Friday, November 18, 2011

Corkscrew Girls Fall Meeting

What says Fall better than good wine and bacon!!?? Whitney made the best BBQ shrimp wrapped in bacon and broiled. Just the smell of them made our mouths water. They were an excellent side to Michelle's famous beer and garlic cheese fondue. This time she had a very coarse and grainy bread that held up quite well under the heavy cheese. There were also red & green grapes with green apples. For something very different Michelle put out an exciting champagne cheese that she picked up at the Cleveland Food Show. It was such a delicate yet delicious cheese.

Conversation flowed as did the Moscato wine that my hubby had brought back from Brazil. Just lightly sweet and I was quite impressed because I am not a fan of sweet white wines, but it was just delicate enough.

To end this months meeting we picked through Michelle's selections from Tevana Tea at Beachwood. WOW! They all smelled unbelievable, made it hard to choose, but we settled on mixing strawberry and oolong. Outstanding. Just like the mini carrot cakes that they accompanied!! Another successful meeting under the belt gals.

Oh, forgot to mention KG....she is in California right now, but we did toast in your honor!!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Parallax Tremont

It's time for some pics and thoughts about another great restaurant in Tremont called Parallax! This is absolutely one of my favorite restaurants of all time, and one of the many fantastic choices when in Tremont. I have been to a few places in that area and this one has been my favorite so far.

Parallax is owned by the same chef as a previous restaurant that I blogged about (L'albatros) and the food is just as good. However Parallax is more of a seafood/sushi restaurant with many of the dishes having Asian flavors. One thing I love about both of these restaurants is that the menus are very large with a lot of different choices. Anyone can find something they like here! The prices here range from about $17-$25 per entree and about $7-$10 for a salad. I have not yet tried the sushi here but it looks AMAZING and seems to be reasonably priced.

We were going all out tonight because Matt and I were celebrating becoming an aunt and uncle for the first time! So of course I had to get a martini, this one being Pomegranate. Very strong and sweet, perfect! They also give you unlimited bread (white and rye I think) and olive oil with sea salt.

I had the Grilled Peach Salad with Arugula and Candied Walnuts. There was probably an entire peach in there and the most amazing sugary salad dressing, one of the best salads EVER. Matt loved his Iceberg Lettuce with Bacon, Tomatoes, Bacon, Blue Cheese, Onions and Balsamic Vinaigrette salad and it got an A+ from him.

Matt had "Lemongrass skewered pork tenderloin with grilled corn, pickled onion and onion hash browns". He loved this and I thought it was fantastic too! I had the "Grilled scampi with smoked Gouda spoon bread, grilled zucchini and red pepper sauce". This smoked Gouda spoon bread underneath the pile of zucchini and shrimp was the most fantastic thing I have ever tasted. I couldn't figure out whether these were shrimp or lobster tails with how huge they were. They were the size of lobster tails, definitely one of the best meals I have ever had.

Matt's favorite part is always dessert, so he demanded that we have some and went for the special. It isn't on their menu but it was some sort of mouse cake with berries and raspberry sauce, it was AMAZING. Just extremely fresh and much heavier than it looks.

Parallax has some of the best food around, and I am excited to go back and eventually try some sushi here. But it is so hard to pass up one of their fantastic meals!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

beer. bacon. barbeque.

I don't think anyone can resist a good barbeque in the summer. I myself love to take part in barbequing at summer picnics and get togethers, even family dinners. Unfortunately I rarely get to grill out but my boyfriend and I found an amazing little place in Erie, PA that will do all the work for us.. even better yet it's a barbeque joint thats obsessed with BACON!

Three B's Saloon (Beer. Bacon. Barbeque...duh) is like a diamond in the rough. Its located in a small little neighborhood surrounded by houses.. if you didn't know it was there you could just pass by without experiencing the amazing bacon filled menu.

This place is known for it's pulled pork and beef brisket. So of course we had to try it! The prices at Three B's were very reasonable.. for 11.00 I got a half pound of beef brisket with a hot and cold side and a choice of texas toast or homemade cornbread. Not bad at all! But as I mentioned before this place is all about bacon... So for an additional .75 cents I added bacon to my homemade mac and cheese and jalepenos for .50 cents. Also I added bacon to my cornbread, which is apparently THE way to have the cornbread. For a cold side I chose a fresh tomato and mozzarella salad with fresh basil and balsamic vinegarette. Mike got the half pound of pulled pork lathered in their house barbeque sauces and spices. It was to die for! AMAZING STUFF! By the end of the meal I was stuffed. I couldn't even eat a quarter of the food they gave me.

Also the beer selection was decent there. Their draft beers are ever-changing. I got a barrel aged beer that was in whiskey or bourbon barrels and let me tell you you could taste the whiskey. It was intense! Another cool thing they do there is with every beer you get a piece of peppered bacon! Whats not to love!

I'm telling you we loved it so much we wanted to go back the next day! The staff was so friendly! They all seemed to be foodies! Talking about different food challenges they had been in and different ideas for future challenges at Three B's. It was just such a good time and such good food I would recommend it to any BBQ BACON loving person!


Sunday, July 3, 2011

My Favorite Restaurant Ever

I was finally able to go back to my favorite restaurant EVER last night for a little July 4th celebration! I know I have told you girls about L'Albatros before, the most amazing restaurant up in University Circle (Cleveland). This is the place that our server at the Melting Pot was suggesting for a Corkscrew girl's night out.

This restaurant is French. For that reason it is extremely difficult for me to get Matt to go! He's not into French food much , but it's not too expensive so I try to get him to take me more often than he'd like! French food consists of a lot of meat, cheeses, creams, cream sauces, mushrooms, and strange "things" that Matt refuses to eat. (escargot, chicken liver, anchovies, etc.) However French desserts are usual very light and fresh. You are NOT going to find anything here that is plain, but everything is WONDERFUL and very flavorful. But for those picky eaters there are many meals that come with "FRENCH" fries!

