The Luxury of Dining

How many people go to bed hungry on this beautiful orb we call home? This beautiful planet that gives occupancy to so many creatures and of all these that occupy this place we call home, how many go to bed starving or near starvation?

Sadly, the majority of those that go hungry are those that don’t forage for food, hunt their prey, or have a source of life’s natural sustenance to provide for their physical needs. As human beings we have come to rely on others to provide our physical need for sustenance from fast food to fine dining, from the farmer to the grocery store, from food banks to garbage cans, we are a species that is unlike the birds of the air, the many predators who hunt for sustenance. We either live in the lap of luxury or the shit hole of despair and as an intelligent, thinking, loving creature filled with passion and creativity you’d think this problem would be solvable, right?

I love good food, I love really expensive wines and wines from Trader Joes. I grew up in the orchards and vineyards of what is now Silicon Valley, in Cupertino California. I picked all types of fruits from grapes, apricots, plums, cherries, peaches and apples. I never grew hungry and always appreciated the beauty of the growing season. I loved to watch the trees, vines and stalks develop, I loved the raising of livestock, chickens and ducks, to the produce that grew in nearly every yard. I love the harvesting of all types of food products and most of all the creativity that came from those who loved preparing, cooking and presenting food in its most beautiful presentation.

People like Alice Waters, J. Towers and Thomas Keller from the French Laundry that took food to a whole other level. To the holistic movement, vegetarians, vegans and a great many creative artists in the culinary world made me rejoice in the world of the culinary art.

That my friends is luxury. The ability to have set before you a cornucopia of dishes, wines, desserts and spirits of any kind such as Louis the 13th cognac, ports from all around the word, brandies and every type of spirit available.

And then, we travel, we explore outside of our own little universe, we read papers, then of course television, until today we have universal access to this planet and what we come to find is that the luxury is limited, not only is it limited, but the amount of wasted product tossed away like filthy garbage every single day makes luxury look like gluttony, irresponsibility and down right disgusting!

My point is not to belittle us as a species nor to damper the beauty of luxury. I have always believed in Buckminster Fullers world of “Utopia or Oblivion” and always believed that as we progressed as an educated, learned society, our passion would grow, even as our technology grew, we would take responsibility, we would act on our blessings, our luxuries and do whatever we could each and every day to make this place we call home a place of luxury, maybe like some religions advocate, heaven on earth.

I always like to end with an offer to my FREE Wine Tasting Guide. It is my way of getting you to stay in touch with me. You can toss the Guide, but keep the relationship, so without further hesitation, get the Guide and let’s begin to make our place we call home a better home. The Culinary Guru is both a business and awareness site for quality of life in the culinary world and we refrain from religion and politics and focus on the quality of food, wine, and spirits as seen from a lifelong restaurateur.

Luxury

Thank you,

Gary Leese and the Culinary Guru Team

 

Golfers: The Most Stubborn People

The most stubborn people I have ever met are golfers who get angry, frustrated, throw their clubs and make everyone totally intense. The sad part of the scenario I just described is that in the world of golf it was designed to create beautiful environments filled with trees, flowers, well groomed and manicured lawns (if you play in America) played outdoors in the seasonal environment.

So how can a person who plays a game in such an environment get so worked over in a game designed to provide an outdoor experience. An experience filled with nautures beauty and the opportunity to clear ones mind of life’s stressors. And in the world of golf it is about practice, love of the game and most importantly, attitude. This is not my opinion but the opinion of nearly every successful and professional golfer. Yet, there are those people who firmly believe it is about luck.

Arnold Palmer once wrote ” Good Golf is a state of mind…

Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated. A child can play it well, and a grown man can never master it. Any single round of it is full of unexpected triumphs and seemingly perfect shots that end in disaster. It is almost a science; yet it is a puzzle without an answer. It is gratifying and tantalizing, precise and unpredictable; it requires complete concentration and total relaxation. It satisfies the soul and frustrates the intellect. It is at the same time rewarding and maddening, and it is without a doubt the greatest game mankind has ever invented. – Arnold Palmer

Its all about attitude and not being stubborn. Stop fighting it, enjoy it, become one with the game. Isn’t that what we all want? To become one with the universe, living in a harmonious balance that catapults us to new heights, a new awareness and an excitement for living that only comes from not being stubborn.

