LOBSTERS INVADE AQUA BLUE MENU DURING TAILAPALOOZA
Concerts, parties, feasts -- when the suffix "apalooza" follows it, you know it's going to be wildly fun with a huge emphasis on whatever precedes the "apalooza." When Aqua blue in Roswell throws open the doors to its highly anticipated Tailapalooza event today, June 7, the treasure trove of delicious lobster dishes will throw you into a tailspin! For one month, lobster lovers can order à la carte specialties of roast lobster bisque ($6), Maine lobster roll ($10), butter-poached lobster salad ($15) and house-made lobster mac 'n cheese ($8). One taste will have you clawing for more -- in which case, order the lobster tail combos served with house-made lobster mac 'n cheese, lemon-garlic butter, summer vegetable sauté and lobster knuckle sauce. Choose combos of six-ounce lobster tail ($26), a Maine surf & turf that pairs a six-ounce lobster tail with grilled filet mignon ($36) or a pairing of two six-ounce lobster tails ($39). A lobster needs liquid: making the Tailapalooza special menu are Benziger, Sangiacomo Vineyard Chardonnay, Carneros 2008 ($8.50/$32) and Folie à Deux "Ménage à Trois," California 2009 ($8/$32). The limited-time menu is available through Sunday, July 3.
Aqua blue: 1564 Holcomb Bridge Road; 770-643-8886..
FADÓ ASKS: DO YOU WANT YOUR PICKLEBACK? MEET UP AT THE TWEET UP FOR NEW HAPPY HOUR APPETIZERS AND SUMMER DRINKS
Get caught up in the Pickleback craze when Fadó Irish Pub & Restaurant welcomes the return of the Pickleback to the menu with a Pickleback Tweet Up on Wednesday, June 8. A Pickleback is a two-shooter cocktail that chases a shot of Jameson Irish Whiskey with a shot of fresh pickle juice. Even the fickle are tickled by the result! From 6:30 - 8 p.m., snag a complimentary Pickleback (one per customer) and appetizers and join in for a group shot at 7 p.m. Angie Tillman from Phickles Pickles and Maura Neill from 365 Atlanta host the pickle-ish party.
Top off your Pickleback with a stout Guinness and Guinness mixers! The Irish classic Guinness buddies with other strong bodies for tall drinks and cocktails on the new Fadó summer drink menu. The tall, dark and handsome look of a glass of Guinness may deceive you into thinking it's high in calories when actually it's lower in alcohol, calories and carbs than other beers! Teaming up with lagers, ales, ciders and more, Guinness takes on new personas: Half and Half (Harp), Black and Gold (Stella Artois), Blacksmith (Smithwick's Irish Ale), Black Castle (Newcastle), Dirty Hoe (Hoegaarden Witbier) and Black Velvet (Strongbow Cider). Beer cocktails put you in chill mode for summer: Harp Shandy splashes Sprite into a pint of Harp; Snakebite mixes Harp and Strongbow Cider; and the Sweet Hoe pours Smirnoff Raspberry Vodka, sour mix, strawberry puree and Hoegaarden over ice in a Hoegaarden glass. The Trinity pleases purists with an Irish flight including seven-ounce pours of Guinness, Harp and Smithwick's. Samuel Smith Organic Lager, Organic Strawberry Ale and India Ale also are summer features.
A new summer happy hour menu, offered from 4 - 7 p.m., has well-priced nibbles ($3-$5) for light or hearty appetites. Order up pub potato chips with blue cheese, bacon and green onion; grilled flatbread with hummus, sun-dried tomatoes, grilled zucchini and feta; Harp-battered fish tacos; blackened shrimp blinis; cheesesteak quesadillas; white bean and vegetable sliders; pub sliders with homemade pimento cheese and matchstick fries; and Guinness BBQ pork sliders. Add screens running UEFA and good times are rolling!
Fadó Irish Pub & Restaurant: 273 Buckhead Avenue; 404-841-0066.
