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Have you met Dr. Potato?

We have a friend in the Midwest who has a second identity – Dr. Potato. He’s Don Odiorne, vice president-foodservice at the Eagle, ID Idaho Potato Commission.

Staffers at IPC weren’t surprised this year to discover that Dr. Potato garnered 959,328 page views, nearly 50 percent of the http://www.idahopotato.com views. Operators and their customers alike are turning to Dr. Potato for answers to a myriad of potato-related questions, they point out.

For example, “What is the correct oven temperature and time to cook a baked potato?” racked up 234,062 visits alone. Dr. Potato also dispenses advice on wide-ranging topics such as how to make the best mashed potatoes, best applications for processed potatoes, and potato salad tips. In fact, the top five recipes for 2015-2016 reflect the popularity of both potato salads and mashed potatoes: 1. Traditional Potato Salad, 2. Traditional Mashed Potatoes, 3. Summer Potato Salad, 4. Mashed Potato Bar, 5. Au Gratin Idaho® Potatoes.

Visit Dr. Potato for answers to your potato questions at idahopotato.com. Also, browse IPC’s foodservice recipe database or downed the Idaho Potato Commission Foodservice Toolkit at idahopotato.com/foodservice. There’s also a helpful size guide, preparation tips and answers and solutions to operational and culinary questions.

The commission dates to 1937 and is a state agency responsible for promoting and protecting farmers. As a longtime lover of Idaho potatoes, we want to share their always helpful information so restaurateurs and foodservice operators here in the Northeast will turn to them as a resource.Cheers to IPC and Dr. Potato!

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The Spirit(s) World – Egan’s 10 Year Old Single Malt

At the turn of the 20th century, the family business of P&H Egan was at its peak, with offices throughout Ireland spanning a broad range of industries. In Ireland they used to say that the Egan’s looked after you from ‘Cradle to the Grave’, meaning they would sell your parents the crib you slept in as a toddler and would eventually sell your children the coffin they buried you in!

At the New York International Spirits Competition recently, Egan’s Irish Whiskey won the Individual Spirits Competition. Jonathan and Maurice Egan carry on the work of making fine whiskey for six generations.

Today, Irish whiskey is said to be America’s fastest growing barrel aged spirit. As a lifelong lover  of Scotch whiskey, I was, I’ll admit, somewhat skeptical but one sip won me over – malty, smoky and elegant. It’s the company’s first foray into the U.S. market – with a gold/amber color, silky body and hints of honey, malt, cranberries apples, caramel and more, as writer and whiskey competition judge Robert Plotkin points out. We found it to be a rich and enjoyable sipping whiskey that definitely belongs on top bars! Visit http://www.eganswhiskey.com/

 

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Sustainable Nantucket hosts NantucketGrown Food Festival

NANTUCKET, MA – NantucketGrown Food Festival, hosted by Sustainable Nantucket with local food purveyors, chefs, brewers, beekeepers and more, takes place Oct. 14-16 this year, raising funds to support SN’s work and programs while celebrating the local food system.

Honorary Chairs Marian and Rush Morash will help kick off festivities on Friday night at the Demo and tasting with Chef Chris Freeman of the Nantucket and the couple will be Special Guests at Saturday night’s Hands-On Lesson & Chef’s Table with Chef Seth Raynor of The Pearl and The Boarding House.

That opening reception runs from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Nantucket Yacht Club with a chef demo provided by Chef Chris Freemen, along with local food fendors.

It is followed at 7:30 by the “Kiss the Ground” film screening and filmmakers presentation by producers Ryland Engelhart and Bill Beneson. It is a yet-to-be-released documentary about how soil damaged by industrialized agricultural practices can regenerate itself and the planet, an incredible journey and one not to be missed.

Learn much more about the many events scheduled for the weekend at https://www.sustainablenantucket.org/events-2/2016-nantucket-grown-food-festival/

For tickets, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2016-nantucket-grown-food-festival-tickets-25865969812?ref=estw

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Dine Out Boston® returns for 15th year

 

BOSTON – Dine Out Boston® is underway through the 19th of August and again from the 21-26th. It offers a wide variety of opportunities to check out untried places or enjoy favorites at a reduced price – lunch for $15, $20 or $25 and dinner for $28, $33 or $38.