In closing,  It was a sunny Saturday morning on the local municipal golf course in Illinois, and I was beginning my pre-shot routine, visualizing my upcoming shot, when a voice came over the clubhouse speaker: ‘WOULD THE GENTLEMAN ON THE WOMAN’S TEE BACK UP TO THE MEN’S TEE PLEASE.’

I was still deep in my routine, seemingly impervious to the interruption. Again the announcement rang out louder, Would the MAN on the WOMEN’S tee kindly back up to the men’s tee.’

I simply ignored the request and kept concentrating, when once more, the man yelled, Would the man on the woman’s tee back up to the men’s tee, PLEASE!

I finally stopped, turned, looked through the clubhouse window directly at the person with the microphone and shouted back, “Would the person in the clubhouse kindly stop shouting and let me play my second shot!”

That my friend is golf. I love the above quote from Arnold Palmer as it applies to nearly all of us. The exceptions, those who seem to be in total harmony with the game, know a game of golf that can only be so close to the heart and mind of God. Yet many of us experience those quiet times while were dreaming, thinking, visualizing the game and see nothing but perfect shots, the best attitude, the excitement that comes with having a nearly professional golfer experience!

Then, the next day comes along and oh my word, what happened, who is this person, how could I forget all the things my mind, body and spirit experienced the day before? You want to scream, but that’s not cool, especially with the big egos you have to play golf with for the rest of the day. And that is when training and the mind need to work together. It’s all about the mindset, the skill level and the joy of the game. I have a short story I’d like to share and it will be spread out over the next 4 weeks on my Pro Golf Swing site, I hope you enjoy it.

Finally, I have co-wrote and edited an ebook that talks about improving your game and hopefully your attitude. It’s free and all you have to is Click here and your on your way!

Thank you,

The Golf Guru 

Stubborn

Who is the Culinary Guru

Red Bottle and GlassWhat is the Culinary Guru? It is a peek into the culinary world as seen through the eyes of those who work and have worked in kitchens, food servers, managers, marketing and all aspects that make a restaurant live and breath. It is about the discovery of food and where it has led us today and will hopefully provide for you, the consumer, better eating choices.

A knowledge of the world of food and the opportunity to see first hand behind the scenes of a real working kitchen, front of the house table maintenance, customers reactions and how disparaging remarks can really hurt feelings and break down the order, what it takes to get the kitchen started through prep work, mental preparation and the difference between food that is already prepared and food that requires thought and real preparation. The dining room with table set up and preparation for the guests, how to set silverware and which side do you serve the guest and which side do you clear. The bar setup and preparation for the guests, creating an environment that only a true connoisseur of the world of wine, beer and spirits can truly appreciate, it’s not just about darts!

Also the world of clean and sanitized. This part of the culinary world can go unnoticed and can create the biggest fears and dangers both to the public and the business. This area I do not take lightly, it requires an attitude from all the staff to provide the cleanest and safest environment at all times. Any slack in this area and in no time a dangerous and volatile situation will erupt as many of us have seen in the news with what is known as “reputable” restaurants. It starts from the top and moves through the organization and is only as bad as the weakest link, so the Culinary Guru advises, either educate or eliminate the weakest link!

I have written and edited a Wine Tasting Guide that is free to download and is filled with basic and intermediate information. It is a good resource guide and very useful if you plan to have a get together with friends and taste wines as a really enjoyable social outlet!

Passion, Food and Love

Wine Tasting in Tale of Two CitiesWe are sitting around the dining room table discussing the most interesting things known to mankind, such as the pyramids located in strategic areas around the world, the Tower of Babel, passion and the importance of friends discussing things out of our league, but enjoying every minute of it.