HOMEFRONT CRANKS AT ATKINS PARK VIRGINIA HIGHLAND ON JUNE 9
Homefront will perform its own mix of rock and folk rock music at Atkins Park Tavern in Virginia Highland on Thursday, June 9. Terrapin Beer Co. co-hosts the event. Band tunes spilling out onto the patio and icy beer filling your glass are major chill factors for a hot summer night at Atlanta's oldest, continuously licensed tavern.
Since Homefront plays at 10 p.m., dinner, drinks and conversation before the show are very doable. Kitchen is open until 2:30 a.m. for the audience.
Atkins Park Tavern - Virginia Highland: 794 North Highland; 404 -876-7249.
HOORAY FOR THE "RED, WHITE AND BREW" AT MARLOW'S TAVERN
With patriotic plates, watermelon red spirits and a boatload of brews icing down, the "Red, White and Brew" menu is all about the good old U.S.A. at all seven Marlow's Tavern locations. The six-week celebration salutes American tastes and seasonal favorites -- with that special Marlow's Tavern twist -- from Tuesday, June 14 through Monday, July 25. The easy-going menu keeps summertime appetites in mind with a light beer and cheese soup, firecracker deviled eggs and a salad combining watermelon, feta and arugula ($3-$9). Keep napkins handy for the juicy Red, White and Bleu burger; honey-glazed grilled chicken with chili-slathered corn on the cob; backyard blackened swordfish with Red, White and Blue potato salad or "hot-off-the-grill" tender grilled skirt steak with summer squash and jumbo Vidalia onion rings ($11-$19). Feel free to order from the regular menu and add RW&B sides of chili-slathered corn on the cob or Red, White and Blue potato salad ($3). Finish with a shot of Key lime pie in a glass with fresh berries ($6). And about those red drinks...try the "Summertime" watermelon margarita bringing fresh watermelon syrup in touch with Herradura Reposado tequila or Tommy's Favorite sangria with fresh, seasonal fruit and agave nectar ($8). Brews ($5-$6) stay true to the red (Rogue American Ale), white (SweetWater Sch'Wheat American Wheat Ale) and blue (Terrapin Hop Karma IPA). Meet up with friends or bring Uncle Sam and Aunt Betsy -- they'll love it!
Marlow's Tavern also is the perfect locale for dad this Father's Day, June 19. And for dads who consider themselves true masters of the grill, the second annual Marlow's Tavern Grilling Recipe Contest runs simultaneously with the "Red, White and Brew" menu offerings. Enter your favorite grilling recipes for a chance to win incredible prizes like a Big Green Egg, and the winning recipe will be featured on the Marlow's Tavern fall/winter menu. More info will be available soon on the Marlow's Tavern website.
Marlow's Tavern: Alpharetta at 3719 Old Alabama Road, 770-475-1800; Kennesaw at 745 Chastain Road, NW, 770-425-8777; Midtown at 950 West Peachtree Street, 404-815-0323; Vinings at 2355 Cumberland Parkway, 770-432-2526; Northlake at 4156 LaVista Road, 678-987-1197; Duluth at 1950 Satellite Boulevard, 770-622-2033; and East Cobb at 1311 Johnson Ferry Road (across from the movie theatre and next to Kohl's department store); 770-977-7747.
ROYAL WATCHERS, THIS MONTH'S BIG TO DO IS AT ATKINS PARK SMYRNA -- THE CROWN ROYAL DINNER ON JUNE 14
Atkins Park Tavern - Smyrna: Market Village, 2840 Atlanta Road; 770-435-1887.
Give Will and Kate some time off and turn your focus to the Crown Royal dinner at Atkins Park Smyrna at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 14. "A Royal Affair" opens with a reception and Crown Royal Coke floats. Crown Royal pairings accompany three courses and dessert. Find Crown Reserve paired with seared scallops, watermelon radish salad, mixed greens, lime vinaigrette and a whisky-honey reduction; Crown Black paired with ancho-rubbed lamb chops, currants, onions and apple demi-glaze; Cask 16 paired with anise- and honey-glazed pork belly with raspberry puree, farro grain, micro mustard greens and Jerusalem artichoke; and Crown XR paired with white chocolate bread pudding. $48 per person (tax and gratuity not included). Call 770-435-1887 for reservations.
