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NY, CA Raise Minimum Wage to $15/Hour; Cup Noodles Goes Luxe

Six things to know right now

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

It's April Fools' Day, also known as the worst day of the year – unless you're really good at practical jokes. Most food and restaurant-related companies think they're good at practical jokes but they aren't. For a good laugh, turn to chef José Andrés, who is producing a new Spanish hip hop album and, apparently, getting into politics:

In other news, this week two states passed laws to raise minimum wages up to $15 per hour; Wahlburgers plans to eventually serve breakfast; a look at an art exhibit that features the many sides of a frying pan; a crucial Cup Noodle update; and more.

— Both New York and California have passed measures to raise the state mandated minimum wage up to $15 per hour. New York State's new minimum will rise gradually until it hits $15 by either 2018 or 2019 — depending upon the type of business. In California, lawmakers plan to raise the minimum gradually until 2022 when $15 will be locked in for all minimum wage workers.

— This week Mark Wahlberg of movie person fame told Yahoo Finance he has big plans for his family's burger chain. He sees it as more than a side project. To him, it's "a family legacy that will survive beyond his movie career." He also dropped this update: "Eventually we'll be doing breakfast as well. We eventually expect and hope to be the most valuable burger."

[Photo: tktk]

[Photo: Flying Frying Pan-04, 1983, Hitoshi Fugo]

— In fine art news: For 15 years, between 1979 and 1994 artist Hitoshi Fugo photographed a frying pan nearly every day. "Hitoshi Fugo: Flying Frying Pan 1979-1994" — which range from realism to extreme abstraction — is now on view at the Miyako Yoshinaga Gallery in New York City. Unlike similar series today, which dominate on Instagram and Tumblr, Fugo wasn't going for a narrative and didn't want to be confined in terms of time or space. He chose the pan to avoid those notions, and most of his photographs obscure its shape. But, as a utilitarian kitchen object the pan was also near and dear to him. From the NYT: "He used the pan to prepare many meals for his wife and daughter throughout her childhood."

— Award-winning London-based chef Jason Atherton has exited the Singapore dining scene. Just a year ago he was co-owner of three restaurants and two bars in Singapore, but his management company, Unlisted Collection group, says he's moved on to focus on other projects around the globe.

— Cup Noodle is going luxe? According to RocketNews24 the maker of this internationally renowned college dorm room staple meal is offering two new supposedly higher end flavors: "Luxury Thickness Shark Fin Soup Flavor" and "Luxury Broth Softshell Turtle Soup Flavor." While there isn't any actual shark fin (which is illegal to harvest in most of the world) in the shark fin soup flavor, there is something called "softshell turtle powder" in the Turtle Soup Flavor. And... that there is the sound of PETA rounding up the troops.

— Finally, here's the movie poster for the upcoming Jeremiah Tower documentary:

Better picture. I produced a movie!

A photo posted by anthonybourdain (@anthonybourdain) on