Best 2016 Food Moments
As another year turns from a bouncing baby to a grizzled old man with a cane, it's important for us to reflect on the things that truly matter — you know, like the biggest stories in the food world. Some really crazy stuff happened, and we aren't talking politics. Here are the biggest stories from the culinary year that was 2016.
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South Park's Member Berries
For the first time ever, South Park committed to serialization in a big, big way. Their 20th (wow) season was one long story arc, lambasting the election, Star Wars and online trolling. However, it was the quirky little Member Berries that stole the show. These sentient pieces of fruit spoke with cute, squeaky voices and caused anyone to eat them to fondly remember something from their childhood. They were also extremely addictive and may have secretly plotted to take over the world, but that's neither here nor there. Since this list is about nostalgia, they have a fitting spot at the top.
It used to be that wine came in, essentially, two colors: red and white. Well, now you can add orange to that list. Orange wine began taking the world by storm at the end of 2016. Note: This wine isn't actually made from oranges. It just takes on an orange hue because the grapes are not skinned before undergoing their lengthy process to become wine. Sure, it may taste just like white wine, but it looks orange. That's enough to spice up any dinner party.
The Announcement of Iron Chef Gauntlet
Iron Chef America, and the original Iron Chef, were the originators of food-based competition shows. It ruled the airwaves for 12 seasons and made stars out of luminaries such as Bobby Flay and Masaharu Morimoto. It was announced in November that Food Network is reimagining the competition show next year with Iron Chef Gauntlet. Not much has been revealed yet, but we do know that Alton Brown will reprise his role as master of ceremonies.
A Heartfelt Thanksgiving Mistake
In a holiday season fraught with uncertainty, this is just the story we all needed to come together and celebrate our shared humanity. Here's how it went down: Grandmother Wanda Dench sent out an innocuous text to her grandson, inviting him to Thanksgiving dinner. The only problem? She accidentally texted a stranger, Jamal Hinton. The pair's conversation went viral on Twitter and, lo and behold, they spent the holiday together. Hearts were warmed everywhere.
Foul-Mouthed Granny Takes YouTube by Storm
Here is another story about an unassuming grandmother, only this one is for adults only. Peggy Glenn uses her YouTube channel to cook a variety of tasty foodstuffs — with a twist. She cusses like a sailor. Her videos quickly went viral and racked up hundreds of thousands of views. She even refers to herself as Granny PottyMouth. F#$% yeah.
The foulmouthed trend continues. While many moviegoers were taking the summer to enjoy the antics of men in superhero costumes fighting off hordes of CGI monsters, some were enjoying the antics of, well, CGI foodstuffs. The raunchy Pixar-esque Sausage Party garnered positive reviews for its no-holds-barred take on what would happen if your favorite grocery items gained sentience and decided to avoid being eaten.
Every year there is something so zany and so ridiculous that it manages to capture the hearts of people everywhere. In years past, it's been the Cronut and the ramen burger. In 2016 it was the rainbow bagel. This concoction may look like a mountain of Play-Doh, but it tastes like a real Brooklyn bagel, which it is, seeing as how it hails from Brooklyn's The Bagel Store.
High-Flying Halloween Miracle
A father and his daughter were stuck on a lengthy flight this Halloween. What happened next? The crafty — and caring — father passed out candy to the rest of the passengers, just so his daughter wouldn't miss out on trick-or-treating. Someone recorded the episode and, of course, it went viral. Here's hoping they don't get stuck on a flight next Thanksgiving. It's hard to cook a giant turkey 5,000 feet in the air.
Denmark's latest grocery chain sensation is called Wefood. What makes it different than, say, Wegmans or Whole Foods? Wefood specializes in expired foodstuffs. Initially this may seem gross, but once the shock wears off, it is actually a pretty good idea. Many of the expiration dates on these items are fairly arbitrary, and that has allowed the store to sell stuff at severely reduced prices, thus the success. Go, Denmark!
Food Emojis, New and Improved
That sound you hear? It's the collective cheers of millions of smartphone owners, poring over the dozens of new food-based emojis that dropped this year. The menu is diverse, featuring emojis for eggs, bacon, avocados, pancakes and, even, the humble baguette. That actually sounds like a totally awesome breakfast.