food & drink

A crazy week

Politics and the world of wine and food rarely meet, unless it's about duty increases. So the news this week has been abnormal. It started with Donald Trump threatening to postpone his promised financial stimulus package that would avoid 75,000 layoffs in the US airline and restaurant business. The reason? He announced the funding would have to be postponed until after the election, interpreted as: 'If you vote for me and I am re-elected, I will make sure the funds are delivered.' Coercion or what?

Almost as serious (!) is the EU's proposed renaming of the veggie-burger. Under pressure to call things what they really are and not to copy established food identities, a ruling that since it contains no meat it cannot be called a burger. The EU will propose it's rechristened 'veggie disk'.

So back to Trump. Having tweeted repeatedly that all foreign-sourced manufacturing should come back to America, an analysis of the items used by his hotel chain shows them to be sourced almost exclusively from China, whether bathroom fittings or steak knives. But Trump should know that outsourcing is not a guarantee of success.

The catastrophic Trump Vodka was made in Germany and bombed spectacularly, probably because marketing tradition dictates that it is hard to market a product under the name of someone who has never used it. (Trump is teetotal and blames alcohol for his brother's early death.)

Assurances that it would outsell the No 1 brand, Grey Goose, and become the most popular mixer in the USA, were never fulfilled, although it enjoyed some success in Israel because it was unintentionally kosher.