giving my final recommendations to MNUFC CEO Chris Wright (just kidding) | Jillian Sakovits
We saw all the ins and outs with our tour guide, MNUFC CEO Chris Wright; you can catch those in a video out later this week. In the meantime, here’s 10 Things you should know about Allianz Field… The Wonderwall The Wonderwall, seen from below | MNUFC
MNUFC’s 2,800-capacity, standing-room-only supporters section is the steepest grade allowed at 34.8 degrees. The Loon!
The Minnesota United crest is everywhere, uniquely intertwined throughout the stadium. That detail, combined with the baby blue seats, is striking. Brew Hall
With 96 beer taps, local food and garage doors that open to the concourse, what’s not to love? This beer garden-inspired restaurant and bar also has non-gameday hours, and will be open for special events like watch parties (Women’s World Cup, anyone?!) The big, big screen sits just across the pitch.
PS: I love the commitment to their local small business owners. In addition to food you would expect at a stadium like hot dogs, popcorn and pretzels, Allianz Field will showcase the diversity of culture and cuisine in Minnesota. Whether a fan’s favorite is a Freschetta pizza, Somali flavors from Afro Deli, traditional nachos from Los Ocampo or a chicken tikka masala rice bowl from Hot Indian, they have it. What is with that analog clock?!
That is what I said, too, before learning about the story: It’s a very cool way to honor the NASL days of MNUFC. There was an analog clock and manual scoreboard at their old home, the National Sports Center in Blaine, Minnesota. The idea came from members of the Dark Clouds supporters’ group who journeyed to the 2006 World Cup and saw the old analog clock at FC St. Pauli’s (get it?) Millerntor-Stadion.
The clock in the center keeps time, while the numbers on either side keep score, old-school style. There really isn’t a bad seat in the house! The view from fieldside seating | Jillian Sakovits
The closest seat to the field is 17 feet away; the farthest, just 125 feet. While this sounded cool, I wanted to see what that means. I scoured for the most distant seat, climbed up to take a look – and it was, in fact, still right near the action. The view from close up isn’t bad, either. Locker room
So fresh, so clean. MNUFC made sure the players were the first people to ever see their new home, via a private tour in early 2019. The grass The pitch | Jillian Sakovits
As I approached MSP by plane, I could spot this patch of green grass from 20,000 feet up. The Kentucky bluegrass surface looks stunning, and with 27.5 miles of heating pipe under the pitch, it will be that way year-round. It glows! Allianz Field’s skin | MNUFC
The PTFE exterior skin is incredible. This is the first time it has ever been used on a stadium; it can light up in all colors with varying moving, flowing light patterns. Drawing inspiration from Minnesota’s abundant waters and the Northern Lights that fill its skies, Allianz Field creates a stunning environment, inside and out, for the sport. The red seat
Every match, this seat will be reserved for a very special guest. Stay tuned for more on that coming later this week from @MNUFC ! “The Why”
The fans! The team & St. Paul based stadium was inspired by the diversity of the fan base. This wall at the entrance pays tribute to them.
Quick Facts, Allianz Field, Saint Paul, Minnesota Capacity: 20,000 Cost: $250 million (privately financed) Stadium Footprint: 296,193 square feet Groundbreaking: June 2017

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Sauces, Dressings & Condiments Market Worth USD 173.36 Billion b

SOURCE Hexa Research
FELTON, California , April 9, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — The global sauces, dressings and condiments market will reach USD 173.36 billion by 2025 and was valued at 124.58 billion in 2017 and is expected to record a CAGR of 4.22% from 2017 to 2025. These products have become an important part of culinary art, representing the diversity of global food culture. The increasing demand for these products is due to globalization, and increasing urbanization. The increasing consumer preference for international cuisine and preference for natural and organic ingredients over the conventional variants will drive the market growth over the forecast period.
Mayonnaise, sauces, ketchups, salad dressings, dips and condiments finds diverse applications in various food preparations majorly sea food products, ice creams, bakery, fruits, vegetable and other products. The increasing demand for diverse culinary trends worldwide is tempting the manufacturers to introduce innovative flavors and convenient packaging solutions. In addition, the companies are focusing on the development of healthier versions such as gluten free products. Millennials and Generation X represent the major consumer group for these products due to their hectic lifestyles and need for convenient and ready-to-eat foods.
Companies are aggressively pursuing new product launches and improvisations to the existing products to incorporate spicy and ethnic qualities and to alter the production processes accordingly. As per the research surveys, more than 9,000 sauces, dressings and condiments products were launched in the U.S. This will ensure the increased acceptance of the products over the forecast period.
Browse full research report with TOC on “Global Sauces, Dressings and Condiments Market Size and Forecast, By Type (Table Sauces and Dressings, Dips, Cooking Sauces, Paste and Purees, Pickled Products), By Distribution Channel And Trend Analysis, 2019 – 2025” at: https://www.hexaresearch.com/research-report/sauces-dressings-and-condiments-market
The table sauces and dressings segment is predominant in the market. The demand for the cross cultural cuisines and need for new flavors will augment the market growth. The manufacturers in this segment are also offering uncommon and different flavors to the consumer in order to cater to the ever-changing preferences and tastes of the buyer. For instance, Nestle, to match the Indians taste buds and preferences, has revamped the tomato ketchup with introducing Hot & Sweet tomato chilli sauce. Cooking sauces and paste and purees segment accounted for second and third largest segments respectively of the total market.
The Asia Pacific region was the largest region in the global sauces, dressings and condiments market and was valued at USD 60.49 billion . The major reason being the huge consumer base coupled with diverse cultures and cuisines. The trade agreements with reduced taxes on these products will pose a positive impact for the exporters in this region. North America region was the second largest region and was valued at USD 35.33 billion in the year 2017 and growing with a CAGR of 3.6 %. The U.S. accounted for more than 70%of total North America in 2017.
The U.S. is the largest consumer of these products accounting for more than 20% of the total retail sales. This provides lucrative opportunities for the international market players to offer a diverse range of products in this country. Furthermore, the organic and natural products will gain more traction over the forecast period from 2017- 2025
Download free sample report on global sauces, dressings and condiments market
The global sauces, dressings and condiments market is consolidated in nature marked with the presence of few established players accounting for the major market share. The Kraft Heinz Company, McCormick & Company, Inc., and Campbell Soup Co. account for three largest companies in the U.S. Market. Other major players operating in this market are General Mills Inc ., Nestlé, ConAgra Food Inc., Unilever, Mars, Incorporated and its Affiliates, CSC BRANDS, L.P. OTAFUKU SAUCE Co., Ltd. The manufacturers are focusing on adoption of strategies such as new product launches, mergers and acquisitions, increasing partnership with the online retailers and offering customized products to enhance their sales and widen the consumer base.
Browse related reports by Hexa Research:
Infant Formula Market – The global infant formula market was estimated at USD 44.26 billion in 2017 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.35% from 2017 to 2025. Chewing Gum Market – The global chewing gum market was valued at USD 29.0 billion in 2017 and is projected to reach USD 48.68 billion by 2025. Carbonated Soft Drink Market – The global carbonated soft drink market is expected to exhibit steady growth in the coming years due to changing consumption patterns of consumers and growing young population.. Legumes Market – The global legumes market was valued at USD 44.9 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach USD 75.8 billion by 2025. Hexa Research has segmented the global sauces, dressings and condiments market report based on type, product, distribution channel and region: –
Segmentation by Type
Table sauces and dressings Dips Cooking sauces Paste and Purees Pickled Products Segmentation by Distribution Channel
Supermarket and Hypermarkets Specialist Retailers Convenience Stores Others Segmentation by Region
North America U.S. Europe Germany Asia Pacific China Japan Central & South America Brazil Middle East & Africa Key Players Analyzed
General Mills Inc Nestlé ConAgra Food Inc Unilever The Kraft Heinz Company CSC BRANDS, L.P. McCormick & Company Otafuku Sauce Co.Ltd. Campbell Soup Co. Mars, Incorporated and its Affiliates About Hexa Research
Hexa Research is a market research and consulting organization, offering industry reports, custom research and consulting services to a host of key industries across the globe. We offer comprehensive business intelligence in the form of industry reports which help our clients obtain clarity about their business environment and enable them to undertake strategic growth initiatives.
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Hexa Research
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View original content: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/sauces-dressings–condiments-market-worth-usd-173-36-billion-by-2025-hexa-research-300827767.html

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TRAVEL GUIDE: The Best Restaurants & Nightlife in Charlotte, NC.

