Episode 18 :: Fruit of the Earth

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Constantly a show of firsts, we’re celebrating fruit this time around – both in beer and food. We start with Banana Bread beer from Wells & Young. Smells like a beer from the Congo, but goes down quite smoothly with a subtle punch of bananas. Then things get weird.

I’ve watched Bourdain eat it, I’ve watched that penis-eating Andrew Zimmern eat it. Now it’s my turn. I have my first taste of Durian fruit. Widely known in Southeast Asia as the “King of Fruits,” Durian has a mild smell and an even more moderate taste. Not what I was expecting, thank God.

Following up on our discussion of Top Chef and it’s excessive cursing, we hear from it’s co-host and head judge Tom Colicchio who has a different take on why the cursing seems so heavy this season (interview courtesy of BravoTV.com). And if that’s not enough, how about an uncensored clip montage of Hell’s Kitchen? Ever wondered what it would be like without all the bleeping? Wonder no longer – you’ve come to the right podcast.

We haven’t cooked much lately, so I thought I’d share my recipe for crepes with freshly whipped cream and strawberries. Perfect for a Wimbledon-style breakfast, or a nice dessert. It’s easier than it may seem, and your girlfriend (or) wife, and kids will love it. Grab the power tools – we’re cooking over here!

There’s a short discussion of the food situation at the Bejing Olympics (BYO Food everyone), a sampling of 21st Amendment’s Watermelon Wheat, and Gordon Ramsey’s proposal of fining restaurants in England who don’t use local, in-season produce in their food.

Listen to this fruit-filled action-packed episode here.

Music in this episode: Bay of Islands by Blackfish. Buy it in the iTunes Store.


  1. Another great episode. Holy S*#t the Hell’s Kitchen clip was loaded with the word F$*k. Where on earth did you find that? If they left it unedited perhaps it would be more watchable.

    Food looks great, beer looks great. Great show.


  2. Hey Phil, started watching Top Chef after hearing about it on your last episode and it’s actually quite good. I watch very few cooking shows, but I could get into this one. I saw on the Bravo TV web site that they’ll be having a marathon of their shows over Memorial Day weekend, so I’m going to catch up on all the episodes I’ve missed.

    The beer sounded strange. Have you ever tried Raspberry or Pumpkin beer? They’re all too sweet for me. Got to stick with my Guinness and St. Pauli GIrl.

    Thanks for a great show.

    – ray ray

  3. Good show, Phil. I started watching this season of Top Chef after catching re-runs of last season. I don’t think I agree with you that these are the best chefs the show has had. And even if they were, they’re almost unbearable to watch on screen. Dale almost seemed like he was a good chef and I think he won a few elimiination challenges, which is more than you can say for Lisa whose attitude stinks and she’s not nearly as good a cook as Dale. This season sucks.

    Haven’t ever tried, seen, or heard of Durian. But if it tastes like socks (clean or not) I think I’ll take a pass. 🙂 No offense.

  4. I have had Durian! It wasn’t that bad either, so your assesment of it was not off at all. I don’t know what the big deal it is when people say that it’s really stinky. I thought the smell was kind of off putting at first, but it didn’t taste anything like it smelled. I enjoyed it very much. You either like it, or you hate it.

    Really enjoying the past few shows, espeically the audio parts. Hells Kitchen is not a show I would watch, but maybe if they left it uncensored as you played it I might.

  5. Thanks for your comments, everyone! I don’t recall saying that this was the best crop of chefs they’ve had on the show, but I may have – my memory is foggy. I think I meant that there were some good chefs on this season, and that I was surprised recently because I hadn’t noticed. For what it’s worth, I too think this season is lacking a bit, but it’s still fun to watch.

    Ray Ray, I have had a lot of fruit flavored beer, including Raspberry and Pumpkin. They’re good for what they are, but I’m not one to go out of my way for them. In the right setting, they’re delicious. I think having two fruit beers on one show may have been a little much for my pallet, but they were both great beers for the style.

    Bill, thanks for the good words. Thanks again to all of you for listening.


  6. Phil, once again another superb show! Loved the unedited “raw” version of the Top Chef – I would watch that just for the verbal beatings he gives people! “You’re sweating in the food!”

    I’ve been eye-balling that bannana bread beer. Thought very hard about getting for the show but then chickened out. I think 21st Amendment’s Watermelon beer is really exceptional! I think the canning line came from local CO brewer… need to look into that.

    The crepes sound fantastic. I will try this recipe. We like putting Riccotta cheese in them with a little artificial sweetner – it’s actually good diet food.

  7. Phil,

    Great show. I feel like such a podcast whore, BFH, your show, and Grahams Craft brewer radio. One of these days I would like to do a round table and discuss some hot topics concerning food, beer, and Oprah (ok, maybe not Oprah.) I think food will be a very hot topic for the next 10 years, after that science will start making it’s biggest contributions yet (that is my teaser).

    Durian fruit is an acquired and indelicate flavour. I had it when I was on a business trip to Singapore. I cannot say that I hated it, but I will not be running to the store to source it.

