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Happenings around the US

A Few Southern California Breakfasts From Our Sisters Trip (1) – Kreuzberg

On our sisters' trip to California recently, we stopped at a few interesting places for breakfast that I wanted to share. In San Louis Obispo (SLO), we let my grand-nephew Kailer, who is attending Cal Poly, select Kreuzberg California on Higuera for breakfast day. It's a local art-adorned hangout serving house-roasted delicious coffee and small bites. One grand-nephew indulged in their Belgian waffle with fruit, maple syrup and dusted with confectioners' sugar ($9). [Continued on A Few Southern California Breakfasts From Our Sisters Trip (2) and (3)] I'd recommend each of these breakfast places mentioned in the three posts if you're in Southern California.   Kreuzberg California 685 Higuera St, [...]

Lunch at Stonehouse, San Ysidro Ranch, Montecito, CA

After my Connecticut friend who now lives in Montecito picked me up at the Santa Barbara airport we drove up to San Ysidro Ranch for lunch. This idyllic spectacular 500-acre California property is the place where Jackie and Jack (Kennedy, for you millennials) honeymooned as they — guard their guest's privacy. If you recall, Montecito is where the heavy rainfall after the Thomas Fire deforestation caused mudslides forcing the property to close. It reopened this April. Although there's a terrace on the lower level,  we chose the upper one with the spectacular view of the Pacific. We opted for the three-course prixe fixe market menu ($47) that emphasizes local ingredients. [...]

Italian Meal at Olio E Limone Ristorante, Santa Barbara, CA

One of my responsibilities before heading to California for a sister's trip was to research dining options. Everyone I asked about Santa Barbara restaurants included Olio E Limone Ristorante on their list. We stopped in for lunch at this Italian trattoria, one — according to the photos on the wall — that Julia Child also enjoyed. We each picked one dish and shared them all. Our favorite (not to be missed) is their Soncino con Anatra, that's thick slices of duck breast roasted until only rare (perfect!) over mâche with clumps of goat cheese all drizzled in a balsamic vinaigrette ($19). That dish and what followed worked well with our bottle [...]

By |2019-11-26T10:24:08-05:00December 13th, 2019|USA, USA Restaurants, USA Travel|0 Comments

The Fox Bar & Cocktail Club + Nashville Palace

The first stop on our Nashville eating and drinking crawl was at the Nashville Palace to listen to "50 Shades of Hay" country music with singer/songwriter Wendy Newcomer on lead vocal and her husband David Spicher on upright bass. We sipped a drink and nibbled some sweet potato fries while enjoying the music. Next, we headed to the unique Fox Bar & Cocktail Club not far from Opryland Hotel, hidden behind Nicoletto’s Italian Kitchen. The Fox serves imaginative, seasonal cocktails changing its offerings monthly. Its unusual multi-page menu is replete with a drink-key explaining the images that accompany their cocktails. That includes the specific glass, the type ice (one cube, [...]

Folk, Rolf and Daughters’ Sister, East Nashville, Tennessee

Many attendees to Les Dames d'Escoffier International 2019 conference in Nashville last month mentioned dining at Rolf and Daughters, the Mediterranean eats place from James Beard Award-nominated chef Philip Krajeck. Some friends and I instead headed to the chef's newest neighborhood restaurant and bar called Folk in McFerrin Park, East Nashville. It's a hip place with custom artwork from local artist Alex Lockwood and Paul Collins lining the walls. This was our last stop on our eating and drinking crawl that had started with breakfast at the Old School Farm (more Nashville posts to come!) earlier in the day. With pizzas made with flour from non-GMO mills in the region, [...]

