Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Fire in the City results begin

Results from the first two Fire in the City matchups:

Aug. 18:

Matchup: Luca Annunziata of Passion8 and Clark Barlowe of Heirloom.
Surprise ingredients: N.C. eggs and molasses from Harrell Hill Farms.
Highest scoring dish of the night: a raviolo using Joyce Farms' Poulet Rouge egg yolk, ostrich carbonara, crispy oyster mushroom, roasted pattypan squash with molasses and charred corn (by Annunziata; shown below, courtesy of Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series).
Advancing: Annunziata, with a score (and we admire this precision) of 29.04825581 to 26.69338999.

Aug. 19:

Matchup: Tom Dyrness of Mama Ricotta’s and Brian Mottola of e2 Emeril’s Eatery.
Secret ingredients: Windcrest Farms tomatoes and Uno Alla Volta cheese.
Highest scoring dish of the night: Confit of Heritage Farms Cheshire pork tenderloin, Windcrest Farms yellow and green tomato compote, U.A.V. burrata chili grits, heirloom tomato oil, aged sherry jus (by Dyrness; below).
Advancing: Dyrness, 30.02278369 to 22.74213836.

Annunziata and Dyrness face off Sept. 8.

Labor Day brunch in uptown CLT

The 7th Street Public Market hosts a 2014 Labor Day brunch and barbecue, with Local Loaf and other vendors serving up their wares from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Grilled entrees and ice cream, live entertainment (and face painting and balloon art) will be on hand. 224 E. 7th St.;

Upstream's oysters en route

Upstream's sixth annual Oyster Bash will be Oct. 3: You get unlimited tastings of oysters from all over, from Olde Salts to York Rivers to Malpeques and more, plus wines both still and sparkling, and live entertainment and a oyster/wine pairing contest. $125; buy tickets online here or call 704-556-7730; 6902 Phillips Place Court.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Taste of the World coming up

Oct. 2 is the next "Taste of the World" in east Charlotte, which has some 25 participating restaurants this year, with cuisines from five continents. How it works: You buy a ticket ($45; here), and show up at the VanLandingham Estate (registration starts at 4:30 p.m.).

There, you get live music, drinks and tours of the historic property. About 5:45 p.m., you'll board one of the tour buses, each of which has a community guide and a route that takes passengers for samplings of food at three area restaurants. When you return (about 8:45), there'll be a dessert reception, more music and prizes.

Restaurants include: Ben Thanh (Vietnamese), Bistro La Bon (Mediterranean/European/French), Carnitas Guanajuato (Mexican), Dim Sum (Chinese), El Pulgarcito de America (Salvadoran and Honduran), El Rancho (Mexican), Euro Grill (Bosnian), Fiesta Jalisco (Mexican), Fu Lin (Indochinese), Jamile’s (Somalian and more), Kabob House (Persian), Krazy Fish (“world soul seafood fusion”), La Shish Kabob (Middle Eastern), La Terraza (Colombian), Landmark Diner (American), Lang Van (Vietnamese), Letty’s (Southern), Mama’s Caribbean Grill (Jamaican), Mily & Lalo (Peruvian), Motherland (Nigerian), Peculiar Rabbit (American), Portofino’s (Italian), Queen Sheba (Ethiopian), Three Amigos (Mexican) and Woodlands (Indian).

Taste of the World is run by the volunteer group E.A.S.T. (Eastland Area Strategies Team), which seeks to promote and boost economic growth in east Charlotte.

VanLandingham: 2010 The Plaza.

Monday, August 18, 2014

'The Feed' premieres Aug. 21

Chef/author/TV guy Marcus Samuelsson (on right, of Aquavit in New York and lots more), Gail Simmons (Food & Wine special projects director, who you know as a "Top Chef" judge) and "comedian and food writer" Max Silvestri debut Aug. 21 in "The Feed," a show in which they chase trends, and compete in weird challenges.

I've seen an episode and it's reasonably entertaining (though one gets the feeling a producer kept telling Marcus to "turn it up!"): In that, slated to be the second aired, the three tackled a make-your-own-mashup and invented something useful (and Gail's actually was). More info here.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Coming up: artisan dinner; beer dinner and a cafe returns (temporarily) from the dead

Heirloom's chef-owner Clark Barlowe does his next artisan dinner Aug. 20 (the following one will be Sept. 24), with producers on hand to talk about what you're eating. On the menu (four courses for $75): N.C. clams, steamed, and Harker’s Island oysters in a Barbee Farm garlic and parsley broth, with Fonta Flora's Alpha Vs. Beta Carotene (a carrot IPA from the Morganton brewer); Lucky Clay’s butter lettuce "cups" with housemade pimento cheese and Anson Mills Carolina Gold rice cakes, with 2012 Jones von Drehle Petite Manseng (a big white wine); Heritage Farm’s crispy pork belly with western N.C.-style barbecue sauce, with NoDa Ramble on Red (a red ale); "Faux Gras" (a beef liver pate made with Salem Hills' grassfed Black Angus) and 2011 Biltmore Cabernet Sauvignon N.C.; and a flourless dark chocolate cake with foraged-wineberry gel, and Jones von Drehle's blackberry dessert wine. 8470 Bellhaven Blvd.; 704-595-7710.

Look for a "beer dinner/picnic" featuring N.C. craft brewers Aug. 21 at D'Vine Wine Cafe. Five courses with six brews for $39.99, with the beers being: Mother Earth Kolsch Style, on draft; Mystery Brewing "Evangeline Saison," Belgian Style, with grilled salmon and spicy Thai salad; Rail House IPA with crabcake and guacamole crema; Rail House K-Bar Brown with grilled sausage; Duck Rabbit Milk Stout with foie burger and roasted potatoes; and Highland Mocha Stout with an espresso brownie sundae. 14815 John J. Delaney Drive; 704-369-5050.

And Bonterra will host a one-day return of the defunct Las Ramblas, the Dilworth tapas place that was once where Toast is now: Sept. 4 will offer a tasting of 21 Spanish wines from the Wine Vault, followed by a three-course Spanish dinner (dishes TBA). Reservations: 704-548-9463; Bonterra is 1829 Cleveland Ave.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Wallis wine dinner at Lumiere

Lumiere will do a wine dinner Aug. 26 featuring Wallis Estate, a Napa winery (Diamond Mountain) owned by Marilyn Belk Wallis and her husband, Edward Wallis, that produces just a few hundred cases of wine a year. She'll host the dinner, and the focus will be a four-year vertical of Little Sister, a red blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Among the courses: braised black pig salad; wild sea bass poached in red wine; dry-aged Piedmontese beef; and vanilla-bean-roasted figs.

$138; tickets here.