Friday, October 30, 2009


The days of trick-or-treating might be behind you but you're never to old to dress-up and enjoy Halloween. Don't get left in the dark this year -- we've got the scoop on frighteningly fun events going on Halloween night at Atlanta restaurants and bars. So rock that costume and head out on the town.

Boo Bash 2009: A Night of Freakish Fun at RA Sushi corners the crypt on freakin' good times in Midtown from 7 p.m. until 1 a.m. on Halloween night. The hip hotspot features beverages such as a Vampire's Kiss and "Boo Bites" such as the Creepy Cali Roll ($6). Dress out -- RA Sushi gift certificates go to the top three costume contest winners. Horror movie theme songs and Top 40 tracks make up DJ Scott's monster mix. Late night goblins note, RA's kitchen will stay open until 1 a.m. No cover charge. (1080 Peachtree Street at 1010 Midtown; 404-267-0114)

Some good-looking witches have been sighted brooming it out beyond the perimeter to Roswell. Our guess is they're in flight to try for the $3,000 in cash and prizes going out to costumed guests at Aqua blue's 8th Annual Halloween Monster Bash on October 31. The spell-binding evening takes off with à la carte dining from 4 - 10 p.m. and flows until the witching hour with cocktails from the Bacardi- and Dos Equis-sponsored bar and three DJs spinning tunes starting at 9 p.m. If you're spooked by cover charges, be there before 10 p.m. -- $10 cover after that. (1564 Holcomb Bridge Road in Roswell; 770-643-8886)

When small things start getting under your skin, do as the skeletons do and party your bones off Halloween night at Marlow's Tavern. From 9 p.m. - 1 a.m. on October 31, guests can order from the full restaurant menu of ghastly good appetizers, enticing entrées and deliciously wicked desserts. $5 cocktails, $500 costume contest and no cover charge all night long make your nearby Marlow's location a hellacious Halloween haunt.

Dress like a boo-rito? A terrifying taco? You don't have to dress Tex Mex but do come creatively costumed to The Original El Taco from 6 until 10 p.m. on Halloween night so you can be photographed for the restaurant's Facebook page costume contest. Photos will be posted, and guests can vote on Sunday, November 1; winners will be announced on Monday, November 2. First place eeks out a $100 dining card, and second snags a $50 card. Costumed kids who come to the restaurant on Halloween between 4 - 6 p.m. will eat FREE! (1186 North Highland Avenue, NE; 404-873-4656)

Costumed characters in Sandy Springs should head to EVOS. Any child who comes to EVOS in costume before 8 p.m. on Halloween night will be treated to a free kid's meal. Adults, you'll get a free milkshake following the same tricks. (5590 Roswell Road, NE; 404-252-4022)

This is no trick. Aria is treating its Facebook fans to 30 percent off their food tab on Halloween night! (490 East Paces Ferry; 404-233-7673)

Pumpkins Galore!

Fun was had by all last night at the Great Chefs Pumpkin Carving Contest at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Enjoy some pictures -- just in case you missed out!

Executive Chef/Co-owner of Woodfire Grill, Chef Kevin Gillespie.

The winning pumpkin pirate! It was made by Victor from the Ritz-Carlton. Pretty incredible!

All of the chefs!

Sipping, Savoring & Sea-ing at the Georgia Aquarium

Last night I attended the 4th annual Aqua Vino event at the Georgia Aquarium and enjoyed some excellent wines and bites from Atlanta restaurants. My food favorites of the evening were Pacci Risotrante’s crab fondue with crostini (Chef Keira Moritz pictured above on the right at her table in the Georgia Explorer Gallery), Il Mulino’s mushroom ravioli and WaterHaven’s mussels. Memorable wine finds included Orogeny Pinot Noir and Twomey Sauvignon Blanc. There was a great turnout – 1,000+ attendees supporting the Georgia Aquarium and the Correll Center for Aquatic Animal Health!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Pumpkins Beware: Atlanta's Finest Chefs Are Coming For You!

