Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Food Jargon of the Day: Eating Their Words

From today's NY Times, lexical-gustatories are individuals who "involuntarily 'taste' words when they hear them, or even try to recall them." According to Dr. Julia Simner, a cognitive neuropsychologist and synaesthesia expert from the University of Edinburgh, lexical-gustatory synaesthesia is an extremely rare disorder. Only 10 lexical-gustatories indentified in the US and Europe.

A summary of Synaesthesia: The taste of words on the tip of the tongue, a report by Julia Simner and Jamie Ward, can be found online at Nature.

For more info, download the following articles on lexical-gustatory synaesthesia here:

Ward, Jamie, Julia Simner, and Vivian Auyeung. 2005. “A comparison of lexical-gustatory and grapheme-colour synaesthesia. Cognitive Neuropsychology; vol. 22(1): 28-41.

Ward, Jamie, and Julia Simner. 2003. “Lexical-gustatory synaesthesia: linguistic and conceptual factors.” Cognition; vol. 89: 237-261.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Food Jargon Resources

Word Spy
Anyone interested in food jargon should check out the Food and Drink Index of Word Spy, an amazing Web-based resource devoted to lexpionage, or “the sleuthing of new words and phrases.” Word Spy takes it's logophilia seriously – a new term will only make the index if it has appeared multiple times in newspapers, magazines, books, Web sites, and other sources.

Sean Shesgreen on winespeak
Sean Shesgreen’s 2003 article, "Wet Dogs and Gushing Oranges: Winespeak for a New Millennium," is a critical introduction to the similes and metaphors (or “winespeak”) used by U.S. wine writers.

Wine X Magazine
Shessgreen’s article focuses on mainstream wine writing, but the next wave in winespeak is already being written by Wine X Magazine. Wine reviews mine the language of rock-n-roll, hip-hop, retro tv shows, and sex to demystify wine for new generation.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Food Jargon: Weekly Round-Up

Tunageddon - John Tierney's tongue-in-cheek moniker for the impending (and, in his opinion, improbable) global seafood crisis that may see the world's fisheries depleted by 2048.

Food Manga - Japanese manga (or graphic novels) focusing on food. Titles include Yakitate!! Japan, which follows the adventures of a young bread baker named Kazuma, and Iron Wok Jan, which focuses on Iron Chef-like competitions. There is even a popular series dedicated to wine that features a crime-solving sommelier. Splicing together comics and cuisine, many food manga series actually include recipes and other food facts alongside typical action-packed narratives.

Underground Restaurants
- unlicensed supper clubs like those sponsored by Ghetto Gourmet in San Francisco. Galleries, apartments, houses, farms, and parking lots have all served as venues for underground restaurants. Also known as culinary speakeasies and pirate restaurants. Check out articles in the LA Times and SF for more info.

Anti-Restaurant Movement/Guerrilla Gourmet - the alternative communal dining culture spear-headed by Ghetto Gorumet (see underground restaurant above).

Food Jargon Watch

This post originally appeared on Vinotheque.

In the March 8 Food Section of the Washington Post, Jane Mengenhauser shared a list of culinary euphemisms that she had culled from various print publications and the Web.

I know that at least one blogger deemed the article fluff, but I find the collision of cuisine and lexiocology interesting, even more so when certain phrases enter popular culture (food porn being my all-time favorite). WIRED magazine has a long history of tracking technology-related phrases with its Jargon Watch column. Why not do the same for food and drink?

So, here’s Vinotheque’s first official Food Jargon Watch listing:
I found this on the American Culinary Federation Website. "Chefpertise" as in "I took a class with Chef Doe and found his chefpertise in the area of French cuisine invaluable."

This phrase is from Jon Bonne's Amuse Bouche blog, which is subtitled “confessions of a foodish man.” I don’t know exactly what he means by "foodish" but I nominate this term as a replacement for the dreaded "foodie" and the elitist "foodist" (see below).

Whole Paycheck
I ran across this term last week in a Slate article. Denotes the seductive quality - and higher prices - of Whole Foods Market. As in " I ran into Whole Paycheck to just pick-up some lettuce and ended-up spending $70!"


Term for technology-related food news coming from the Circuits section of the NY Times. Fom Michael Yee's blog.

Paper Chef
One of my fav phrases from food blog culture. The title of "Paper Chef" is awarded to the winner of an online food blogger event.

From Free Range on Food, a discussion with Washington Post Food section staff. meaning someone who is "discrimitive (or ultra snobby)" about food.