Affordable Fashion // Attainable Travels // Authentic Living April 9, 2019 TRAVEL GUIDE: The Best Restaurants & Nightlife in Charlotte, NC. Confession: I can’t believe the first time I’m writing a post like this is TWO YEARS after I moved away from Charlotte! This is long overdue. I loved my years in Charlotte, and a big part of that was due to the incredible restaurants and fun nightlife there! I’m sharing all of my favorites in today’s Travel Guide, as we continue with this month’s Tuesday blog series (all about Charlotte). {Pictured L: Amelie’s. Pictured R: Milkshake at Cowfish} RESTAURANTS: COFFEE SHOP: Nova’s (multiple locations, my favorite is in South End at 1515 South Blvd. Charlotte NC 28203.) This was my absolute favorite coffee shop when I lived in Charlotte! The South End location is my favorite. It’s pretty no-frills inside (in full honesty, not the most Instagrammable coffee shop), but the beverages and bakery goods are incredible . I’ve never had a chai latte as good as the ones at Nova’s! Their scones are also a great breakfast item. I wrote the majority of my senior capstone paper during my final semester of college at the South End Nova’s location, and then the following year while in broadcasting school I had my last radio internship at one of the stations located directly across the street, so I was still there all the time. So this place is pretty special to me, and I highly recommend it! CAFE: Amelie’s (multiple lcoations, my favorite is the original in NoDa at 2424 N. Davidson St. Charlotte NC 28205) If you only make it to one thing in this Travel Guide that I suggest…let this one be it because this is as quintessentially Charlotte as it gets food-wise! Amelie’s is a local chain of French bakeries. The original, in the NoDa neighborhood, is open 24/7- even on holidays! Now Amelie’s has expanded across Charlotte and also has locations in Uptown, South Charlotte, and even beyond in South Carolina and Georgia! I am being 100% honest when I tell you I’ve never ordered something I didn’t like. I love their sandwiches, hot and cold beverages, and of course all of the incredible French pastries! Visiting one of their locations is a must- both for the amazing treats and the incredible decor and atmosphere! (This place is very Instagrammable.) BAKERY: Suarez Bakery (Park Road Shopping Center, 4245 Park Rd. Charlotte NC 28209, Montford neighborhood) One of my favorite things to do when I was in college if I’d had a tough week with school was to make the quick drive over to Suarez Bakery and pick out a decorated sugar cookie to enjoy! Their cookies and other treats are pretty reasonably priced for such a nice bakery, and also delicious! Suarez Bakery also does the most insane and beautiful decorated cakes- sadly I’ve never tried one of those but I’m sure they’re amazing. BRUNCH: Terrace Cafe (4625 Piedmont Row Dr. Charlotte NC 28210, SouthPark neighborhood) This is my very favorite Charlotte brunch spot! Their pancakes and French toast is just incredible- and they always do fun flavor twists on favorite breakfast dishes. The one major downside of Terrace Cafe is that they don’t take advance reservations for brunch. This is a popular spot so be prepared to wait awhile… but it’s worth it! DINER: Midnight Diner (115 E. Carson Blvd. Charlotte NC 28203, South End neighborhood) Those of you from the tri-state region of Connecticut, New York and New Jersey know that it’s hard to find a good, traditional diner in other parts of the country. I never thought I’d find something that would compare to the diners in Central Connecticut and Long Island, NY, by where members of my dad’s family live. Well folks- Midnight Diner is some serious competition. It’s open almost 24/7 (very late at night- you can eat after the bars close at 2!). While Midnight Diner is great to eat at midnight or later- it’s also great for breakfast or really any meal! I love their waffles with a side of corned beef hash- yum! This is also one of my parents’ favorite spots in Charlotte that we used to eat at when they’d visit me. BURGERS (AND SUSHI): Cowfish (4310 Sharon Rd. Charlotte NC 28211, South Park neighborhood) Cowfish is one of the most unique restaurants that I’ve ever been to. Their name comes from the fact they they specialize in gourmet burgers (cow) and sushi (fish). Three of their other specialties include their milkshakes (the best of the best in Charlotte), their fries, and their vast tea selection. I personally don’t eat sushi, but many friends have raved to me about how good the Cowfish sushi is. I do enjoy their burgers- however I will say they are a bit pricey (but good). In all honesty though- my favorite thing to go to Cowfish for is a birthday cake shake with malt added, and a side of fries! Definitely not a healthy snack… but a tasty one. Cowfish gets very busy especially on weekends- which is something to note. Expect to wait for a table at popular times. UPSCALE AMERICAN: Rooster’s Wood-Fired Kitchen (multiple locations, my favorite is the on in South Park at 6601 Morrison Blvd. Charlotte NC 28211) Rooster’s is a wonderful restaurant, that I would call a combination of classic American and a little farm to table. They have a few locations- but I always ate at South Park. The ambiance in the South Park location is very nice- this would be a great date night spot. I’ve been there before with my parents, and also a few times with sorority sisters for celebratory lunches. Their mac and cheese is very good! (In full honesty I do think it’s a definite second to Kid Cashew’s mac and cheese, but still tasty.) FARM TO TABLE: Kid Cashew (1608 East Blvd. Charlotte NC 28293, Dilworth neighborhood) One of my favorite unique spots in Charlotte! Kid Cashew is a farm to table restaurant with Mediterranean flair, but they serve a lot of American dishes with fun twists as well. Their mac and cheese… Y’ALL. Get the mac and cheese. it will change your life. I’ve never had restaurant mac and cheese like this before. This is also a great restaurant for vegetarian options, and in the inside is filled with natural light and fun rustic decor. FINE DINING: Evoke (555 S McDowell St. Charlotte NC, 28204. Uptown- inside Le Meridian Hotel) Being that I was on a student budget while I lived in Charlotte, I didn’t get to experience too many of the fine dining restaurants in the city. Right before I moved two years ago, I did get to attend a media dinner at Evoke, located in Le Meridian. This might have been one of my favorite meals that I ever ate in Charlotte! In my opinion, Evoke is one of the most underrated restaurants in the city. Their menu is described on their website as eclectic, and the cuisine is inspired by both the US and international dishes. Check out my review of my dinner at Evoke here ! MEXICAN: Cantina 1511 (Park Road Shopping Center, 4271 Park Road, Charlotte NC, 28209. Montford neighborhood) I ate dinner here with my Charlottesville friends last month on our Charlotte girls’ trip! This restaurant has a very fun atmosphere, and absolutely delicious food. I’ve never had drinks here- the drink menu was a little pricy but it did look like they had good margaritas and craft cocktails. ITALIAN: Vapiano (210 S. Tryon St. #101 Charlotte NC 28202. Uptown.) One of my very favorites in Charlotte! It’s actually a European chain with a few US locations (I’ve also been to the NYC one!). It’s incredibly affordable- most full meals are under $10. They make their pasta from scratch in house and it’s absolutely delicious, as-is everything on the menu! Vapiano also has a fun modern feel to it with the cool decor. Vapiano was a favorite place of mine to bring out-of-town guests to lunch or dinner when I lived in Charlotte and would have visitors, and I also had my 20th birthday lunch here! FRENCH/CREPERIE: Crepe Cellar (3116 N. Davidson St. Charlotte NC 28205. NoDa neighborhood) Ohhhh I sure do love this place! The Crepe Cellar is a fantastic restaurant that has a wide array of both savory and sweet crepes, as well as other delicious menu items. The butter and sugar crepe is a delicious but simple dessert crepe option… but if you want the real deal, you have to order the Brownie in a Blanket crepe. It’s literally a gigantic brownie baked into