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The return of man food

October 24, 2011

It would easy to report that America’s food tastes are leaning towards the organic, healthy, natural and pure, but while this is true, there’s a new desire for “man food” that tastes great, but does you more harm than good and there in lies its appeal

A great example is the recently New Yorker reviewed Earl’s Beer and Cheese in Manhattan which takes its inspiration from the primal dietary needs of men. Of course, it does it with a unique twist; the beer isn’t the ordinary macro brews, but instead, Earl’s focuses on the recently exploding domestic craft brews.

The food is firmly focused on taking cheese and doing strange things to it to make it less good for you.

Here are some of Earl’s menu items:

Asian Gnocchi & Beef

Asian Rice Cakes, Scallions, Ground Beef and Chili Garlic Sauce, Topped with Crispy Cheese Fries

Beer-Cheese

NY State Cheddar, House Lager, Fresh Garlic With Toast

Grilled Cheese(s)

NY State Cheddar…Pork Belly, Kimchi, Fried Egg on Sourdough

Double-Cream Brie…Blackberry Mostarda on Brioche

Calabro Mozzarella…Miso Mayo, Potato Chips, Dill Pickles on English Muffin

Mac & Cheese

Goat Cheese, Rosemary, and Shredded Chicken

The Earl’s Eggo

Eggo Waffle Gourmet Style: Foie Gras, Aged Cabot Cheddar, Coffee-Cured Bacon, and Syzzurpy Goodness

This is food that not only goes great with beer, but food that combines low culture with high culture in unusual ways- Eggo Waffles and Foie Gras is one example. It’s food you will dare your friends to eat and talk about for days after wards.

Earl’s is clearly a reaction against a number of things that are going on in food culture for a while; the over-healthy San Francisco “foodie” culture and the pretentiousness that tends to surround it.

It’s often hard to find restaurant ideas in Manhattan that could transfer across the country, but Earl’s might just be one of them. You  can easily imagine a couple of hundred Earl’s Beer and Cheese sports bars opening up across this nation.

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