Category Archives: Food

Recent posts on food

Organicgirl Introduces New Salad Blends

Get a taste of organicgirl‘s two new salad blends! Introducing true hearts butter and true hearts butter, plus, which feature the tender and sweet hearts of butter lettuce.

Both blends have the delicious and crispy lettuce you love from organicgirl, and are ready to mix in summer salads. Like with the other blends, these feature organic lettuces that have been triple washed. Just take them right out of the package and serve!

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

Experience the new true hearts blends this Sunday at Whole Foods in Buckhead when the Eat Your Hearts Out Tour comes through Atlanta.

On Sunday, June 18th from 10 am to 2 pm join blogger Cynthia Hoyt of Darling Down South for a tasting of true hearts butter and true hearts butter, plus. You’ll also be able to get exclusive recipes, VIP coupons and the chance to win prizes.

Whole Foods Buckhead is located at 77 West Paces Ferry Road NW in Atlanta.

Can’t make it to the Eat Your Hearts Out Tour? Click here to get a buy one, try one coupon, so you can enjoy both new blends for the price of one.

For more information on organicgirl lettuces and salad dressings visit iloveorganicgirl.com.

Related:
Organicgirl Introduces Green Juices and Delivery
Dress Them Your Best: Organicgirl #Flavcraze Challenge

Atlanta Food & Wine Festival

Atlanta Food & Wine Festival Returns in June

The Atlanta Food & Wine Festival returns for its 7th year this June, showcasing the best of the South’s restaurants, food, drinks, spirits and beyond.

From Thursday, June 1st through Sunday, June 4th, unique food and beverage traditions from Texas to D.C. will be served up in more than 80 Learning Experiences, plus dinners, events and the can’t miss all-you-can-indulge Tasting Tents.

Atlanta Food & Wine FestivalComing together for the four day fete in Midtown Atlanta are award-winning chefs, mixologists, barbecue pit-masters, sommeliers, mixologists and local growers.

The best strategy is to come prepared with how you want to travel through the South. Is it through food? There are Learning Experiences about barbecue sauce, soul food vegetables and oysters. Is it through drinks? There is Bourbon, southern craft beers and Virginia’s award-winning wine. Or are you looking for a global experience, going beyond Atlanta to other southern regions around the globe? There’s Chilean, South African and Australian wine seminars, and even one on sake.

One thing is for sure – no matter the event, you’ll experience the best in wine and food. Be sure to share it via social media, with hashtags #AFWF17 and #KnowTheSouth.

If you don’t yet have tickets, here are the details:

Individual Tasting Tent Pass – $100 per Tasting Tent ticket
Day Pass – $175 per day
Weekend Pass – $435 for full weekend
Connoisseur Experience –$600 – $1,800 per ticket
Dinners & Evening Events – $25 – $225 per person, per dinner/event

Click here to purchase tickets

The Tasting Tents are open Friday, 7:30 pm to 10:30 pm; Saturday, 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm; and Sunday, 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm.

Extra advice: wear comfy shoes so you can enjoy the festival to its fullest extent. The main action happens at the Loews Hotel at 1065 Peachtree Street NE, and the Tasting Tents are located a short walk away, at Piedmont Park’s Greensward Promenade (there is a shuttle from the Loews and golf carts from the 12th street entrance to Piedmont Park). Taking public transportation or Uber is recommended, or have a designated driver. Guests must be 21 years of age or older.

For all information, visit atlfoodandwinefestival.com.

>> Connect:
Twitter: @ATLFoodAndWine
Facebook: AtlantaFoodandWineFestival
Instagram: @atlfoodandwine
Pinterest: ATLFoodAndWine
Festival Hashtags: #AFWF17 #KnowTheSouth

Related: Atlanta Food & Wine Festival Celebrates the South

Headline image via Atlanta Food & Wine Festival on Instagram

MAYA Steaks Seafood

Support Second Helping Atlanta at MAYA Steaks & Seafood

Chef Mimmo Alboumeh of MAYA Steaks & Seafood and Red Pepper Taqueria is not just focused on making delicious food. He’s also passionate about giving back to the local community.

Now through mid-May Chef Mimmo has partnered with Second Helping Atlanta. The 501(c)(3) non-profit organization aims to eliminate hunger in the Metropolitan Atlanta area by taking surplus food and delivering it to those in need.

