Common Good Grant Helps Fund Local Gardening Initiative (Coastal Journal)

The Common Good Grant program, administered by the Joseph McKeen Center for the Common Good, has provided some of the funding for a gardening initiative in nearby Bath. It’s designed to help elderly and disabled people grow more of their own food, reports the Coastal Journal.

Standing Joe: William Doak ’17 Brews Trilingual Honors Thesis from Chairless Italian Cafés

William Doak ’17 with Massimiliano Rosati from Gran’ Caffè Gambrinus in Naples

It was an observation made when passing through the Bologna airport — that its café, oddly, had no chairs — that led William Doak ’17 to write a trilingual 146-page honors thesis in English, Italian, and French.

The chairless café piqued Doak’s curiosity about why people stand up to drink their coffee in Italy, rather than sitting down as they do in neighboring France. That question led to a research project that covers the cultural history of French and Italian cafés, and how coffee drinking is tied up with modernism, industry, and the national identities of the two countries.

Read the story in Bowdoin News.

The Mold Transforming Japanese Cuisine (Atlantic)

Koji is a fungus found in soy sauce, miso, and sake. The mold, known for its toxicity, was domesticated by humans about 9,000 years ago. Though its closest relatives can be deadly, koji is nontoxic.

Originally used for alcohol, the fungus has been implemented by Asian chefs for centuries. Read more in The Atlantic.

Something’s Brewing: The Microbrew Capital of the US, and The Hot Spot Near You (The Pudding)

A cold one is a hot commodity these days. Microbrews are more popular than ever, and various regions across the land seem to lay claim to a “microbrew capital of the country.”

Portland, Maine, by the way, happens to land ninth on a list compiled by The Pudding. See who tops the list and find out where the hops are popping in your neck of the woods.