As life unfolds here in our world there are things we look to that must remain consistent, changing, but consistent. Love is a big one. The aspects of love and all the qualities love brings to our lives creates this firestorm of thought, it builds up in us this desire to be our best, to become fulfilled.

Yes, passionate and warm sexual encounters that come from a sweet embrace and a deep luscious kiss help as one soothes and touches the warm and primal areas. This love that fuels the fire of passion that creates deep loving friendships that grow and develop into long lasting, everlasting relationships is powerful. How about in your quiet time fantasizing, or better yet, feeding your loved one grapes as they languish on the couch succulently eating each grape one at a time while juices dribble down their chin? And………don’t stop now!

Passion, Food and Love are key to living this life. Eating is an important part that even King David was once known to say “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over.” I find the reference to a table filled with all the delicacies of meats, fruits, vegetables, cheese, and the most delectable of desserts prepared before those who spite us, hate us and would do harm. Anointing of oil that I am sure was made from olives, that precious fruit that symbolizes power, humility, heart health and beauty. And finally the wine that over flows making your cup run over that all should partake and enjoy!

As the world spins and orbits our sun on a yearly journey bringing us the seasons, may we aspire to be our very best and prepare for our friends a table filled with great food, drink and laughter. Preparing a table for our enemies is best left to those who understand the words of King David and until we have the growth and maturity to not live in fear and tremendous anxiety we will not hasten to quickly to this table nor will we truly listen and understand those words of another great King ” love thy enemies”.

But until that time as the world screams and yells like a bad reality show, I will bring thoughts and encouragement to eat well, drink well and get educated in whatever your hands and heart find to do, and always with Passion, Food and Love.

IF you would like to hear more you can get my edited FREE Wine Tasting Guide and toss the guide and keep the relationship!

Muse

Gary Leese
Culinary Guru

What is the Culinary Guru?

Red Bottle and GlassWhat is the Culinary Guru? It is a peek into the culinary world as seen through the eyes of those who work and have worked in kitchens, food servers, managers, marketing and all aspects that make a restaurant live and breath. It is about the discovery of food and where it has led us today and will hopefully provide for you, the consumer, better eating choices.

A knowledge of the world of food and the opportunity to see first hand behind the scenes of a real working kitchen, front of the house table maintenance, customers reactions and how disparaging remarks can really hurt feelings and break down the order, what it takes to get the kitchen started through prep work, mental preparation and the difference between food that is already prepared and food that requires thought and real preparation. The dining room with table set up and preparation for the guests, how to set silverware and which side do you serve the guest and which side do you clear. The bar setup and preparation for the guests, creating an environment that only a true connoisseur of the world of wine, beer and spirits can truly appreciate, it’s not just about darts!

Also the world of clean and sanitized. This part of the culinary world can go unnoticed and can create the biggest fears and dangers both to the public and the business. This area I do not take lightly, it requires an attitude from all the staff to provide the cleanest and safest environment at all times. Any slack in this area and in no time a dangerous and volatile situation will erupt as many of us have seen in the news with what is known as “reputable” restaurants. It starts from the top and moves through the organization and is only as bad as the weakest link, so the Culinary Guru advises, either educate or eliminate the weakest link!

I have written and edited a Wine Tasting Guide that is free to download and is filled with basic and intermediate information. It is a good resource guide and very useful if you plan to have a get together with friends and taste wines as a really enjoyable social outlet!

 

From Stardust to Here: A Dietary Journey

Louis 13 DecanterI don’t know where in our journey as human beings that we charted a course to become spiritual beings, but I do know this, that along the way we became very hungry. Eating has been an important part of our development, not only to sustain the body, but to unite us as a species creating a path that is filled with the wonder of exploration, dreaming and discovery. Depending how far back we go in our development one thing is for certain, there was the need to eat!

Possibly we were complete vegans and eating only what we could forage until one day one of our ancestors stumbles upon rhubarb, eats the leaves and succumbs to the toxins. Was one of the family members observing this act? How many of our ancestors died eating the part of the rhubarb that contains toxins? Did we stop there? Hell no! We now partake in one of natures most delicious pies during a holiday we call Thanksgiving? Thanks for what? Thanks for all of those ancestors who taught us about discovery and a really great dessert.

