Friday, March 28, 2008

The Lights Will Go Out In Georgia...For One "Earth Hour"

Exclaiming “What a turn off!” can have benefits. The lights will be turned off in Atlanta from 8 – 9 p.m. on Saturday, March 29, as Mayor Shirley Franklin honors the World Wildlife Fund’s charge to join cities around the world in Earth Hour 2008. Going powerless for an hour is a powerful way to demonstrate commitment to finding a solution to the climate change issue. Millions of concerned consumers in one city for each global time zone -- from Bangkok to Copenhagen, Sydney to Tel Aviv, and Atlanta to San Francisco -- will douse the lights from 8 to 9 p.m. local time as a historic, international gesture that’s in essence a world-wide wave with lights off. Dozens of major Atlanta landmark buildings in Downtown, Midtown, Atlantic Station and Buckhead will go dark in honor of the event, as will neighborhoods across the city. City officials, local police and fire departments, electrical utilities such as Georgia Power, and private and public organizations have all become involved to coordinate logistics in Atlanta. Georgia Power will measure the drop in electricity use during the event and will provide additional logistical support and assistance. In the long run, benefits will come as participants and readers like you replace older light bulbs with highly-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs, pledge to take actions to reduce their energy consumption on a daily basis.

During Earth Hour, see light in a new way as these Atlanta restaurants honor the pledge:
At least one cocktail will glow in the dark during the In the Dark party at Marlow’s Tavern Midtown. Out go the lights at 8 p.m., replaced by candles and backed by live music and drink specials. Glow sticks anyone? 950 West Peachtree Street; 404-815-0323.

Outdoor lights are ttfn (ta-ta for now) during the eight o’clock hour at all 12 Atlanta Chipotle Mexican Grill locations on March 29. The Earth Hour mission and serving “Food With Integrity” go hand-in-hand at the fresh-is-best burrito haven. Power down your own kitchen and light up your dinner with a made-to-order burrito, taco or bowl at your nearby Chipotle!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Baconfest '08

As we have posted before, we here at MLA are big fans of bacon. We even enjoy a sprinkle of Bacon Salt on our munchies and salads from time to time just to taste that delicious bacon flavor. So naturally, I was really excited when I saw on that Baconfest '08 is coming up this weekend! It's a fundraising event for Dad's Garage Theatre Company (they are a non-profit organization) where bacon, beer and fun are the only things on the agenda.
Ticket info:

VIP BaconFest Tickets: $35- Includes admission to BaconFest from 2-6pm, 12 game tickets, UNLIMITED BEER & BACON, admission to Samurai Davis Jr. and Dim Sum’s Super Mega Happy Fun Time Improv Show at 6pm, and reserved seating.

Full-On BaconFest Tickets: $20 - Includes admission to BaconFest from 2-6pm, 8 game tickets, 2 Sweetwater draft beers, 2 fistfuls of bacon, and admission to Samurai Davis Jr. and Dim Sum’s Super Mega Happy Fun Time Improv Show at 6pm.

Fest Only: $10 – Includes admission to BaconFest from 2-6pm, 8 game tickets, 2 Sweetwater draft beers, and 2 fistfuls of bacon.

This unique event is sponsored by the The Vortex Bar and Grill, so when you’re done scarfing down bacon – head over there and hit some of their delicious hamburgers!

Baconfest is on March 29, 2008 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Dad's Garage Theatre located at 280 Elizabeth St NE, Atlanta, GA. For more information call (404) 523-3141.

The High Museum Wine Auction Kick Off

Today is the day! Winemakers, wine lovers, and chefs all come together for this weekend's High Museum Wine Auction at the tents of Atlantic Station. The party starts with today's industry tasting event for winemakers and restaurateurs. Tomorrow and Saturday's Vintner's Reception and Live Auction are totally sold out this year, but, fear not; you can still dine at the same restaurants that will be participating: Aria, Canoe, La Tavola Trattoria, Ecco and Woodfire Grill.