Chef MimmoDine at MAYA Steaks & Seafood on Wednesdays through May 10th 2017, and 20% of your total bill will be donated to Second Helping Atlanta.

Call ahead to the Sandy Springs restaurant at (404) 705-8880 and reserve the Chef’s Table for Second Helpings. You may also reserve a table for 2 to 8 people through Open Table. If reserving online, include the note that you’d like to be seated at the Chef’s Table to benefit Second Helpings Atlanta.

MAYA, named for Chef Mimmo’s youngest daughter, offers top cuts of steak from Iowa Premium Black Angus and inventive seafood dishes with a signature Spanish flair.

For more information on Second Helpings Atlanta visit www.secondhelpingsatlanta.org.

MAYA Steaks & Seafood, 6152 Roswell Road, Atlanta 30328.
Offering dinner Monday through Saturday, 4 p.m to 11 p.m.
(404) 705-8880, www.mayasteaks.com

Image of Chef Mimmo courtesy Red Clay Public Relations

Related: MAYA: Superior Steak in Sandy Springs

ONE taco tuesday

Taco Tuesdays at ONE. Midtown Kitchen

Looking to get your taco fix this Tuesday? ONE. midtown kitchen is now offering a taco and Tecate special.

On Taco Tuesdays you can enjoy three different tacos created by Executive Chef Matt Weinstein and a can of the Mexican beer for just $13.

You can add rice and beans for an additional $1, and a shot of tequila for $3.

The tacos will change weekly, though you can anticipate one featuring poultry, one with seafood and one vegetarian taco.

ONE’s regular dinner menu is also available on Tuesdays. The restaurant opens at 5:30 p.m.

Taco Tuesdays at ONE. midtown kitchen, 559 Dutch Valley Road, Atlanta, 30324. 404-892-4111, onemidtownkitchen.com

Photo credit: Mia Yakel

STK Atlanta

Oyster & Champagne Party at STK Atlanta

Oysters for $1 each and a glass of champagne for $5 starting at 5pm on Friday, March 31st at STK Atlanta.

You really don’t need to know much more than that. Fab food and drinks at a great price at one of Midtown’s coolest spots kind of speaks for itself.

oysters at STKBut here are the full details: STK Atlanta is hosting a “Shuck Yeah! Oyster and Champagne Party” in its bistro and lounge in honor of National Oyster on the Half Shell Day. It’s from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on the 31st.

Fresh, chef handpicked East Coast and West Coast oysters will be $1 apiece, and the price of champagne changes based on the hour. At 5 p.m. a glass of bubbly is $5, starting at 6 p.m. it’s $6, and then it’s $7 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. A live DJ completes the party, making STK the perfect place to kick off the weekend.

Stay for dinner and add some turf to your surf, with one of STK’s mouthwatering steaks. I recommend the 28 oz Dry-Aged Porterhouse.

Shuck Yeah! Oyster and Champagne Party at STK Atlanta
Friday, March 31, 2017 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
1075 Peachtree Street, Atlanta 30309
(404) 793-0144, www.stkhouse.com

Images courtesy Caren West PR

Scofflaw Beer Dinner at The Cowfish on March 13

How do Atlanta’s newest craft brews pair with sushi and burgers? Find out on March 13th when The Cowfish hosts a special dinner with Scofflaw Brewing Company.

Cowfish logoAtlanta is the latest city to welcome The Cowfish, a unique dining experience that brings together fresh Scofflaw logoand innovative sushi with classic and gourmet burgers. The restaurant is located at the Perimeter Mall.

Scofflaw Brewing Company has been earning rave reviews since their beers debuted last October in metro Atlanta.

