Friday, November 14, 2008

Atlanta Community Food Bank Roasts Four Atlanta Restaurant Legends on Nov.17

“A Legendary Roast” honors four men who have made innovative and enduring marks on the Atlanta restaurant scene over the years: Pano Karatassos, Bob Amick, Tom Catherall and George McKerrow, Jr. Howard Halpern, Chairman of Halperns’ Purveyors of Steak and Seafood will take the lead by roasting Pano Karatassos.

Start the event, which goes from 6-10:30 p.m., with a drink at the cocktail reception. Later, guests will have the chance to enjoy a three-course dinner prepared by well-known chefs Peter Kaiser, Carvel Gould, Jamie Adams, and Jonathan St. Hilaire. End the night with something sweet to balance out the roast by attending the dessert reception.

Hosting the roasting is the Atlanta Community Food Bank at its warehouse located at 732 Joseph E. Lowery Boulevard, NW. The event benefits the Atlanta Community Food Bank, which provides meals for the elderly, shut-ins, and others in need of assistance in Atlanta.

Taster tickets are $300 each, Foodie tickets are $500 each, and both may be purchased online and by calling 678-538-9000.

Eating Regionally

Each month, Portofino features a special a la carte dinner menu that focuses on a specific region of Italy. This month’s regional menu spotlights “Piemonte,” the nation’s Piedmont region, and the menu offers appetizers, entrees, desserts and wines all inspired by the regional cooking of Piedmont.The culinary trip starts with an appetizer such as Bagna Caudo – tempura-fried vegetables topped with a sauce blend of anchovy, garlic and olive oil. Entrée choices include Carbonada – a rich, hearty veal stew scented with truffles over potato hash. Land in the sweet spot at meal’s end with mocha cinnamon bonet – a flan custard dessert with crushed Amaretto cookies and Amaretto di Saronno. Specially selected wines from the Piedmont region include the crisp, white Pio Cesare, Cortese di Gavi, ’07; Fontanafredda, Barbera, Briccotondo, ’06 with its hints of pepper and chocolate; and Pinot Noir-like Massolino, Langhe Nebbiolo, ’04.

I haven't made it in to taste this month's menu yet, but I was in recently and had a bruschetta appetizer topped with braised short ribs, creme faiche and what I think was a pesto. Oh my deliciousness, it was can-not-stop-eating-this-just-box-up-my-entree-because-I'm-so-full good. I'm looking forward to seeing if this menu lives up to my now very high expectations.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Field of Greens Festival at Whippoorwill Hollow Organic Farm

What better way to enjoy this wonderful fall weather than at Whippoorwill Hollow Farm at the Field of Greens festival, 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Saturday, November 15. Envision 74 acres lush with organic greens just east of Atlanta. Enjoy locally grown chow demoed by chefs from Woodfire Grill and other Atlanta farm-to-table restaurants, green-themed booths on recycling, clean energy and more, pony rides, raffles, arts and crafts, face-painting and a farmers’ market.
Cost is $3 for adults or FREE if you buy a food ticket ($10 per person; $20 per family). Free for children under 12 years old. All proceeds benefit Georgia’s local organic farming community and Slow Food Atlanta.
Whippoorwill Hollow Organic Farm is 35 miles east of Atlanta in Walnut Grove; 678-625-3272.

Before You Bail Out on Lunch or Dinner, Review the Opentable Appetite Stimulus Plan for November 17-21

So we all know that times are tough and though we may disagree on the reasons why, all parties can agree that the OpenTable Appetite Stimulus Plan, in effect November 17-21, is a terrific value now with dining point benefits that extend into the future. Ask for the special three-course menus at top restaurants then enjoy your meal for just $35 at dinner and $24 at lunch (per person, excluding beverage, tax and gratuity). Additionally, you'll receive 200 Dining Rewards Points for every Appetite Stimulus Plan reservation that you honor! OpenTable rewards members with points, redeemable for dining cheques, for making and honoring reservations. Some of our favorite Appetite Stimulus Plan participants are Dogwood, Eclipse di Luna, South City Kitchen Vinings, and Woodfire Grill. Under the OpenTable Appetite Stimulus Plan, you'll enjoy not only specially priced, three- course menus at these restaurants and others, but you'll also earn double Dining Rewards Points when you book through OpenTable. Points add up quickly and can be redeemed for OpenTable dining checks to be redeemed at OpenTable restaurants.

