5 Food And Drink Trends That Are Perfect For Jackasses
The phrase "too much of a good thing" applies to all facets of life, even science. Especially culinary science. No doubt it's saved countless lives, be it through improved sanitation practices or increased food crop yields to feed the needy. On the flip side, it's generated a number of ridiculous foodie trends for no other discernible reason than to make us all look like jackasses. To regain our dignity, I suggest reverting to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle, as all essential nutrients can be supplied by foraging for berries and lichen. I mean, it can't be any worse than using things like ...
One can argue that culinary science is lagging far behind the other disciplines. Yes, over the past 200 years we've stopped adding lead chromate and other deliciously poisonous metallic derivatives to mustard, but compare that to other fields. In about 60 years, NASA went from launching weather balloons with varying levels of success to landing a spacecraft on one of Saturn's moons, whereas food technicians still can't devise a sugar-free Jell-O that doesn't taste like diabetic bedsores.
For the past few decades, scientists have sought to create calorie-free foods -- possibly forgetting that calorie and food are synonyms. Alas, a calorie-free food cannot exist, but molecular gastronomists have invented the next closest thing:
Delicious ominous mist.
That machine above is known as Le Whaf, birthed jointly from the loins of food scientist David Edwards and culinary designer Marc Bretillot at the Parisian experimental science-art firm Le Laboratoire. That was probably the most pretentious sentence you'll ever read.
The meal-to-be is first boiled, then strained and poured into the ultrasonic Le Whaf device, which excites food particles by ultrasound vibrations, producing a cloud:
Essentially a synthetic fart.
Le Whaf was inspired by the raving success of Le Whif, a food particle dispenser that debuted to uniformly poor reviews, and was discontinued forever with the unused stock sent to Moldova along with the latest shipment of Chicago Bulls 1997 Championship T-shirts.
Though to be fair, it only failed because it was awful. Like an asthma inhaler for obesity, its makers promised a smooth, almost-calorie-free hit of chocolate with each puff. According to the overwhelmingly disgruntled reviews, all it did was weakly ejaculate a small load of irritating chocolate powder that made people cough.
You can be secretly sucking chocolate dust while everyone thinks you're trying to kill yourself by smoking a bullet casing.
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Caviar wasn't always the snob food it is today. Its ascent to the peak of food snobbery began as a Pursuit Of Happyness-like rags-to-riches story that began in the late 19th-century when sturgeon was so plentiful that American bars offered it as a complimentary drinking snack, to entice patrons to buy more beer in the pre-Lays potato chips world.
Then, like a beautiful Disney story, the American populace learned that inebriation is its own reward. And caviar, now one of the world's most expensive offal, no longer spends its nights turning tricks in bars, instead co-mingling with the moneyed elite in opulent penthouses and clandestine sex mansions.
It's just eggs squeezed out of a fish's pussy onto a cracker. Bon appetite, you freak.
But what of us poor souls who desire to emulate the pointless extravagances of the unscrupulous rich on a scrupulous poor man's budget?
Thanks to the Imperial Spherificator and competing products, you can make your own. Based on the real scientific process of spherification, whereby liquids are turned into tiny gelatinous spheres with a thickening agent, spherificators can transform almost any food item into ghetto caviar:
From left to right: Spherized pond scum, unicorn blood, urine, and clown pubes.
These little spheres can instantly jazz up any meal, like the classic Tabasco oyster, only all pretentious:
Turn the liquid into balls that turn back to liquid when you bite into them. Hooray science.
Alternatively, add an appetizing film of algae to your favorite beverages:
You can even use it to kick desserts up a notch, theoretically, though for me there's something very unsettling about what appears to be sushi-grade tobiko piled on top of a slice of Safeway cheesecake:
You'd think they would have splurged for Cheesecake Factory for the photo shoot instead of filling a cardboard box with Elmer's Glue.
Stoners say the stupidest things. But every so often, either by sheer luck or maybe interdimensional inspiration, they'll utter something so profound that it preempts scientific knowledge. We all laughed at my friend, let's call him Charlie, when one night he asserted that the music tasted good. But scientists have since discovered that humans really can taste music and now Charlie's the one laughing at us, because revenge is a dish best served stoned.
A study led by Oxford experimental psychologist Dr. Charles Spence found that various pitches correspond with basic tastes, and that the right tune can enhance flavor perception, making sweets sweeter and potato chips crunchier.