The Scofflaw beer dinner will be held at 6pm on Monday, March 13th. Four courses of Cowfish favorites will be paired with an assortment of brews, with a Scofflaw brewer on hand to talk about each sip.  Here is a peek at the menu:

First Course
Signature handmade nigiri of salmon, tuna and Hamachi
Sneaky Wheat | Imperial American Wheat

Second Course
Blackened Tuna Nachos – Seared Ahi tuna with
avocado salsa and crab rangoon dip
Deliverance Roll – Burgushi selection made with pulled pork,
housemade BBQ sauce and bacon coleslaw
Basement | East Coast IPA

Third Course
Two all-natural mini burgers selected from the
“minis of the week” rotation:
Boursin & Bacon
Luchador
Double Jeopardy | Double IPA

Fourth Course
Flourless chocolate torte with raspberry sauce,
caramel and sesame brittle
Interrogation | Coffee Milk Stout

The dinner costs $40 per person. Reservations are required and may be made by calling (770) 225-0009 or emailing kevin@thecowfish.com. For more information check out the event’s Facebook page.

Scofflaw Beer Dinner at The Cowfish, March 13, 2017 at 6 pm. Perimeter Mall, 4400 Ashford Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody, GA 30346. (770) 225-0009

Tavern at Atlas

Now Open: The Tavern at Atlas

There’s a new excuse to check out one of Atlanta’s top dining spots. Atlas, the restaurant at the St. Regis in Buckhead has just launched The Tavern at Atlas.

Located in the two front areas of the restaurant, by the bar and in the library, The Tavern at Atlas offers chef-driven small plates, creative cocktails and a more casual experience.

Click to enlarge menu
Click to enlarge menu

It’s the perfect date spot or place to reconnect with friends. In the cozy, intimate setting you can share dishes like citrus-cured salmon flatbread, Georges Bank pan-seared sea scallop and Atlas sliders.

You get to enjoy the excellent food Atlas is known for, without committing to a full, formal dinner.

The Tavern at Atlas opens at 4 p.m. daily. For more information visit atlasrestaurant.com, or connect with @AtlasBuckhead on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The Tavern at Atlas, St Regis Atlanta, 88 West Paces Ferry Road NW, Atlanta 30305. (404) 600-6471

Cobb Restaurant Week 2016, September 17 – 24

Cobb Restaurant WeekMake your reservations for Cobb Restaurant Week. During the 8th annual event participating restaurants in Cobb County will be offering prix fixe menus for $15, $25 or $35 per person, plus tax and gratuity.

Cobb Restaurant Week runs from Saturday, September 17th through Saturday, September 24th.

Click here to see a list of participating restaurants and their menus.

Cockentrice Atlanta

The Cockentrice Debuts New Menu

Come for the charcuterie, stay for the new innovative and delicious meat, pasta and yes, even vegetarian dishes. The Cockentrice, the hip restaurant in Krog Street Market owned by the husband-and-wife team of Executive Chef Kevin and Megan Ouzts, has debuted a new dinner menu. I recently got to indulge in a sneak peek.

The CockentriceOf course you have to start with charcuterie. You’ll be craving it after walking past the display at The Spotted Trotter on your way into the restaurant. The Ouzts launched The Spotted Trotter in 2010, and their meats can be found at farmers markets around Atlanta in addition to their two brick and mortar locations.

Pair your charcuterie with one of The Cockentrice’s new cocktails. New Beverage Director Cole Younger Just brings his experience at The Last Word, King + Duke and Horseradish Grill and offers his take on classic cocktails. I was a fan of the Milk and Honey, a twist on a Bee’s Knees, made with milk washed gin, raw honey, lemon and lavender.

The new dinner menu is organized by taste preference. From vegetables to flatbreads, fish and shellfish to beef, pork and pasta, there’s a dish (more likely several) to match your mood.

Tomato cucumber salad with tomato granita
Tomato cucumber salad with tomato granita
Peach caramelized onion tart with candied tasso and fromage blanc
Peach caramelized onion tart with candied tasso and fromage blanc

Several of the dishes can be made vegetarian, and many are gluten free. Dishes range from $8 to $38.

The decidedly non-vegetarian Spanish pork paté with golden date, pimenton and mustard on brioche
The decidedly non-vegetarian Spanish pork paté on brioche bread

There’s even the namesake Cockentrice on the menu. Chef Ouzts’ take on the unique medieval dish is a roasted hen stuffed with lamb and served with cornbread, roasted tomato, asparagus, and game jus. If that’s not your style there’s always the massive 34 oz. char-grilled pork porterhouse.

