Read my A to Z Reflections:

The Madlab Post is Home to the weekly Monday Movie Meme: Signup!

Are you ready for the best blog hop on the net? #atozchallenge

*All 31 "Prompts" might not be featured on this blog; I have my own schedule and topics to adhere to.

Your ad could be here, right now.

Entries in Food (7)


German Food Truck The Flying Deutschman Shares Rolling Movie Theater Plans for Philly and shnit Film Festival Picks 

Made in Switzerland, the shnit International short Film Festival selection BON VOYAGE is about a couple on a holiday cruise and their encounter with a sinking refugee boat.Did you know the 14th Annual shnit International Short Film Festival is the largest of its kind, taking place simultaneously in multiple cities across five continents? On Saturday October 15, Philadelphia is joining this global community of movie buffs who are coming together to share the excitement of world cinema.

Head chef Stirling Sowerby at The Flying Deutschman, a German food truck calling on your vote to become a finalist in the 2016 Brassys (Square’s Small Business Awards celebrating the boldest businesses in America) recently took a moment with me to discuss his transnational encounters and most anticipated films in the shnit CINEMAS lineup for Philly.

During our Q&A it quickly became clear that Sowerby’s extensive travels demonstrate the shnit International Short Film Festival’s mission of embracing diversity and exchange between creators and audiences from different cultures and backgrounds. “I have been in England, Germany, France, Austria, Switzerland, Holland, Belgium, France, Spain, Turkey, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Bahamas (that's where I met my wife); I traveled almost all states up and down the east coast and some of the central states; Mexico, I think that's it” he says. 

The Flying Deutschman and his main crew are in the running to become one of 35 finalists in the next round of the Brassys, in the food and drink category.Honored as a local Vendys finalist, The Flying Deutschman shared that he would also love to hike up to Machu Picchu in Peru, Tibet, and “experience the equator somewhere in Africa.” As a presenter for one of the few shnit Film Festival screenings in the United States, I not only have the pleasure of bringing epic films to the city, but also making it possible for Philly to have a voice in picking the winner of the shnit CINEMAS Audience Award.

Here is a further sneak peek into the films you can expect to see at this year’s show, some of the innovations that illustrate why you should tell everyone you know to vote for The Flying Deutschman in the Brassys, and more from the chef who has successfully carved out a space for himself in the culinary arts world.

Madlab Post: What kind of adventures did you experience during your time abroad?

The Flying Deutschman: There are many, how about when I was in the Bahamas where I met my wife.  It was me and 3 friends of which one of them was a pilot.  So we had this rental plane and planned to fly from Miami to Nassau; the problem was that with 4 of us and the luggage we were too heavy. So Frank, the pilot, flew me and the luggage over to Nassau with the mission to find a hotel for us while he would fly back and pick up the other 2. This was in 1989, so contacting people was still a little more complicated and as hours passed and no one showed up at the airport I got nervous and asked someone about my friend; he had left Miami but had not landed yet.

So they look into it and tell me that they had no idea where he was and that he had declared an emergency 20 minutes into the flight; that's all they had. Let's just say now I was really nervous -- all kind of scenarios went through my head. It took until 10pm that night ‘til Frank finally got a hold of me through the number I had left at the Airport and he told me that he had a Generator problem and returned back to Miami to get it fixed. Somehow the tower in Miami forgot to log that and that's what caused all that confusion. So those were some hell-raising hours thinking I had lost 3 of my friends.

MP: Is film a universal language?

TFD: Pictures speak a thousand words. I think that says it all.

MP: How many languages do you speak?

TFD: I speak German and English. I would like to become better at Spanish.

Made in Germany and Austria, the shnit International Short Film Festival selection DIE BADEWANNE (The Bathtub) is about three brothers trying to re-enact a childhood photo to prepare an original present for their mother.MP: Which film in the shnit Cinemas lineup for Philly interests you the most?

TFD: Die Badewanne (The Bathtub), for obvious reasons, but also the Swiss one – Bon Voyage,  I think the subject matter is very timely and deals with the biggest problem The European Union has faced in a long time, far greater than anything they have seen since WW2.

MP:  What is one of your favorite foods from another country or culture?

TFD: Thai by far; the food is clear, fresh, crisp, light and healthy.

MP: Can you describe one of your favorite foreign movies?

TFD: I know I saw many movies with subtitles, but I just can't recall them anymore. I keep thinking of Metropolis by Fritz Lang but to me that's not really foreign.

MP: What inspired you to want to add giant LED screens to The Flying Deutschman and what kind of movies are you planning to show on your food truck?