So where does that bring us in today’s modern times? Are we observing our family and friends succumbing to possible toxic dining? Are we really sitting down with the clan and in conversation, instead of grunts or drawing in the dirt, talking about the dangers of our diet?  And why does it really matter? There are those of us on this planet who give little regard to life and at the other extreme there are those who don’t give this much regard as there is something better on the other side. Whatever you believe in the here and now or put your faith on the other side, I am forever grateful to the law of discovery and our willingness as a species to put that law into action. I would rather learn from our discoveries here and now then bet on the other side and continue to eat rhubarb leaves!

So, as the Culinary Guru, I would advise you to make this an enjoyable journey and learn from our errors. Change the causes that create ill effects into causes that create healthy effects!  Enjoy a really nice meal with the family in conversation and laughter over a beverage of choice. It’s all about here & now and forever, so for that, I am forever grateful!

If you haven’t had the chance to download my FREE Wine Tasting Guide then now is the time. It is filled with good information and the updates will be free, so click on this link and follow the instructions! Enjoy! Click Here!

FREE! Wine Tasting Guide

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CLICK HERE!

Hello. It’s been a while and I thought it would be good to be in touch. I have been building this blog site for quite some time and have written and edited a FREE Wine Tasting Guide for you. It is a PDF ebook and easy to download and easy to read, informative and well, it’s FREE! Click here if you want the Wine Tasting Guide by the Culinary Guru or continue reading as I have links all the way down this page for you to get your FREE Wine Tasting Guide

After selling the restaurant and working in the field I suddenly realized I have a wealth of knowledge that could be helpful to many people. For example, do you know how to take out a cork that has been pushed into an empty bottle without breaking the bottle? Do you really know why people put a cork to their nose as though they are smelling it? Do you know how to make the best damn bread pudding in the world? Well that and so much more will be made available to you in short, concise, entertaining snippets each and every week, but more of that later! Ah, another link if you need to escape, if not, read on and Thanks!

Wine Tasting Guide by the Culinary Guru

As you may know this blog site was once the Palm Cafe, which I changed to Coffee Cafe and now has morphed into what I believe is my passion: food, wine and spirits, thus the Culinary Guru! Over the years my wife, Heidi (the real Culinary Guru whom I defer to often) and I prided ourselves encouraging our staff to be their very best. Some required holding onto them and developing them into partners and owners, while others were guided towards College to further their passions whether Architects, Actors, Pastry Chefs, Scientists, Peace Officers, even getting their Masters and Doctorates and all the while encouraging them to be their very best. Another link in case you’re bored! lol

Wine Tasting Guide by the Culinary Guru

The Culinary Guru will be making recipes, knife cutting skills, certified organic farming, reviews on wines and spirits, secrets revealed in the industry, table setup, dining etiquette, wine bottle opening skills, and of course Free Books like the one made available today in knowledgeable, informative and humorous ways that can only come from someone like the Culinary Guru!

Thank You for reading this far, I totally appreciate it, but I am also grateful to those who left early to get their FREE Wine Tasting Guide from the Culinary Guru!

The Art of Opening a Bottle of Wine

Please click on link below to learn about the Art of Opening a Wine Bottle! If you know how to open a bottle of wine then this may help refresh something you may have forgotten or never realized, whatever the case may be it is nice to know the older style, the romantic style, of opening a bottle of wine that has a cork. If you are purchasing wines with a screw top, then our videos on that particular technique will be out in a few short years! lol! 

The art of winemaking starts with an idea and moves into grape choices, then to viticulture and a variety of steps bringing the wine to it’s final destination, your lips! It is here that an art form takes place, in this case, a cork, if properly trained this technique takes the wine tasting experience to a whole different level!

The Art of Opening a Bottle of Wine

As you learn more about wine you realize with one glance at a freshly poured glass whether it was stored correctly before tasting the wine. No I am not talking about “Smell a Cork” that we see everyone who is handed a cork proceeds to do, nor am I talking about a cracked cork that shows it was bleeding off product, but a visual that can readily tell you immediately there is a problem.

