'science' on Serious Eats

The Science of Fat-Washing Cocktails

Fat-washing: it might sound like a process for getting rid of bacon grease on your shirt, but it's actually a clever cocktail technique that adds savory flavor to spirits. We take a look at the science of what's actually going on with this tasty trick. More

The History and Science of Frozen Slushie Cocktails

Every time I've come across premade frozen-cocktails-in-a-bag at the grocery store, I can't help but wonder if there might be something worth drinking inside. I was curious about how these cocktail-pouches came to be, and whether they might provide some hints for making better creamy-textured frozen drinks at home. More

Science! This is Why Hot Water Can Freeze Faster Than Cold Water

You've probably heard before that hot water freezes faster than cold water—that's the Mpemba effect. It's the kind of thing that has the ring of an old wives' tale, but it's true. Last week researchers at the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore proposed what might be the most plausible explanation yet for why the Mpemba effect occurs. More

What Makes a Great Mocktail?

Wouldn't it be great if you could sip a mocktail that looks and tastes just like the real thing? Today, we'll look at the science of how alcohol actually tastes, how to mimic it, and whether this is a good idea. More

Lab-grown Burger Coming This October

The potential lab-grown burger that was in the news last November is back in the news after Dr. Mark Post—head of physiology at Maastricht University in the Netherlands and head of the team making the lab-grown meat—announced this past Sunday at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Vancouver that he expects to have a complete lab-grown burger this October. The price tag: about €250,000 ($331,375). More

Lab-Grown Burger Coming Soon?

The first lab-grown hamburger is coming as soon as next August or September for about €250,000 ($337,825), reports Reuters. "The first one will be a proof of concept, just to show it's possible," says Mark Post, vascular biologist at the University of Maastricht in the Netherlands. The lab-grown burger will be made of thousands of muscle-like strips—each measuring about 2.5 by 1 centimeter with a nearly see-through thickness—stacked with strips of lab-grown fat. Post grows the muscle strips from the stem cells of leftover animal material from slaughterhouses, giving them nutrients and exercising them by stretching them "between Velcro tabs in the Petri dish to provide resistance and help them build up strength." More

The Brazil Nut Effect: Why They Always Sit on Top of Smaller Nuts, Explained

We're taught from an early age that heavy things, which are usually big things, sink to the bottom. Yet whenever you open a can of mixed nuts, the Brazil nuts always seem to be sitting on top, as if to say, "hello there—you didn't think the biggest nuts in the can would be sitting on top of smaller nuts waiting to greet you, challenging your concept of physics and the natural world, wouldn't you?" (Or is that voice just in my head?) Science has the answer. More

Would You Eat Lab Engineered Meat?

In this week's New Yorker there's a piece called "Test-Tube Burgers" on the controversial work being done to engineer meat in a lab. The stem-cell biologists, tissue engineers, animal rights activists, and environmentalists involved all share one goal: to grow muscle without the use of animals, and produce it in quantities that are large enough to sell in grocery stores. Would eating it give you the heebie-jeebies? Or does thinking about the factory farm slaughterhouses freak you out more? More

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