a crepe, with chocolate sauce and vanilla ice cream. Think like chocolate lava cake, but a million times better. One of my favorite desserts in Charlotte! While the sweet crepes are great- the actual food here is wonderful too. The only major downside is that this restaurant is that it’s located right in the heart of NoDa, where parking can be super tough. INDIAN: Passage to India: (9150 University Blvd. #101 Charlotte NC 28213. University area) I love Indian food, and always have. It’s one of my very favorite international cuisines. With that said- when I first got to Charlotte for college, I was determined to find the best Indian restaurant in the city. And I sure tried a lot of them! I’ve eaten at Indian restaurants in most Charlotte neighborhoods… and I can tell you without a doubt that Passage to India is THE BEST! It’s located just outside of the UNCC campus in the University area. Granted- this is about 30 minutes away from Uptown (more with traffic), so it might not be the most convenient place to get to, depending where you’re visiting in Charlotte. But oh my- it is so good! A very small, low frills restaurant, but insanely delicious and authentic Indian food. JAPANESE / HIBACHI: Red Ginger: (401 S.Tryon St. #130 Charlotte NC 28202. Uptown.) A delicious hibachi and sushi restaurant in Uptown! Definitely one of the pricier ones on this list, but the food makes it 100% worth it to go. They have a mix of hibachi grill tables and regular tables. It’s a very classy restaurant- perfect for a nice night out on the town. They can also easily accommodate big groups (with reservation)- I had both my 21st and 22nd birthday dinners here! VIETNAMESE: Doan’s ( 5937 South Blvd. Charlotte NC 28217. Technically not sure of neighborhood- further down South Blvd. from South End!) Pho is my very favorite rainy day comfort food! And Doan’s is THE place to get it in Charlotte. I will be honest and tell you that this restaurant isn’t located in the most scenic or desirable part of town. It’s in a strip mall about midway down on South Boulevard (a long road running from near Uptown all the way to almost the state line). But the food makes it worth a visit. Their prices are extremely reasonable, and they have wonderful Pho, as well as other Vietnamese specialities! THAI: Thai Taste (324 East Blvd. Charlotte NC 28303) Similar to my love of Indian food, I also really enjoy Thai food. Thai Taste is what I believe is the best of the best in Charlotte! Their curries are delicious, as is the Thai iced tea! It’s located in Dilworth, which is a great neighborhood to eat in. This was yet another favorite spot of mine to eat at with friends, and I’ve also brought my parents here. CHAIN: The Cheesecake Factory (4400 Sharon Rd. Charlotte NC 28211) Call me basic, but your girl LOVES The Cheesecake Factory! The Charlotte location is at South Park mall. You name it, I’ve been to it at The Cheesecake Factory: my birthdays, other friends’ birthdays, dates, girls’ nights, takeout for S’mores cheesecake after a rough week… yep, I’ve been there for it all. And loved it every time! Seriously- a highlight for me of where my university was located in Charlotte was that it was under 10 minutes from The Cheesecake Factory. Haha! NIGHTLIFE: (all located Uptown) ROOFTOP BAR: City Lights ( (555 S McDowell St. Charlotte NC, 28204. O n top of Le Meridien hotel.) There are now several rooftop bars in Charlotte, but City Lights will always be my favorite! Part of that is for a sentimental reason. I was invited to the media opening night of City Lights three years ago- and it was one of the coolest local events I’ve ever been invited to as a blogger! So it has a special place in my heart. I also had my Charlotte going away part here before I moved , and did birthday/blogiversary pictures here in 2016! City Lights is obviously special to me, but it’s a great rooftop bar aside from that! Le Meridien hotel is located on the outskirts of Uptown, which means this rooftop has THE BEST views of the whole skyline, since it’s a couple blocks before it instead of being right in it. They also do really fun craft cocktails!! (The only thing I don’t recommend at City Lights is the food- it’s a bit overpriced for the quality.) No cover. THEMED NIGHTCLUB: Roxbury (116 W. 5th St. Charlotte NC 28202) This is one of my absolute favorite bars in Charlotte- I’m only ranking this second to Whiskey River because Roxbury often gets more crowded. Roxbury is named after the classic 90s comedy, Night at The Roxbury, which is one of Will Ferrell’s first movies. (Highly recommend watching that movie if you like dumb comedies, by the way!) Roxbury Charlotte is an 80s and 90s themed nightclub. They play all of the biggest songs from those two decades, and there are TVs all over the bar so they play the music videos as well! A lot of their cocktails have themed names after popular movies and TV shows from those years as well. Roxbury is two stories- most of the dancing happens in the lower level. It can get really crowded on Saturday nights (literally the only downside of this place!), so I recommend going on a Friday night, or getting there early on a Saturday! There is a cover charge- I think $5 for girls. UPSCALE NIGHTCLUB: Kandy Bar (210 E. Trade St. #342 Charlotte NC 28202. In Epicentre.) If you’re looking for a taste of upscale nightlife from cities like New York City or Las Vegas, Kandy Bar is the spot for you. This nightclub opened right after I graduated college, and it was one of my favorite spots to go out during my last year in Charlotte! This bar is definitely a little dressier- this would be the perfect spot to wear a cute little dress and heels to, whereas the others that I’m highlighting are a little more casual. There is a cover charge. BEST OVERALL NIGHTCLUB: Whiskey River (210 E. Trade St. A-208 Charlotte NC 28202. In Epicentre.) My FAVORITE spot in Charlotte! I never went to Whiskey River in college, as I’d heard it wasn’t that much fun. Shortly after I graduated, I went for the first time, and HAD A BLAST. I kept wondering how I’d never been before! Whiskey River is my favorite bar in Charlotte mainly because of the music. They play an amazing variety: rap, current pop, country, and a lot of the same 90s throwbacks that Roxbury plays. There are also boxes that you can dance on- which is so much fun!! Whiskey River also has a mechanical bull, which adds to the fun. It’s located in the Epicentre (like Kandy Bar), which makes it a great spot for bar hopping, but with that said Whiskey River so much fun that you can also spend your entire night here! There is a cover charge, but frequently there are staff members perusing the Epicentre giving out cards for no cover for that night. Since it has been two years (this week!) since I moved away from Charlotte, I realize that there are a lot of new places that have opened in the time that I’ve been gone, as well as classic spots that I never made it to while I lived there. I asked some of my favorite ladies from Charlotte to contribute a few of their own favorites to this list! The places with names that are bolded are ones that I also listed in my guide above: Ciera: Restaurant: Vapiano – Karaoke Bar: Noda 101 – Rooftop bar: Merchant and Trade Priyanka: Coffee shop: Smelly Cat Cafe – Restaurant: Moo & Brew – Bar: Thomas Street Tavern Caroline: Coffee shop: Sunflour Bakery – Restaurant: Benny’s Pizza – Bar: Dandelion Market Deeana: Bakery: OMG Donuts – Restaurant: Pacos Tacos Perrin: Cafe: Amelie’s – Restaurant: Mama Ricotta’s – Bar: Corkbuzz Hannah: Cafe: Amelie’s – Restaurant: Futo Buta – Karaoke Bar: Jeff’s Bucket Shop Mary: Coffee Shop: Brakerman’s Coffee and Supply – Restaurant: Beef & Bottle – Bar: Dot Dot Dot Cara: Coffee shop: Parliament Espresso – Restaurant: Aix en Provence – Brewery: Wooden Robot Leslie: Coffee Shop: Sunflour Bakery – Restaurant: Latin Street Grill Thanks to all of these ladies for helping contribute to this! And thanks to you if you made it here to the end! I know this was a longer Travel Guide, but I wanted it to be as comprehensive as possible, since Charlotte is one of my very favorite places. Next Tuesday, I’ll be continuing with the Charlotte posts sharing the best hotels there! God Bless,

