Archive: December, 2012
Unless you have an unhealthy (or, well, healthy infatuation) with squash and root vegetables, this time of year gets pretty dull as far as CSA shares are concerned. To counteract winter CSA ennui the good folks at Little Baby's Ice Cream have just announced a Deep Winter Community Supported Ice Cream Subscription Service available now through December 30th.
Similar to produce CSAs (except way better because it's ice cream) the C.S.I.C.S.S. offers ice cream aficionados a chance to purchase full or half shares of this exclusive ice cream opportunity. A $75 full share gets you four pints per month from January until March and a half at $45 brings two pints for the next three months.
So, aside from the fact that an ice cream subscription service is a downright genius idea, some of the other benefits of signing up for the C.S.I.C.S.S. include access to try new flavors. No confirmation yet but sources say that holiday-centric flavors like Purple Candy Cane, Rosemary Egg Nog, Peppermint Hot Chocolate with Burnt Marshmallows as well as rumors of ROOT Hot Toddy and Kugel (!!) are all in the works. Plus there's the added advantage of the subscription service saving you a few bucks of your ice cream order. And for those vegan, lactose-intolerant or just plain dairy-adverse, don't feel left out, non-dairy subscriptions are available as well.
Once you sign up pick-ups will happen on the first of every month at Metropolitan Bakery (262 South 19th St.), Green Aisle Grocery (1618 East Passyunk Ave.) and Little Baby's World Headquarters (2311 Frankford Ave.) Oh, and Little Baby's is still working on a West Philly drop spot so if you know of anything give 'em a shout.
Looks like Bainbridge Street Barrel House (625 S. 6th St.) isn't wasting any time jumping into the beer dinner game. Their first paired prix fixe is scheduled for Wed., Dec. 19, and we really like their brew choices. (Full first-person disclosure: I lived in SF before 3-oz. liquid limits on airlines ruled the day and used to dutifully carry on loads of Anchor Christmas Ale when returning east for the holidays, so nostalgia plays its part.)
The five-course spread costs $50 (inclusive of beer pairings, but not of tax or tip) and starts seating at 7 p.m. You can reserve over the phone or in person. In addition to Anchor Christmas, they've got holiday offerings from Corsendonk, the Bruery, Goose Island, and Tröeg's—even Mad Elf pop rocks are making an appearance.
Because it's Christmas, you'll find goose and bûche de Noël on the table, but this is not your typical homey holiday spread—not unless your parents put out sweetbreads and pickled kumquat every December. (If they did, we wouldn't say no to an invite to your family holiday party.)
Set the alarm for five p.m. this Friday, December 7th. Ralic's on South, the South Street seafood house with the giant octopus busting out its balcony, opens just in time for happy hour. To start, chef John Anninos is running a limited menu of bar-friendly bites while the staff gets its "sea legs" (da-dum-bum!): savory lobster-and-corn bread pudding, gingered tuna tartare, oyster stew and Buffalo shrimp. (Peep full opening menu after the jump.) Following Friday, Ralic's will be open for lunch and dinner, with weekend brunch on deck for January.
Still up in the air about weekend plans? May we suggest heading over to Union Transfer on Friday to check out Pittsburgh mystery-psych outfit Black Moth Super Rainbow. Of course there are a few reasons that we're talking music on this here food blog. First off there's the man-eating orange on the cover of BMSR's latest Cobra Juicy and then there's the fact that frontman and chief vocoder Tobacco is high school BFFs with none other than Verti Family beverage manager Steve Wildy. So there you go.
Over at Food Republic Tobacco is talking Philly picks, burgers and Wildy-inspired barrel-aged cocktails. And if you like what you see it's worth a mention that Alla Spina (1410 Mt. Vernon St.) is quite convenient for a pre UT bite and a Tobacco curated playlist will be the soundtrack to the evening.
Back in the days when Drew was still running the show here at Meal Ticket I had a different food-related gig going on. For the past four years I was the official "cookbook czarina" at Serious Eats, a job that entailed vetting recipes from newly published cookbooks and sharing my experiences on the site.
Now that the bulk of my meals take place in restaurants and my fridge is perennially bare and recipe testing is a distant memory it's easy to forget that I spent the first half of 2012 cooking my way through all sorts of cooking, baking and cocktail books.
Being that it's end of the year best-of list time Kate Williams, my cookbook successor has put together a top ten that includes some of my favorite picks, all of which are perfect gift-giving material.
Today's Afternoon Snacks is all about December's new crop of seasonal specials, from chili to eggnog to peppermint to... Rudolph?
First up, a look at the December specials at Jake’s Sandwich Board (122 S. 12th St.) moving in to take the place of November’s Turducken sandwich and pumpkin shake. In lieu of a sandwich, they’ve got a warming pork cheek chili with cilantro-lime sour cream (shown above)—and a decidedly chillier peppermint shake to go with.
Brunch at Brauhaus Schmitz (718 South St.) is never a bad idea, what with their duck and foie gras hash, sourdough pancakes, and the genius way they conceived of combining french toast, pretzels, and Nutella.
But why not do one (or two) better and have all of that and pictures with Santa and glühwein? OK, so they've dubbed it the Santa Beer Brunch, and so great German holiday beers are a given. But we've gotta say, we feel more Christmassy with a cinnamon sugar-rimmed mug of warm spiced wine.
All of this Christmas cheer is almost guaranteed to to put you in a coma, so maybe don't plan a lot else for Sun., Dec. 16. Brunch is from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and you might want to reserve a spot for this one.
Last Friday, we told you about the two-night birthday celebration in the works at Kennett (848 S. 2nd St.). Well, the festivities kick off tonight, and we've got our hands on some more details on what you'll be eating and sipping on while you're there.
First off, all the great Flying Fish beers we told you Casey Hughes would be bringing will go for a flat $4 apiece from 7 p.m. on. As far as food goes, the kitchen will be bringing back some bygone bar snacks that should stir nostalgic feelings in the hearts of long-time Kennett fans (keep an eye out for beer-battered tripe). On the specials tip, they're also bringing back menu items like their half roasted chicken and chickpea small plate.
Mixtress Phoebe Esmon was also kind enough to share her Repeal Day cocktail list with us—keep reading for all the details!
Tonight, Dim Sum will be showing up at Supper (926 South St.), and it's the last time they'll pop up before the holidays hit. This "concierge shopping service" has visited the South Street spot a few times, setting up shop upstairs so you can browse while you work up an appetite. They've got tons of housewares, jewelry, and kids' items, so you should be able to strike a few people off your gift list in one stop.
They'll even have some complementary apps available to graze on while you shop. Better yet, and you'll get a 10% discount off your dining check downstairs at Supper if you mention that you shopped Dim Sum before eating. (Or show off your scores!) Check out a preview of their wares here and plan to visit from 5-9 p.m. tonight.
Tomorrow through Friday, you've got a couple of chances to hit up Meritage (500 S. 20th St.) for a special prix fixe tailor-made for our favorite drink. No beer, no wine, no fanciful cocktails—just a bit of bourbon served alongside each course. Sounds good to us.
The 4-course menu, which is available at dinner from Wed., Dec. 5 to Fri., Dec. 7, is $39 per person. The (not really) optional bourbon pairing will tack on another $29. Look forward to pastrami-spiced and bourbon-cured Skuna Bay salmon with lots of accoutrements, stuffed quail with a cider-bourbon gastrique, and grilled venison in Knob Creek gingersnap sauce. You can read the rest of the details for yourself below (dessert sounds awfully dreamy), including all four varieties of Knob Creek bourbon they'll be pouring.
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