Five Things You’ll Learn
1. The Pride of Kalamazoo: According to urban legend, at the end of the 19th century, boys in Kalamazoo, Michigan, would gift their dates bouquets of celery instead of roses. The city was once known as the world celery capital, and its celery was considered the finest by fancy restaurants all over the country.
2. The Proof Is in the Price: Celery was the third most popular menu item in New York City restaurants in the late 19th century, and in some instances, it cost more than caviar.
3. The Rich Past of Celery Servingware: Serving your celery in a celery vase—yes, a celery vase—was viewed as a status symbol until it was renounced as “too messy” by the fashionable upper class and replaced by celery dishes.
4. Celery Soda, Then and Now: And how its story is steeped in America’s development and social class.
5. The Future of Celery: One man’s plan to get consumers as excited about heirloom celery as they get about heirloom tomatoes, and one restaurant’s dogged quest to make celery leaves the star ingredient on their cocktail list using “nitro-muddling.”