Restaurants offer as many courses as they wish at their selected price! Over 150 restaurants in the Greater Boston area are taking part, including new restaurants in Cambridge and the Seaport District. Those choosing to share their #dineoutboston pictures on Instagram get a chance to win $100 gift cards to participating restaurants. Follow Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau on social channels to learn more.

This is the 15th year for this event. “Dine Out Boston spotlights Boston as one of America’s premier culinary destinations, providing patrons from Boston and afar with a unique opportunity to enjoy exceptional value, variety and hospitality in Greater Boston restaurants,” says Patrick B. Moscaritolo, president & CEO of the GBCVB. “Diners are invited to take advantage of these restaurant deals while taking in seasonal activities – a ballgame, concert, theatrical performance, or museum exhibition, coupled with a Dine Out Boston meal, makes for a classic Boston experience!”

Since 2008, the GBCVB has used this dining program to give back to a different local Boston charity each year. To date, more than $300,000 has been raised for charities through the online auction component. The charitable partner for August 2016 is First Night/First Day, the nation’s oldest First Night celebration. Gift certificates provided by participating restaurants will be up for auction starting August 15, with all proceeds benefiting First Night/First Day.

 

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Tickets on sale for Newport Mansions Wine & Food Festival ’16

NEWPORT, RI – Tickets are available for the upcoming 11th annual Newport Mansions Wine & Food Festival, scheduled to take place Sept. 22-25.

Don’t miss such signature events as the Wine & Rosecliff Gala Friday , Grand Tastings on Saturday and Sunday, the Vintner Dinner on Saturday evening, Newport After Dark on Saturday evening, Jazz Brunch on Sunday and Seminars in The Breakers Stable and Carriage House throughout the weekend. Go to www.NewportMansionsWineandFood.org.

This year’s Wine & Rosecliff Gala features beautiful wines, award-winning chefs, and live music and dancing in the elegant ballroom. Chefs for the evening include: Chef Matthew MacCartney of Jamestown Fish (Jamestown, RI), Chef Jose Enrique of Jose Enrique (Puerto Rico), Chef Brian Alberg of Red Lion Inn (Stockbridge, MA), Chef David Blessing of Newport Beach House: A Longwood Venue (Newport, RI), Chef Thomas Duffy of The Spiced Pear at The Chanler (Newport, RI), Chef Terence Feury of Forty 1° North (Newport, RI), Chef Josue Louis of Bistro du Midi (Boston, MA), Chef Lou Rossi of Castle Hill Inn (Newport, RI), Chef Dante de Magistris of Dante (Boston, MA), Chef Shaun Velez of Deuxave (Boston, MA), Chef Will Gilson of Puritan & Co. (Cambridge, MA), Chef Robert Sisca of ProvidenceG (Providence, RI), Chef Kevin O’Donnell of SRV (Boston, MA), Chef Peter Quinion of Parsnip (Cambridge, MA), and Chef Jason Santos of Abby Lane (Boston, MA). Featured wines include  Champagne Taittinger (Champagne, FR), Maison Joseph Drouin (Burgundy, FR), Château D’Esclans (Provence, FR), Elk Cove Vineyards (Oregon), Chateau de Beaucastel (Rhone, FR), Catena Zapata (Mendoza, Argentina), Robert Mondavi Winery (Napa, CA), Marchesi di Barolo (Piedmont, IT), Champagne Gosset (Champagne, FR), Larkin Wines (Napa, CA), Wölffer Estate Vineyard (Sagaponack, NY), Castello Banfi (Montalcino, IT), Domaine Faiveley (Burgundy, FR), Graham’s Port (Duoro, PT), Hall Wines (Napa, CA), Joseph Phelps Vineyards (Napa, CA), Kumeu River (Kumeu, NZ), Opus One / Overture (Napa, CA) and S.A. Prum (Mosel, Germany).