Dinner at Larimar, Spring Lake, NJ

There's an upscale place restaurant on Third Avenue in the beach town Spring Lake that I'd recommend you try. Both the food from Chef Anthony Palangi and service are quite good. Plus you get to bring your own wine with no corkage fee since they do not have a liquor license. I recommend the refreshing fresh summer strawberry salad with shaved fennel, fresh arugula, toasted almonds and chevrè came in a delicate champagne vinaigrette. Worth ordering. Their veal ragu over short twists (casarecce) of al dente pasta was a bit light on the meat although super-flavorful from olives and capers all dusted with shredded pecorino ($27). I also suggest the [...]

By |2019-08-30T11:21:32-04:00August 21st, 2019|USA Restaurants, USA Travel|0 Comments

The Fisherman’s Restaurant & Bar, San Clemente, California

We decided to meet at the Fisherman's at the wharf in San Clemente as it was about half-way between where I was staying and my friend's home. We met on a train from Antwerp to the then ferry in  — gulp — 1965; we've been connected ever since. The sun hadn't yet risen high enough to shine on the deck, so we sat near a heater to keep us warm until it rose enough to do the job. We each had a bowl of their creamy clam chowder, chock full of the bivalve mollusks and potato chunks. A soup rich enough to be a meal in itself — especially along [...]

By |2019-04-20T20:53:36-04:00April 6th, 2019|USA Restaurants, USA Travel|0 Comments

Fairfax Coffee Shop, Berkeley Springs, WV

While in Berkeley Springs (WV) to judge an international water competition, I stopped into the local Fairfax Coffee Shop for breakfast. I was glad I did. I sampled the Joey Special for breakfast, a housemade biscuit topped with a farm-fresh egg, melted sharp Cheddar cheese and tomato 🍅 (my special request) in lieu of their pickle chips. My breakfast buddy indulged in one of the good morning muffins ($3). Both were fabulous to the last crumb. We happened to meet and chat with proprietress Trey Johanson, who re-opened this coffee shop as a town hospitable gathering place, while she and her husband hold down other jobs. Fairfax Coffee Shop is worth the side trip. [...]

Lot 12 Public House, Berkeley Springs, West Virginia

When I decide to accept the invitation to judge the Berkeley Springs (WV) International Water Tasting, the friend who invited me mentioned that we'd be dining together that weekend at Lot 12 Public House. It's chef Damian Heath had been selected as a semifinalist in the James Beard Foundation Awards for the southeast region many times. I looked forward to experiencing his cooking. Lot 12 Public House is in a beautifully restored 1913 house, where dining on the Victorian porch is an option, weather permitting. We dined inside in the homey atmosphere one rainy evening and noticed the artwork of Damian's folks lining the walls. Our group of eleven was too [...]

Park City Food Tours

Consider taking a day off of the slopes when in the Park City (UT) area to learn some of the history of Main Street while tasting the fare of several restaurants. Local resident Shirin Spangenberg hosts Park City Food Tours where you'll hear how the town has gone from mining to dining — of course, sampling some goodies — while walking down the picturesque historic Main Street. If you're tired from your day's activities, there is a free trolley to take you back up the street. When I took the tour this fall (prices vary seasonally),  we stopped at the below mentioned places for a nibble. The locations change often [...]

By |2017-09-01T14:46:47-04:00January 2nd, 2016|USA Restaurants, USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

San Francisco Street Food Festival

San Francisco Street Food Festival (SFSFF) — the Bay Area’s annual celebration of local food and drink, community, and entrepreneurship —  announced the dates for the seventh annual festival on August 15 and 16, 2015. The 2015 SFSFF is moving to the Dogpatch and historic Pier 70, a Forest City Project, to accommodate the festival’s growing popularity and fan base. In 2014, the festival welcomed 50,000 guests, while featuring over 80 local vendors. This year’s event is projected to be even bigger, especially that this year’s event will be two days instead of one. For more information on the festival, click here. - Guest contributor

By |2017-08-31T16:21:58-04:00June 27th, 2015|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

