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The Crumb for February 17th, 2017

Lori Bailey / February 17th 2017

And the Semifinalists are...

The James Beard Award season barrels on with the announcement of this year's semifinalists. It's a long one, so pour yourself a drink and sift through the results for the restaurants, chefs, and other nominees you'll be rooting for. The finalists will be announced on March 15th, with the awards ceremony scheduled for May 1st.

A Day Without Immigrants

On Thursday, across the nation, a number of restaurants and other food establishments either closed their doors or offered limited service to stand in solidarity with immigrant employees on every level -- from line cooks to lead chefs, dishwashers to owners. This marks another widespread protest of President Trump's controversial anti-immigration policies. The food industry has been scrutinized in recent years for its lack of diversity in the upper echelons, but yesterday's protest recognizes the fundamental importance of the immigrant population to the operations, expertise, and creativity of the entire sector - a foundation that, if removed, would cripple America's culture and economy.

...But what we really need are better milkshake straws.

Thanks, McDonalds, for looking out for our deepest, truest needs. This limited-edition straw, or "STRAW" (Suction Tube for Reverse Axial Withdrawal) are the result of numerous whiteboard drawings, prototypes, 3D models, and tests. Heck, just coming up with the acronym had to have taken serious brainpower. All so customers can better enjoy the double-layered Shamrock Shake, a mint chocolate Mc-Concoction. (Honestly, though, if you get your mitts on one of the 2,000 hitting select stores over the next few weeks, let us know what you think. We can't help being insanely curious.)

What Instagram tells us we did on Valentine's:

1) Ate a lot of cookies. A looooot of cookies.

2) Chocolate, because duh.

3) Heart shaped pizza oozed all over the internet like so much gooey mozzarella.

4) People found other things they could turn into hearts. C'mon you guys, watermelon isn't even in season.

5) Maybe not chocolate, cake or sweets (too basic?), but still some other form of carb. Hellooo, pasta.

6) Fancy(ish) meals at home. Less pressure, no reservation struggles, and permission to drink the entire bottle of wine (or two) because no one's driving. High five.

Featuring posts from @jonjon33@food52, @ashrod, @mollyyeh, @iamafoodblog, @heartbeetkitchen, @firstwefeast, @feedfeed, @lifeandthyme, and @localhaven.

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