Brian Sheehan dishes on what's hot and trending in the world of all things food and drink for Tuesday, October 18, 2016.
Cardinals Protest McDonald’s Planned for St. Peter’s Square
McDonald’s has plans to open a new restaurant next to St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City, but some Catholic cardinals are not lovin’ it. According to The Local Italy, the new McDonald’s would occupy a 5,800-square-foot site just to the right of St. Peter’s Basilica. It could potentially earn the Vatican as much as $33,000 a month in rent, but seven cardinals who live above the proposed McDonald’s do not think it’s worth the extra income, saying that the burger chain would damage the architectural character of the historic place. At least one cardinal is reportedly looking for a papal intervention and has sent Pope Francis a letter asking him to bar the McDonald’s from going forward.
200 Venomous Cobras Escape Unlicensed Snake Farm
Cobras are used in the production of “snake wine” — wine made with a dead snake preserved in it — and breeding them can be a very profitable though dangerous venture. More than 200 extremely dangerous baby cobras recently escaped from an unlicensed snake farm in China. According to Shanghaiist, the snakes are monocled cobras, one of the deadliest types of snake. The local government in Chunyi, Nanjing, where the snakes escaped, told residents that the baby snakes were much less dangerous than mature ones. The government reportedly found out about the great snake escape earlier this week when a villager found one and reported it to the authorities. It could have been a lot worse, though. The farm reportedly had 1,500 baby cobras, and 1,300 of them remained in captivity. Thus far, 150 of the baby snakes have been caught or killed, and authorities are looking for the rest.
Woman Finds Human Thumb in Bowl of Ramen
There’s no good answer when a customer asks, “Waiter, what's this thumb doing in my soup?” According to Rocket News 24, a woman and her child were dining at a branch of the Kourakuen ramen restaurant chain in Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan, when she spotted a strange object in her soup. The city health center determined the object was an approximately 1-square-centimeter-long piece of someone's thumb, nail and all. A woman working in the kitchen had apparently cut off her thumb tip while slicing pork and it got mixed with the food. The store apologized and said it would disinfect all utensils. Fortunately, no customers were sickened from consuming the tainted ramen, but it will probably be some time before anybody involved can look at a bowl of noodles the same way again.
Haagen Dazs Japan
Häagen-Dazs Japan Announces a Fancy New Flavor for 2016
Häagen-Dazs Japan already makes some fancy and very interesting flavors that aren’t available to the rest of the world, and it looks like the company’s Japan-themed Japonais flavor line is getting an update for fall. According to Rocket News 24, these Häagen-Dazs flavors are inspired by classic Japanese dessert combinations. Previous iterations of the Japonais line have included matcha green tea ice cream with sweet red beans, strawberry with red beans, and even soybean with dark syrup. This year it’s adding a new Japonais creation that will be flavored with walnuts, red bean paste, and dark brown sugar syrup, or “kuromitsu.” The new flavor will go on sale at 7-Eleven shops in Japan for about $3.50 per serving, but the company warns customers that the fancy new Häagen-Dazs flavor is just for fall and won’t be around for very long.
Wikimedia/Leandro Neumann Ciuffo
Naples’ Da Michele Pizzeria Plans Outpost in London
L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele, the most famous pizza restaurant in Naples and home of what is often dubbed the “best pizza in the world,” will soon make its wares available in London. According to Time Out London, Pizzeria da Michele will be launching an outpost in Stoke Newington, in northwestern London. Though it hasn’t actually opened its doors yet, the 5,000-pound pizza oven arrived last week, according to the restaurant’s Twitter account. According to The Local Italy, the original Da Michele was opened in 1870 and the 80-seat restaurant is still operated by the same family. The London branch will be managed by the family's fifth generation. The restaurant is expected to open in November and will certainly generate some very long lines when it does.