2015 Oxnard Salsa Festival Celebrates Everything Salsa!

Get ready to spice things up during the 22nd Annual Oxnard Salsa Festival, one of Oxnard’s signature events. The festival celebrates salsa food, music and dance on July 25-26, 2015 at Plaza Park, Fifth and “B” Streets, in historic downtown Oxnard. Presented by the Oxnard Downtowners, the annual event features spicy food and fiery, top entertainment, attracting an estimated 45,000 salsa lovers to the City of Oxnard for the two-day action packed celebration. Event highlights include Main Stage entertainment with Salsa and Latin Jazz bands; the Salsa Tasting Tent, featuring over 75 different salsas; an eclectic vendor marketplace; international foods; Kids Korner attractions; chef demonstrations; a salsa recipe contest and [...]

By |2017-09-01T14:47:37-04:00June 18th, 2015|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

Annual Iron Chef Elm City, New Haven

The eighth Iron Chef Elm City will be held  Sunday, April 26 11:45 am a the Omni New Haven Hotel, 155 Temple Street.  The competition is a battle between three chefs, requiring them to demonstrate their culinary prowess, while testing their skills against each other, Each chef must create a scrumptious appetizer, entrée and a dessert using the “secret ingredient." which is revealed at the start of the competition. This year's competition feature chef Carlos Cassar of Copper Beech Inn, Ian Frew of Yale-New Haven Hospital and Todd Ruiz of Omni New Haven Hotel Enjoy food samplings from competing chef's restaurants and CT food manufacturers before and during the competition. [...]

By |2017-08-31T15:40:18-04:00April 20th, 2015|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

Community Plates Food for All

Community Plates, the technology-fueled, direct-transfer food rescue organization dedicated to ending food insecurity in America, presents their signature fundraiser, “Food for All” on Thursday, May 7, 2015 from 6 to 9 p, at  The Loading Dock, 375 Fairfield Avenue, Stamford. This is an event features Fairfield County’s newest restaurants and artisans, in addition craft cocktail bars spearheaded by creative mixologists. The Dessert Café will feature sweet treats and libations. Tickets are $75. To purchase tickets ($75) and find more information click here.  

By |2017-09-01T14:48:07-04:00April 19th, 2015|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

Banana Festival, Port of Hueneme, CA

Go Bananas’ on the scenic grounds of the Port of Hueneme (105 East Port Hueneme Road) during the Banana Festival, Saturday, September 27, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The free festival provides a fun-filled day to learn about the journey of the banana and the interworking of the Port. Festival highlights include delicious food and banana treats, live music, interactive displays, recipe contests, arts & crafts, kid’s activities, port tours and more. Vendors offer authentic tacos,  savory barbecue, Thai noodles, local brews and special banana treats including banana splits, banana smoothies and chocolate dipped bananas. Local bands will provide entertainment. Get a glimpse into how the Port works [...]

By |2017-09-01T14:49:57-04:00September 14th, 2014|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

Houston Restaurant Week August to September 2014

Houston Restaurant Week runs Friday, August 1 through Tuesday, September 2, 2014, featuring a variety of restaurants and offering 2-course lunch for $20 and 3-course dinner for $35. For additional information or list of participating restaurants, click here.  

By |2017-09-01T14:50:45-04:00July 29th, 2014|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

Bourbon Women “Sip-osium,” French Lick, Indiana

Bourbon Women will hold its first  “sip-osium,” a weekend of bourbon enjoyment and education, at the French Lick Resort in French Lick, Indiana, Friday August  22 through Saturday August 23, 2014 The two-day conference includes daily cocktail receptions and a bourbon dinner Saturday evening. The cost is $175 for members; $225  for non-members that includes a one-year Bourbon Women membership. Saturday only tickets are $150 for members, $200 for non. For more information and to register, click here. Attendees of the "sip-osium”must be at least 21 years old. Bourbon Women is a member-based organization founded in 2011 to promote and preserve the heritage of bourbon through educational, networking and charitable [...]

By |2017-09-01T14:50:57-04:00July 23rd, 2014|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments