Santas drink for charity, Carolyn Parrish vs. Hazel McCallion, Slow Food movement turns 20

Santas drink for charity, Carolyn Parrish vs. Hazel McCallion, Slow Food movement turns 20

• Various drunken Santas will be stumbling around New York, Vienna and several other cities for this weekend’s SantaCon, “a not-for-profit, non-political, non-religious and non-logical Santa Claus convention, attended for absolutely no reason.”  Starting at 10 a.m., groups of Jolly Olds Elves will hit the streets on a daylong pub-crawl governed by the following rules: Don a Santa suit, have rosy cheeks and a white beard, don’t get arrested, and don’t forget Santa’s signature generosity—each participant has to donate one or two food items to a food bank. Last year, New York’s St. Nicks collected 1000 pounds of food. [NBC]

• Mississauga city councilor Carolyn Parrish, infamous for her “I hate the bastards” anti-American sentiments when she was an MP, has now re-directed her trademark rage to a foe closer to home, Hazel McCallion. Parrish, after dining at Port Credit’s Aielli restaurant, spotted a poster supporting Mississauga’s long-serving mayor decided tear it off the restaurant’s door, rip it up, and then stamped on it with “a smirk and laughter.” Although Parrish later apologized to chef Louis Macerola, noting that the “evil Carolyn surfaced for 30 seconds,” we wonder if this was just a sad attempt to reprise her fractional second of famed that peaked with her stomping a George Bush doll on This Hour Has 22 Minutes. [Toronto Star]

• According to the Wall Street Journal, “a tapas-style menu, a hotel location and a major focus on the bar scene” will be the hallmarks of fine dining in the not-too-distant future. With high-end restaurants closing by the dozen in cities across North America, restaurateurs who offer small doses of luxury like canapés and cocktails will be more competitive than those looking to survive by selling full-blown meals. The canapés surprise no one, but we’re shocked to hear that hotel restaurants will reign supreme. The Journal suggests that since hoteliers are some of only investors left with any cash to spend, star chefs and their ilk will be flocking back to the Hiltons and Four Seasons of the world. [Wall Street Journal]

• This past Thursday marks the 20th anniversary of the Slow Food Manifesto, which was ratified in Paris and has since been a call to arms for hundreds of thousands of gourmands to rally “against the universal madness of the fast life.”  Inspired into the being by the opening of a McDonalds at Rome’s Piazza di Spagna, Slow Food organizations are now in 150 countries. Canada alone has 5,000 offical ahearants. [Canadian Press]

• Since a 2000 referendum made it legal for licensed pot sellers to provide medical marijuana in Colarado, bud-friendly businesses have been springing up in Denver. Now, Gourmet Ganja has opened to offer diners “a slice of the high life,” baking mary jane into dishes like jambalaya, paella and chocolate mousse.  Co-owner of America’s first pot café, Steve Horowitz, hopes to serve both quality food and good green in a welcome, safe atmosphere. A state review of the medical marijuana legislation next year, however, might mean the spot will have to switch to virgin as opposed to laced brownies. [Huffington Post]