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If You Thought These 11 Dishes Are Indian, You’ve Been Living A Lie

[br][br]Food is all sorts of wonderful. It isn’t just for one’s tummy but for the soul. Over the years, we’ve all come to have our own list of favourite dishes but one can’t deny that there are some timeless delicacies we all enjoy. The Indian cuisine, though diverse, has certain dishes that are dearly loved by all Indians. However, most of us forget that most of our favourite food has roots in other cultures. Food has its own story to tell. Some of the food we eat and think is Indian, you would be shocked to know, is not.[br][br]Here are 11 dishes that we think are Indian but are actually not:[br][br] 1. The next time you’re craving some samosa with your chai , remember that it isn’t Indian at all! Samosa was originally from the Middle East and was called ‘sambosa’ . However, it came to India around the 13th or 14th century, thanks to traders. [br][br][br][br] 2. Most Indians will come forward and say they can’t live without chai but the truth is that tea was discovered by the Chinese and brought all the way to India by the Britishers. Out of all the things the Britishers left back after their rule, one can say chai is the most beloved. [br][br][br][br] 3. Finding its origin in the Persian word Birian which means ‘fried before cooking’, many historians say that ‘biryani’ finds its origins in Persia and was brought to India by the Mughals . Years later, various regions have their own way of cooking it and all of them happen to be quite a gastronomic treat. [br][br][br][br] 4. There are various different sorts of kebabs now and we love all of them but when we talk about its origin, it goes all the way to medieval Turkey. It is believed that soldiers would grill the meat on their swords and eat that meat. [br][br][br][br] 5. On a cold, dark night in Scotland, a bus driver entered a restaurant run by a Pakistani chef. He ordered for chicken curry but sent it back because he found it to be too dry. The chef was enjoying his tomato soup and got the idea of adding some of it to the chicken curry. The rest, as they say, is history as chicken tikka masala has emerged as one of the most loved dishes of our time. [br][br][br][br] 6. Vegetarians need to sit down for this one: paneer isn’t from India. Introduced to Indian by Afghan and Iranian traders, paneer is said to be an accidental invention by the Mongols who travelled a lot and often carried milk with them but in leather bags. The milk must have turned to paneer because of heat and the rennet in the leather during one of their trips and because of that, we can all enjoy shahi paneer now. [br][br][br][br] 7. Idli , loved by both south Indians and north Indians, has two origin stories. While some say it was brought from the kitchens of the Hindu rulers of Indonesia and is similar to a dish called ‘kedli’ , there are some who say that the Arab rulers who settled in the southern region of India and had very particular eating habits, brought idli as a concept to India. No matter where it’s from, we’re glad it came to India. [br][br][br][br] 8. Rajma or kidney bean was actually brought to India by the Portugals but they find their origin in Mexico, along with the technique of cooking it after having soaked it or boiled it. Our preparation of rajma is now very different and we wouldn’t want it any other way. [br][br][br][br] 9. Gulab Jamun was prepared in India for the first time in the medieval age from a fritter brought by Central Asian Turkic invaders. Today, we enjoy gulab jamun and often even use it as our choice of dessert when celebrating something. [br][br][br][br] 10. Daal Bhat might be comfort food for many Indians now but it actually finds its origins in Nepal. Being closer to us geographically, it isn’t surprising that daal bhat or rice with daal travelled all the way to India but travelling is only part of it because over the years, it has become one of the most simple yet loved dishes in India. [br][br][br][br] 11. Vindaloo is a favourite for Goans and is often cooked when celebrating something special but this dish comes from the Portugese . In fact, it was called carne de vinha d’alhos but over the years, Goans have made the dish their own by introducing some fantastic variations. [br][br][br][br]

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Mutt City Masterpieces OutSmart Magazine