THE ORIGINAL EL TACO BRINGS STREET FOOD TO THE TABLE AT MI CASA SU CASA ON JUNE 14
As "hot" as street food is right now, it's so hot outside that bringing street food indoors for dinner sounds extremely appealing. That's the idea behind this month's installment of The Original El Taco's Mi Casa Su Casa dinner on Tuesday, June 14 at 6:30 p.m. Meet new amigos and amigas at El Taco's communal table and fill up on authentic Mexico City street cuisine including Torta Cubana -- a popular overstuffed sandwich loaded with pork milanesa, sausage and more. Also on the menu are Quesadilla Classica, ceviche tostadas, wood-grilled fish skewers with lime, real Mexico City elote (corn on the cob roasted corn with mayo and chili) and refreshing agua fresca. El Taco Chef de Cuisine Scott Keefer joins the table to talk about the history of these foods. $30 per person (including tax; excluding online service fee and gratuity). Purchase tickets to this one-night-only event today.
The Original El Taco: 1186 North Highland Avenue, NE; 404-873-4656.
ASHA GOMEZ HAS YOUR PASSPORT TO INDIA'S SPICE ROUTE VIA SALUD! CLASS AT ALPHARETTA HARRY'S FARMERS MARKET
Harry's Farmers Market: 1180 Upper Hembree Road in Alpharetta; 770-664-6300.
Spice Route Supper Club Creator and Chef Asha Gomez grew up in Kerala, India's spice belt, learning traditional Southern Indian cooking from her mother. She's eager to share these intoxicating flavors and scents with Atlantans through monthly supper club events and classes such as "Passport to the Spice Route" at Salud! in Harry's Farmers Market - Alpharetta from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 16. Learn how to prepare the "home-cooked" meal of Kerala-style curried shrimp with mustard seeds, chili powder, curry leaves and coconut oil; green bean and carrot thoren (vegetables stir-fried with grated coconut, mustard seeds and curry leaf); and Kerala beef curry with ginger, cinnamon and curry leaf. $39 per person. Register online. To sign up to receive future Spice Route Supper Club invitations, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
FORK OVER THE TIE -- ATLANTA RESTAURANTS HAVE BETTER IDEAS FOR FATHER'S DAY, JUNE 19
Who wants to button that top collar, let alone knot up a tie on June's hot days? Better to treat dad to a memorable meal that brings the family together, gives him an opportunity to chef or surprises with top-grade grill fixings. Now that's how you tie one on Dad for Father's Day!
Dad can sink his teeth into the three-course Father's Day brunch menu offered at Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar on June 19 from 11:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. The special menu is priced at $32.95 for adults (plus tax and gratuity) and a children's menu will also be available. Dads, loosen up over Fleming's "Buttoned-Down" specialty cocktail made with Jack Daniel's Whiskey, freshly squeezed lemon juice, maple syrup and a dash of bitters ($6.95). Dads who mark the day at Fleming's will receive a $25 gift card! Reservations are strongly recommended. (4501 Olde Perimeter Way in Perimeter Place Village; 770-698-8112)
La Tavola Trattoria is celebrating Father's Day with an à la carte brunch menu filled with classic Italian offerings from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The regular dinner menu will be served from 5 - 10 p.m. Call 404-873-5430 for reservations. (992 Virginia Avenue, NE)
Patriarchs of the grill will drool over steaks and grilling go-withs from New York Butcher Shoppe. Grill Master packages gather meats, sides -- and even woodchips and lump hardwood charcoal for an extra few bucks. The Americana packs up four burgers, hot dogs or NYBS bratwursts, buns and a choice of two sides for $19.99. BBQ-ers pine for the Pork Butt package that includes an eight-pound bone-in pork butt, one John Henry Rub and BBQ sauce of your choice ($29.99) or the Beef Brisket package with NYBS house brisket seasoning and BBQ sauce of your choice ($44.99). NYBS stocks family sides, wines and desserts to complete the feast. (Three locations in Alpharetta, Buckhead and Dunwoody.)
