Wednesday, February 14, 2007

To Dine In or Out? That is the Question.

It's always a dilemma about what to do for Valentine's Day. I find it to be one of the worst nights of the year to go out to dinner. Its kind of like New Year's Eve in that way. Special menus, crowded restaurants, surly single wait staff or bitter involved wait staff that wish they were home in front of the fire with their loved ones.

We are staying in this year- I actually have a PhotoShop class until 9. I am bringing home a molten chocolate cake to eat in front of the fire. I did start the day with heart shaped pancakes for my wife and kids. Some of them look like they may need bypass surgery- But all I had was one cookie cutter and making sure they set before I moved to the next one was tricky. And I did have to work today.
I leave you with some words of the Bard:
"If music be the food of love, play on;
Give me excess of it, that, surfeiting,
The appetite may sicken, and so die.
That strain again;--it had a dying fall;
O, it came o'er my ear like the sweet south,
That breathes upon a bank of violets,
Stealing and giving odour.--Enough; no more;'
Tis not so sweet now as it was before
.O spirit of love, how quick and fresh art thou!
That, notwithstanding thy capacity
Receiveth as the sea, nought enters there,
Of what validity and pitch soever,B
ut falls into abatement and low price
Even in a minute! so full of shapes is fancy,
That it alone is high-fantastical. "

--From Twelfth Night (I, i,1-3)

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

An Old Friend

Headed up to Charlottesville last week to see a great concert at
the Paramount Theater- Jeff Tweedy, the front man from Wilco,
was playing a solo acoustic show. We were able to sneak out of Richmond early enough to have a nice dinner. As we pondered the many choices within walking distance on the Downtown Mall, we opted for an old favorite, the warm and cozy confines of the C&O Restaurant's basement bistro.

Greeted outside by flickering lanterns, and inside by a warm fire, our decision was decidely a good one on a cold and blustery night. After a few drinks from the bar- local Starr Hill brew and a few Makers Marks, a basket of warm bread arrived at the table and was gobbled up.

We sampled a variety of dishes including a Pear & Leek soup, Pumpkin gnocchi, sweetbread croquettes, a venison steak, and Steak Chinoise with fresh ginger, Tamari, and scallion cream sauce. The latter was served with mashed potatoes and green beans, simple fare but just what the night called for. A few bottles of Shiraz rounded out our pre-concert meal. I hadn't been to the C&O in over 5 years, but it has certainly held its ground in a competitive restaurant scene in Charlottesville. And few can boast of the same warm bar and intimate atmosphere.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

A New Breed of Food Blogs

According to am article in Sunday's New York Times, "Unlike an earlier wave of food blogs focused on home cooking, recipes and basic restaurant recommendations, the new breed is gossipy and competitive; it trafficks in pointed restaurant criticism and tidbits of news — Craftsteak has installed a new stove! Emmerite beans have been added to the menu at Tasting Room! — and is unsettling the ground of the restaurant industry."

Click here for the full article .

Sharp Bites

And come back soon to hear some juicy bits about Richmond establishments!