The Marble House hosts the two day Grand Tastings with the opportunity to sample hundreds of wines from around the world with cuisine from local, regional and national restaurants and purveyors from around the world and cuisine from local, regional and national restaurants and purveyors. It also includes the Nobilo Oyster Seaside Bar, Pop Up Tastings in the Chinese Tea House, and non-stop chef entertainment in the Rosé Grill Garden presented by Château D’Esclans and Lynx Grills.

The Presenting Sponsor of the 2016 Newport Mansions Wine & Food Festival is FOOD & WINE Magazine. Additional sponsors include National Trust Insurance Services, Kitchen Aid, Champagne Taittinger, Lynx Grills, Vantage Deluxe World Travel, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Robert Mondavi Winery, Nobilo Wines, Alta Vista Estate Vineyards, Sequoia Grove, Atria Senior Living, José Cuervo, Hennessy Cognac, Coca Cola Bottling Company of Southeastern New England, United Airlines, Forty 1˚ North, Dole & Bailey, Nestle Waters North America, Estrella Damm, William Grant & Sons and Calvisius Caviar.

Proceeds from the Newport Mansions Wine & Food Festival benefit The Preservation Society of Newport County, a non-profit organization accredited by the American Alliance of Museums and dedicated to preserving and interpreting the area’s historic architecture, landscapes and decorative arts. Its 11 historic properties—seven of them National Historic Landmarks—span more than 250 years of American architectural and social development.

For more information and to purchase tickets for the 2016 Newport Mansions Wine & Food Festival, visit www.NewportMansionsWineAndFood.org.

 

 

 

 

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What’s Brewin’ -Lagunitas Lucky 13 A Mondo Large Red Ale

@LagunitasBeer calls this brew, known as Lucky 13 A Mondo Large Red Ale, an ultra-mega red ale. It was created to celebrate the brewery’s 13th anniversary in 2006. It’s a Spring seasonal, available April – June, but we got lucky and found it nearby recently and now hope they’ll have more when we return!

This Imperial Red Ale, Lagunitas Brewmaster Jeremy Marshall declares,  was made “in honor of 13 things.” It is strong, with lots of kiln malt which has a distinctive red color. That comes from the high temperature of the kiln, he explains.

Marshall finds notes of “grapefruit, berries, roasted walnuts and slightly charred leprechauns” in the resulting brew. We aren’t so sure about the leprechauns – you may have to be Irish to detect them.

However, this brew is rich and smooth and, as Marshall pretty accurately notes, “something you want to pet and stroke.” It’s got 8.8 ABV and comes in 12 oz. six packs as well as being available on tap.

Whites rule in summer months!

Dry, cool, refreshing white wines rule on hot summer days. From California’s Russian River Valley to the Loire Valley, we’ve recently discovered two that enhance the day and deliver pleasure.

Balletto 2015 Chardonnay, Teresa’s Unoaked comes from the Russian River Valley in California’s Sonoma County with its cool, foggy climate. It’s been consistent gold medal winner in various competitions.

John Balletto began making wine after starting out as a farmer right after high school and his dad’s untimely death. In 1998, three El Nino storms destroyed several plantings, each of which cost several million dollars. The home ranch had plantings of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris, and Balletto began converting his vegetable acres to vineyards. Check out http://www.BallettoVineyards.com.

This Chardonnay was  grown in the Sebastopol Hills area with its steep 800 ft. elevation where the winery’s goal was expressive and pure offerings. Seeking to capture the essence of Chardonnay which it calls “pure, crisp and pretty,” and this vintage does that well. It’s 13.7% ABV with bright fruit aromas and earthy notes. Nicely structured, it’s a treat.

From the Loire Valley comes M De Mulonniére Chenin Blanc from Anjou. The Chateau has been making excellent wines since 1860. The Saget family acquired it in 2000.

This 12.5% ABV Chenin Blanc is bright and almost tingles. It’s soft and fresh, well balanced with notes of almond and acacia, grape and honey. It’s subtle and enchanting. Visit http://www.PasternakWine.com or http://www.Mulonniére.com. Serve as an aperitif – we think you’ll want more after the very first sip! 20160805_114336.jpg20160805_114032.jpg