Monday, November 30, 2009

I Did It!

I posted every day for an entire month! Whew!

You can, too at NaBloPoMo.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Zorba's on MacArthur

I can always count on this Northside establishment to deliver a great pizza. If you live in the neighborhood, check them out. 264-5370. Minimum $10 order for delivery. No credit cards.

They also carry subs, baked spaghetti, and lasagna.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Post Thanksgiving Joys - Potato Cakes

Sometimes the best things in life are leftovers. We had potato cakes for breakfast along with scrambled turkey eggs.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Getting the Heebie Jeebies

Black Friday tends to give one the Heebie Jeebies. I'll take this particular one from Napa any day.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving Feast

Here's a wrap up of the lunch menu:

Roast Duck
Cranberry Sauce
Roasted Fennel, Purple Carrots, and Onions
Dressing with Smoked Sausage and Roasted Butternut Squash
Mashed Potatoes, Celery Root, and Japanese Turnips
Homemade Bread
Adelsheim Pinot Noir

I am very thankful that I can cook for my family and that I could incorporate some local goodness from the South of the James Market.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

$2 Mimosas

Ahhh. Movieland on Boulevard. Miss Grant Takes Richmond (a bit out of focus) and a couple of $2 Mimosas. Life is good.

Monday, November 23, 2009

River City Supper Club #9 - A Philosophical Evening

For this month's Supper Club R and K hosted and gave us a menu to ponder. As well as a splendidly set table.

First Course: Tabula Rasa

Unleavened bread, shepherd's cheeses, olives, figs and dates


2008 Coteaux du Languedoc Picpoul de Pinet

Second Course: The Bird or the Egg? We discovered that both arrived at the same time.

Quail egg over polenta and greens with pork fat caramelized red onion confit and Duck confit and pear salad


2008 Chateau de Nages Costieres de Nimes Reserve White

and 2007 Chateau de Nages Costieres de Nimes Reserve Red

Third Course: Simon Fish 16th Century Reformer

Salmon en papillote with fennel, potatoes, and olives


2008 Chateau de Nages Costieres de Nimes Reserve Rose

Intermezzo: Lemon sorbet in lemon shell

Fourth Course: Can a cow achieve the Buddha mind?

Individual Beef Wellington with red wine reduction


2006 Michel Gassier Les Piliers Cabernet Sauvignon


2003 Le Cigare Volant Red Wine California

and 2005 Chateau Lieujean Haut-Medoc

Dessert Course: Life, the Universe, and Everything
Assorted lollipop desserts

Francois Montand Blanc de Blancs

What an enlightening evening!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

La Casita - Fast, Funky, Fun

Probably the only reason we really go to La Casita is because it's within walking distance of our house. But every time we go we, it's enjoyable. The place is popular with the area locals and you get a lot of decent food for a great price. And don't forget the chips with three types of salsa - red, white, and green. I am fond of mixing the white and the green together and then spooning out some green sauce in my refried beans.

So, on Friday we headed to the little house once again at the corner of Azalea and Brook. The sign offers a hint of what's inside.

The funky holiday lights adds to the quirkiness of the place.

I tried the soft taco special of the evening with grilled steak, grilled onions, guacamole, and cilantro with Spanish rice and refried beans. Very tasty.

We also tried the drink special featuring tequila and orange curacao - way too sweet. We switched to margaritas for the second round.
It was still all good and doesn't break the bank. If only they featured some kind of pork dish...

La Casita on Urbanspoon

Saturday, November 21, 2009

South of the James Market - Late Fall

A lovely day and a great day to visit the South of the James Market. Almost as many vendors continue to offer fantastic products. Lots of root veggies (including my new fav - Japanese turnips!), squashes, and lettuces. And a vendor that is popular for restaurants, but new to the market - Manakintowne Specialty Growers. Common Ground Growers are offering wreaths. Flynn's Foods now has a truck and can cook up garlic fries, turkey burgers, and egg inna nest (fried egg and grilled toast). We also learned that a smaller market will operate in the winter from 10-noon and about 20 vendors have committed to being there. Yippee!

Here are a few pics for your enjoyment:

Friday, November 20, 2009

A Favorite Burgundy (for the moment)

2005 Bourgogne from Bouchard Pere and Fils. I tasted this at J. Emerson last month and picked up a couple of bottles for less than $20 each.

I almost always enjoy wine from this particular producer. This bottle had a decent fruitiness across the upper to mid-palate and was tasty just by itself. Yet, it had enough heartiness to stand up to a pan fried pork chop.

This wine definitely embodies what I think of (and, indeed want) when someone talks about Pinot Noir.


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Turkey Soup Recipe

Since Turkey Day is right around the corner, I thought I would share a soup recipe. It's not too precise, but it gives you the foundation to be creative.

Turkey Soup

Before soup day:

Roast a turkey a day or two before you make the soup. I usually season the turkey with fresh rosemary and thyme and salt and pepper. Part of the seasoning is inserted between the breast and the skin. Enjoy some hot turkey. Place the leftover turkey in the refrigerator. Save any turkey juices and filter and place in metal bowl and put in refrigerator for stock.

