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Pork bones... Stock options

DONT'T LAUGH! We take the baby back rib bones, throw in some broccoli stalks and a couple of old carrots, and use the resulting stock as a spritzer for our 2 dogs food. (English mastiffs, 190 and 140 # respectively). The bits of meat left on the bones falls off and they love the result.

Downtown Minneapolis eats

Marriott City Center

Downtown Minneapolis eats

Attending convention in downtown Minneapolis next week for 3 days. Looking for good breakfast, lunch unde $10; dinner under $25. So other post but had trouble discerning locale of places. Will not have a car.

Grand Cayman -- special occasion?

If you haven't made your trip, would strongly suggest considering Lucca in addition to Blue. Approx. 100 yds. south of Ritz.
Have not eaten at Ristorante Pappagallo in several years. Checked out La Dolce Vida a couple of weeks back; food good not great; service mediocre.
The Brasserie in downtown has been excellent in the past.
My impression of Grand Old House was that it had been resting on its laurels for a long time!

A Christmas Carol Dinner !

Thanks for the suggestion. I had guessed at brussell sprouts cooked with pancetta and have a good guyere potato gratin recipe.

Oct 24, 2010
vinolovers in Home Cooking

A Christmas Carol Dinner !

Looking for a menu that includes a roast goose to prepare as a test for our neighborhood cooking club. Cooking skills vary from inexperienced to expert.


Oct 22, 2010
vinolovers in Home Cooking

Grand Cayman update - July 2010

Recently returned from a week+ visit to Grand Cayman and offer the following updates on restaurants.
Calypso Grill remains our favorite spot on the island! The food is excellent (sort of a French/Caribbean fusion) and the wine list offers good values at different price points.
Agua, which opened last year by an alum of Calypso Grill is our second favorite.offering a South American take on the Caribbean dining. The wine list also offers good values if you look closely.
We went back to the Cracked Conch, across from the Turtle Farm, and had an excellent dinner. (This related to but not the water bar in the back which has another name as well). They have stepped the food up a notch and offer some serious epicurean delights. The wine list, although impressive, doesn't offer many values or interesting choices.
Luca has a great interior, check out the fish tanks when you enter the lobby, and the food is good but not great. (The owners of Ragazzi have in interest in Luca).
We tried Tiki Beach for a evening dinner. This is a new place on the north end of the public beach along 7 Mile Beach. The food was ok, but eating at dusk the flies swarmed and we still had welts 3 days later coming home. I suspect once it's dark the bar has an interesting scene but we didn't stay late.
Finally, if you want a good burger, Aqua Beach has a very good one and decent service as well.

There are many other good restaurants on the island, but this summarize's our most recent visit.

Where to get decent priced drinks (beer/cocktails) on Grand Cayman - with a view

You might try the Cracked Conch. It's across from the Turtle Farm and while the atmosphere is typical beach, they have a great view of sunset when the clouds permit.

10 Reasons Why Whole Foods Is Annoying

In Atlanta, Whole Foods bought out what was essentially a gourmet grocery. While those locations retain the old name, Harry's Farmer's Market, in the interest of being healthy and wholesome, they have slowly discontinued many of the items I used to purchase (ranging from Hebrew National deli mustard to more recently Citterio salami's. The variety and quality of the produce has declined as well (you can't buy a decent tomato ever it seems). However, there seems to be more and more room for prepared dishes!

Oct 29, 2008
vinolovers in Features

Atlanta Season Opener - Good Eats????

Emeril has closed his Atlanta outpost. While it improved tremendously after a rocky start, I think the location was less than ideal.
BluePointe, across Peachtree St. from Phipps Plaza is good.
We had an excellent dinner at "Home" a couple of months back. (It's the old Seegar's location if that helps directionally).

Spending most of the week in El Paso Tx

Spending most of the week in El Paso and looking for on update on recs from the board.

Places mentioned previously include:

Cafe Central
Mi Piaci
Los Bandidios de Carlos (sp?)

Not interested in driving great distances as it will be 4 long (10-12 hr) days.

Any new places or suggestions?

Mar 10, 2008
vinolovers in Texas

Aging Zin?

Chicago Mike and zin1953 are pretty much dead on regarding ageworthiness. I might add the tannin level to the balance part of the discussion.
We opened a '92 'Ridge earlier this year that was wonderful. Generally Ridge zins will last longer than many.
We're also slowly finishing off the case of '97 Deerfield Ranch Zin (Sonoma) that has aged wonderfully.
Sutter home used to make a Reserve zin (early '80's and before :the pink stuff) from Amador County that would age very well.
Generally I won't buy unless I think I'll get 7-10 years from my zin. I look for fruit and balance, no hot alcohol finish and tread lightly if the alcohol goes much over 14.5 -15%.

Aug 26, 2007
vinolovers in Wine

Dining choices Des Moines

Thanks for all the responses. I only had 1 night to chow, so I chose Lucca. The meal was delicious (the duck was heavenly). The wines by the glass were very good. I would reccommend highly, although as a stranger it was a bit difficult to find hidden among the store fronts.

Dining choices Des Moines

Heading to Des Moines later this week on business.
The following restaurants received Wine Spectator recognition for their wine list. Any comments / preferences on the food end?
Biaggi's Ristorante Italiano
Cafe Di Scala


Fremont / Newark area choices


Fremont / Newark area choices

I'm heading west for business in the Fremont/Newark part of East Bay and don't expect to have time to get into SF for dinner. Any places of merit nearby?

Coming to Atlanta for a conference

If you're staying downtown, probably the best choice, believe it or not, is Nikolai's Roof at the Hilton. Don't let the decor put you off (the czar and cossacks disappeared year's ago) but the food, wine and view are terrific.
If you are closer to mid-town, defined as north of North Ave. to about 17th St; the following are options:
Trois, good experience but not everyone agrees
Veni Vedi Vecci; haven't been in a long time but recently got good reviews in the paper.

Grand Cayman Rec for 20th Anniversary

Just returned from Grand Cayman in early June.
Rupert's Blu at the Ritz for formal (mostly - jacket no tie) romantic dinner is probably best choice.
Calypso Grill is excellent but definitely need a reservation.
Other thoughts not mentioned:
The Lighthouse (about halfway to the east side of the island -- a trek but the food is excellent and so is the wine list)
Lobster Pot -- lacking a bit in the ambience but great food & wine list
Harvery's -- new, downtown.
Raguzzi's -- Italian and across the road from the beach.
Cracked Conch up by the Turtle Farm (lunch / dinner).
Other observations.
The Wharf is variable (service more so than food) and I've never figured out what causes the variability.
Had a poor experience at the Grand Old House a couple of years back.
Pappagallo's just doesn't work for me for some reason.
Bacchus is good but tables are small and quarters close.