Tis the season to get spooky! Atlanta is full of fabulous Halloween festivities this week, but if you find yourself with nowhere to haunt tonight, you’ll want to check out the Great Chefs Pumpkin Carving Contest at the Atlanta Botanical Garden tonight!
It’s a great opportunity to see your favorite Atlanta chefs, including Woodfire Grill Executive Chef/ Partner and Top Chef contender Kevin Gillespie, let their creative inspiration loose on 100-plus pound pumpkins as they carve jumbo orange masterpieces.
Here’s the catch: they only have 25 minutes to get the job done before the crowd picks the winner by applause! If you happen to fall for a particular pumpkin creation, you’ll have an opportunity to bid on the pumpkins at the post-contest silent auction.
The Pumpkin Carving Contest will be from 7 to 8 p.m. tonight , and it comes at the end of the garden’s month-long and always popular Scarecrows In The Garden series. It’s $15 for adults; $12 for senior citizens and children ages three to 17; free to garden members and children under age three.
The event will also mark the last night of Fest-of-Ale, the garden’s October Thursday night brew-fest that’s rocking with live music, beer school by Hop City and lots of harvest-themed brews from 5 to 10 p.m. Pumpkins, beer, and your favorite chefs in the beautiful setting of the Atlanta Botanical Garden – it’s a can’t miss combination!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wednesday Round-up

This Wednesday is truly a day of tasty proportions! Today from 12 - 1 p.m. stop by the new EVOS Viewpoint location in Midtown and enjoy free samples of their Airbaked Chicken Strips & low-fat real Fruitshakes.

Also, today is National Chocolate Day! Visit our website to see our favorite places to grab a decadent chocolate treat! Remember to save a little room for all that Halloween candy this weekend.

Lastly, it's Top Chef night! Tune into Bravo tonight at 10 p.m. to support your favorite Atlanta chefs, Eli and Kevin!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

My kind of recipe

We all know I'm not much of a cook. Okay, I'm no kind of a cook. But when it comes to cocktails, I'm not half bad at mixing up something delicious. I guess I just embrace my inner mixologist more than my inner chef.

So when these recipes for Halloween cocktails from the folks at SKYY vodka made their way into my inbox, I was pretty happy. I would have been happier if they had sent some samples too. Sigh.

Can't wait to try these out this weekend!

2 oz. SKYY Infusions Citrus
1 oz. mango nectar or juice
0.5 oz. orange juice
0.5 oz. fresh sour*

Combine all of the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and pour into a goblet glass and garnish with a slice of orange and a mint leaf laid flat on top. (*Combine 0.25 oz. fresh lime juice and 0.75 oz. simple syrup.)

Vampire’s Elixir
1.5 oz. SKYY Infusions Raspberry
0.75 oz. white chocolate liqueur
1 oz. half and half
Strawberry syrup

Dress strawberry syrup on the inside and rim of a chilled martini glass. Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into martini glass. Garnish with vampire teeth.

Beer + Bread = Delish

Two of my favorite things (beer and fresh baked bread) have come together to make one tasty treat. Whole Foods Market and SweetWater Brewing Company have teamed up to create hearty SweetWater 420 Extra Pale Ale bread using spent grains from the SweetWater 420 Extra Pale Ale brewing process. The grains from this award-winning ale are taken from the Midtown Atlanta brewery to the Whole Foods Market bake house. The pumpkin seed-studded loaf with a nutty texture is selling for $3.49 a loaf at Whole Foods Markets across the Southeast. Whole Foods also offers an awesome beer and cheese fondue recipe featuring SweetWater 420 Extra Pale Ale bread, perfect for your next fall get-together.

3 cups sharp cheddar, shredded
1/4 pound Gruyère cheese, shredded
1 rounded tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup SweetWater 420 Extra Pale Ale
1 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
A few drops Worcestershire sauce
A few drops of hot sauce or horseradish (optional)
1 SweetWater 420 Extra Pale Ale bread loaf

Combine cheeses in a bowl with flour. Add beer to a small pot and bring up to a bubble over medium heat. Reduce the heat to simmer and add cheese in handfuls. Stir constantly, melting the cheese in batches. Stir in a figure-eight pattern with wooden spoon. When the cheese has been incorporated fully, stir in the mustard, hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce. Hollow out the SweetWater 420 Extra Pale Ale bread to form a bread bowl. Pour the fondue into the bowl.

Make cubes from the leftover bread that was hollowed, dip cubes into the fondue and enjoy.