On soup day:

Turkey stock
Chicken broth (1-2 big boxes depending on how much turkey stock you have)
2 large sweet onions, chopped
1 pound of carrots, diced
1 cup of frozen corn
As much diced, shredded turkey as you want
1 tablespoon dried lavender
Several sprigs of fresh thyme (leaves scraped off and stems discarded)
Salt and pepper to taste

Take turkey stock and scrape off fat from the top of the stock and discard
Place stock in large pot
Pour a box of chicken broth into pot
Toss in diced onions and carrots
Let boil and then lower burner to simmer for about 30 minutes
Toss in lavender and thyme
Toss in turkey
Add more chicken broth, if needed
Simmer for about 15 minutes
Add corn and simmer another 30 minutes
Add salt and pepper to taste
Serve immediately

You can also put in rice or egg noodles in this dish or add other veggies or herbs. I am also contemplating making the soup with black eyed peas... The possibilities are endless.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


The tasting at J. Emerson tonight featured something extraordinary:

1981 Max Ferd. Richter Erdener Treppchen Riesling Kabinett (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany)

Pay close attention to the date - 1981. And the Riesling is still tasting good. And it's only $20. A rare find and a rare treat.

Turkey Day is right around the corner and this would be a great wine to serve.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Nadolski's Butcher Shop - Goochland

If you live in the Goochland area, stop by Nadolski's Butcher Shop. The shop (located on Rt. 6 River Road West) features locally sourced meats, homemade sausages, and a "Meat for the Week" special. They also serve as a certified deer check station and can process and package your venison.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Where Should I Take My Parents on Thanksgiving Day?

Hey Richmond!

My parents are coming to Richmond for Thanksgiving and I need a restaurant recommendation (lunch or dinner). We do not want to eat at home this year. Lemaire would be too upscale this time around, but I don't want to end up at Cracker Barrel either.

Thanks in advance.

Half Way There

I signed up to publish 30 posts in 30 days. Half way there and looking good. And for any of you that visit me from time to time. Thanks!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

We Did Eat at Fleming's

The allure of a $25 credit at Fleming's was too overwhelming. We dined on a Friday night. And we had a most enjoyable experience (aside from the very curt and unfriendly hostess who confirmed our reservation in her computer). Hostess aside, the host was quite friendly as he seated us at our table. Our waiter did not contrive to put on a wine snob attitude and did not rush us to decide upon dinner or dessert. Our wine was decanted. We did not have to pour our own wine, the staff took care of that throughout the evening. The management came by twice to make sure we were having a good time and to thank us for taking advantage of the Holiday program. Our bill automatically had the $25 credit attached to it (no paper coupons) and we were presented with another gift card for the new year.

All of this attention! We lapped it up. And the attention did not smother us. But we did notice that even on a Friday night, the place was not packed. A few empty tables remained during the evening. This would not have been the case a couple of years ago. For my part, I reveled in the attention. For a place with high price points, the service has to be above expectations. Fleming's delivered on this night.

And, they also delivered on scrumptious food and wine. We started with glasses of white - Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc for hubby and Helfrich Alsatian Pinot Gris for me. Both delicious and both paired well with the Caesar salad that we split. And since we stated up front that we would split the salad, it was presented on two plates with chilled forks. The dressing definitely made use of anchovies and both wines held their own with the little fishies.

For dinner we ordered a 2007 Chelsea Goldschmidt Merlot to drink. Full bodied and satisfying.

My spouse selected the Rockfish and Scallops special and I had the Veal Chop. We also split a Half and Half side - shoestring potatoes and giant onion rings fried in peanut oil. Both entrees were very tasty. Fleming's did a great job in preparing the veal.

Although tempting, no dessert.

Hands down this was the best Fleming's experience we have ever had. I hope they continue to wow their diners.

Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar on Urbanspoon

Saturday, November 14, 2009

3 Fellers Bakery - Gluten Free Products

The other day we drove out to Goochland along Patterson Ave which turns into River Road West and happened upon 3 Fellers Bakery. This is a gluten-free bakery. While you can pick up delicious cookies, cakes, etc. at the bakery itself, we also discovered that Ukrops, Whole Foods, and Good Foods Grocery carry 3 Fellers products. The M & M sugar cookie was quite nice. And while I do not need gluten free products, I have friends who need to steer clear of the stuff.

Kudos to this local business who is bringing sweetness to folks.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Westwood Fountain

Ah, there's just something about drug store lunch counters. These days they are few and far between. And for me they do not jump out as a place to go for lunch, even though I grew up with them and enjoy eating at them.

Well, this past Wed. we were headed for Goochland and thinking about a place on Patterson for lunch. Suddenly..."Let's go to Westwood!"

And so we embarked upon our first dining experience at this very experienced and expanded lunch counter. Of course, many others already knew about the place. Neighbors and friends stop by, recognize each other, and chat.

And while my hubby ordered a club (which was decent, but the bread could have been toasted more), I went for a more bold choice employing a large part of the grill - A Cheesy Western - a hamburger, American cheese, and a fried egg and an order of fries along with a Coke.

Such a mouth-satisfying delight.

I need to drop by for breakfast. The Egg in a Nest would make this bird chirp sweetly.

Westwood Fountain on Urbanspoon