Thursday, February 16, 2017

Thursday Sips & Nibbles

I am back again with a new edition of Thursday Sips & Nibbles, my regular column where I highlight some interesting, upcoming food & drink events.
1) Cook, located in the heart of Newton, is featuring a parade of Mardi Gras specials inspired by New Orleans’ favorite feast.  On Tuesday, February 28th, from 4:30pm to close, the Newton restaurant is expanding its intimate neighborhood vibe to include the carnival’s vibrant energy.

Guests can indulge in small plates like Bourbon Honey Mustard Wings ($10), or feast on flavor-packed entrees like Drunken Mussels made with Andouille Sausage ($14), and a Cajun Shrimp Flatbread with a spicy garlic cream ($16). Sweeten the Mardi Gras meal with an order of house-made Beignets ($6). Toast the night with the Special Fat Tuesday cocktail with Bulleit Rye, Myers Dark Rum and grapefruit ($12).

Reservations recommended by calling (617) 964-2465.

2) Salty Pig Executive Chef Josh Turka along with the Salty Pig staff will bring back the popular “Red Sauce Sundays” promotion starting this week on Sunday, February 19, from 5pm-10pm. Guests will enjoy a taste of old school Italian with the sounds of Sinatra and Dean Martin on the sound system, red and white checkered tablecloths and chianti bottles on every table. Dishes start at $7 and go to $19.

Salty Pig Executive Chef Josh Turka has created a Red Sauce menu that will be available all night that includes starters like garlic knots and meatballs; pastas like fusilli al fredo and fettucine bolognaise; entrees like chicken parmesan and sausage and peppers; along with brick oven pizzas and build-your-own charcuterie boards.

WHEN: Sundays, Starting on February 19th through indefinitely

3) One of Boston’s most anticipated culinary occasions of the year, A Taste of Ginger, will be held on Monday, March 27, from 6:30pm-9:30pm, in the beautiful Art of the Americas Wing at the Museum of Fine Arts. Proceeds from A Taste of Ginger will benefit Joslin Diabetes Center’s Asian American Diabetes Initiative (AADI) which works to enhance the quality of life and health outcomes for the rising number of Asian Americans living with diabetes, and collaborates with Joslin as they work to find a cure.

Each year, hundreds of supporters and foodies gather to enjoy a lively evening, including the opportunity to meet and taste the cuisine of Boston’s most celebrated chefs such as Joanne Chang, Jasper White, Andy Husbands and Dave Becker amidst the beauty of the MFA.

Emceed by NBC Boston anchor and health reporter Kristy Lee, the event will honor David Wong, owner of Empire Garden Restaurant, for his outstanding commitment to Joslin’s AADI . Dr. Nandan Padukone, head of the Office of Commercialization and Ventures at Joslin Diabetes Center will co-chair the event alongside Hepzi Fonseca.

FOR TICKETS: Tickets are $250 per guest, and can be purchased online at:

Joslin Diabetes Center is world-renowned for its deep expertise in diabetes treatment and research. A federally designated Diabetes Research Center, affiliated with Harvard Medical School, Joslin is dedicated to finding a cure for diabetes and ensuring that people with diabetes live long, healthy lives. We develop and disseminate innovative patient therapies and scientific discoveries throughout the world.

In response to the rising rates of diabetes in the Asian American population and the lack of culturally relevant research, clinical care, and education, Joslin Research Director George L. King, MD, and supporters of Joslin Diabetes Center, established the AADI in 2000. For over a decade, the AADI has made substantial advances to enhance to quality of life and health outcomes for Asian Americans living with diabetes through research, education, outreach and culturally appropriate treatments.

4) Poutine, a favorite French-Canadian dish originating in rural Canada, is composed of a trio of key ingredients: French fries and fresh cheese curds smothered in brown gravy. The growing popularity of this flavor-packed dish is certain to satisfy the most extreme of cravings. This winter, The Beehive is introducing a variety poutine dishes with a modern spin. For its late night menu, The Beehive’s innovative team decided to veer away from its familiar multicultural dishes to craft a selection of Canadian-inspired poutine recipes.