Ray's Restaurants invites you to take Dad to the river, creek or city for fabulous Father's Day brunch buffets from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Ray's on the River is offering a Father's Day brunch buffet priced at $34.95 for adults and $17.95 for children ages 5 to 10. (6700 Powers Ferry Road; 770-955-1187) The Ray's at Killer Creek brunch buffet is priced at $29.95 for adults and $14.95 for children ages 5 to 10. (1700 Mansell Road, Alpharetta; 770-649-0064) And downtown, Ray's in the City is offering a brunch buffet priced at $29.95 for adults and $14.95 for children ages 5 to 10. (240 Peachtree Street, NW; 404-524-9224)
Both locations of South City Kitchen are celebrating Father's Day with a brunch menu full of Southern favorites. South City Kitchen Midtown is offering an à la carte brunch menu from 1 - 3 p.m., and South City Kitchen Vinings is offering a three-course prix-fixe brunch from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. priced at $21 for adults and $10.50 for children under the age of 12 (plus tax and gratuity). In addition, South City Kitchen Vinings has a great gift for fathers and husbands: a grilling class on Saturday, June 25 at 11 a.m. with Chef de Cuisine Blake Wagner. Dads will learn how to master the grill with step-by-step, hands-on instructions. Attendees also will enjoy lunch and beer pairings throughout the lesson. Seats are limited, and tickets are available online for $45 plus service fee. (South City Kitchen Vinings: 1675 Cumberland Parkway; 770-435-0700. South City Kitchen Midtown: 1144 Crescent Avenue; 404-873-7358.)
Dad's dream of becoming a chef can come true, even if for just one day, at Spice Market. Book a customizable "chef for a day" excursion for $150 plus an additional $48/person for dinner with a four-person maximum (excluding tax and gratuity). He'll spend five hours working different kitchen stations before preparing dinner for family or friends. Price includes a five-course meal paired with wine. Advance notice of 72 hours is required; not valid with other discounts, promotions or specials. (In the W Atlanta-Midtown, 188 14th Street, NE; 404-724-2550)
Get down to the grass roots of Father's Day by supplying Dad with grass-fed beef and other sustainably raised meats from White Oak Pastures. You can even buy jars of beef jerky and meat at the online store! Over 220 Publix stores now sell White Oak Pastures beef as do all metro-Atlanta Whole Foods Markets.
For dads who enjoy showing off their culinary skills in their own kitchens, the Atlanta Cooks at Home cookbook makes a perfect Father's Day gift. Top Atlanta chefs share their recipes and menus for home entertaining for every occasion. From Micah Willix's rack of lamb to Gerry Klaskala's lobster minestrone, dad will enjoy this cookbook from cover to cover for years to come. Atlanta Cooks at Home is available for purchase online for $34.95. As a preview, we're sharing this delicious pork loin recipe from Chef Ron Eyester.
Vanilla and Rosemary Scented Pork Loin
½ cup maple syrup
½ cup apple cider
½ cup fresh rosemary, finely chopped
2 vanilla beans, split and scraped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 four- to five-pound center-cut pork loin
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Combine maple syrup, apple cider, rosemary, vanilla, garlic and cumin in a large bowl. Add pork and turn to coat. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate to marinate at least 3 hours.
Preheat oven to 325°. Remove pork from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before roasting. Place rack in roasting pan. Season roast on all sides with salt and pepper. Place pork on rack and roast in oven until thermometer inserted in center of pork registers 150°, 45 minutes to 1 hour. The pork will be slightly pink in the center. Remove the roasting pan from the oven and let the pork rest on a warm platter covered with foil from 10-15 minutes. While the meat is resting, the internal temperature of the roast will rise to at least 155° because of carryover cooking.
SMASHBURGER WILL ROCK YOUR MOUTH WHEN IT OPENS IN BUCKHEAD THIS SUMMER
Smash. Sizzle. Savor. Western states already know the delicious drill at Smashburger eateries. Be patient. July is coming, and when it does, Smashburger opens in Buckhead! The choice is yours for buns, toppings and meats such as 100 percent Angus beef Smashburgers and Smashdogs and grilled or crispy Smashchicken. Smashsalads? Sure are, and everything else you could want -- Häagen-Dazs ice cream treats, a kids' menu and beer and wine for grownups. We're telling you, Smashburger is going to be a SMASH hit! The new restaurant will be located at 2625 Piedmont Road.
