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A Little Bit About a Lot of Things

A lifestyle blog with a focus on my food adventures

imag1631This past Saturday I joined Blog and Tweet Boston at Del Frisco’s in Burlington. (See my previous review of Del Frisco’s in Fort Point here) It’s a great group and it’s always so fun meeting other foodies.

Del Friscos 1We started off with the ahi tacos ($15), Tuna Tartare with avocado and spicy citrus mayo.

Del Friscos 2

Next we tried three different kinds of flatbreads: the first, a wild mushroom flatbread ($13) made with fontina cheese, caramelized onions and topped with  baby arugula.

Del Friscos 3The second flatbread was the shaved Brussel spout flatbread ($13) that came topped with smoked bacon, caramelized onions & mozzarella – a huge table favorite!

Del Friscos 4And the final pizza was the roasted tomato flatbread ($12) made with fresh mozzarella and topped with basil.

Del Friscos 5Another favorite for the table was the cheesesteak eggrolls ($12.50), served with sweet & spicy chili sauce and honey mustard.

Del Friscos 6For our main course we had the grille prime cheeseburger ($13) that came with double patties, lettuce, red onion, tomato, pickle, sloppy sauce and served with a side of frites. First of all, how cute is that mini bottle of ketchup?!?! The burger was pretty good – the bun held up throughout the whole meal and the burger itself had all the classic flavors you would want.

Del Friscos 7For dessert, the adult milkshake ($11) made with Nocello Walnut Liquer, Creme de Cacao, Chocolate Liquer and vanilla ice cream.

Del Friscos 8The coconut cream pie was also served as dessert and was quite tasty. I was pleasantly surprised at how light it was. It wasn’t as sweet as some of those “typical” coconut desserts can be (which I tend to avoid), which made this dessert that much better for me.

Disclaimer: I attended this lunch with Blog and Tweet Boston. Del Frisco’s invited us to be their guest and provided a complimentary lunch. All opinions are my own.

Del Frisco’s Grille

92 Middlesex Turnpike, Burlington, MA

http://delfriscosgrille.com/burlington

Del Frisco's Grille on Urbanspoon

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 Marc Hall 3

Marc Hall Objekt is a lovely showroom located in the historic SOWA neighborhood. I stopped in during their open studios to give you a sneak peak at some of the fun things they have.

Marc Hall 4

I love the mini pumpkins.

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The showroom has a mix of things new and old. Marc recently returned from a trip to Paris where he picked up a lot of new items. Many of the pieces in the showroom come from Hall’s travels.

Marc Hall 14

Marc Hall create beautiful scapes for events – head to their website for photos.

Marc Hall 1

See some of Marc Hall’s pieces from events I have been to: Christofle Dinner at Liquid Art House and Ready to Bare Media Preview.

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Marc Hall has a space next door to the showroom that you can rent out for events.

Marc Hall 6

In addition to doing events, the team at Marc Hall also goes out to client’s homes for site visits to work on their homes and gardens.

Marc Hall 7

It is easy to fall in love with everything in the showroom, there are such great colors and textures, the sky is the limit when it comes to designing your space.

Marc Hall 8

Marc Hall was the creative director for events at Winston Flowers for 7 years before he opened up his own design firm in 2010.

Marc Hall 9

In addition to being a talented designer, Hall also has his own line of handcrafted vessels, furniture, and textiles which can also be found in his showroom.

Marc Hall 10

I met Sarah Anne DiNardo at the Christofle dinner at Liquid Art House. She has the kindest soul and is such a lovely girl. Not only is she a talented designer at Marc Hall but she is also an amazing tape artist.

Marc Hall 11

What is a tape artist? Sarah hand rolls masking tape into these wonderful sculptures. Check out the beautiful video describing her craft on her website.

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Sarah uses found antiques as the base of her tape sculptures. Each one is beautiful, unique and hand made.

