Hot Art, the Illusion of Choice and Whiskey Boom Tremors

by in News, June 5th, 2014

Hot Art at LA's Chinese American MuseumArt Meets Hot: You could call it the hottest art exhibit in Los Angeles. LA’s Chinese American Museum is currently showing, through July 12, new works by 30 diverse artists inspired by locally produced hot sauces Sriracha and Tapatio. Some of the artwork even incorporates the sauces as a medium. The now-iconic sauces have risen “to rival Heinz Ketchup and French’s mustard as the all-American condiment for the Y-Generation,” the museum contends, adding that they “have become interwoven into the American cultural fabric.” Curator Steven Wong told NPR that, while “a hot sauce show could be superficially kind of pop-y,” he believes it is “very complex if you peel away the layers.” [Chinese American Museum via NPR]

Whiskey A-Going-Going … Gone? Thanks to a global explosion in bourbon and whiskey consumption, with exports more than doubling in the past decade and sales up more than 10 percent in just the past year, we could be looking at a whiskey shortage. American distilleries are struggling to keep up with the rising demand, but sales are outpacing increased production by about two to one, The Tennessean reports. “It’s not like you can ramp up production today and have that whiskey on the market tomorrow,” Clayton Cutler, chief distiller at the TennSouth Distillery in Lynnville, Tenn., tells the paper. “There’s an aging process that requires a wait of at least a couple of years before you can start selling it. Some takes four years or more.” Better down that sour before it’s too late! [The Tennessean]

Boiling Down the Brands: The product choices we have at the grocery store may feel vast, but it turns out the perceived plethora of options is somewhat illusory. Finances Online has taken the findings from a 2013 study about the market share of 100 common grocery items, conducted by consumer rights group Food and Water Watch, and turned it into a vivid infographic. The takeaway? Even though we feel like we’re buying products from a gazillion different brands at the supermarket, most of those brands are actually owned by only a handful of giant conglomerates. That fact alone might not be completely shocking, but seeing it all laid out in big, bold colors is, well, bracing. Have a look. [Finances Online]

In Other Food News: Nestlé and the Girl Scouts are teaming up to reintroduce a limited-edition run of Nestlé Crunch Girl Scout Candy bars, available in three varieties (Thin Mints, Caramel & Coconut and Peanut Butter Creme), starting this month and while supplies last. [CSPnet.com] It may never have occurred to you to wonder what would happen if you boiled all the water out of a can of cola, but it occurred to this YouTube experimenter who calls himself CrazyRussianHacker. And now you have the answer. [CrazyRussianHacker/YouTube] And if you’re in an experimental mood yourself, try turning your leftover fruits and vegetables into new sources of produce. So cool. [Mashable]

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