There are also still a few tickets available for The Big Finish, the Wine Auction's grand finale wine tasting and dance with live band music. Wine tastings will be offered from 7 – 9 p.m.; music and dancing until 11 p.m. Austin Hope, a third-generation California farmer and a first-generation winemaker for Treana Winery and his own Austin Hope Winery, will serve as special guest at The Big Finish. Georgia's own Wolf Mountain Vineyards & Winery will be on hand to pour tastes of their locally made wines. Additionally, Marlow’s Tavern and Aqua Blue, along with other terrific Atlanta restaurants, will balance the wine with dine. Stay tuned for pictures and a recap of The Big Finish on Monday!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Today is National Pecan Day!

No matter how you like to say it (puh-KAHN or pee-KAN) today is National Pecan Day. March 25 is the day on which George Washington planted pecan trees at Mt.Vernon and we're celebrating! Did you know that the Pecan tree is the only nut tree native to North America? Another crackin’ good reason to go nutty over the pecan dishes at our favorite Atlanta restaurants!Aqua Blue tops a butter lettuce cup with caramelized pears, pecans and gorgonzola dressing ($7). 1564 Holcomb Bridge Road in Roswell; 770-643-8886.

Aria starts the meal with an elegant oak-grilled lamb tenderloin appetizer with warm pecan-crusted goat cheese and sweet onion pipérade ($15). 490 East Paces Ferry Road; 404-233-7673.

Canoe piles a wealth of health on a plate of grilled Atlantic salmon with spaghetti squash and carrot sauté, pecans and wilted baby spinach ($22.95). In Vinings at 4199 Paces Ferry Road, NW; 770-432-2663.

South City Kitchen indulges guests with individual pecan pies with buttermilk caramel and vanilla ice cream ($6.75). South City Kitchen Midtown: Open for lunch and dinner daily and Sunday brunch at 1144 Crescent Avenue; 404-873-7358. South City Kitchen Vinings: Open for dinner nightly and Sunday Brunch at 1675 Cumberland Parkway; 770-435-0700.

Woodfire Grill dresses Newborn, Georgia’s own Crystal Organics Farm lettuce with the native nut, Mt. Vikos goat feta, watermelon radish and Sonoma trio vinaigrette for a savory salad ($9). 1782 Cheshire Bridge Road; 404-347-9055.

Monday, March 24, 2008

VITA is open for dinner!

VITA is now open for dinner! After a week of
serving lunch only and a weekend of dinner sans
liquor license, VITA is now ready for a "real" opening. My friends couldn't wait to get together to go check it out!

We had a great time trying a lot of different things. The mussels are outstanding - plump and juicy. I had the marinara preparation but I hear the white wine with gorgonzola is to die for. Ah, next time.

Tonight I enjoyed a yummy house side salad and the linguini with meatballs. I had promised one of the girls a bite of meatball, but guess what? Didn't happen. They were too good for sharing!

The service was friendly, helpful, and always there. Our server had the wine in her hand before we even ordered it. Talk about anticipating your needs!

We had a dessert platter that was gone before I could take a picture. YUM. That's all I can tell you.

VITA is in the old Mick's location on Peachtree at Bennett St. It's open for lunch and dinner Monday - Saturday. You will undoubtedly meet Tony LaRocco, the owner. Enjoy!!

Love is in the Air

Brunch was a cherry on top of what was a gorgeous Easter Sunday afternoon. La Tavola Trattoria in Virginia-Highlands has one of the best patios in town, so we decided to head there for our first patio meal of the season. Since Allen and I had our first date at the very same table where we dined, the entire experience was chick flick sentimental. Memories from that first date were at the center of our attention – until the food came!

I had the chicken sausage, which is served over potato-leek hash with poached eggs and a spicy cherry pepper chutney ($9.95). The sausage was juicy and full of flavor, but stood out even more when blended with the spicy potatoes.

Allen ordered the Pork Milanese, which is breaded pork scallopine, served with arugula-tomato salad and a poached egg ($12.95). I can always tell when he likes something, because he always eats that last. I could tell he was having a hard time deciding what to eat first – including the tomatoes, which I have never seen him eat.

For dessert, I had the mascarpone cheesecake and he had the free form tiramisu. I fell in love again at La Tavola, but this time it was with the food.