Can 5,000 Frenchmen, all chefs and all members of the formidable La Societe des Cuisiniers de Paris, be wrong? Could be, writes Gourmet Robert Courtine in Paris' influential Le Monde. "Chefs and those who pride themselves on a knowledge of gastronomy will be up in arms," M. Courtine admits, but his shattering discovery is simply this: the best food is cold food.
" 'Hot food gives bulk, flesh and increases secretions,' " wrote Courtine, quoting a tract on cattle breeding. "'Cold food gives endurance and energy...and is suitable for working animals.' Why should man, considered as an animal, be any different from the others?"
Such heresy will stir the wrath of chefs, said Courtine, because "Cold food cannot stand up to mediocrity. An egg which is not of the first freshness would be tasted in a cold preparation." Is it not possible, Courtine needled, that great chefs prefer hot foods because they are merely lazy?
Courtine was not content to let the matter rest there. Not only should food be served cold, he said, but so, indeed, should red table wine. "Ask restaurateurs to put a bottle of red wine on ice, and they'll think you're crazy," he wrote. But the fact is that while room temperature was fine for wine in the days before central heating, room temperature now is far too hot. "Today," he concluded with a flourish, "we stupidly heat wine until it is undrinkable."
Twenty-three finalists—three of them women—puffed through the pipe-smoking championships of the world in Lancaster, Pa. last week, an event in which each contestant was given a pipeful of tobacco and a single match. The object: to keep sending up smoke as long as possible.
Ann Busselle of New York had tough luck at the start; she broke her match. Defending Champion Howard Resch of Flint, Mich, got overanxious, puffed himself out in 34 minutes 10 seconds. Edna Bohrer of Milwaukee, who takes off her shoes when she smokes, faded at 59 minutes 35 seconds. The winner was Richard Austin, also of Flint, who managed to make his 3.3 grams of tobacco last 85 minutes 10 seconds, thereby proving—well, what?
Australia's touring tennis stars have long been standoffish to their public. Just how standoffish was made clear again the other day at the Eastern Grass Court championships in South Orange, N.J. Tournament officials informed reporters that all interviews, no matter how informal, would have to be "cleared" through Aussie Team Captain Adrian Quist. "They're a strange breed of cats," muttered one official, "almost like the Russians. Nobody can say anything without Quist's O.K."