Thursday, October 25, 2012

It's Gonna Be a Great Food Weekend in Cin-tucky!

An inadvertent slip of the finger on the keyboard. A 50-minute call from an unemployed friend who finally got a job interview. Replying to generous responses for a fundraising effort. Some fact- and link-checking. And the next thing I know, the post I'd hoped for isn't gonna happen and my suitcase still isn't packed.

But you can still take advantage of a lot of great food events this weekend, even if I'm not able to link them all. Google it, people. Or find this stuff on facebook. Here are just a few:

The last NOM (Night Owl Market) of the season Friday night, with food trucks and a Halloween costume contest that could net you tickets to some great arts events.

The Dutch's / Oscar Blues "Hops and Heifers" beer and burgers tasting Friday night. And keep your eye out for more events at Dutch's. The Larder can definitely step up to the plate with wine dinners (as I discovered with their inaugural event Monday).

There's also Findlay Market's Fall Festival, complete with Pie-Baking Contest, and Taste the World Tour!

I am sorry to miss my hometown events, but I will be traveling one last weekend this fall, to Lexington for the Incredible Food Show, a first-class food show that costs just $15 and is only a 1.5 hour drive from Cincinnati. The ways in which it inspired me last year are coming full circle, and I wouldn't miss this for the world.

In crazy, unexpected turns of events, I've met OH and KY chefs, farmers, cheesemakers, beekeepers, mushroom cultivarors, and a great bunch of food bloggers from north and south of the Ohio River. I've backed away from my computer and become involved in my local food community. Thanks to new friends, I've also looked southward and explored. I've discovered my inner food geek when it comes to learning from demos. And I somehow have discovered my inner volunteer.

Here's a Save the Date tip: The Golden Lawnchair from Cincinnati Nomerati goes live Nov. 18, and some of Cincy's best are contributing to the raffle!

Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Traveling Tuesday: The Bloomy Rind and Porter Road Butcher in Nashville

I've been on the road most weekends since Labor Day, and things aren't letting up during October. Lots more to come, but here's one of my favorite finds from last weekend's jaunt to Nashville for the Southern Artisan Cheese Festival and dinner at The Catbird Seat.

The Southern Artisan Cheese Festival was launched last year by the proprietor of a Nashville artisan cheese shop called The Bloomy Rind, which I decided to check out Saturday afternoon before Cheese Fest opened at 3:30. Come to find out, Bloomy Rind isn't much bigger than this cheese case tucked inside a great little butcher shop, Porter Road Butcher (PRB, not PBR).

People are always happy to wait for their order when it's good stuff. And this is clearly good stuff. Even the fellow coming in for his weekly order of house-ground dog food wasn't deterred when there wasn't any available. He just proceeded to order a bunch of people food.

I salivated over the offerings in the butcher case, knowing I'd have to keep them chilled in one of the coolers I'd brought with me and resisting the urge to buy too much since I'd soon be away from home again.

I settled on some jowl bacon, lardo (!), and a single sausage made in the style of that signature Nashville dish, Hot Chicken.

I'll be back to share photos of Cheese Fest, which drew cheese artisans from all over the South and hundreds of attendees – pretty remarkable when you look at that little cheese case inside PRB. But this weekend I'm off to Columbus, OH, for the book launch party of my most recent editing project, Hot Dogs, A Little Marketing, and A Lot of Fun.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Happy Autumn!

There's a nip in the air that undeniably signals fall. I felt it even under the sunny skies of Nashville this weekend. While I work on downloading pics from the Southern Artisan Cheese Festival and my amazing dinner at The Catbird Seat, here is some of the autumnal abundance at the Nashville Farmers Market Saturday morning. Can you help me identify any of these varieties? I'm sure I could have asked the farmers staffing the booths. But I became too transfixed to ask . . .