Tuesday, May 19, 2020


Everyone here at DGA has a dog. Some of us have more than one. Only Benson has cats (but also two dogs). Dogs are, quite simply, the best. They comfort us, make us laugh, and are fantastic companions.

Our dogs have been especially important in the midst of the pandemic, providing a reason to go for walks and a welcome distraction from the world. And while they have surely noticed that there's something up with their human companions, they remain committed to their day-to-day lives--chewing bones, eating yard detritus, and being especially bothersome and ill-behaved at the worst possible moments. They are the best.

A few weeks ago, we began passing around a series of dog videos made by UK golf announcer Andrew Cotter. While they are relatively short, they brilliantly sum up the joys and absurdities of life with dogs. In Cotter's case, he has two Labrador retrievers--Olive and Mabel. Mixing the seriousness of his announcing voice and the mundanity of watching a dog eat or play with a bone is the perfect distraction for a world in the midst of a pandemic.

For those of you who haven't seen them, the first two videos are imbedded below. Enjoy and if you're anything like us, you'll watch them half a dozen times or more.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Recreating Leah Chase's Gumbo

The Bon Appetit Test Kitchen crew

Over the past two years or so, Bon Appetit magazine has developed a very successful YouTube channel. By bringing cameras into the magazine's test kitchen, the recipe testers have become video stars in their own right.

There's Brad Leone's ADD energy and off-the-cuff remarks. There's Claire Saffitz and her love of crafting and endless perfectionism in making gourmet versions of junk food--think Bagel Bites, Doritos, or Starburst. Sohla El-Wayliy is the queen of tempering chocolate.

Armed with a couple of dozen tasting spoons, test kitchen director Chris Morocco has his own show as well. On his show, Morocco must recreate dishes from famous chefs by taste. He can touch, smell, and taste the dishes, but he cannot look at them. In previous episodes, Morocco has recreated Guy Fieri's Trash-Can Nachos and Snoop Dog's Lobster Thermidor.

Last week, Morocco took on a new challenge--Leah Chase's famed gumbo. How'd it go? Watch below for yourself.

Monday, May 4, 2020

A Quiet New Orleans

With New Orleans currently under a shelter-at-home order, the streets of the Crescent City are quiet. Gone are the cars, the tourists jam-packed on Bourbon Street, and the lines at Cafe du Monde. Jackson Square sits empty and the army of musicians and street-performers who entertain guests and locals alike remain in their homes.

New Orleans has been hit particularly hard by the pandemic. An ill-timed Mardi Gras and the poverty of the city's residents combined to deal the city a brutal blow. Orleans Parish (New Orleans) has seen over 6,500 cases and nearly 450 deaths from COVID-19.

With residents staying in their homes, the streets have taken on an eerie quality to them. Once bustling boulevards, are now void of people, vendors, and most significantly--music. Yet there is also a beauty in the quiet. A chance to observe and reflect on the city we love dearly and how it will and won't be the same.