Red Heat Tavern: Josper Charcoal Broiler Oven (Part 1)

    It is the only one of its kind in Massachusetts, and one of only three in New England. It is an intriguing piece of equipment, and it perked my interest enough to learn much more, delving deeper into its origins and capabilities. All this excitement over an oven, An oven? This fascinating oven is the Josper Charcoal Broiler Oven and is part of the kitchen at the Red Heat Tave ...

    4 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Americans, Don't Ignore Farmed Seaweed

    For most Americans, their sole familiarity with eating seaweed is when they dine at Japanese restaurants, from seaweed salads to sushi. Most non-Asian restaurants rarely use seaweed as an ingredient and it is also rare for Americans to purchase seaweed for home cooking. Why is that the case? Why isn't seaweed for popular, especially with current efforts to get people to eat m ...

    3 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Rant: Vodka's Dying, Long Live Whiskey!

    Three years ago, vodka reigned supreme and its future seemed bright. How matters have apparently changed in a short time. From 2010 to 2011, the vodka category grew by volume about 6%, selling about 65.8 million cases and making it the most consumed spirit in the U.S. During that same time period, the growth of some other spirits included: rum rose 1.3% (25.8 million cases), tequila rose 3.

    5 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Gran Reserva Rioja: The Beauty of Aged Spanish Wine

    My love of Spanish wine is well known, from Basque Txavoli to Sherry, from Albarino to Mencia. They make excellent wine at all price points, and have some intriguing indigenous grapes. The country is rich in wine history, and there is much diversity to be found. I've traveled to Spain three times, including to the Rioja region, and would return again in a heart beat.

    6 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Alden & Harlow: First Impressions

    Although Alden & Harlow opened in January 2014, I felt bad that I hadn't dined there until very recently. And now that I've dined there, I feel like I've cheated myself out of some excellent meals, and I promise myself to frequent this restaurant more often. As I mentioned yesterday, I recently dined there with a Chilean winemaker and I also attended another wine tasting ...

    4 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Thursday Sips & Nibbles

    I am back again with a new edition of Thursday Sips & Nibbles, my regular column where I highlight some interesting wine and food items that are upcoming. ********************************************************** 1) On Thursday, October 23, at 6pm, at M.C. Spiedo, Mark Gaier and Clark Frasier will transform their Italian rotisserie into a den of Italian luxury: showcasing f ...

    2 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Viña Koyle: Cristóbal, Carmenere & Auma

    The art of blending. The death of 700,000 beetles. Cow horns filled with dung. An indigenous Chilean flower. The soul. These were all fascinating topics that arose during a recent dinner I attended at Alden & Harlow with Matt Demers of Quintessential Wines and Cristóbal Undurraga Marimón, co-owner and winemaker at Viña Koyle, a Chilean winery.

    4 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    The Origins of Ceviche, Tempura and Fish & Chips

    Consider some of the most popular seafood dishes from all around the world, such as Ceviche from Peru, Shrimp Tempura from Japan and Fish & Chips from Britain. You probably wouldn't suspect that they actually had a common origin, in a 1500 year-old Persian meat stew. As I mentioned recently, I've been immersed in a fascinating new book, The Language of Food: A Linguist Reads ...

    5 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Rant: Local Wine Ignorance

    Are you ignorant about the wines produced in your state? How much do you know about these local wineries? Have you tasted any of their wines? Or have you made an assumption that the wines aren't worthy of tasting? The time is now to battle ignorance about local wines. Today starts the 7th Annual Drink Local Wine Week, an event founded by Drink Local Wine (DLW), an organization w ...

    6 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Cedro Do Noval 2009: A Touch Of The Rhône In Portugal

    If you know the winery Quinta do Noval, you probably are familiar with their iconic Ports but did you also know they make table wines as well? Dating back to 1715, Quinta do Noval is one of the oldest Port houses and has been a pioneer in Port production in several different aspects. They were also one of the first producers to experiment with Rhône varietals, such as Syrah.

    7 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Thursday Sips & Nibbles

    I am back again with a new edition of Thursday Sips & Nibbles, my regular column where I highlight some interesting wine and food items that are upcoming. ********************************************************** 1) One of my favorite restaurants, Bergamot , will soon be hosting a special Champagne dinner, highlighting a rare Grower Champagne.

    5 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Westland Distillery: A Worthy Washington Whiskey

    It's an exciting time for whiskey lovers as excellent whiskey is now being produced all over the world. Some of these new distilleries have been making their mark, impressing everyone with world-class whiskey that can compete with the best. In 2008, the state of Washington passed a new law, creating a "craft distillery" license, allowing small distilleries to open tasting roo ...

    2 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    2014 Drink Local Wine Week: Starting October 12

    Drink Local Wine (DLW), the organization whose goal is to bring greater attention to regional wines, announces that the seventh annual Drink Local Wine Week (formally Regional Wine Week) will take place the week of October 12, 2014. The members of DLW encourage all North American wine critics, bloggers, and broadcasters to participate in the virtual event by publishing an articl ...

    2 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    The Largest Marine Reserve In The World

    One of the most powerful protections for the ocean and its ecology is the establishment of marine reserves, protected areas where generally no fishing, oil drilling or exploitation can occur. These reserves are different from marine protected areas (MPA), which prohibit certain activities but allow others. For example, they might prohibit drilling but permit commercial fishing.

    3 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

    Rant: Menu Secrets & Sacrificing Choice

    You might assume that if you dine at an expensive restaurant, you'll have lots of choices, that all of your money means they will cater to your whims. However, that is actually not the case for most expensive restaurants. In fact, it is the much less expensive restaurants which provide diners with the most choices and greatest control. It seems counter intuitive but it is reality.

    3 readers - By Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie

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