Scallop with peach chow-chow, fennel and grilled savoy cabbage
Scallop with peach chow-chow and fennel
Brisket with crispy grit and grilled savoy cabbage
Brisket with crispy grit and grilled savoy cabbage

What hasn’t changed is Chef Ouzts’ commitment to supporting local farmers and purveyors.

“As Krog Street Market and Inman Park continue to take shape and grow, we want to make sure we’re providing a distinctly, authentic Atlanta experience that reflects the friendliness and needs of the community and stays true to our philosophy to provide exquisite balance in flavor, price and sustainability,” said Chef Ouzts.

Blueberry and sumac panna cotta with lemon genoise and chantilly cream
Blueberry and sumac panna cotta with lemon genoise and chantilly cream

The Cockentrice is located at Krog Street Market. It is open for dinner Tuesday through Sunday, and brunch on Saturday and Sunday.

The Cockentrice, 99 Krog Street NE, Atlanta 30307.
470.428.2733
www.thecockentrice.com

Connect >>
Twitter: @cockentrice
Instagram: @thecockentrice

Grand Velas Riviera Maya

A Luxurious Getaway Awaits You at Grand Velas Riviera Maya

The tough decisions start just moments after you arrive at Grand Velas Riviera Maya. Do you want a traditional margarita, a tamarind margarita, spicy margarita, lychee margarita or mango margarita?

The decision is made easier by knowing you’ll be able to sample all of them and more during your stay at the luxury all-inclusive resort on Mexico’s Caribbean Coast. Emphasis on the luxury – from checking in to dining out, enjoying the white sand beach, three pools or world renowned spa, not a single detail has been overlooked.

You’ll feel pampered, spoiled and blissfully relaxed. I know, as I had the opportunity to spend four days there and I’m ready to go back.

Grand Velas Riviera Maya is located near Playa del Carmen on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. It’s about a 45 minute drive south from Cancun International Airport, an easy flight from just about anywhere in the United States.

The giant white-walled gated entrance offers a hint at what’s beyond. Pass through and you’re enveloped in the jungle, a drive that helps with the transition from work to pleasure.

The entrance to Grand Velas Riviera Maya, photo courtesy of Velas Resorts
The entrance to Grand Velas Riviera Maya, photo courtesy of Velas Resorts

The first section, or ‘ambiance’ of the all-suites resort you’ll come to is Zen. Designed to blend in with the surroundings, this ambiance is all about peace and relaxation. Palapas-covered raised walkways take you from the lobby to your suite, your escort a member of the staff assigned to assist you with anything you need during your stay. Each suite has a large spa tub and private terrace looking out at a lagoon and mangrove jungle.

Lobby at Zen ambiance, photo courtesy of Velas Resorts
Lobby at Zen, photo courtesy of Velas Resorts

The attention to detail is readily apparent. Sparkling wine can be arranged to be on ice in anticipation of your arrival. A bottle of Grand Velas Tequila sits above the fully stocked mini bar (raid it as many times as you like, it’s part of the luxury all-inclusive experience). There’s a Nespresso machine and high-end teas. L’Occitane bath and body products. An umbrella if there’s rain. And bug spray just in case (though as of this posting there has been only 1 case of Zika reported in the Cancun area).

A room at the Zen ambiance at Grand Velas Riviera Maya
A room at the Zen ambiance at Grand Velas Riviera Maya

I stayed in the Zen ambiance the first night of my stay. Waking up the next morning and enjoying coffee and breakfast on the patio was pure heaven. (In-suite dining is available 24 hours a day and included in the all-inclusive experience.)

Breakfast on the patio at Zen
Breakfast on the patio at Zen

Each of the three ambiances has a pool, gym, bars and restaurants. There are readily available shuttles to take you around so you can experience it all.

The pool and bougainvillea-draped balconies at Ambassador
The pool and bougainvillea-draped balconies at Ambassador

The family-friendly Ambassador ambiance is ideally located steps from the white sand beach and the resort’s largest pool. Nearby the Kid’s Club and Teen Club have been decked out with the latest in gaming and entertainment, guaranteeing they’ll have fun while you get to relax.

