There's nothing like well-chilled Champagne to celebrate a major milestone, especially when the achievement is setting a world speed record for reaching the North Pole. Last week, a team of five explorers traveling by wooden dogsleds made it to the pole in just hours less than the 37 days claimed by Robert Peary in 1909, disproving skeptics who have long believed that his journey wasn't possible. The team, which included American guide Matty McNair and British organizer Tom Avery, lugged a bottle of Mumm, along with the rest of their supplies, 475 miles from their starting point at Cape Columbia in Nunavut, Canada. After surviving temperatures as low as -49 degrees Fahrenheit and the hazardous terrain of shifting ice, they raised their countries' flags and popped the Mumm for a toast. We love our bubbly, but under those conditions, we might have opted for hot chocolate.
Numerous pro golfers, from Arnold Palmer to Ernie Els, have started wine labels in recent years. But many people thought that PGA Tour veteran Frank Nobilo already had his own. That prompted Nobilo, one of New Zealand's leading wine producers, to hire Nobilo, a two-time New Zealand PGA Champion, as its brand ambassador in the United States. Now when the Golf Channel commentator isn't out on the greens, Nobilo may be found at tastings pouring reds and whites.
|This Outback hat looks a little screwy for good reason.|
New Yorkers have reason to be proud of their restaurant scene, having once again nearly swept the annual James Beard Awards this week. There were no real surprises, with Danny Meyer--the man behind institutions such as Gramercy Tavern and Union Square Café--earning the Outstanding Restaurateur Award and Mario Batali of Babbo (and a string of other restaurants ending in vowels) taking home the Outstanding Chef Award. Per Se, the Time Warner Center venture from French Laundry chef Thomas Keller, was named the Best New Restaurant, while Karen DeMasco at hotspot Craft was voted the Outstanding Pastry Chef. In the wine categories, Wine Spectator Grand Award-winner Veritas was recognized for Outstanding Wine Service, under the direction of Tim Kopec, and Joseph Bastianich, owner of Italian Wine Merchants and a partner in Batali's restaurants, was chosen as Outstanding Wine and Spirits Professional. Making sure New York's ego wasn't overly inflated, the Outstanding Service Award went to Wolfgang Puck's Spago Beverly Hills, the Outstanding Restaurant Award to the venerable Galatoire's of New Orleans and the Rising Star Chef Award to Christopher Lee of Striped Bass in Philadelphia.
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