So in this day and age of sophistication and a lack of time to do all the necessary research, classes, opinions, there may be a way to have information at your fingertips without all the hassle and conveniently delivered right to your computer.

What of storage? What varietals to choose? What foods pair nicely? What is Cream of Tartar? How was Port discovered? What is Henry the XIII Cognac? Is it really casked in Baccarat Crystal?

So with all of this wouldn’t it be nice to have a place you could easily get great culinary information? Well enough of my talking, my next blog will be about Louis the XIII so click the link to see the video on the art of opening a bottle of wine.

The Art of Opening a Bottle of Wine

Country of Origin Labeling!

The House of Representatives has voted to repeal country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for beef, pork, and chicken.

Texas Republican Rep. Michael Conaway’s Country of Origin Labeling Amendments Act of 2015 passed late Wednesday night by a 300-131 vote.

Conaway introduced the bill on May 18 — the same day the World Trade Organization rejected a U.S. appeal of its decision that COOL unfairly discriminates against meat imports and gives the advantage to domestic meat products.

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photo-us-capitol-building-spring-west-front-dome-under-scaffolding-restoration-image53398765Two days later, the House Agriculture Committee passed the bill by 38-6.

COOL, which went into effect for meat in 2013, require that packaging indicate the country, or countries, where animals were born, raised and slaughtered.

So now we get the message! Americans don’t give a shit! The House of Representatives and other agencies have pretty much put the nail in the coffin! Why should you care where your food comes from? Why does it matter what we put in our bodies? We eat at horrible dining establishments, shovel food down our throats and wonder why we are so fat while we lounge in our comfortable seat, watching television and going to sleep because we don’t exercise! And now? The US Government doesn’t give a rat’s ass where our beef, pork or chicken “Country of Origin” is located! The House of Representatives has voted to repeal country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for beef, pork, and chicken. Texas Republican Rep. Michael Conaway’s Country of Origin Labeling Amendments Act of 2015 passed late Wednesday night by a 300-131 vote. So why should we give a shit where our food is being raised? Our politicians don’t really care and once again it derives from Texas, that Lone Star community of right…. oh, forget it! The point is we are in big trouble in this country if we don’t take the “bull” by the horns and take control of our lives!

So the question is what’s next? As we pulverize the entire food chain it leaves one suspicious to think someone has it out for us! I am not a conspiracist, but I do see a pattern developing. Are we over-populated? Are there just too many human beings on this planet? Could it be possible that a reduction in the number of human souls on this planet needs to implemented. Seriously, we eat horribly, we are either too fat or too skinny, we watch way too much television, we text too much, play lots of video games and the worst part, we socialize on social media providing very little human interaction! So it leaves all you idiots to read posts like this to give you life, some sort of sustenance, since you probably eat crap food and care less where the quality of your food originates! Pathetic! I am sorry if this offends you, actually, no I’m not, but if it riles you, pisses you off, then maybe, just maybe, we will start looking for solutions! That cannot happen while sitting down in your favorite chair, doing nothing but wasting time while the world turns and burns. Pathetic!

May I offer a solution? This may not fit well with you fast food, potato chip eating, smelly body odor people who think the world owes you a favor and gives no care for fellow human beings and the planets overall health, but here I go, like it or not! Still here? Pathetic! Here I go anyway! Shop local! Yes, that’s what I said, shop local! If we as Americans want to preserve any kind of dignity and respect in our culinary lives, then shopping locally is the solution! This is not something new, nor is it for the back to the earth hippy type of lifestyle. This is what our ancestors, our Grandparent, the Founding Fathers based nearly 100% of their diet upon, eating quality meats, fresh produce, newly slain chickens for their meals. So, if you are a true blooded American, and I’m not sure you are, except for the fact you just spout off your loyalty like someone in a trance, yet have no clue to what is right and just, then this may be what you’re looking for in making some positive changes in country and self! My next blog is taking on Monsanto, those assholes!