Tuesday Nine: Starbucks' War on Xmas Grinds On, Joe's Crab Shack Ditches Tips

Plus the Bay Area is about to get a lot more açaí, Moshi Moshi Cocktail and Sushi Bar will temporarily close to become condos, and why the Irish love milk chocolate so much.

[jump] Starbucks' War on Christmas Intensifies
I just can't get enough of the War on Christmas. Maybe it's just cause I went to the same all-boys Catholic high school as Bill O'Reilly, but it's just the greatest. Think Progress will get you up to speed.

Mezcal Dinner at Calavera Tomorrow
Oakland's Oaxacan Calavera will host an $80, five-course meal paired with mezcal brand Real Minero, newly available in the United States via an amazingly named importer called Heavy Métl. Fourth-generation mezcal maker Graciela Angeles Carreña will be there to talk about Real Minero. 
Thursday, Nov. 12, 6:30 p.m., 2337 Broadway, Oakland, 510-338-3273.

I Got Crabs at Joe's and Didn't Leave Any Money
Eater National reports that Joe's Crab Shack is the first major national chain to abandon tipping. Servers at the restaurant, which has about 150 locations nationwide, will get $14/hour to start. Diners will still get Ragin' Cajuns and Arctic Bay Steampots.

Moshi Moshi Set to Become Condos
Lucky 13 is the most prominent bar destined to go condo, but Socketsite reports that Moshi Moshi Cocktail and Sushi Bar (on Third and 18th streets) is also doomed to become a generic rendering. There's good news, however: The new building will include space for a Moshi Moshi 2.0, complete with takeout area.

So Much Açaí
Four-year-old Vitality Bowls, with 18 locations and another 39 franchises (13 of which are in the Bay Area), is set to have 100 locations by the end of next year, according to the Business Times. With McDonald's set to close more stores in the U.S. than it opens for the first time since 1970, that's a big shift in the açaí bowls versus Big Mac ratio. And here I thought that trend had peaked in 2010.

Carnegie Deli Looks Really Dead
When the Carnegie Deli closed earlier this year, there were big, loud promises that the New York institution would reopen. According to Eater National, that's looking a lot less likely. Fortunately fans of delicatessen have a newly revived Russ & Daughters, only blocks from Katz's, but not since Letterman stopped frequenting the Hello Deli has Midtown taken such punch to the jaw.

Milk Chocolate is Very Big in Ireland
Don't you hate milk chocolate? Sure, we all do. Except the Irish, who love it the way San Franciscans love that 72 percent cacao. Part of the reason is that Irish dairy cows feed on nutritious green grass all year long, resulting in creamier milk (as The New York Times would have us believe, anyway).

Why We Can't Quit Neonicotinoids
If you've heard about what's killing all the bees and wondered “Why can't farmers just stop using certain pesticides?”, Civil Eats has the answer.

Wine Diplomacy
According to Quartz, the mere act of having wine bottles on the table — which renders a perfectly halal meal haraam — caused a diplomatic row between France and Iran.

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