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D oes Houston match up to the Big Apple, Paris, and Tokyo as a global foodtropolis? It depends on how you compare them. We may not have Noma, Eleven Madison Park, or Sukiyabashi Jiro, but we can get to them quickly (thanks to our well-connected airports) and we have the same odds as everyone else in those cities to snag a reservation. And I wouldn’t trade our own Justin Yu’s Theodore Rex, Chris Shepherd’s UB Preserv, Kaiser Lashkari’s Himalaya, or anything from Ronnie Killen for any of those distant choices. (Try finding real-deal Tex-Mex, smoked boudin, crawfish pho, barbacoa tacos, carnitas siumai, affordable oysters, crispy fried catfish, East Texas hot links, CFS, and other soulful TexLaMex dishes in New York City!) John Nechman
Do we have mezes the equal of Istanbul’s? No, but no one else does, either—and ours are excellent. Does our gumbo or Creole compare with New Orleans? No way, but ours is better than anyone else’s outside of Louisiana, and New Orleans is a delicious five-hour drive away. Dining out in Mutt City is incomparable, undefinable, and more enthralling with every new restaurant opening. How people rank food cities is a matter of preference, but I prefer H-Town.
Here are 30 of my favorite dishes that all reflect our mighty metropolis. (Whittling this down to 30 was like making Imelda Marcos choose her 30 most-favorite pairs of shoes.) So grab a drink (I suggest a potent blue frozen ’rita from El Patio on Westheimer), or if you’re behaving, Irma’s peerless lemonade, and celebrate 30 more reasons to swell with Houston pride. BREAKFAST
1. Bò Né Bò Né Houston, 11169 Bellaire (Bellaire Asian District) Bò né—a great way to start the day. Few breakfasts satisfy more than this Vietnamese classic of creamy pâté and butter slathered on a fresh-baked Viet-French baguette, a side salad drizzled with soy-sesame dressing, and the all-important cow-shaped comal bearing tender, sizzling chunks of marinated filet mignon, onions, and eggs. Steak & eggs, H-Town style.
2. Katfish & Grits The Breakfast Klub, 3711 Alabama (Midtown) thebreakfastklub.com No matter how cold, rainy, or sweltering the weather is, our city’s longest breakfast line is at Marcus Davis’ Breakfast Klub. The dish I order every time is the Katfish & Grits, a perfectly flaky, crispy filet sided with the creamiest grits in town, buttermilk biscuits, and a duo of sunny-side-up eggs, all yearning to be doused in Louisiana hot sauce. Morning Thali, Pondicheri
3. Morning Thali Pondicheri, 2800 Kirby Dr. (Upper Kirby/River Oaks) pondicheri.com With its progressive take on Indian dishes, Pondicheri draws crowds for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. One of its many brilliant dishes is the breakfast thali, a colorful medley of potato or carrot paratha, saag paneer, uttapam, chutney, curried potatoes, yogurt, lamb keema (I often ask to substitute the creamy dal), and a fried egg. If Chef Anita Jaisinghani is around, beg her to make her khichri (a hearty rice-and-lentils porridge).
4. Quail and Eggs Goode Company Taquer i a, 4902 Kirby Dr., (Lower Kirby/West U.) goodecompany.com/taqueria.asp Goode Company has deep Houston roots and empire status, but many of its BBQ fans are unaware that they make some of the best breakfasts in town at their taqueria. My favorite is their two plump and succulent mesquite-cooked Bobwhite quails served with eggs, hash browns, and biscuits. It doesn’t get more Texas than that. Crispy Rice Salad, UB Preserv APPETIZERS, SOUPS, SALADS & SIDES
5. Boiled Crawfish Crawfish Shack, 5822 FM 2100 (Crosby) crawfishshack.com To hell with groundhogs; spring begins when crawdad castles sprout! That’s also my sign to head out to Crawfish Shack in Crosby, the best spot for mudbugs this side of the Sabine River. Take a group and an Igloo full of booze. Add in andouille sausage, potatoes, corn, and mushrooms (truly scrumptious simmered in the boil). The feel is ice house, the music ranges from Journey to Beau Jocque to Waylon & Willie to Selena, and the crowd is everybody in the area who eats to the Bayou City beat.
6. “ Carolina Gold” Rice and Butterbeans Theodore Rex, 1302 Nance St. (Warehouse District) trexhouston.com Chef Justin Yu’s creative yet approachable Theodore Rex is my favorite restaurant. One glorious night, a group of fellow foodies and I ordered everything on the menu, and every dish we had could have made this list. The menu changes regularly, but a must-order that always appears is the “Carolina Gold” rice and butterbeans cooked in soft butter with crushed garden leaves. Prepare to swoon. If Houston were a restaurant, we’d be Theodore Rex.
7. Crispy Rice Salad UB Preserv, 1609 Westheimer (Montrose) ubpreserve.com A server at UB Preserv convinced me to order the bland-sounding Crispy Rice Salad. I ended up fighting my husband for every last pellet. Now, whenever we visit, right after ordering one of their stunning cocktails, that salad is the first dish I order. Nobody in town is more dedicated to the story of Houston food than owner/chef Chris Shepherd. Along with chef de cuisine Nick Wong, Shepherd has created a local classic here. For dinner or dim sum, every dish we’ve had has been a stunner.
8. Empanadas Papio’s Fusion Deli, 11999 Katy Freeway (Energy Corridor) papios-deli.business.site Deep within an obscure office building is Papio’s Fusion Deli, where chef Juan Carlos brings a background in science, a European pedigree, and Peruvian upbringing to his trade. His piping-hot beef empanadas, made with finely chopped olives and raisins and topped with a light dusting of powdered sugar, are without equal. Don’t miss any of his other Peruvian dishes, either—particularly his exquisite tamalitos verdes (green tamales) and mind-blowing chicharrón.
9. Oysters Shrimphooley Gilhooley’s, 222 9th St. (San Leon) facebook.com/gilhooleys Ramshackle Gilhooley’s is a smoky biker’s bar with a no-kids policy. It’s also home to one of the greatest dishes on America’s Third Coast—plump Gulf oysters grilled in garlic butter and parmesan cheese. What makes them transcendent is the smoky flavor they absorb from the grill’s pecan and oak firewood. If you want shrimp on top (and you do), order the Oysters Shrimphooley. LUNCH
10. BBQ Brisket Killen’s BBQ, 3613 E. Broadway (Pearland) killenssteakhouse.com Area barbecue fans speak of the “B.K. Era” (Before Killen’s). In those days, we enjoyed our heavily sauced barbecue while begrudgingly admitting that the Texas Hill Country was home to the best Q. But then, Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef Ronnie Killen started doing a weekend BBQ service at his Pearland steakhouse, and the rest is history. I’ve eaten at nearly every BBQ place on every Texas Monthly Best BBQ list since the first one came out, and my favorite brisket is at Killen’s. I’m addicted to the massive beef ribs, too.
11. Cheese Coney JCI—James Coney Island (everywhere) jamesconeyisland.com In the early ’70s, my dad would take my brothers and me to the original James Coney Island in downtown off of Main Street, and we would join the hungry hordes watching in awe as a line of servers would work their magic over a gigantic grill containing dozens of sizzling wieners. My go-to order then was three Cheese Coneys (a hand-cut steamed bun cradling one of their signature dogs, topped with mustard, “chili sauce,” cheese whiz, and minced onions). Fifty years later, it’s still my order. In fact, if I’m out of town for any appreciable amount of time, my first stop upon return is the closest JCI’s. Facchia di Vecchio, Mandola’s Deli
12. Facchia di Vecchio Mandola’s Deli, 4105 Leeland St. (East End) mandolasdeli.com I had a near-epiphany the first time I tried the Mandola’s Deli faccia di vecchia (which translates to “old woman’s face”). It’s an offbeat take on Sicilian-style pizza—thick crusts topped with fresh tomatoes, spices, herbs, their famous house-made sausage, grilled peppers, and onions. It’s sensational—one of those dishes I can’t get enough of. And it should be a local law that any diner at this cozy, historic locale must save room for a slice of their sublime Italian cream cake.
13. Fiddler on the Roof of Your Mouth (with Swiss Cheese and Chopped Liver) Kenny & Ziggy’s (Galleria area and Upper Kirby) kennyandziggys.com You’d have to travel 1,500 miles to find a deli that compares to Kenny & Ziggy’s. Travel 10 times that far, and you still won’t find better pastrami. My favorite sandwich is my own custom creation: the Fiddler on the Roof of Your Mouth (a triple-decker of corned beef, pastrami, and Russian dressing), but with a smear of their decadent chopped liver and melted Swiss cheese added. I call it the “Nechmangabetzky,” a toned-down version of their notorious $85 Zellagabetsky, a sandwich that could feed six (or just me if I skip breakfast).
14. Grilled Pork and Egg Bánh Mì with ChA Giò Cali Sandwich & Fast Food, 2900 Travis St. (Midtown) The owner of Cali Sandwich is known by the not-very-original name “The Cali Lady,” and since she first opened many years ago across the street from her current location, she’s brought me the same meal (or told a server to do so)—a full order of her best-in-town cha giò and a marinated grilled pork bánh mi topped with a soft fried egg. I wouldn’t know how to order anything else at Cali, nor would I ever want to.