Marc Hall

535 Albany Street, Boston, MA

http://marchalldesign.com/

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island creek 10Last week I attended a cookbook launch party at Island Creek Oyster Bar. Jeremy Sewall  has an impressive resume. He was nominated as a rising star chef by the James Beard Foundation, he opened Great Bay in 2003, opened his own restaurant, Lineage in Brookline, in 2006, collaborated on Eastern Standard in 2009, opened Island Creek Oyster Bar in 2010 and opened Row 34 in 2013.

island creek 9In Sewall’s new cookbook with partner Erin Byers Murray, they explore contemporary versions of New England Classics. Guests gathered for a book signing and light bites.

island creek 8While the raw bar and passed appetizers were delicious, these cider donuts stole the show for me. They came out from the kitchen warm and the glaze just melted in your mouth. I may have had two!

island creek 7The photos, taken by Michael Harlan Turkell, in the book are beautiful.

island creek 6Bites for the evening included lobster tacos and a toast topped with mushrooms, Parmesan cheese and truffle oil.

island creek 5The raw bar boasted colossal shrimp.

island creek 3CJ holding down the boat.

island creek 2The raw bar was impressive.

island creek 1They were shucking oysters all night long.

island creek 4Island Creek Oyster Bar is open for dinner Monday – Thursday 4pm-11pm, Friday-Saturday 4pm-11:30pm and Sunday 10:30am-11pm.

Island Creek Oyster Bar

500 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA

http://islandcreekoysterbar.com/

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Liquid Art House 1Liquid Art House had it’s media preview of their newest art collection “Ready to Bare” on October 7th. Artists featured in this exhibit included: Kerry Armstrong, Fanny Bucchiotty, Chris Cavallero, Giovanni Decunto, Rimantas Dichavicius, Izabella Kay, Heather McGrath, Josie Morway, Jordan Piantedosi, and Erin Shaw. Also included is an installation of live plant sculpture and lighting by designer Marc Hall (above). Guests were treated to a preview of the PostParty furniture collection designed by Michael Nedeau and Party By Design.

Liquid Art House 3Guests were also treated to a preview of the Postparty lounge in addition to a live art demo.

Liquid Art House 4Guests were offered light bites and whimsical desserts.

Liquid Art House 5How lovely are these French macarons?

Liquid Art House 2“Saudi anime ultra princess”, Artist: Jordan Piantedosi, Price: $4800. The Ready to Bare collection will be on display until January 5th.

Liquid Art House 7Beautiful hand glass blown pumpkins are on display made by Luke Adams, a local south end craftsman. All pieces are for sale.

Liquid Art House

100 Arlington Street, Boston, MA

http://www.liquidarthouse.com/

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Norwell Farms 5On October 3rd, guests came out in festive attire to attend Norwell Farm’s first farm to table benefit dinner.

Norwell Farms 1The main tent held the chefs and the band and the secondary tent had long tables for guests to take a load off and relax, while enjoying delicious food that came straight from the farm.

Norwell Farms 2The decor in the tent was just charming.

Norwell Farms 14And although it was drizzling outside, no one inside seemed to notice.

Norwell Farms 7They had a great band at the event, people danced the night away.

Norwell Farms 3Island Creek Oysters was at the event, shucking oysters all night long.

Norwell Farms 4Check out how beautiful they are!

Norwell Farms 6Robin King is the chef and owner of ORO and Tesoro in Scituate. He has worked in Breckenridge at Cafe Alpine and in Boston at Tosca and Mistral. King made shaved steak arepas over roasted poblano pepper salad with avocado puree and chimmichurri.

Norwell Farms 8Jamie Bissonnette is the chef and owner of Toro and Coppa. Bissonnette started his career in Europe before coming back to the states where he opened Eastern Standard and was later recruited to work at KO Prime. He was voted best chef of the northeast in 2014 by the James Beard Foundation and just released his cookbook, The New Charcuterie Cookbook: Exceptional Cured Meats to Make and Serve at Home. Bissonnette made a vegetable paella featuring a variety of Norwell Farms seasonal produce.

Norwell Farms 9Stephen Sherman, chef at the Scarlet Oak Tavern in Hingham, earned his degree at the Culinary Institute of America which led him to working at the two best restaurants in Basque County. Upon his return to the states, he took a positions at River Cafe and Union Square Tavern. He moved back to Boston to open  Bricco in the North End and joined the Aquitane group in January 2000.

Norwell Farms 10Sherman made two dishes, a butternut squash and apple bisque (above) paried with a grilled flatbread made with fresh ricotta and eggplant jam (see picture above bisque).

Norwell Farms 11 Adam Fuller runs Snappy Lobster, a locally owned and operated seafood business in Scituate. They source all of their lobster, fish and scallops from small independent fishermen. Fuller made  fried green tomatoes stuffed with chorizo and lobster served over lobster roe aioli.