TFD: Turning the truck into a rolling Movie Theater is another way to create revenue. I am open minded as far as movie selection goes. I would start with old music movies….Stop Making Sense by Talking Heads,  Live in Pompeii by Pink Floyd,  She's the Boss by Mike Jagger, Help by the Beatles, Tommy by The Who, Breaking Glass by Hazel O'Connor. 

I would surely be on board for showing movies from independent filmmakers; it's publicity, so hell yeah. I am open minded regarding genres. The whole thing is new and I have to see what will and will not work. 

Thanks a bunch to The Flying Deutschman for discussing shnit short films, food and culture with me! Cinema fans can GET TICKETS to see some of the world’s best films.

The Flying Deutschman menu. Jaeger Schnitzel with Dumplings and Red Cabbage Foodie fans in South Philly can find The Flying Deutschman at The Navy Yard this month:

  • Tuesday October 18th 11am – 2pm
  • Thursday October 27th 11am – 2pm

*The Flying Deutschman might also run a solo down at Clark Park on short notice. Get updates on the truck's Facebook page.

Which country do YOU think produces the best films?

What is YOUR favorite food from another country or culture?

Did YOU vote for The Flying Deutschman yet?


Brandon Questions whether Quinn Microwave Popcorn is any Good

Vinyl hijackers known as the Popcorn Snobs are catching up on their theme, ‘The Taking of April A-Z,’ as they run this blog for the next 10 (or so) days.

Hey Everyone, it’s Brandon and I’m back to find out if any of you lovelies have ever eaten Quinn popcorn. Me and the gang remember Nicole checking out the company’s microwaveable selection a few years ago when she was doing that American Red Cross thing but this snack brand never made its way onto her grocery list.

The Quinn brand prides itself on being a healthier alternative to the microwave popcorn options we’re used to seeing on the store shelves. It’s said to be organic, made with real butter, no GMOs and blah, blah, blah. That’s all well and good but at $5 per box of two…yes, TWO measly bags of this snack, it better be some delicious freakin’ popcorn if I’m going to make it a part of my next Netflix movie night!

Then there’s the issue of choosing which of their popcorn flavors may be worth the splurge:

  • Butter & Sea Salt
  • Vermont Maple & Sea Salt
  • Parmesan & Rosemary
  • White Cheddar

Have YOU ever eaten Quinn popcorn? Which flavors would YOU recommend for a taste test?


Kesha’s Crisis: The Movie Theater Popcorn and Candy Combo 

‘The Taking of April A-Z’ is in full swing, as a group of vinyl hijackers (known as the Popcorn Snobs) have taken over this blog for the next 24 days. Strap yourself in and sit tight. It’s going to be a wild ride!

Hi everyone my name is Kesha West and I’m an alcoholic. Just kidding. Well, about the alcoholism, that is. I do have an addiction….to junk food. So it’s no surprise that going to the movies is a huge treat for me. The popcorn. The hot dogs. The nachos. The ice cream and all those other sweets. I can never get enough of them!

It’s become so bad that you could probably build a small chain of cinemas with the amount of money I’ve spent at the concessions counter. I knew something had to be done about my eating and spending habits when my boyfriend gave me an ultimatum – either skip the snacks altogether or we would have to share one order of popcorn. Sure, these options sound easy enough but they’re impossible for a junk food junkie like me to follow when you consider the following factors:

1. There’s no way in hell I’m giving up snacks! I mean, the whole point of going to the movie theater is munching on all of the yummy fare available on the menu. Watching the movie is just icing on the cake! (see what I did there? ;))

2. He likes his popcorn served without butter. That’s a deal breaker for me and my taste buds! Not only do I like my popcorn topped with butter, I need a sweet and salty mix of popcorn and candy. Specifically peanut M&Ms, which makes me classy, fun and in tune with the universe (at least, by Huffington Post’s standards). The combination of buttery popcorn, chocolate, candy coatings and peanuts hits the spot. Every. Single. Time.

So, I found a solution that would suit the needs of our budget without having to sacrifice my cravings for sweet and salty goodness. I buy candy in advance at retail price which is between $0.79-$0.99 compared to $4, give or take, at the theater. I later sneak the candy into the cinema, buy some popcorn, and then mix it together while the previews are playing. The boyfriend and I save money on snacks, the movie theater still makes a profit from the popcorn sales and I still get to have my combo and eat it too. Everybody wins.

Are there any other solutions that YOU would recommend to address this popcorn and candy crisis?

What is YOU favorite junk food item?


Kesha West is a popcorn snob trying to figure out why experimental films are so underrated. She enjoys DIY projects, trick-or-treating, and hanging out with friends.