Sara in the City: West Scrambled Eggs

I'm loving the Westside resurgence - great interior design and art stores, trendy boutiques and unique loft living spaces are popping up all over the area. And the revitalization doesn't stop with shopping and housing - Some of the best restaurants in town, including acclaimed Bacchanalia, The Real Chow Baby and my personal faves Figo and Taqueria del Sol, are located on the west side of town.

So when my beau and I went looking for a great breakfast, we traveled westward towards West Egg Cafe. Launched in 2004 by a "recovering attorney," West Egg is the perfect mixture of new culture and down home cuisine. A bakery, coffee house and restaurant all in one, the cafe displays original artwork and was voted "Best Breakfast" and "Friendliest Wait Staff" by Creative Loafing and Taste of Atlanta, respectively.

The wait was long, but when you're the Best Breakfast in town, that's not a surprise. Luckily, we got bottomless cups of coffee to sustain us til were seated. When it came time to order, I decided on the Peachtree Platter, a unique take on the bacon and eggs breakfast. Scrambled eggs were complimented by a fresh biscuit, fried green tomatoes, pimento cheese grits (they found a way to make grits more Southern) and a little slice of heaven on earth, brown sugared bacon.

My beau, perfering a simpler meal merely told the waitress he wanted "standard bacon, eggs, biscuit." Living up the "Friendliest Wait Staff" title, she knew exactly what he needed, "You want the blue plate with grits," and served up a great, homemade breakfast with extra, extra cheese on his eggs. (Just the way he likes it!)

The bill hit the spot too - at under $20 for two, this breakfast should also be named the "Best Steal" in town!

Visit West Egg Cafe seven days a week, from 7 a.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. on weekends to 4 p.m. every day.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

1st Annual Midtown International Wine Crawl Set For Saturday, November 15

I always complain that there’s not enough time in the day to hang out with my friends and get the amount of exercise a woman, ahem, my age, needs to maintain her girlish figure. Someone at must have heard my rants, because this weekend, they are creating an opportunity to combine one of my favorite pastimes (hanging with my friends) with one of my least favorite (exercising) – well, sort of.

Saturday, at the first the 1st Annual Midtown International Wine Crawl, walk from restaurant to restaurant to enjoy wine and/or beer and food specials, including $5 glasses of red and white wines from West Coast wineries at Marlow’s Tavern - Midtown. Tickets are $5 in advance, $10 at the door. Buy tickets online or register at Eno Restaurant & Wine Bar from 1:30-5 p.m. on November 15. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Small Dog Rescue and Humane Society.

Marlow’s Tavern - Midtown: 950 West Peachtree Street; 404-815-0323.

The Cook's Warehouse in Midtown Hosts Pre-holiday Sale and Celebration November 14

Two weeks until Thanksgiving then it's a blink until New Year's Day! Perfect timing for the Friday, November 14 pre-holiday sale at The Cook's Warehouse Midtown, featuring discounts on Wusthof Trident knives and 10 percent off on Staub enameled cast iron cookware. Shoppers who stop in between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. that evening can sample wine and appetizers, watch cooking demos by Chef Michael Harnage from Toulouse and Chef Tony Ballester from Morton's Buckhead, and meet Staub Cookware Marketing Manager Matt Mozzer. Harold Wüsthof, seventh generation knife maker and president of Wüsthof Trident knives, will be at the store throughout the day. Add some $5 raffle tickets to your shopping basket for chances to win prizes and help Open Hand.

Open Hand helps people prevent or better manage chronic disease through Comprehensive Nutrition Care, which combines home-delivered meals and nutrition education as a means to reinforce the connection between informed food choices and improved quality of life.

The Cook's Warehouse - Midtown: 549-I Amsterdam Avenue; 404-815-4993.

