Chow Bella's 9 Most Dramatic Moments in the National Food (and Drink) Scene in 2012

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Aaron Tam/AFP via Getty Images
Robert Parker
Mega Wine Guru Robert Parker Steps Down as Editor in Chief of the Wine Advocate

The wine world was rocked on December 10, when its most influential wine critic announced he was stepping down from his position as editor in chief for the bi-monthly newsletter he started in 1978. For over 30 years, Parker not only drove demand and pricing for wines all around the world but also influenced how wines were made. High scores from Parker (who preferred the lush, in-your-face wines typical of California) meant financial success for the wineries he touted. The Wall Street Journal reported he's assigned his editorial duties to Asia-based correspondent Lisa Perrotti-Brown and that he's selling a substantial interest in TWA to Singapore-based investors. And for the first time, the newsletter will accept advertising. Nobody knows what this all means yet and if the newsletter (boasting 50,00 + subscribers) can be as successful (or as ethical) without Parker in a day-to-day role.

Teenage Girl Petitions Hasbro for Gender Neutral Easy-Bake Oven

While 13-year-old McKenna Pope was making her list and checking it twice, she made a disappointing discovery: the Hasbro Easy-Bake Oven she wanted to get her four-year-old brother for Christmas only came in girlie colors (pink and purple) and the packaging only featured girls -- not girls and boys -- cooking. She set up a petition on, gathered over 40,000 signatures (as well as the support of high-profile chefs such as Bobby Flay) and took her to polite, eloquently written case to Hasbro, arguing that their packaging promotes gender roles. Pope met with Hasbro earlier this week, and Hasbro just announced they're rolling out a black-and-silver prototype in February. Here's the story we ran last week, showing two chefs and their stance on gender-neutral cooking toys.

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