The Year That Was: The Top 10 Posts on Serious Eats of 2008

You know, it's the day after Christmas. Most people are out exchanging gifts or still visiting with family. And it's a Friday. Both good reasons for taking it easy today. So we're going to do some navel-gazing with a look back at the Top 10 posts across the Serious Eats family of sites. Seems fitting to begin with the main Serious Eats site. These are the Top 10 posts on Serious Eats in terms of pageviews. Think of it as a "people's choice," whereby the people voted with their clicks. —Adam

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1. Snack to the Future: The Col-Pop, an All-in-One Chicken Nugget and Soda Cup: The Colpop
The most amazing fast-food packaging invention ever takes the hill and rules the roost—spurred on by numerous links from gadget blogs, Digg, and everywhere else on the web. Our No. 1 post of the year came early—in February. How it came about: We wanted to order fried chicken for lunch at the office, grabbed the BBQ Chicken menu, and began writing down our order. When Raphael got his hands on the menu, he spotted the Colpop in a tiny picture at the bottom. We knew we had to order it. We documented it, blogged it, and the Colpop quickly made its way around the web and became something of a fast-food-packaging phenom. We thought we'd see more dual-pack snacks come around the bend in 2008, but, sadly, that hasn't been the case.

2. America's Regional Hot Dog Styles
On the heels of Slice's regional pizza style glossary, Ed Levine suggested the humble hot dog be documented as thoroughly. Our correspondent Jenn Sit was up to the task and created a guide to red hots, white hots, deep-fried dogs, Chicago dogs, you name it. Did we catch your area's hot dog? Find out.

3. 'Palin Syrah' Wine Drops in Sales After Sarah Palin Veep Pick
Remember all those stories about Palin Syrah wine and how its sales were down—and then up? You heard it here first. No, seriously. Let it be known that Serious Eats correspondent Amy Monroe broke the news here and that the blogosphere and then the mainstream media then ran with it. Cheers!

4. Top 10 Awesome Nostalgic Foods We Want Back
We love getting into the Talk threads on Serious Eats. Inspired by a particularly backward-looking thread in April, Erin Zimmer rounded up your favorite nostalgic foods that you wised were still around. Seriously, people—Crystal Pepsi?

5. Essentials: Roast Chicken
This was sort of a sleeper hit. From our Serious Eats Essential Recipes library, roast chicken comes in at the midpoint of this list. It's not a flashy recipe, but it's tried and true, and my guess is that a lot of people are looking for a simple and sound way to cook this bird. Sometimes slow and steady wins the race.

After the jump, the rest of this year's top posts, plus a bonus No. 11.

6. Top Ten Worst Halloween 'Candies'
Another Erin Zimmer Top 10 list. And this one was awesome. Erin excoriated the crappy candies that nobody wants to see in their candy bag. But wait! Lots of folks defended the candies Erin dissed. And many more added other nasty treats to the roster. Think of it as a fun and useful guide to not getting your house tee-peed.

7. How to Make Spam Musubi
For the longest time, Robyn Lee here was coming into the office with Spam musubi. "Where'd you get that?" we'd ask. "My friend Kathy and I made it," Robyn would reply. We kept bugging her to get Kathy to do a how-to, and this is the result. The tutorial is better than I ever could have imagined. I mean, what other method of Spam prep actually has you craving this strange meat?

8. Michael Pollan's Twelve Commandments for Serious Eaters: Can You Live By Them?
One morning in January, Ed got up and realized that a number of people were taking Michael Pollan to task for some of his 12 Commandments of Food. Trouble was, nobody up to this point had ever listed them all in one blog post. A simple idea, but one that a lot of people were interested in. The quick summary piqued my interest enough that I bought the book. Good read.

9. Cheap(er) Drinks: Tips For Enjoyable Drinking Without Going Broke
Well ahead of the economic crash later in the year, our cocktail man, Paul Clarke, had hit upon a winning strategy for an awesome cocktail blog post—how to drink well without going broke. "Discover rum," "embrace the cocktail," and "change spirits" were among his bits of advice. Serious eaters chimed in with other ways, too.

10. A Red Velvet Affair
Amanda Clarke's baking posts are among my favorite pieces in any given week, so I was happy to see her red velvet cake recipe round out the top 10 this year. Amanda's recipes and methods are well-researched, insightful, and backed up through lots of trial and error in the kitchen. This one is no different.

Bonus 11th Top 10 Pick

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Photograph taken by Gwen Turner-Juarez

This turtle eating a strawberry was a weirdly popular post on Serious Eats. It came in at No. 11, but I wanted to give it a shout out just to illustrate the weird, wacky, only marginally food-related stuff that brightens our day and, apparently, yours.

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