This place is gorgeous. The atmosphere is very modern. You have to book at least a week in advance, but in the summer time it is easier because their huge patio is open and Case Western is out for the summer.

Now onto the food pictures! This was the best
pomegranate martini I have ever had. You name any kind of drink/martini and they will make it. They are not shy with the vodka :) They bring unlimited warm bread around and there is olive oil, and also a mustard seed spread at each table for the bread.

We were so hungry that we forgot to take pics of the appetizers before digging in, oops! I had my usual favorite salad ever, The Frisee and Bacon with Poached Egg salad with Vinager and Dijon Mustard. WOW. That's all I can say, best salad ever. Tastes kind of like breakfast. In Matt's quest to find some sort of salad or appetizer he likes here, he ordered the Pulled Pork with Spices and Toast Points. I really liked it but it was definitely unusual, more like a chicken salad spread made from pork with toasted bread, pickles, and beets.

Onto the greatest meal of all time, the Mussels with Pomme Frites (french fries) with spicy aioli sauce. It's basically about 20 mussels in the most amazing broth ever with tons of fries and spicy sauce on top. I have had about 4 meals here and this is my favorite. Matt LOVED his meal, the Chicken Breast with caramelized fennel and goat cheese. The goat cheese was a huge portion of goat cheesy mashed potatoes.

The desserts here are all very fresh and light tasting. We shared a Warm Brownie with Vanilla bean ice cream. This was fantastic, and there were lots of nuts, chocolate chips, and dried cherries in the brownie.

If you ever want a special night out, this is the place to go. The chef that owns this restaurant owns 3 others in the Cleveland area and we are going to have to try them all at some point. But it's hard not to keep coming back here!


Friday, June 17, 2011

Backyard, Pasta Salads, Chipotle Roasted Chicken and Conversation

Corkscrew Girls had their summer wine and food fest on a delightful Thursday evening. Although we were down one gal so we made Michelle;s hubby an honorary member. Kelly is currently in Italy enjoying some good food and wine.

We paired a delightful fresh Barefoot Pinot Grigio with our dinner of chicken & pasta salads. There were two roasted chickens, one regular and one chipotle. Moist and delicious they were an excellent accompaniment to Whitney's outstanding pasta salads. She didn't make one, but two huge bowls. Sweet corn, feta cheese, mozz cheese, calamata olives, salami, real bacon, cherry tomatoes.... they were spectacular!! I believe they had a red wine garlic vinaigrette. She might have to verify.
All of this was eaten with gusto along with fresh, soft pretzel rolls.

All followed with the insane fruit salsa and cinnamon/sugar chips that Michelle has posted to this site before.

Lily, their little Cavalier Spaniel loved all the tidbits she was able to snag!

The way it looks right now everyone will be staying in the area so there will be many more restaurants and menus to tackle!! Brasa in Cleveland might be next.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Fruit Salsa and Cinnamon Chips

I made a really yummy Spring-like appetizer today for a family get together, and it was such a hit I had to share! Dicing all of the fruit and making the cinnamon chips is a bit time consuming, but it is well worth the effort!

With a manual blade chopper (not a food
processor though, it will make it too soupy) chop up:
1 pound strawberries
8 ounces raspberries
4 ounces blueberries
Fuji apples
2 kiwis

Then mix the fruit in a bowl with:

1 TBSP brown sugar
2 TBSP white sugar
3 TBSP fruit preserves (i like boysenberry, but you can use any kind)

Refrigerate this for about an hour until it is cold, then serve it with the BEST part, the yummy cinnamon chips!

10 flour tortillas
butter flavored cooking spray
cinnamon and sugar

Preheat the oven to 350. Then spray the tortillas with cooking spray. Dust them with the cinnamon sugar. Then cut each tortilla into about 8 pieces with a pizza cutter and bake them for about 10 minutes at 350. They will be hard and ready to eat about 15 minutes after coming out of the oven!

I am in love with this recipe, and ever member of my family was too! I can't decide whether it is more of an appetizer, or more of a dessert. You could probably serve it with some cool whip to dip them in also!


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Chowder House

Last night some friends introduced me to The Chowder House in Cuyahoga Falls. I was totally impressed!

It is quite small and reservations are expected on weekends. We walked in, on a Wednesday night, and had no trouble getting a table, but as we were there in continued to fill up. They also have a patio which was being utilized by many.

The decor is as amazing as the menu. The place is just adorable. The menu is diverse, but the quality is outstanding! The large cup of lobster bisque I started with made me wish I had gotten a bowl as did my friend. It was an otherworldly experience! Insanely creamy and with gigantic globs of lobster!

I had the crab cake appetizer & a salad as a meal. I should have picked just one of them because the portions/size were worthy of their own time. The crab cakes came with a summer corn cream drizzled with jalapeno vinaigrette. The freshest crab cakes ever. Nothing frozen here. The salad was a wedge salad topped with roasted tomatoes and the house white French dressing. They make the dressing there and it was delicious.

They have a beautiful pastry case/selection and I chose, to take home, a raspberry lemon cheesecake. I ate it at home, after having been to a movie, and it was such a refreshing combo of flavors. Very creamy and full of flavor.

They do not currently have alcohol, but you can bring in your own. They used to charge a "corking fee", but the state laws have changed and we were told that they can no longer charge and you take all responsibility for what you might bring in. On weekends they say every table has wine or beer with them. They are in the process of getting a wine/beer license, but say that they have such little space that selections will be quite limited.

We had water, but I would consider taking some wine in the future. A gem hidden away on a side street, but one that should be sought out.