Monday, October 15, 2018

My Return From Porto & The Douro

There is something about the longevity of port that naturally helps to vinously place our lives in perspective.”
--Andrew Hawes

Last night, I arrived home in Boston, returning from an amazing journey to Porto and the Douro region. I'd long yearned to travel to Portugal and that desire became a reality last week. As I mentioned last Monday, I visited Portugal as part of a FamTrip, accompanying both a small group of people from the Boston area and a second small group from Brazil. The trip was lots of fun, fascinating and educational, exciting and delicious, informative and beautiful. I want to make some brief comments and observations here, though please note I will be providing much more detail in the near future in a series of articles about my experiences in Portugal.

We had a full itinerary, most days the activities ranging from 9am to Midnight. We saw and experienced so much, yet it was like a chef's tasting menu, enticing small plate tastes, showing the great potential of the chef and making you yearn to experience all that the chef had to offer. I still want to know and explore more about much we saw. I am far from being sated of Portugal, desirous of sampling all that fine country has to offer.

I traveled through the Douro region by van, train, boat and on foot, ranging from Porto to Bragança. There were so many highlights, from the Castle of Bragança to the Sephardi Interpretive Center. We stayed at superb hotels, from the Douro Palace Hotel to the Pousada de Bragança. And the scenery was breathtaking, one of the most beautiful vineyard regions in the world. As the foliage had turned, there were wonderful colors everywhere, spread across the steep, terraced vineyards and mountains. No photo can properly do justice to the beauty of the Douro.

I was especially excited to visit wineries including Quinta do ValladoQuinta de Covela, Caves de Murganheira, and Cockburn's Port. Portuguese Sparkling Wines, wines from the Vinho Verde DOC, Port wines, and more! In the two photos above, you can see my purchases, a couple 30 Year Old Tawny Ports, a 30 Year Old White P ort and a Sparkling Rosé. I easily could have bought several cases of wine but the logistics of getting them home with me weren't easy or inexpensive. I know what to seek out in the U.S. though, and hopefully can find them here.

So much delicious food, from multi-course dinner to ample platters, and this certainly was not a region for vegetarians. Lots of pork, like the above platter of various pork parts, like ears. There was also plenty of beef, venison, wild boar and more. As expected, salt cod was ubiquitous though at certain points in our trip we also enjoyed some amazing local seafood, from razor clams to pike. We also devoured lots of various sweets, from the famous pastel de nata to other tasty concoctions. I only gained about 3 pounds in Portugal, a miracle considering how much I ate but which is likely due to all of the walking we did.

The people of Portugal were wonderful, so genuine, welcoming, knowledge and and filled with passion. Marta and Ricardo, our two main tour leaders, did a great job of guiding us through our travels, answering all of our questions, and assisting us in anything we needed. Our main drivers, including Rui, Alandro, and Miguel, not only transported us around the region but also knew much about the history and culture of the area. Each tour guide was had was a font of valuable info and helped to imbue a passion within us. I also need to give a shoutout to Sarah, Jennifer, Joyce, Denise and April, fine and fun women, other attendees from the Boston area, who traveled with me in the same van for much of the trip. They helped to make this an enjoyable trip

Well, I now have a few thousand photos to sort through, lots of notes to review, and I have plenty of story ideas worthy of a myriad of articles. I'll certainly be busy, but reliving so many fantastic memories of Portugal.

I'm also fortunate that I'll be making new memories next month, as I will be returning to northern Portugal! I don't have much detail yet, but I'm sure it will be another amazing journey.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

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)  If you’re looking for every possible way to fit pumpkin into your diet this season, head to Kendall Square’s Sumiao Hunan Kitchen for pumpkin-laced recipes that will quench your autumn cravings. Sumiao has brought back a new rendition of their festive Sweet Pumpkin Cakes ($12) for the month of October. These little indulgences are filled with a rich, red bean paste and pan-fried until golden brown. It doesn’t end with October, though; Sumiao has two signature dishes that are here to stay all year long: Melted Gold Soup made with pumpkin and millet ($5) and a Stir-Fried Sweet Pumpkin dish made with garlic and fermented back soybean ($14).

Don’t forget: October 26 marks National Pumpkin Day…why not spend it at Sumiao?

Sweet Pumpkin Cakes are offered during normal operating hours throughout the month of October; Melted Gold Soup and Stir-Fried Sweet Pumpkin are offered during normal operating hours throughout the year.

2) Vialé restaurant in Cambridge is proud to announce the celebration of their 4-year anniversary in Central Square with dinner and drinks on Monday, October 15, from 5-10pm. Special beer and beer cocktails from Norwood's Castle Island Brewing Co. and fresh lobster specials from Scituate's Snappy Lobster will be available, alongside Vialé's full fall menu served à la carte.

