Following the months of buildup that greet any endeavor remotely related to Momofuku, Lucky Peach, the quarterly magazine from David Chang, Peter Meehan, and McSweeney’s, is now available at bookstores and newsstands.
As previously mentioned, the debut issue is dedicated entirely to ramen. It features Chang and Meehan’s account of their recent trip to Japan; John T. Edge’s reflections on ya ka mein, a New Orleans specialty; Harold McGee’s explanation of the science behind MSG headaches and alkaline noodles; and an instant-ramen taste test with Ruth Reichl. And in addition to recipes from Chang, the Torrisi dudes, and Wylie Dufresne, Anthony Bourdain offers his thoughts on The Ramen Girl, and talks at some length with Dufresne and Chang about mediocrity.
“Why does everyone want Parmesan cheese shaken out of a Kraft container?” asks Chang. “People buy that Parmesan cheese in that little shaker because that’s what they want,” answers Bourdain. “If you gave them the real thing, they wouldn’t recognize it. They might even punish you for it.”
In Issue 2, incidentally, we have it on good authority that David Chang will be crucified for all of our sins.