Norwell Farms 12 Doug Rodrigues, chef at the Tip Tap Room, has worked in places like Tosca in Hingham, Saporito’s Florence Club Cafe in Hull, Clio and Sensing. Rodrigues joined the Tip Tap Room in the fall of 2013. Rodrigues made bagna cauda with shaved boar belly.

Norwell Farms 13The Bloomy Rind offered the following cheeses: Praire Breeze, a cheddar cow’s milk cheese from Milton Creamery in Iowa;  Coco Cardona, a semi firm goat’s milk cheese from Carr Valley in Wisconsin; Georgian Stilton, a blue cow’s milk chees from Form Farm in England; and Lille’ a brie cheese made from cow’s milk from Vermont Farmstead.

About Norwell Farms: In the fall of 2012, the Town of Norwell has granted Norwell Farms a license to operate a community farm on 7.34 acres at historic Jacobs Farm and an additional 1.5 acres at Barstow Field on River Street. Scott Franklin became the  Farm Manager in February 2013. Norwell Farms constructed a greenhouse next to the East Barn in Spring 2013. In Fall of 2014, the Town of Norwell voted $50,000 to help the Historic Commission and Norwell Farms rejuvenate historic Jacobs Farm. With these funds, we installed electricity to the East and West Barns and the greenhouse. We also dug a well and installed much needed irrigation for our fields! In Summer of 2014, Norwell Farms welcomed chickens back to Jacobs Farm and we renovated a historic chicken coop we discovered on the property.  Scott and his family now live in the farmhouse on the property.

Mission:

  • To feed our community fresh food grown on our farm in Norwell. We farm without the use of chemical herbicides, pesticides, or synthetic fertilizers and are taking steps to achieve organic certification
  •  Educate and engage the community about sustainable, local agriculture, along with the environmental and historic aspects of Jacobs Farm
  • Increase access to and awareness about healthy food by at-risk populations
  • Protect, conserve and steward historic open space, natural habitat and farmland (focused on, but not limited to Jacobs Farm) for the benefit of the community.

Disclaimer: I attended this event as media and Norwell Farms gave me a complimentary ticket.

Norwell Farms
4 Jacobs Lane, Norwell, MA 02061
info@norwellfarms.org
781-733-9572

 

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IMG_4555Follow the Honey is a great store located in Harvard Square, owned and operated by Mary Canning.  They have an amazing variety of honey and honey related products. Some of the great features of the shop are their honey on tap and their bar where you can sample a variety of types of honey!

IMAG0466_1Follow the Honey was involved in the dinner I went to over the summer at Cuisine en Locale – see the recap here. I went to the shop on a hunt for Shira Melen’s special honey macarons – made exclusively for Follow the Honey. They did not disappoint – perfectly light and crisp with a hint of sweetness.. Check out my previous post on Shira’s macarons here.

Stop in today and pick up a jar of my favorite honey from Red Bee.

Follow the Honey

1132 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA (Harvard Square)

http://www.followthehoney.com/

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imag1431

I met a colleague for a business meeting at Sportello – he had never been and I was raving about Sportello, saying that he had to try the place that has my favorite bolognese. He might be a hard sell as his mom makes the best bolognese he’s ever had.

Sportello is run by Executive Chef Colin Lynch and Chef de Cuisine David Cavilla. Cavilla has been part of the Barbara Lynch Gruppo for some time, working at B&G oysters, The Butcher Shop, Stir, and now Sportello.

All the pastas on the menu look delicious – and while I do love the bolognese, I like to try other dishes as well. So I decided to get two half orders of pasta, one of course being the tagliatelle bolognese (pictured above).

imag1432Garganelli with Italian sausage and pecorino. I really enjoyed this dish, the pasta was cooked perfectly al dente.

imag1435We decided to split the coconut cake ($6) which was light as air. It had just the right amount of sweetness – because you know how sickly sweet coconut desserts can be…and delicious, creamy frosting.

Sportello

348 Congress Street, Boston, MA

http://sportelloboston.com/

Sportello on Urbanspoon

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imag1464I met my two old friends over at Trade for dinner. We grabbed a great seat by the window and gabbed the night away.

