Posts for February 17th 2009
While perusing the massive wine section at Berkeley Bowl, a bottle of Tintero Sori Gramella Moscato d'Asti ($11.99) caught my attention. I've always been a huge fan of Moscato d'Asti, a wine made in Italy's Piedmont region from the fruity, floral Moscato Bianco grape. It falls under the category of a frizzante wine, which is effervescent but has less fizz than typical sparkling wine, with an accompanying sweetness.
This particular wine possesses all the attributes that I love about Moscato d'Asti: It's reasonably priced, not overly bubbly, and, at 5-7 percent alcohol, won't get you too drunk too fast. It's an exceptionally well-balanced yet delicate wine.
The flavor reminds me of peach skins and Osmanthus flowers, and while it's sweet it's not syrupy at all — only refreshing. I can't wait to hoard Sori Gramella for this weekend's Oscars celebration. Have you tried Moscato d'Asti?
I wish there were a dozen of me so I could be at every single one of this week's events. Case in point: I'm going to have to choose between the Grilled Cheese Invitational and a clam chowder cook-off. Life is full of the most difficult decisions! Meanwhile, Orange County is gearing up for its restaurant week, and, on the opposite coast, Miami will soon be abuzz with its South Beach Wine and Food Festival.
Are you going to any of this week's events? If we've left anything off our list, feel free to chime in below!
- Indio, CA: Riverside County Fair — Feb. 17-22
- New York, NY: NYC Restaurant Week — Feb. 17-22
- San Francisco, CA: Around the World in 80 Sips — Feb. 19
- Miami, FL: South Beach Wine and Food Festival — Feb. 19-22
- San Antonio, TX: San Antonio Wine Festival — Feb. 20-22
- Chicago, IL: Chicago Restaurant Week — Feb. 20-27
- San Francisco, CA: POP Party — Feb. 21
- Santa Cruz, CA: Santa Cruz Clam Chowder Cook-off and Festival — Feb. 21
- San Francisco, CA: NorCal Grilled Cheese Invitational — Feb. 21
- Orange County, CA: Orange County Restaurant Week — Feb. 22-28
Although they may have differing opinions on Padma and Tom, each week when I interview the eliminated Top Chef contestants, one thing remains constant. Everyone says that no matter how much they may have prepared, the competition is more challenging than they expected. Can you imagine how difficult it must be to compete on Top Chef? What do you think would be the most demanding part of participating?
Everyone's talking about Barbie's® first-ever runway show in New York's Bryant Park. Check out our slideshow to see all the fabulous looks from 50 top designers. You will be tickled pink all over again!
At T.G.I. Friday's, the bill may not be up to you, but the restaurant wants to remind you that it's thinking of you during tough times. The national chain has a new promotion in which customers buy one entrée and get a dish of equal or lesser value for free. "Our guests want more Friday's year-round because of the great food, a fun atmosphere and incredible value," said Andrew Jordan, T.G.I. Friday's senior vice president of marketing. "With our Buy One, Get One free offer, we’ll give them twice as many Friday's."
To get in on the promotion (note: only one offer applies per party), which lasts until the first of March, simply bring in this coupon.
It's been a while since I've been to a T.G.I. Friday's, but this may be the incentive I need to finally try the restaurant's Ultimate Recipe Showdown menu. Will you put this coupon to good use?
If you live in the Boston area you may be familiar with Chef Michael Schlow.
A James Beard Award-winning chef, Schlow owns three wildly successful restaurants: Radius, Via Matta, and Great Bay. Although I've never dined at one of Schlow's establishments, I recently got my hands on his cookbook, It's About Time ($24.71).
Different from most cookbooks, this tome is not separated into courses. Instead each section represents a specific time — be it a cooking time (Time to Eat and Now) or a time in one's life (Time to Celebrate). To find out more about this excellent cookbook, read more
Every February I invite an intimate group of friends over to watch the Academy Awards. In 2007 I cooked a menu that featured Wolfgang Puck's recipes. In 2008, I made a smorgasbord of elegant, award-winning appetizers. This year I've decided to serve a buffet of classic movie foods. However, I'll give the concession-stand snacks the star treatment. Instead of offering guests boring old popcorn, toss fresh cooked kernels with truffle oil, Parmesan cheese, and black pepper. Wrap mini sausages in puff pastry for an upscale take on the ordinary hot dog. Serve with a trio of dipping sauces — honey mustard, chipotle ketchup, and garlic mayo.
Trade in the theater's bright orange nacho cheese and stale tortilla chips for a creamy goat cheese béchamel and blue corn chip variation. Not into the Oscars? These recipes would be excellent at any movie-watching shindig. To add them to your recipe collection, read more
- Try your hand at making a New Orleans King Cake.
- Try your hand at making a New Orleans King Cake. — Chow
- Ten cocktail recipes created specifically for the Oscars. — Gourmet
- It's a dirty job, but someone's got to do it: adventures in oven cleaning. — The Kitchn
- Think outside the appetizer box with savory blue cheesecake. — Al Dente
- Should you be forced to tip on a restaurant's coat check?— Serious Eats
- Learn how to make the perfect soufflé. — The Epi-Log
While everyone has purchased a rotisserie chicken or cooked chicken breasts from a market's deli, few people have applied the same technique to salmon fillets. However, most supermarkets carry a section with premade foods where cooked salmon is a staple.
Use the salmon to make this healthy meal in minutes. The flaked salmon is combined with a warm shallot buttermilk sauce before being placed on a bed of crisp arugula and crunchy potatoes. Sound enticing? Wait till you see the recipe: read more