The beach at Grand Velas Riviera Maya
The beach at Grand Velas Riviera Maya

If you’re looking to reconnect with that special someone in the ultimate setting, you’ll want to stay in the Grand Class section. Exclusively for adults and teens 16 years of age and older, the Grand Class offers views, luxury and beyond, and you can enjoy it while sitting in the soaking tub on your balcony. Also worth noting, the giant spa bathtub that can probably fit six adults, no exaggeration.

I thought nothing could top breakfast on the terrace at my Zen suite until I was sipping bubbly in the soaking tub on my balcony looking out at the Caribbean Sea.

Sunset on the balcony at Grand Class
View from the balcony at Grand Class

The all-inclusive portion of your stay at Grand Velas Riviera Maya feels like the most decadent indulgence. It’s the adult version of being a kid in a candy shop; eat and drink whatever you want, and you’ll want to taste it all.

First, the drinks. You’ll find premium liquors and high quality wines from around the world available throughout the resort, all included. Want an introduction to tequila or mezcal? Host an impromptu tasting yourself! Your bartender will give you a pour from all the bottles you’d like. Decide you want to switch from a mango margarita to a lychee one while lounging at the infinity pool? There are plenty of poolside servers, or my recommendation, float over to the swim-up bar.

Next, the food. You won’t find fine dining like this at any other all-inclusive resort. Choose among the restaurants offering Mexican, French, Italian or Asian cuisine. You’ll find dishes prepared to the highest standards, and flavors to match any top restaurant. In fact, Cocina De Autor, Grand Velas Riviera Maya’s signature restaurant, has been awarded the American Automobile Association’s Five Diamond award – it’s the only restaurant in an all-inclusive to receive this honor.

A selection of dishes at Grand Velas Riviera Maya
A selection of dishes at Grand Velas Riviera Maya

The fun continues late into the night at any of Grand Velas’ bars. Listen to live music at the Piano Bar, or belt out your favorite tune at the Karaoke Bar. Of course if you just want to sit on your balcony and listen to waves lap at the beach, that’s fine too.

A stay at the Grand Velas Riviera Maya is not complete without a visit to the spa. Appropriately located in the Zen ambiance, the region’s largest luxury spa incorporates elements of the natural environment in its two-level, 89,000 plus square-foot space.

Warm water pool at the spa, photo courtesy of Velas Resorts
Warm water pool at the spa, photo courtesy of Velas Resorts

Your treatment begins with a Water Journey. Alternating hot and cold treatments culminate in a warm water pool with bubbles, jets and waterfalls designed to help you sink deep into relaxation.

I enjoyed a Therapeutic Velas Maya massage during my stay. The deep tissue massage is uniquely tailored to each guest, with various techniques to help relieve stress and tension. The massage, coupled with the Water Journey, was easily one of the top spa experiences I have ever had. I was the most relaxed I had been in ages.

Treatment room at the spa, photo courtesy of Velas Resorts
Treatment room at the spa, photo courtesy of Velas Resorts

Spa treatments vary in price and are not included in the all-inclusive rate.

You could easily spend your entire vacation on the Riviera Maya at the Grand Velas resort. But there is plenty to see and do nearby. You can explore the shops and restaurants of downtown Playa del Carmen. Tulum and its famous ruins are located about 45 miles away, and a bit farther is Chichen Itza. Xcaret, an eco-archaeological park is about 20 minutes away. Check out a video of the Butterfly Pavilion below.

A video posted by Robin Austin (@amgastronomer) on

Ready to book? Visit the website for Grand Velas Riviera Maya at rivieramaya.grandvelas.com.

If you’re looking for an excuse to visit in October, the Best of Mexico Riviera Maya will be held from October 5th to 9th. Five internationally-known Mexican chefs will team up for a 10-course tasting menu that will be offered over the four nights. It is included in the all-inclusive pricing.

The $250 million Grand Velas Riviera Maya offers 539 suites ranging in size from 1,184 to 3,767 square feet. Nightly rates start at $393 per person per night based on double occupancy.

Grand Velas Riviera Maya is part of the Velas Resorts family that includes Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, Velas Vallarta, Casa Velas and Grand Velas Los Cabos, which will open later this year.

The inviting pool at the Grand Velas Riviera Maya, #nofilter needed
The inviting pool at the Grand Velas Riviera Maya, #nofilter needed

Special thanks to Grand Velas Riviera Maya for hosting my visit. All opinions are my own.