Archive for January, 2008

Heads Up!

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

Samantha and I are taking a quick vacation – something with no cookbooks involved. The store will be closed next Monday, February 4th through Thursday, February 7th. We’ll be back open on Friday, February 8th, rested and ready for question.

Slow Food Portland Writer’s Night

Monday, January 21st, 2008

This Thursday is the big night at Space Gallery!

The Slow Food Portland Writer’s Night comes to town, and promises to be an evening of top notch food writing entertainment and good food. The line up includes Sandy Oliver, Margaret Hathaway, Melissa Pasanen and Rick Gencarelli and James Peterson – all great and all different. Come for the readings stay for the food.

Click on the link for info about times, tickets, etc.

The Portland Culinary Scribbler

Monday, January 21st, 2008

A new place for local Portland based food writing debuts this week, The Portland Culinary Scribbler. The Scribbler is the brainchild of Margot Mallar, a financial advisor at Merrill Lynch and a local foodie who loves food writing. The Scribbler is simply a low-risk platform for short writings on the local food experience. The first group of writings comes from four folks who each gave their take on a wine and cheese experience. The experience was aided by Jacques of the Old Port Wine Merchants and Kris of K. Horton Specialty Foods.

Can You Look Your Dinner in the Eye?

Wednesday, January 16th, 2008

It’s not enough that British chefs have been writing the most engaging and important cookbooks these days. Now they’re taking on performance art as a means of getting across their message of meat eaters’ responsibility. Julia Moskin outlines some of the recent activities in the New York Times.

Jamie Oliver has taken to the British public, a TV show which thoroughly disects the chicken and egg industry. The show is incredible, and well worth watching on YouTube. You can find the beginning of the show here:

[note: January 28th. It appears the links to Jamie’s show on YouTube have been taken down. Hopefully they will be available elsewhere soon.]

jamie’s pre-show interview
part 1 – the real show begins at about 2:10
part 2
part 3
part 4
part 5
part 6 – this piece seems to be missing right now
part 7
part 8
part 9
part 10
part 11
reaction to the show

Wondrich wonderful!

Sunday, January 6th, 2008

Thanks to all of you who showed up Friday night to meet David Wondrich and to hear him talk about, and more importantly mix, classic cocktails. Dave spoke about the roots of the cocktail itself, and dove into the origins of the Manhattan, the Martini and more. The highlight for many was the demonstration of Jerry Thomas’ fiery Blue Blazer, made with cask strength scotch and boiling water, and poured back and forth between two silver or pewter mugs while alight. The flame burns dark blue, and arcs along with the booze as it flows from one cup to the other. Very impressive, and tastier than the simple and high octane ingredients might lead you to believe.

Dave appeared on WCSH TV’s local show “207” – the other guests included Hulk Hogan, and he’s scheduled to be on Conan O’Brien this coming Friday.

And extra thanks to local bartending star John Myers (found behind the bar at Local 188) who helped put the whole evening together, and to Naomi and the other kind folks at RiRa who let us take over a piece of the upstairs on a busy Friday night.

Armagnac in the news

Thursday, January 3rd, 2008


Michael Sanders, the Maine-based food writer and author of From Here You Can’t See Paris, and Families of the Vine has a lengthy feature in The NY Times on Cognac’s underappreciated sibling, Armagnac. The focus of the article is the Darrozes family, who have done much in the last half century to bring armagnac out from its hiding places in the cellars of Gascon farmers. For some time now, Sanders has been working on a book about Armagnac, to which we eagerly look forward. but if you can’t wait, there are a few older times articles on the subject here, and here.