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Bite Off More Than You Can Chew At China's Mineral Banquet

You can't fault the “cooks” at the Stone Museum in Liuzhou (located in southern China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region) for laying out a mouth-watering spread. Don't try to sneak a snack, however, unless you've got plenty of dental insurance.

Petrified pasta, stone-ground rolls and slabs of well-marbled beef – made with real marble – were specially selected by museum staff and artistically arranged on ceramic platters. Don't bother bringing a knife... to cut this calcified cuisine you'll need a hacksaw. And you thought your spouse's dinners were tough!

Alas, this mineral-rich buffet was merely a feast for the eyes, not the palate. The region around Liuzhou has long been famed for its beautiful and bizarre stones, and the December 6th, 2010 exhibition provided an innovative way for the city's Stone Museum to show off their stock.

Liuzhou is known as “the capital of peculiar stones” and this ancient city of 4 million is home to an estimated 100,000 amateur rockhounds and stone aficionados. Just this past October, the 6th Liuzhou International Fantastic Stone Festival was held - not exactly a Rock Concert but as Dylan says, "Everybody must get stoned!"

As for the exhibition of all-natural, ultra-high fiber faux foods, let's just say it got off to a rocky start AND finish – which is exactly what museum officials had planned. (via People's Daily and Chinanews.com)

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Steve Levenstein