    Gordon Ramsey, I love his cooking. Every restaurant that I have been to of his has been very good value and expertly produced dishes. While I agree that it is a crime to see an out of season veg, in some places it would be hard to design a menu in December.

    First course
    SeaBuckthorn confit with deer medallions.

    Celeriac puree with slow braised pork belly

    3rd (final)
    Winter hardened potato gratin with beef tips.

    Other then those three items I would be hard pressed to find other winter veg. Unless he is allowing root veg. Then we can add carrots, onions, parsley root, and maybe cabbage.

    Top Chef was usually one of the cooking reality programs that I really enjoyed. Other then Blaise, who was asked to participate and did not submit an entry, there are no passioned cooks there. Most of them are mediocre at best, and produce a borderline 1 star product. Even with that shiny review,, they are all hands down 10 times better then Hell’s Kitchen cooks. I can not understand the praises of Bobby and Jen. I could outcook them and I am a Software geek. I actually liked Ben, but he is gone now. Arrgh.

    Well, there you have it. Another post that is a bit too long. Just to tell you, I like your podcast because you put out your opinion and state the facts that back up your beliefs. No quibbling, fidgeting, or uhm-ahhing. I respect that, and I will put out what I believe and state my facts, if they don’t mesh, who cares. At least we have the balls to stand behind our decision. If I am faced with overwhelming evidence that I may have (god forbid) been in error. I accept that and will have no qualms saying that you are right. It all syncs with being a steward of information. hehe

    Peace und viel spass,

  8. Very good show Phil. Your podcast is one of my favorites on iTunes. I wish they were longer and you did them weekly though, but I understand that it takes a lot of time to put these shows together. It’s a very intelligent show with some fast paced wit. I really enjoy it a lot. And I love Top Chef and I hate Hells Kitchen.



  9. Thanks for your kind words, Andy. I appreciate that you enjoy the podcast as much as you do. Every time I release a new show I wonder if this is the one that people are going to say that I finally dropped the ball. Good to know it’s still listenable. 🙂

    Kirk, another awesome post – I could read your stuff all day. You seem to have your finger on the pulse when it comes to food. I always look forward to see what you’re going to write next, and that’s no lie. Your winter menu, while impressive to look at, does look somewhat bleak. I think if restaurants actually had to abide by the law that Ramsey wants to have set in place, they’d be serving a lot of stews and soups in the Winter. I don’t think it would go very well either. So I agree with you.

    And if you think you’re a podcast whore, you should see what I listen to. Almost every Beer Safari podcast, along with the Brewing Network, Gourmet magazine, and ESPN. I love podcasting, especially when there’s stuff I really enjoy listening to. Thanks again for including my show in your line-up. And your soliloquy on the effects of the reinheitsgebot was absolutely fantastic. I posted a link to your comments on Big Foamy Head over at the Beer Report’s Confrontation Board because I wanted every one to see it. They all found it very fascinating, and agreed with a lot of what you said. It was great to read a first-hand account of a beer aficionado living in Germany.

    And Rick, thanks for your comments as well! Ricotta in the crepes would be fantastic, and as you said, very low in fat. I have to tell you that Banana Bread beer was an odd one. When you smell it, you think “Oh my God, it’s all bananas!” but the taste is very mellow. I see the art in brewing when brewers can do something like that – almost like what chefs like Ferran Adria do in the kitchen. You make something that appears to be one thing, but tastes entirely different. Love that.

    Thanks again for listening, and for your comments everyone!

  10. Hey Phil! Another stellar show my friend! I think you might have overdone it a bit with the fruit beers, that would have killed my pallet. Never had Durian, not sure where to get that if at all in the Pittsburgh area.

    I will try the bananna bread beer soon, it has been staring me in the face at the local 6 pack shop for months now, you have inspired me to pick it up!


  11. Also wanted to point out that my friend over at http://www.drunkenpolack.com recently reveiwed the Well’s Bananna Bread Beer, check it out here:


  12. […] beer from Wells &amp Young. Smells like a beer from the Congo, but goes down quite smoothly withttps://zeroface.wordpress.com/2008/05/21/episode-18-fruit-of-the-earth/’American Idol’: Check Out Our Live Blog Of The Archuleta Vs. Cook Finale! MTV Music TelevisionMTV […]

  13. I made your crepes over the weekend and they were very good. We have a French restaurant near us. They make buckwheat crepes, with simple honest fillings. They’re very good.

    My husband and I were in France years ago. There’s a small chain there called Moulin Bleu, on a Normandy theme. At one in Dijon with outdoor tables,* a galette “forestière” had mushrooms stir-fried with fresh garlic and parsley, and a little cheese, rolled into a sort of cone, with huge fringes of the crêpe sticking out wildly. Served with a mug of tart hard cider, all a few dollars, very satisfying. That’s real fast food for you.

  14. I can’t add anything that hasn’t already been said above. Another awesome episode.

  15. Somehow i missed the point. Probably lost in translation 🙂 Anyway … nice blog to visit.

    cheers, Perceptivity

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