15. Grim Burger Lankford Grocery & Market, 88 Dennis St. (Montrose) lankfordgrocery.com The first time I ever came up with a Top 100 list of restaurants, Lankford topped it. I used to eat here when it actually sold groceries. Chef Eydie Prior is one of my favorite people in the local restaurant scene, and whether it’s her perfectly crafted breakfasts, some of the city’s best enchiladas, or her legendary burgers, she makes sure no one leaves hungry or unsatisfied. My must-have is the Grim Burger—a massive patty topped with gobs of mac & cheese, jalapeños, bacon, and a soft-fried egg. Throw on some tater tots and hope you’re not due for a yearly checkup afterwards.
16. Gulf Shrimp and Crab Sandwich Local Foods (various locations) houstonlocalfoods.com Few sandwiches get me drooling more than the Gulf shrimp and crab sandwich from the local chain dedicated to all things local, and appropriately named Local Foods. They stuff a home-baked ciabatta with the best from our coastal waters, topped with locally sourced pickled red onion, tomato, and homemade green-goddess dressing. l usually grab several of the fabulous sides and salads—this is a place where I gleefully eat my veggies. Texas-Size Steak Sandwich, Champ Burger
17. Koshary Adam’s Bite, 7919 Westheimer (Galleria area/Westchase) adamsbite.business.site Adam’s Bite is a food truck run by Mr. Omar. If you want to see him beam with joy, ask for koshary, the national dish of Egypt and one that my husband and I fell in love with on a recent trip there. Mr. Omar’s version features the usual rice, lentils, and fried onions, but he adds layers of ground beef, chickpeas, pasta, and much more. Pour on the chili tomato and vinegar sauces, and you have my favorite food-truck dish in town. Also order the “Here We Go” rice pudding, topped with ice cream, hazelnuts, and chopped almonds.
18. Smoked Oxtails Ray’s BBQ Shack,3929 Old Spanish Trail (Third Ward/South Side) raysbbqshack.com Thursday in Third Ward means one of Houston’s greatest dishes—smoked oxtails by pitmaster extraordinaire Rayford S. Busch. This man knows his smoke! I usually add a fat link of smoked boudin and a Lott’s Link (East Texas-style sausage only found around Houston and the Golden Triangle). And if I feel like eating healthier, I’ll throw on a side of grilled squash/peppers; if not, I get the fried corn on the cob.
19. Texas-Size Steak Sandwich Champ Burger, 304 Sampson St. (East End) champsburger.net Since 1963, Champ Burger has been serving the East End with quality fast food. I love the family that runs it, and remember many years ago when the original owner, Mr. Saladino, told me to try their steak sandwich. Texans know that a steak sandwich is a CFS, and no one does a tastier version than Champ Burger. Add on an order of the area’s best onion rings and an orange milkshake (think dreamsicle), and you’ll know why I’d be 20 pounds lighter if not for my regular visits to this quintessential Houston stand. DINNER
20. Crab Fried Rice Tuk-Tuk Crab, 6128 Wilcrest Dr. (Bellaire Asian District) tuktukcrab.com In a mostly deserted strip center far off the main Bellaire Asian District drag is Tuk Tuk Crab. On my first visit, a cheery woman suggested the crab fried rice, and when it arrived, I gasped. It was a mountain of fragrant, ham-studded rice that could have fed four, covered with gargantuan juicy crab parts and a chives omelet that appeared to have been made with at least four eggs. It was sided with a delightful garlicky, vinegary sweet sauce. Try to save room for dessert so you can order the best halo halo I’ve had outside of the Philippines.
21. Hornado Andes Café, 2311 Canal St. (East End) andescafe.com Chef David Guerrero’s intimate Andes Café has introduced Houstonians to dishes and ingredients from all over South America, including delectable cuy (guinea pig) and lúcuma (a spectacular Peruvian fruit that tastes like creamy caramel). I crave many dishes on his menu, but my favorite is his hornado, from his native Ecuador and composed of savory roasted pork leg, llapingachos (fried potato cakes), and a sprightly mix of sautéed hominy, shredded greens, and avocado coated in a house-made vinaigrette.
22. Khao Soi Gai Street Food Thai Market, 1010 W. Cavalcade St. (Heights) streetfoodthaimarket.com This is the third or fourth reincarnation of a Thai business at this location, but it always ends up being my favorite Thai spot in town. Their khao soi gai consists of a massive bowl of Northern Thai noodles and chicken simmered in a rich coconut curry with the sharp tang of sour mustard greens and unexpected enhancements of fried shallots and diced red onion. There are days I can’t concentrate on anything but this spectacular dish—and also their marvelous mango sticky rice.
23. Le Complet Belge Café Brussels, 1718 Houston Ave. (First Ward) cafebrusselshouston.com Those wanting to visit Europe without investing the time and money know the next-best option in Houston is chef Catherine Duwez’s Café Brussels. For over 20 years, I’ve followed Chef Duwez wherever she’s gone, and I still never need a menu. I always get Le Complet Belge, consisting of a pot of the finest mussels money can buy, simmered in white wine and onions and sided with her legendary frites (ask for a side of her homemade mayo, along with a draft Stella Artois, which I tend to have refilled often).
24. Parathadillas Himalaya, 6652 Southwest Freeway (Gandhi District) himilayasrestauranthouston.com Chef Kaiser Lashkari is a local icon. His Himalaya is globally renowned, and I could dominate a Top 30 list with selections from his menu. The kitchen, led by his lovely wife Azra, makes some of the most creative dishes in town, blending Desi flavors seamlessly into Third Coast classics. Here, quesadillas are “parathadillas,” made with unleavened flatbread in place of tortillas and stuffed with spicy ground lamb, brisket, or chicken, and onions, masala sauce, cilantro, sour cream—unforgettable Houston fusion at its finest. Porchetta e Fagioli, Giacomo’s Cibi e Vino
25. Porchetta e Fagioli and T agliatelle Giacomo’s Cibo e Vino, 3215 Westheimer (River Oaks) giacomosciboevino.com Chef Lynette Hawkins’ passion for Italian has resulted in a trattoria that manages to be faithfully Italian, yet very Houston. The portions are generous, and everything I’ve had has impressed. I’ll cheat and do a two-fer here—one of my favorite meals is to order half-size portions of her unforgettable porchetta e fagioli and the tagliatelle alla Bolognese.
26. Roosevelt Special El Real Tex Mex Café,1201 Westheimer (Montrose) Only in Houston do I regularly find Tex-Mex places that serve heated salsa (so much tastier than when it’s cold). And when I ask for eggs on my enchiladas, I never get the funny stares that I get in other cities. My favorite enchiladas with eggs is El Real Tex Mex’s Roosevelt Special (named for a dish at a place in Fort Worth that made it at the request of president Franklin Roosevelt, although they thought he was weird to order it). This special also comes with a chalupa and a taco. A second must-order dish at this temple to Tex-Mex is the Borunda stacked enchiladas—topped with an egg, of course. Crême Brûlée Bread Pudding, Killen’s Steakhouse DESSERTS
27. Bayou Goo House of Pies (Upper Kirby and Galleria) houseofpies.com Any time of the day or night (but best appreciated after the clubs have closed), the beloved “House of Guys” serves up splendid diner fare and eye candy as well as my favorite pie, the legendary Bayou Goo. How can anyone resist a pecan crust topped with sweet cream cheese, vanilla custard swirled with chocolate chunks, whipped cream, and chocolate shavings?
28. Crème Brûlée Bread Pudding Killen’s Steakhouse (Pearland and The Woodlands) killenssteakhouse.com Chef Ronnie Killen makes a second appearance on this list because my husband calls Killen’s crème brûlée bread pudding his favorite dessert in the world. It’s complex without being overly sweet or dense. It’s fruity, flan-ny (if that’s a word), buttery, tart . . .you just have to try it. And make sure to order his best-on-earth carrot cake, too.
29. Grand Marnier Soufflé Tony’s, 3755 Richmond Ave. (Greenway Plaza) tonyshouston.com Throughout my five decades in Houston, Tony’s has been where the stars shine brightest. Impeccable service and food make this one of the worthiest splurges in town. The mandatory order is the Grand Marnier soufflé. Once you try this luscious, billowy, mini-Astrodome of a dessert, you’ll see why Shirley MacLaine orders one for herself every time she dines here.
30. Maple Sweet Potato Cheesecake Ester’s Cajun Café and Soul Food, 5204 Yale St. (Independence Heights) esterscajunsoul.com Our proximity to Louisiana is why Houston has some of the tastiest soul food in America. We’re blessed with Creole-Cajun soul with a lot of Texas smoke mixed in. No one in America has what we have, and no one in Houston serves it better than Ester’s. If they’re serving their stunning Maple Sweet Potato Cheesecake, I’ll eat a slice and take a few more home—always graciously but reluctantly leaving some for the other diners.
This article appears in the April 2019 edition of OutSmart magazine.