More recently, Spence and sound designer Felipe Carvalho commissioned a troupe of musicians to compose The Sound Of Chocolate; quite literally chocolate-eating music to inspire you when you can't find the motivation to be a candy bar-guzzling piece of shit.
Sure, sonic seasoning offers some practical everyday applications, like enhancing the creaminess of your nightly pre-bedtime Snickers bar, or reviving a stale bag of chips, or even helping you cook the perfect cut of meat.
But we all have at least one obnoxious acquaintance who shows up to dinner outings just to wrangle a free sandwich and spend the entire time on their smartphone, while everyone at the table just wishes they were dead. Now imagine how much more annoying these people will be when they're head bobbing throughout the whole meal with an oversized pair of Beats on.
Why drink your alcohol like a primitive savage when you can inhale it like some kind of futuristic genius? The Vaportini, available online and at pompous millennial eateries, vaporizes your favorite spirits so you can ingest them sans calories:
It's apparently very popular, because I once accidentally walked in on two homeless men and a woman using a similar device in a Chevron restroom.
The ultimate frat boy destroyer, inhaled alcohol is supposedly more potent because it directly enters the bloodstream, skipping the stomach and all the Taco Bell therein as well as the liver, where it loses a few percentage points to metabolization.
Teenaged partygoers love it, for some reason, even though it's much easier to just drink the damn alcohol. Hell, in my day we were happy with a nine-dollar plastic handle of Popov and a chill-ass parking lot to chug it in. And even at the most broke-ass parties, I've never seen anything as depraved as using a bike pump to huff alcohol, something going on in well-to-do suburban households.
Coincidentally, vaporized liquor was trending hard in Europe a few years ago when I visited my ancestral apartment building in the beautiful Romanian city of Timisoara. Sure, I felt like a total dickbag huffing vapors from a straw as people high-fived all about me, but with family and associates of family buying round after round I sure as hell wasn't going to let my country down.
I'm not a big drinker, and after about eight or nine "shots" of vapor over an incommensurately short span, I realized I'm probably going down soon. So I engaged the pre-blackout protocol, handing off my valuables to a sober cousin and writing my address on my wrist for any farmers or policemen that might fish me from a ditch the following morning.
And then nothing happened. I felt buzzed but nowhere near drunk. Disappointing, but since I maintained consciousness throughout the night I chalked it up as a win.
As it turns out, the effects are weak and oral administration is still the preferred method if you're trying to get turnt up. But seriously, it's just good to see that kids aren't sticking vodka in their ass anymore.
Cocoa Powder Bumps
As the last entry showed us, a substance becomes a drug when you need paraphernalia to consume it. And so I present to you the worst thing Belgium has ever done, other than, you know, all the colonial slavery:
That's the chocolate shooter, a modified 19th-century snuff machine that catapults cocoa powder directly into the underside of your brain.
Or you can snort a line of Nesquick.
Invented as a tongue-in-cheek birthday gift for the Rolling Stones, the chocolate shooter is Belgian chocolatier Dominique Persoone's Frankenstein's monster, an unholy fabrication to prove God's inexistence.
Or, at the very least, apathy.
Then, for some reason, the general public expressed interest in Persoone's device, so he commercially produced it and has so far sold over 25,000 units, according to himself. Presumably to people who'd like to experience catastrophic sinus collapse without the shame of a cocaine addiction.
It's still pretty shameful, though.
Persoone claims that snorting his cocoa, which contains ginger powder and luxurious spices to accentuate the rich, chocolaty notes, yields a natural high -- most likely the mild euphoria associated with brain cell death.
When asked if the practice of snorting cocoa powder was safe, doctors laughed and high-fived and a few of them dabbed.
The proliferation of beer pong and craft beer may have you think that we're living in one of the peak times to get drunk, but humans have been getting famously hammered for millennia. Like a frat house's lawn after a kegger, history is littered with world changing events that were secretly powered by booze. The inaugural games of the Roman Coliseum, the drafting of the US Constitution and the Russian Revolution were all capped off by major parties that most attendees probably regretted in the morning.
Join Jack O'Brien and Cracked staffers Carmen Angelica, Alex Schmidt, Michael Swaim, plus comedian Blake Wexler for a retelling of history's biggest moments you didn't realize everyone was drunk for.
Get your tickets here:
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