Some might think that wine dinners are becoming passe. Some might believe the best way to renew interest in them is to combine them with a completely unrelated activity.
Or maybe some think that traveling by bicycle to four different restaurants and enjoying a single wine-paired course at each one is just a really cool idea.
On Tuesday beginning at 6 p.m., representatives from Anne Amie Vineyard (a small winery in Oregon) will lead as many as 30 food-and-bicycle enthusiasts on a leisurely tour of local restaurants as well as some of Toledo's most intriguing neighborhoods. The restaurants on the Tour de Food (it's actually called the Fête d' Ete, which is not the same thing) are the Toledo Museum of Art, Mancy's Steakhouse, Real Seafood Company, Rockwell's, and the Registry Bistro - that's the new restaurant to be opened soon by Erika Rapp, the former chef at the Toledo Museum of Art.
The total length of the bicycle ride will be less than 7 miles, and the pace will be leisurely. Think of it as a way to work off some of those calories.
The cost is $75 and you have to provide your own bicycle. On the other hand, you do get a T-shirt with a logo for the event.
For reservations, visit anneamie.com/biketour.
It's church-dinner season again, though you would not be alone in wondering when it isn't church-dinner season.
The next one, or at least the next one we know about, is at the Augsburg Lutheran Church, 1342 Sylvania Ave. It will be held next Sunday, May 20, from 4 to 6 p.m.
The menu will be down-home and traditional: baked chicken, dressing, mashed potatoes with gravy, green beans, tossed salad, dessert, and a beverage. Sounds like a church dinner, doesn't it?
This one costs $8 for adults, with the proceeds going to the Christmas concert performed by the Toledo Symphony. If the adults bring a can of food for the Feed Your Neighbor program, their admission is $7. Children under 12 get in for $5.
And you'll have the choice of eating at the church or taking your food with you. What could be more accommodating?
Contesting the issue
Everyone loves contests. They make you feel as if you have a chance to be a winner, or perhaps a chance to make a winner out of your favorite person, place, or thing. If you get a mild sense of superiority for having such great taste, well, that's just a pleasant side benefit.
Naturally, markets seem to be seizing on contests as a way to promote their various products. They get people interested in a product and thinking about it, maybe even interested enough to buy it.
This week, we have two contests to digest, so to speak. One is the kind where you do the submitting, and one is the kind where you do the voting. Let's start with the submitting one first, because it is about eggs, and everybody likes eggs, and because someone is going to win $10,000 out of it. Sponsored by Eggland's Best ("the No. 1 egg brand in the country," they say), it looks for the best egg dishes in four categories: breakfast, appetizers, main courses, and dessert.
Each recipe must use at least two Eggland's Best eggs, and the winner in each category will pick up $1,000. The grand prize winner, the best of the best, will pocket a cool 10K.
The contest is open through Aug. 12. For more information and rules, or to submit an eggy recipe, visit egglandsbest.com/yourbestrecipe.
The other contest is the kind where you vote for other people. In this case, it is for the best neighborhood chef in the country.
So if there is a restaurant chef in your neighborhood - or frankly, in someone else's neighborhood - and you think he (or she) is good enough to be the best in the land, you might want to submit him (or her) to the good folks at Cooking Light magazine at CookingLight.com/ChefAwards. Submissions are being accepted through May 31.
After that, or at least after mid-June, you'll have the chance to vote for your favorite of the selected nominees. The winner will be announced in the November issue of Cooking Light magazine.
It's that time again: Time for wine tastings.
Actually, it seems to be that time just about every week. But never mind that. This week we're here to talk about the wine tastings at the Walt Churchill's market in Monclova. These tastings are held Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m., and they generally range between $10 and $20, except where noted.
This Saturday, they'll be pouring Gigondas and other big red wines from the southern Rhone in France - this will be one of those more expensive tastings.
May 26 will be an All-American Saturday. American beers and wines will be paired with all-American foods such as burgers, sausages, fresh fish, and more, cooked by the store's chef, Bill Kolhoff. For this day, the food and beverages will only be served from noon until 4 p.m.
Reservations are not required.
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