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The Crumb for March 17th, 2017

Lori Bailey / March 17th 2017

Happy St. Patrick's Day! As the old, traditional Irish blessing goes: May your plate be loaded with corned beef and cabbage, and your glass flow with green beer. (Or something like that.)

It's Friday! Pour yourself a non-despicable pint, and settle into this past week's food news.

Drum roll, please...
This year's James Beard Award finalists have been announced. As one might expect, cities like New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Chicago are reppin' hard. What's more interesting is the growing number of restaurants and chefs from budding foodie meccas like New Orleans and Philadelphia. Read the full list, complete with Media Awards for outstanding books, broadcasts, and journalism.

Everything spice is everything nice
Whoever said "less is more" apparently didn't know about everything bagels. The spice blend (typically a combo of poppy seeds, sesame seeds, dried garlic and/or onion, salt) has been an institution in many a bagel shop since its disputable origins in the 70's or 80's. Recently, though, the blend has been branching out; it's popping up on all sorts of baked goods, from croissants to doughnuts. It's even been known to moonlight in Bloody Marys. The ol' bagel must be jealous.

Snack like the cool kids
Research has shown that Millennials are leading the snack pack, driving a growing snacking trend with big opportunities for consumer packaged goods. What's particularly interesting, though, is how much the demographic has influenced other generations' choices. Companies are looking to leverage Millennials' values of social connectivity, brand storytelling, and innovation to win across a range of audiences. It's a shift from the typical "target audience" approach; this new tactic identifies a cultural driver and targets that instead. So when Grandma starts ordering superfood bars on Amazon, you'll have these new biz strategies to thank.

It pays to play
Baseball (you know, the "all-American" sport) is really, reeaally popular in Japan. What to do with that kind of popularity? This particular baller, Manny Ramirez, has the right idea: write "unlimited sushi" into your contract. Seems like he's got his priorities in the right place... next to the private chauffeured Mercedes and ultra-fancy hotel room. Naturally.

That's no moon...
This recently released photo from NASA shows Pan, one of the moons of Saturn, which made a bit of a splash with foodies due to its interesting shape. Some said it looked like a ravioli; others voted walnut. All we know is, we haven't had such a strong contender for cosmic chow since the old "Moon is made of cheese" premise. Also, though Pan may be named after the flute-playing god of Greek mythology, pan could also refer to bread. Coincidence? Probably, but we'll take it.

Saddest of days. 
The world of food journalism took a heavy hit this week.

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