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Dr. Howard Conyers is Reclaiming BBQ for Black Pitmasters

Nathan Thornburgh: A Tuesday afternoon deserves at least a few fingers of liquor. Cheers.
Dr. Howard Conyers: Cheers.
Thornburgh: Wow. Oh, that’s good.
Conyers: That’s great. Uncle Nearest. He knew a little something or two.
Thornburgh: You had said definitely that this is what we should drink on the podcast and I’m glad you did. Tell me what Uncle Nearest 1856 is about.
Conyers: So Jack Daniel, he learned how to make whiskey from a slave. And his name was Nearest Green. This particular story came out maybe about two years ago. So, they started making this particular whiskey to honor his contributions to the Jack Daniels distillery.
Thornburgh: So I think there was an African American woman named Fawn Weaver who had heard about the story (I only know this because you set me on this whole path of finding this bottle and thinking about it). But Fawn had heard the story about Uncle Nearest, which is I guess what they called Nearest Green, who was an emancipated slave who taught Jack Daniel’s, the Jack Daniels , how to make whiskey. I think Weaver went to Lynchburg, Tennessee—that happy town that they show in the commercials—and she looked for a sign or some sort of commemoration for this man who had been at the birth of Jack Daniel’s whiskey and she couldn’t find it. I’ve never met this woman, but I assume she’s the kind of woman who’s like, “Well, fuck it. I’m going to do it myself.”
Conyers: I really enjoy hearing that story. When I heard that story, I started thinking that there are more people out there than just Uncle Nearest. There were a lot of black men who were making whiskey in the American South. They were making corn liquor or moonshine.
Thornburgh: It really reminded of the revelation you had about kind of flipping through a guide of the best American pitmasters and seeing that it’s all white men, basically. I mean, no African Americans. It’s like: “African Americans made this in the first place. How are they not in the picture?”
Conyers: Yes, I was thinking that when I chose that particular drink.
Thornburgh: I think in any discipline, any science, any act that has come out of America, there’s always going to be someone written out of that story. It usually is African Americans.
Tell me about that moment where you saw that other people were getting acclaim and recognition for things that you can do.
Conyers: Nobody [who was getting acclaim] looked like the men I learned how to barbecue from. That was kind of the most disheartening thing because the story that was shared with us is that white people used to cross over to the black lines to get barbecue from some black men who made it. So, it looked like a total switch.
Thornburgh: This is in rural South Carolina , where you grew up?
Conyers: Yes.
Thornburgh: And your father was a welder, right?
Conyers: Yeah, my father was a welder.
Thornburgh: Much of this very muscular, intense barbecue that I’ve seen you do starts with an act of welding. You make these incredible contraptions that are put together from one piece of this and different parts of that to hold animals large enough to make you interested in barbecuing them.
Conyers: Yeah, it takes a lot of ingenuity and resourcefulness.
You could do your culture well, but you can also be an engineer. You can be a doctor. You can be a lawyer and still hold true to who you are as a person and the things that make you special.
Thornburgh: New Orleans is known for a whole lot of things and incredible food culture. Barbecuing is not…
Conyers: No, I tell people who come to New Orleans looking for barbecue: “Please don’t come. Please go to the other regions.” I know there are some great barbecue spots in the city of New Orleans, but please come to New Orleans for New Orleans cuisine. Go to Texas. Go to South Carolina. Go to North Carolina for their barbecue. Come to New Orleans for the gumbos, the etouffee, the jambalayas.
Thornburgh: Absolutely. How long have you been in New Orleans?
Conyers: I’ve been in New Orleans since 2011. I moved to New Orleans in February of 2011, Mardi Gras time.
Thornburgh: Was that why you moved at that time?
Conyers: No, I didn’t know. My realtor was kind of joking about me living close to the parade route. I was like I hope not. She was like, “No, you’re in the middle of it.” And then the year after I was like, “Oh yeah, I’m in the middle of it.”
Thornburgh: Do you leave town?
Conyers: I haven’t gotten to that point yet.
Thornburgh: Do you join in?
Conyers: I go to the parades. I really like seeing the Black Masking Indian culture. That’s probably my favorite thing about carnival season.
Thornburgh: Part of the reason you wanted to come and live here in New Orleans, even though you work in Mississippi, was that you saw the city had some need after Hurricane Katrina.
Conyers: I mean, that’s kind of cliche. I hate saying that, but I felt like, hopefully, through my life story, my life’s work, that young black males and young black people could see that there are opportunities. I want them to see that different careers are attainable.
I think my life story is pretty unique. You can have two different sides of your life or three different sides of your life. You don’t have to be one-dimensional. You could do your culture well, but you can also be an engineer. You can be a doctor. You can be a lawyer and still hold true to who you are as a person and the things that make you special.
Thornburgh: So obviously, you’re mechanically-inclined and you have a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering. You have other degrees as well.
Conyers: I have a degree in environmental engineering, which basically combines agriculture and engineering together, and I have a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering and aeroelasticity.
Thornburgh: Aeroelasticity. One of the things that make your show pretty delightful to watch is how you approach barbecue because of your background. So, when you walk up to a full line of, of pigs rotating slowly, you’re like, “Hey, what’s the gasket made of? What’s the ball bearing that is like creating the ability for this thing to rotate?” You geek out on that, where I would probably just be knocked unconscious by the amazing smell of the fat on the fire.
Conyers: I definitely want to see all the engineering behind it. I have a great appreciation for it.
Thornburgh: Tell me about the Nourish episode that featured a whole cow. That’s one of the episodes I remembered best. It’s pretty audacious.
Conyers: Have you seen many people cook a whole cow?
Thornburgh: I’ve never seen it in person. I’ve seen a lot of animals at their end, but not that.
Conyers: So, the cow is actually kind of like Uncle Nearest. I wanted to show African American contributions to barbecue. And in a lot of historical literature that I read, they talk about an African Americans cooking whole cows.
Cooking a whole cow was the only thing I didn’t know anything about. My father had never heard of anybody barbecuing a whole cow.
Thornburgh: So, it’s just been lost kind of in the culture.
Conyers: It’s been lost in the culture.
Thornburgh: So you work at the Stennis Space Center . What exactly do you do there?
Conyers: Currently, I work on facility design. Basically, I work on like designs to like make sure valves and different components are in place to make sure we can safely test the engine. But sometimes it can be something as simple as a stair rail that you might need to replace or you might want to have a fuel cell backup and he may be involved with that are building another building, like a storage shed.
Thornburgh: You’re saying engineering and barbecuing are not very similar, but I just can’t help but think that there’s some heavy overlap because you’re talking about having ideas of how to work things together.
Conyers: I guess one thing engineering and cooking a whole cow have in common is you have to learn how to distribute your lows, and understand how to handle lows and handle loads or forces. Every material not going to handle it the same way. You have to know what materials can handle certain temperatures, certain weights.
Thornburgh: Right. You’ve got to account for the physics involved, as well. Does your background help you create a different barbecue experience than what other people can do?
Southern food is built upon African American foods and indigenous foods. You can’t omit those two communities when we talk about southern foodways.
Conyers: I see things a lot differently. I had the opportunity to cook in Denver, Colorado, I had to think about the fact that I wasn’t in the south anymore.
Thornburgh: That is true. Your highest mountains in the south are not going to be high enough to affect your pasta cook time.
Conyers: Exactly. So, I had to think about how you cook barbecue in Denver, Colorado, where’s the altitude difference. I don’t know how many people would take that into consideration.
Thornburgh: You are super accomplished in your field. Is barbecuing a release from that?
Conyers: It started out being a release and therapeutic, for the first four or five years after I moved to New Orleans.
Thornburgh: Now, you’ve got pressure because everybody wants to know what Dr. Conyers is barbecuing because of the show.
Conyers: It’s been something I really enjoy. Hosting and co-producing the show has been a really awesome experience.
Thornburgh: People should definitely check it out. There’s this element of education, which as we were saying right at the top, is strangely necessary. People need to be educated on the African American quality of barbecue in this country.
Conyers: Southern food is built upon African American foods and indigenous foods. You can’t omit those two communities when we talk about southern foodways.
Thornburgh: Another guest on the show, Pepper Bowen, pointed out that African Americans own maybe 1% or 2% of the farmable land in this country. Being public and out in front about that information seems like it’s only going to be more and more important.
Conyers: Anthony Bourdain said something that really resonated with me when he was in Kenya . He said something to the effect of “I appreciate people that allow me to tell their stories, but people need to tell their own stories.” When I heard him say that, I said to myself, “I need to take this thing a little more seriously.” I mean, I already took it seriously, but I need to really dive deep into that.
Thornburgh: Right. You have the opportunity to be that person. What is next for you in terms of cooking and what, what you think you might be able to do with that?
Conyers: I need to sit down and focus and write this book.
Thornburgh: You have a book project that you’re working on?
Conyers: There’s a ton of barbecue books out there, but not a lot of African American books barbecue. Adrian Miller is writing a book on barbecue.
I think we need an African American voice who actually grew up in this tradition, and being in the community where my father learned how to cook in the ground and people before him cooked in the ground. There’s a different set of knowledge that comes down with the barbecue tradition that’s not in the books. It’s all passed orally, and I want to make a documentary on barbecue. I want to give people a comprehensive story.
Episode 34 Show Notes:
Check out Dr. Conyers’ PBS show Nourish .
Stay tuned for updates on lawyer and food historian Adrian Mille r’s upcoming book on barbecue called Black Smoke.

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Leicester Indian burrito eatery Wrapchic has closed for good after a year in the city

Wrapchic in Leicester has closed Get the biggest Daily stories by email Subscribe Thank you for subscribing We have more newsletters Show me See our privacy notice Could not subscribe, try again later Invalid Email
The Leicester branch of Indian burrito company Wrapchic has closed after just over a year in the city.
The eatery, in Gallowtree Gate, launched at the end of February 2018 , and served Indian-style street food, with breakfast offerings including filled paratha and wraplettes, and a main menu featuring burritos, bowls and wraps.
Wrapchic – which was previously open seven days a week – is now closed, and all the shop fittings and tables inside have been removed.
A ‘To Let’ sign has also been placed in the window.
However, a member of the Wrapchic team has told LeicestershireLive that “the outlet is being relocated.”
So, it won’t be the last we see of Wrapchic in Leicester. Inside Wrapchic in Gallowtree Gate
The Gallowtree Gate branch featured colourful seating, tables made from oil drums, and photos of India on the wall. Plus, there was a ‘Great Wall of Wrapchic’ where customers were encouraged to leave feedback. Read More
It was officially opened last year by the company’s founder, Mahesh Raikar.
He launched Wrapchic in 2012, with the aim of making Indian cuisine available to a bustling lunchtime market. Fillings at Wrapchic
Wrapchic is fast Indian food, but it is cooked and prepared by Indian chefs in a healthier way – something which the company says makes it very popular with customers. Read More

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10 Best Foodie Destinations In Africa