The Glass and Bottle are Full, but the Price is Half Empty Thursday Nights at Woodfire Grill

Wow. A wine lover's wish come true. A restaurant with an amazing wine list is offering the deal of our dreams! The entire vast wine list, representing 11 different countries. By the glass, by the bottle. All, half off on Thursday nights in November and December at Woodfire Grill. Now, there's a pre-holiday gift that will ensure even Scrooges will see the world through a rosy glass...or white...or red. Woodfire Grill fans know Chef Kevin Gillespie's menu changes with the harvest. Same goes for the wines as Woodfire Grill is constantly bringing in the best new releases! Open for dinner Monday through Saturday at 5:30 p.m. Woodfire Grill: 1782 Cheshire Bridge Road; 404-347-9055.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

DailyCandy Definition - One Word, Two Meanings

First glance has you thinking this has something to do with your email inbox. Not quite. Remember, we talk about food and drinks here and so is The DailyCandy Lexicon in addressing the characteristics of a high-end and lower-end spammelier.

Spammelier: n. 1. a sommelier who gives you too many choices. 2. Someone who’s an expert on canned meats.

Splurge: Her head was spinning from the long list of wines the spammelier had just reeled off…maybe she’d just stick with the house wine.

Budget: As they stood facing the long aisle of canned meats, poultry and fish, they wished the store’s personal shopper spammelier was not tied up with another customer.

Save a few dollars and eat at Dogwood!

Monday through Friday after 8 p.m. Dogwood is offering an appetizing deal that all guests will enjoy! Guests can relish a three-course dinner for only $35 per person (excluding tax and gratuity). This three course meal consists of an appetizer, salad or soup, entrée and any dessert. The only exclusions are the grits bar, soup flight and cheese offering. For such a good deal sharing and substitutions are not allowed, but who needs them! For the perfect drink to accompany that food, grab a Smirnoff martini or cosmopolitan for only $5. Just want to grab a drink? Come in Monday, Wednesday, and Friday to check out the half-price wines by the glass or $5 John Daly’s Firefly served from 5:30-7p.m.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Les Dames Afternoon in the Country

The 8th annual Afternoon in the Country event was held this past Sunday at Serenbe, near Palmetto, Georgia. More than 35 chefs from Atlanta's best restaurants, select retailers and local wineries set up tastings inside the tents on this beautiful property. This is certainly not your run-of-the-mill food and wine event, instead of wearing formal attire, jeans and boots were encouraged! It was a gorgeous day to be outside, and especially enjoying tasty cuisine and fine wines.

Other highlights of the event included live music, a one-of-a-kind cake auction, hayrides and silent auction. Among my favorite tastings of the day were bbq sliders from Holman and Finch, braised beef from White Oak Pastures, Low Country boil with pickled okra (yum!) from the restaurant on Serenbe and desserts from Joel. Proceeds from the event went to benefit the Atlanta Chapters of Les Dames d'Escoffier.

Ecco Carries On Spanish Tuesday Night Tradition

It’s so easy to push everything to the weekend and then have good intentions swallowed up by to-do’s. Enough of it, we say! Be like the Spanish and embrace Tuesday nights as your night to get together with family and friends. Ecco makes it easy, setting forth a glass of wine, live Spanish guitar (6-8:30 p.m.) and a heaping bowl of housemade cocido, a hearty Spanish stew – all for only $24 per person plus tax and gratuity. Reservations are recommended, but not required; call 404-347-9555 or click here. Ecco: 40 7th Street, NE; 404-347-9555.

Midtown Shop and Dine Week November 14-21

Two of my favorite past times, eating and shopping, come together this week during Midtown Shop and Dine Week. Two can dine for $25 at The Original El Taco and other casual restaurants. At fine dining spots such as Ecco, La Tavola Trattoria, South City Kitchen Midtown and VITA, guests can sit down to three courses for $25 per person. Making reservations is so convenient through What a deal?!

Ecco: 40 7th Street, NE; 404-347-9555.

The Original El Taco: 1186 North Highland Avenue, NE; 404-873-4656.

La Tavola Trattoria: 992 Virginia Avenue, NE; 404-873-5430.

South City Kitchen Midtown: 1144 Crescent Avenue; 404-873-7358.
VITA: Vita: 2110 Peachtree Road; 404-367-8482.