GET SHAKING IN MAYFIELD'S "BELOW ZERO HERO" CONTEST FOR A CHANCE TO WIN $10,000
The second-annual Mayfield Dairy Milkshake Recipe Contest is well underway offering a $10,000 grand prize to the 2011 winning "Below Zero Hero." Aspiring milkshake makers can submit their milkshake masterpiece recipes to the contest website until August. A panel of culinary judges will pick the top-10 recipes nationally based on overall appeal, originality and taste. The recipes will be posted online for consumers to test and to vote for their favorites. The first place winner will receive $10,000, second place $3,000 and third place $1,000. So what are you waiting for? Plug in the blender, purchase delicious Mayfield ice cream and milk, gather your favorite add ins -- fresh fruit, candy or cookies -- and start shaking! Like the contest on Facebook and follow it on Twitter (@IceCreamFun) for lots of tips and recipe ideas.
BUFORD HIGHWAY WINS AGAIN WHEN YELPER FINDS CHINESE FOOD AT GU'S BISTRO
Bottom line, why would anyone order from the Americanized Chinese menu? Really, this is Buford Highway, paradise found for international flavors. Yelper Robert C. takes a few steps outside the Perimeter where spicy Sichuan is king at Gu's Bistro in the strip shopping center behind Chick-fil-A.
Exceptional Sichuan food. This place is worth the drive, even though it's ever-so-slightly OTP.
You'll find Gu's Bistro in a shopping center on the southbound side of Buford Highway, just outside the I-285 loop. Look for the deserted- and sketchy-looking strip mall behind the Chick-fil-A -- don't worry, Gu's is very much in business.
The interior is surprisingly nice. Not upscale, no, but still tastefully decorated, all things considered. Everything is spotless, and the staff is incredibly attentive and friendly.
But let's talk about what's really important: the food. It's some of the best Chinese food in Atlanta. And, yeah, it's Sichuan food, but the spiciness can be adjusted to your liking. Just ask; they're eager to please.
Following a small serving of pickled vegetables, we had the Luo Jiang Dried Tofu ($6.95), the Szechuan Style Spicy Pork Intestines ($12.95), and the Tea Smoked Duck ($14.95). Everything was solid, but the duck ("zhangcha duck") is particularly worth mentioning: incredibly flavorful (don't compare zhangcha duck to the generally much blander Peking duck), smoky (I can certainly believe Heather N.'s note about the in-house smoker), and delicious.
Although I've only been to Gu's for dinner, their website indicates that they also offer an extensive menu of lunch specials, mostly under $6 (significantly cheaper than their dinner prices). And there's apparently an Americanized Chinese menu available, as well, but I don't know why you'd bother looking at that...
Gu's Bistro: 5750 Buford Highway, NE, Suite A in Doraville; 770-451-8118.
EAT IT AND TWEEP: CRAVING, CRUSHING, CRUNCHING ARE ALL RELEVANT ON FOODIECRUSH
Foodiecrush creator Heidi has a fetish for food magazines. Not a vice, but not a virtue when they pile up and eat up your time trying to find that recipe that was here someplace. Tweeting is so much faster (@foodiecrush), and Heidi's Foodiecrush blog peeks at photos and recipes on who-can-resist food blogs. Her growing fetish: food blogs, and soon, Foodiecrush magazine.
Sample Tweet: macaroni & cheese -- waffles! http://bit.ly/kHF9uP
|Looking for the latest restaurant opening, weekly wine tastings and drink specials, or other culinary happenings? Whatever makes your mouth water, Melissa Libby & Associates will point you in the right direction. Our monthly calendar, blog, flickr, Facebook page and Twitter feed will keep you up-to-date on new and ongoing restaurant events around Atlanta.|
Melissa Libby & Associates is an Atlanta-based public relations firm specializing in the restaurant, retail and hospitality industries.