Executive chef, Gregory Torrech, proves he has no limits when it comes to perfecting Canadian cuisine by developing a menu composed of a variety of savory entrees inspired by traditional poutine. Included in Chef Torrech’s late night poutine menu is Classic Quebec Poutine “á la Beehive” with Beehive frites, cheese curds and roasted veal gravy ($13), BBQ Braised Beef Cheeks Poutine with caramelized onions and veal roasted gravy ($18), and Lobster Poutine with Cajun Etouffèe Gravy ($21).

The late-night menu is available Sunday through Wednesday, 10pm-11pm, and Thursday through Saturday, 11pm-1am.

5) On Monday, February 27, at 6:30pm, Legal Harborside will host a four-plus-course Bethel Heights Vineyard dinner with winemaker Ben Casteel. Founded in 1977 by twin brothers Ted and Terry Casteel, Bethel Heights is an Oregon winery in the Eola-Amity Hills AVA of the Willamette Valley. While initially only a vineyard, a winery was built with the first estate wines produced in 1984. The winery specializes in Pinot Noir and the family now makes more than 2,000 cases of estate Pinot Noir, and more than 1,000 cases of an estate Chardonnay.

The menu will be presented as follows:
Kumamoto Oyster, Frozen Citrus, Caviar
Salmon Belly Terrine
Corn Cake, Egg Custard
Lobster & Apple Hush Puppy
Bethel Heights Estate Pinot Blanc, Eola-Amity Hills, 2015
Shrimp (polenta, wild mushrooms, green garlic chimichurri)
Bethel Heights Pinot Gris, Oregon, 2015
Scallop Potage (turmeric, almond, carrot, honey pollen)
Bethel Heights Estate Chardonnay, Eola-Amity Hills, 2014
Bethel Heights “Casteel” Estate Chardonnay, Eola-Amity Hills, 2014
Salmon (Parisian gnocchi, currant-hazelnut butter, charred frisée)
Bethel Heights “Aeolian” Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills, 2013
Bethel Heights “Southeast Block” Estate Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills, 2013
Livarot, Sbrinz & Tomme
Bethel Heights “Casteel” Estate Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills, 2014

COST: $125 per person (excludes tax & gratuity)
Reservation required by calling 617-530-9397

6) Puritan & Co. Chef/Owner Will Gilson, Wine Director Peter Nelson, and the Puritan & Co. team invite guests to join them for upcoming Totally Fried Fizz Fest. Rumor has it sparkling wines are amongst the most diverse and versatile wines for food pairings and the wine nerds agree - both sweet and savory fried foods are a divine partner with all things bubbly.

Puritan & Co.’s Totally Fried Fizz Fest on Wednesday, March 22nd will offer an introduction to the diversity of styles and tastes of sparkling wines served alongside the tastiest fried foods. From funky reds to Grand Cru Grower Champagne, the industry-style tasting will allow guests to try dozens of wines from all over the world from various grape varietals exhibiting a full array of colors and flavors.

Tickets cost $65 and can be purchased for either a 5:30 p.m. or 8 p.m. entry time. Tickets are available on Eventbrite at

$5 from each ticket sale will be donated to Lovin Spoonfuls. Lovin' Spoonfuls is a 501c3, non-profit organization that is legitimizing local, immediate, and responsible food rescue.

This sounds like a fantastic event and I highly recommend you check it out!

7) Chef/Owners Carla & Christine Pallotta and the Nebo Cucina & Enoteca team invite guests to join them for late night grub on Saturday nights at the bar with a new, late-night menu at the bar featuring a selection of Nebo’s signature items.

Available on Saturdays from 11 p.m. to close, the menu includes:
Chicken Parmigiano ($12)
Meatball Parmigiano ($12)
Zucchini Lasagna “Bobby Flay Throwdown” winner ($12)
Puglia Spuckie with burrata, imported mortadella, tomato, saba, and EVOO on a ciabatta roll ($12)
Pugliese Pizza with burrata, traditional sauce, EVOO, and basil ($12)
Gino Pizza with spicy sausage, hot cherry peppers, traditional sauce, mozzarella ($12)
Christina Pizza with sweet sausage, bacon, sweet corn, and mozzarella ($12)
*pizzas can be made gluten-free for an additional $4

WHEN: Saturday evenings from 11 p.m. to close
For  reservations, please call (617) 723-6326

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