Trade is owned by Eric Papachristos, Sean Griffing and chef Jody Adams. You may know Jody as a James Beard winning chef and the co-owner of Rialto in Cambridge. Griffing is a 15 year veteran of the Boston restaurant scene and Papachristos is a self made restaurateur. Jacki Morisi has just moved over to Trade as the new events manager – she comes from Rialto, where she was the marketing and communications manager.

We start with curry cauliflower with red onion, raisins and yogurt ($7). The presentation is lovely and the dish has a warmth to it – the yogurt was a really nice addition to complete the dish.

imag1465Chicken meatballs with smoked corn, charred tomato vinaigrette and pine nuts ($11) were a table favorite. Classic yet bold in flavors.

imag1466Fried polenta bites with chorizo aioli, cilantro and preserved lemon  ($9). These were delicious – I loved the texture of the polenta.

imag1469Baked rigatoni with spicy lamb ragu and provolone  ($22) had perfectly al dente pasta. The ragu wasn’t too game-y as sometimes lamb can be. It felt like comfort food without that heaviness that can sometimes come with it.

imag1467The chocolate decadence cake with caramel, creme fraiche and 5-spice ($8) went quickly. The cake was dense but not heavy. It paired well with caramel and the 5 spice wafer was a nice mix – sweet and spicy.

Trade

540 Atlantic Ave, Boston, MA

http://trade-boston.com/

Trade on Urbanspoon

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imag1453I met Melissa over at Wink and Nod to check out Josh Lewin’s Bread and Salt. From the moment you meet Joe, who greets you outside at the front door, you feel like you are part of a private supper club. As you descend the stairs and walk into the restaurant, you see a dimly lit room with comfy sofas and armchairs. Is this the bat cave? I already know I want to come back soon and we haven’t even eaten dinner yet.

They have recently added bread service – and you’ll be glad they did. Here is the soda bread with a schmear of lobster butter which may rival my all time favorite honey butter from Sweet Cheeks. They also make a delicious saffron roll.

imag1455I’ve met Josh a few times and he knows Melissa too, so he comes out to the table  and chats for a bit. He brings us delicious Pani Puri with Tamarind Chutney, Truffle Oil, and Potato Purée. I try to be lady like and make it into two bites, but really, it’s a one bite kind of thing.

imag1456We start with a lovely peach with ricotta salad with a honey film- I’m trying hard to hold on to the last bits of summer!

imag1457The lobster curry ($13) is an excellent dish made with spiced corn broth, pork rinds, pickled onion, puffed rice.

imag1459The insanely talented Sous Chef, Kate Holowchik, comes out next to say hello and brings us some scallops with grapefruit and avocado – such a wonderful dish- sweet, creamy and perfectly acidic.

imag1460The hand rolled pasta is cooked perfectly al dente and comes topped with mushrooms and rabbit cakes.

imag1461Peaches & Corn. This dessert features popcorn panna cotta and peach sorbet with cornmeal crumble and bay leaf mousse for a slight savory note that cuts through.

Not pictured (because we were too eager to eat), the fernet bon bons. Kate Holowchik stabilizes the alcohol first before adding it to the ice cream base so that more alcohol can be added and you get an intense fernet flavor – not to mention a buzz!

Monday nights join Bread and Salt for their night market menu from 8pm-12am. They print up menus that look like newspapers with the evenings selections. Most are small plates/bites, all priced at under $20. The also have #winktiki Mondays, where guest bartenders come in and serve drinks –  this particular evening, Angel’s Envy was getting mixed up in cocktails.

Bread an Salt

Located at Wink and Nod

3 Appleton Street, Boston, MA

http://winkandnod.com/

Wink and Nod on Urbanspoon

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IMAG0391We met Ruth and Joe, my cousins, in Worcester for our monthly meal together. We headed out to a new spot, Livia’s dish.

IMAG0394We are usually horribly late, but today we are here first. We sit and look over the menu while we wait for our dining companions to arrive.

IMAG0392The decor inside is simple and a bit dated, but the food is pretty good, and the price is right!

IMAG0395The nutella French toast ($7.99) was enormous, and I couldn’t even get halfway through it! As I mentioned before, the price is right, four of us for breakfast and the bill was less than $50! Service was good – they allowed us to sit and chit chat well after the time when they close for lunch. If you’re ever in Worcester and looking for a casual bite, stop in!

 

Livia’s Dish

1394 Main Street, Worcester, MA

http://www.liviasdish.com/

Livia's Dish on Urbanspoon

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