Home / Africa / 10 Best Foodie Destinations In Africa 10 Best Foodie Destinations In Africa
Kenya
Photo credit: Xiaojun Deng; Flickr
Intrepid marathon runners and exhilarating safari adventures are not the only things Kenya is famous for. The country offers a variety of yummy dishes too, and one of them is nyama choma, Kiswahili for roasted meat. No spices here – the meat is only seasoned with salt and slow-grilled over hot coals until it’s tender and ready to please your palate. While everything from chicken to beef makes for good nyama choma, the favourite is always goat meat, both for its distinct taste and chewiness. Nyama choma is always good companions with a relish of thinly sliced raw tomatoes and onion, and goes down well with a cold local Tusker beer.
You can also pair nyama choma with irio, a highly nutritious dish made from mashed potatoes, green peas, corn, and pumpkin leaves. Ghana
Photo credit: Carol Gelles; wheatfreedairyfreekitchen.com
If you want to experience the best tastes of Ghana in one plate (read skewers), ditch the five-star hotel and try the street food. Chichinga, probably the most popular street food in Ghana, is a kebab similar to the Nigerian suya. Made from beef, chicken or sausage with a peanut-spice rub or ground spices, the chichinga is a true embodiment of Ghanaian taste.
If you fancy something more solid and filling, then banku is your best bet. It is cooked by placing a mixture of fermented corn and cassava dough in hot water until it turns into a smooth, soft paste. Banku is best served with fried fish, beef or chicken stew, or soup. Angola
While the Angolan cuisine contains extensive Portuguese influences, you will find a delectable assortment of dishes that are distinctly African . The most common ingredients in Angolan cuisine include cassava, peanut, maize, and chilli. Chicken and seafood are also widely eaten.
The Angolan chicken stew, known as chicken muamba, is one of the jewels of the country ’s cuisine and a definite must-try. This is a spicy stew made with with palm oil or palm butter, garlic, okra, and chilli pepper.
Kizaca – which is simply cassava leaves stewed in peanut butter – is also worth trying. If you like creamed spinach, you’ll definitely appreciate this veggie side dish. Have it with chicken breast and rice, and your taste buds will sing your praises.
Mozambique
With its white-sand and gleaming blue-water beaches , Mozambique is not only a paradise for beach lovers and fishing enthusiasts, but for foodies too. The cuisine is a tasty combination of African , Portuguese, and oriental flavours that will take your senses on an unforgettable journey.
Visitors to the tropical country usually revel in the cherished taste of the juicy, succulent prawns mainly found in Maputo, but there’s a lot more variety on offer that will blow you away. Case in point, the classic Mozambican dish, piri-piri chicken . The much-touted dish consists of chicken marinated in lemon juice, garlic, coconut milk, and spicy piri-piri sauce. It’s usually accompanied with French fries or matapa, a dish of cassava leaves prepared in peanut sauce and coconut milk. Zambia
Photo credit: Francis Wong; [email protected]
Zambia’s cuisine is packed with carbs, and the country ’s staple food is maize, mainly served in the form of nshima, a meal made from finely ground maize and has the appearance of thickened porridge. This wonderfully filling dish is usually served with two side dishes known as relishes, and they can be anything from beef to chicken stew to fish and beans; and a vegetable such as pumpkin leaves, okra, or cabbage.
Nshima is widely eaten in other parts of Southern Africa where it has different local names. In Zimbabwe, this hearty dish is known as sadza, while in South Africa it’s called pap.
Another Zambian dish that would impress any foodie is the chikanda, also known as the African polony. Contrary to what the name suggests, the African polony has not a grain of polony or meat in it – it’s actually a vegetable. It’s made from tubers of orchids, a wild vegetable that grows prominently in the northern part of Zambia. This delicious meal can be enjoyed as a snack or dessert. Egypt
Photo credit: Waleed Alzuhair; Flickr
Egypt’s famous ancient monuments and rich history are undoubtedly the top attractions for tourists, but the food is also always a highlight for any traveller. Egyptian cuisine is influenced by the different cultures and civilisations that the country is renowned for.
Considered the Egyptian national dish, koshari is one of those tasty meals you can’t afford to miss when you’re in the North African kingdom. Both a home and street food, this nutritious and savoury vegetarian dish consists of rice, lentils, and macaroni, topped with crispy onions and spicy tomato sauce.
Another Egyptian favourite is ful medames, a wholesome stew of lava beans simmered with olive oil, lemon juice, cumin, and garlic. This breakfast dish reportedly dates back to the time of the Pharaohs. Nigeria
Planning a trip to Africa ’s most populous country ? Do yourself a favour and try some of Nigeria’s most famous dishes. The country boasts a delicious array of traditional foods – a combination of meat, maize, vegetables, and spices. You’d be doing yourself a disservice to not try dishes such as jollof rice and egusi soup. The former’s basic ingredients are rice, tomatoes, onion, and pepper. You can customise it according to your own liking and even add your choice of meat. The latter is prepared using melon se, palm oil, vegetables, dried fish, and stewed meat. Egusi soup is best enjoyed with pounded yam and garri, a popular West African food made from cassava tubers. Ethiopia
Africa ’s oldest independent country offers the best of both worlds: an ancient cultural heritage and a unique, delicious cuisine consisting of vegetables, spicy meat, and varieties of bread. The best known Ethiopian food is probably injera, the spongy sourdough flatbread normally eaten with meat, lentils, beans, and vegetable sauces.
Tibs is also another dish you’ll find on most menus across Ethiopia. This beloved meat dish is made from beef cut into small pieces and sautéed in butter or oil with onions, garlic, hot pepper and rosemary.
If you appreciate good coffee, then Ethiopia is the best place to visit. The country is a coffee hub and grows hundr of types every year. Zanzibar
Photo credit: Mark Wiens; Migrationology.com
Hailed as the Spice Island, Zanzibar is bursting with history, culture, and of course some of the best dishes in the world. You’ll be spoilt for choice with a wide selection of delightful foods to choose from. If you really want to awaken your taste buds, you can never go wrong with urojo soup, a rich mashup of tangy chicken , chopped potato, kachori, thinly sliced onion, fried cassava chips, and a boiled egg. It also contains a luscious blend of mango and ginger.
Zanzibar also offers must-try biryanis, ranging from vegetable to meat, and seafood. South Africa
Photo credit: Chelsea Miller; Courtesy of Foodal.com
South Africa offers a vibrant cuisine influenced by the indigenous population as well as the Dutch, Indians, and French. If you’re ever in South Africa , don’t leave without trying local foods such as biltong, a cured and dried meat normally enjoyed as a snack. The meat is cured in a blend of salt, vinegar, sugar, and spices before being hung to dry. Dry curing was a method of preserving meat in Southern Africa long before the advent of fridges.
Another South African favourite is the Cape Malay curry, which is known for combining sweet and pungent flavours, using sweet spices like cinnamon and ginger, dried fruit. This beef stew is usually served with rice and is also great over mashed potatoes.

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Del Monte launches easy-to-use, economical spout packs of its favourite mayonnaise spreads!

Delhi New Delhi, April 9, 2019: Del Monte, the premium food brand, has launched convenient and economical spout packs of its much-loved range of mayonnaise spreads, which will now make it even more convenient, delightful and affordable to add taste to a wide range of food and snacks.
With changing lifestyles and an urbanized way of living, Indians are adopting more innovative and novel food options in their diet. Consumers are looking for ready dressings to prepare restaurant quality food at home. Keeping the consumer preference and satisfaction as a primary aim, Del Monte’s much liked tasty and creamy – Eggless Mayo, Tandoori Mayo and Sandwich Spread – will now be available in smart spout packs of 80gms in the price range of Rs 30-35. To help consumers make delicious cuisines at home, these smart packs come with instructions on its usages, printed on their packaging.
The introduction of new smart and convenient packs is yet another offering from Del Monte, which always has kept family’s health and convenience as uppermost on its priority and due to which it has emerged as a top and favourite food brand in a wide range of categories.
“We have always given highest priority to consumer product quality and convenience while making new products. Del Monte has introduced small packings of its much-loved range of mayos to enable a wider set of families to buy its range.” said Mr. Yogesh Bellani, CEO, Del Monte.
So, it’s time to head straight to your nearest store and get hold of your favourite Del Monte’s mayos for adding a healthy taste to your food and snacks in a healthy way!

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