Wednesday Five: Richie Nakano on the Xmas Season, Crystal Pepsi Returns

Plus, a new brewery for Bernal Heights, a report on mixology in Iceland, and The Bear-Naked Chef

[jump] Richie Nakano on Cooking in Restaurants Over the Holidays
“December is an extra-brutal slog, a month-long build up to the New Year’s Eve grand finale, and the whole thing is bad and wrong.” So writes S.F. chef Richie Nakano (formerly of Hapa Ramen, until it all went wrong). His highly entertaining screed against Xmas in the kitchen, in First We Feast, is worth a read. The season is extra-busy, chefs are prone to ill-considered extravagances, and “it is inevitable that the people who come in to spend all this money and celebrate and wear awful sweaters are going to send food back.”

Bernal Gets a Brewery
According to Inside Scoop, Barebottle Brewery, a 16,000-foot facility, should open on the eastern flank of Bernal Heights sometime in February or March. A project from a team of devoted homebrewers, Barebottle will solicit recipes from amateurs and showcase the best of them in its taproom.

Mixology in Iceland
The New York Times has a great look at the rise of cocktail culture in Iceland. The treeless, subarctic island has to make the most of what it's got, such as “terroir with unusual native flavors like Icelandic moss, sweet kelp and even dried sheep dung used to smoke barley.” Distilleries came late to Iceland, where prohibition effectively lasted until 1935 and only the Nordic equivalent of low-alcohol Oklahoma beer could be sold until 1989.

Crystal Pepsi Is Back
According to Food and Wine, Pepsi will be be giving away 13,000 six-packs of Crystal Pepsi (which it hasn't produced since 1993), but you have to download an app called Pepsi Pass to do it. It'll taste just like a Van Halen album from 1992, only grosser.

NSFW: The Bear-Naked Chef

This is pretty ridiculous, but there is a new cooking show called The Bear-Naked Chef. In episode 1, muscly, tattooed Chef Adrian De Berardinis makes chicken cacciatore while wearing only an apron, so his buns are exposed whenever he turns to face the stove. 

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