This week, we felt the dynamic push and pull of innovation and tradition in all corners of the world of food and drink, from the growing craft beer scene in the Middle East to an independent soda shop holding strong in Los Angeles.
Nostalgia mixed with intrigue over tales of NYC's ice cream truck wars and NJ's hotly debated Taylor Ham, and through it all, we felt refreshed, knowing that there are always interesting stories to uncover, be they historical deep dives or investigations into rising trends.
Here are eight great reads to check out this weekend if you haven't already.
The Awl examines why The Great British Bake Off just won't take off in the U.S. like it has in the UK. The short story? Americans value competition and celebrity over hobbies and the "deep pleasure of craft."
GOOD points out an important message that the U.S. could learn from China, surrounding a recent set of dietary guidelines.
Another surprising tale comes from the New York Times exposé of NYC's ice cream trucks and the turf wars that rule them.
And over in New Jersey, new breakfast site Extra Crispy makes a strong case for Taylor Ham, the state's "beloved mystery meat."
On the other side of the country, the Times tells the inspiring tale of a soda speciality shop that held on against all odds.
Roads and Kingdoms shares a unique peek inside the budding world of craft beer in the Middle East.
In another kind of "craft" expression, this Melbourne-based coffee shop really ruffled people's feathers with its deconstructed latte. Business Insider's got the scoop on all the people flipping out over this next-level coffee snobbery.
Finally, Grub Street gets an interview with the "fearless" 25-year-old chef leading NYC's current hottest restaurant, Mimi, the tiny French bistro that's just gotten a ton of great praise, including three stars from Adam Platt. If you already wanted to eat there, get ready to feel even more inspired.
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