Omaha’s Lost Restaurants: A Matchbook Retrospective

By on Thursday, April 18th, 2013

(written by Matthew Hansen-reprinted with permission from The Omaha World-Herald)

Rich Yost was tidying the boxes in his basement when he happened upon his own personal chunk of Omaha restaurant history. He had forgotten almost completely about this, forgotten that he had collected tiny, free artifacts for decades and pasted them on a posterboard and displayed them proudly for visitors. He remembered now. The 53-year-old took the posterboard upstairs. He peeled the 200-odd matchbooks and business cards off of it. He arranged them on his kitchen table. He emailed me. “I made a discovery which took me on a trip down memory lane,” he wrote.

Which is how I ended up over at the Yosts’ South Omaha home, taking my own personal trip through what Rich calls “the graveyard of Omaha restaurants.”

It’s a tour of the Yost family and their food. It’s a story, or a series of stories, that isn’t really about food at all.

The Food Tank: Rebuilding the World’s Food System with Data

By on Thursday, January 10th, 2013

(banner photo © timsackton/flickr)

In a world where one billion people go hungry and 1.5 billion people are obese, the time has come to figure out how to fix a very broken food system. Danielle Nierenberg and Ellen Gustafson, two women who have dedicated much of their careers to studying agriculture and sustainability around the world, hope that the answers will be deposited in their new think tank.

Danielle Nierenberg talks about Food Tank’s mission: to get vital information to the right people within the global food system.

Food Tank launches today, an ambitious yet approachable depository of knowledge based entirely around the way we grow, harvest, distribute and eat food. Global in scope, the Food Tank will provide a modern library dedicated to issues of agriculture, livestock, transportation, plant science, malnutrition, obesity, foodservice, food diversity and food policy. Underneath it all, avenues of radical change will be built, which the founders hope will ensure a healthy food supply to all even in tough times ahead.

Danielle Nierenberg took a few minutes to talk to us in the busy day just prior to launch.

Toque: Has our obsession with food helped illustrate the need for a better system?

DN: The foodie movement in this country in the last 15 years has done so much to propel these issues to the forefront. But it’s very white and very elite. ‘Did you go to this restaurant that only serves organic and local?’ We need to talk about access and affordability and the right to food no matter how much money we have.

2012 Food App Awards Winners

By on Friday, December 7th, 2012

Last night 11 food and drink apps were honored in 15 categories during Toque’s 2nd annual Food App Awards. Sara’s Kitchen, an app by Sara Moulton, cookbook author and host of PBS’ Sara’s Weeknight Meals, was awarded Best Overall and won in two other categories. Grocery IQ and Mixologist both garnered two awards as well.

“We saw a lot of new contenders this year,” said Steve Cooper, Toque food app critic and co-organizer of the awards. “All of the entries, even prior to the finalists, revealed a professional level of design and functionality.”

Toque’s panel of judges worked throughout the last three weeks, downloading, testing and evaluating all of the finalists. The apps were judged on design, navigability, usefulness, innovation, value and overall impression.

Here are the winners for the 2012 Food App Awards:

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