In a joint statement from Vialé co-owners, Greg Reeves and Mark Young: "We're grateful to our families, current and former staff, neighbors, vendors, and friends for all of your support as we celebrate 4 years in Central Square. Special thanks to Cambridge School of Culinary Arts, Central Square Theater, The Dance Complex, Food For Free, Savenor's Cambridge, and Central Square Business Association. We're looking forward to being part of the ongoing revitalization of Central Square, and the Cambridge and Boston area restaurant communities for many years to come. We look forward to celebrating with everyone!!"

No advanced tickets will be necessary, but reservations are recommended by calling 617-576-1900

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Apples & Cider: Post 390's Farm to Post With Kimball Fruit Farm

Last week, while dining at Post 390, it certainly felt like Autumn, as the Apples & Cider dinner brought to mind some of the best elements of the season.

Roughly every month or so, Post 390's Executive Chef Nick Deutmeyer and his culinary team hosts a special Farm to Post dinner and menu that spotlights "some of New England’s finest farmers, producers, vineyards, brewers, and fishermen and focuses on ingredients that are sourced locally and produced sustainably." I've been to a couple of these events in the past and always enjoyed them, savoring excellent food and drink.

Last week, Executive Chef Nick Deutmeyer created a superb dinner, spotlighting apples and cider, in collaboration with Kimball Fruit Farm, a third-generation family run farm owned and operated by Carl and Marie Hills in Pepperell. I was invited to attend this dinner as a media guest. I'll note that you'll be able to order the dishes that were at this dinner throughout the month of October, and a bit into November, and I strongly recommend that you visit Post 390 to experience these tasty and creative dishes.

The Kimball Fruit Farm was originally established in the 1930s by Allen and Foster Kimball, who bought a fire damaged dairy farm and then planted apple and peach orchards, with apples being their primary product. They eventually took on Harold Hills, Allen's brother--in-law, to help with the farm and he became active in running the orchards. At one point, when the market for apples took a significant drop, they cut down about half of the orchards so they could plant a variety of other fruits and vegetables.

In 1969, the family had to sell the land to a group of investors though they continued to lease the land to continue running the farm. Carl (Harold's son) and Marie Hills bought the 200-acre property back in 1999 and Carl used some legal actions to protect 176 acres so no one will ever be able to build on the property. They currently grow over 50 different types of apples, as well as a variety of other fruits and veggies. Most of their business is in wholesale, which they want to get out of, though they also sell their produce at 10 Farmers' Markets. The farm used to produce apple cider, but hadn't for the last 18 years, until Carl and Marie recently decided to make it once again. Rather than pasteurization, they are using an UV process, so as to not affect the taste of the cider.

Our evening began with a Cocktail Hour with some appetizers and a competition. David Danforth, Post 390’s Beverage Director, presented a welcome cocktail, a modern take on an old New England cocktail, The Stone Fence. Often associated with Ethan Allen, the Revolutionary War patriot, the cocktail was originally a mix of rum and apple cider but as whisky began to overtake rum, the cocktail changed with the times. David created this cocktail with a blend of about 1 ounce of Woodford Reserve, a 1/4 oz of Don Pappa Rum, and 1/4 oz of Scotch. He then added 1/2 oz lemon, 1/2 oz Cardamaro, 2 oz Kimball Fruit Farm cider, and a dash of Jerry Thomas Bitters. It was certainly a refreshing drink, with prominent apple and lemon flavors, and the alcohol was almost imperceptible, though personally I would have preferred a bit more of the taste of the spirits.

As we enjoyed our cocktail, there were three appetizers for us to try, including samples of six apples and a Cheddar Cheese plate with Marcona almonds. Apples and cheddar make a fine pairing, and the almonds are always a favorite of mine.

Servers also passed around Pork & Apple Sausage Tartelettes, made with blue cheese, dried fig, frisee, and an apple cider vinaigrette. Though I thought the pastry shell was a bit too dry, the filling was quite tasty, with the pungent blue cheese making a nice accompaniment to the apple and pork flavors.

There was also a station with Brandied Apple Flambé, with duck liver mousse, and I loved this appetizer, with its silky smooth and earthy mousse, balanced with the sweet and tart flavors of the crunchy apple pieces. A spoonful of pleasure.

There was also an Apple Contest, where you had to guess the names of six different apples, and it certainly wasn't easy. It helped to showcase the diversity of flavors that can be found with the myriad of apple types. My good friend Chanie was the ultimate winner, and was awarded a deep dish apple pie.

Once we sat down, our first courses was Chilled Crab & Apples, with a tart Cortland apple & herb gelée, Peekytoe crab celery root salad, Hackleback caviar, Marcona almond Florentine, and chive crème fraiche. This was an intriguing, fresh and light dish, with a nice blend of flavors and textures, from sweet crab to the crunchy florentine. The gelée, basically like a tasty apple Jello, was full of rich apple flavors. A powerful, and elegant, opening salvo by Executive Chef Nick Deutmeyer.

To pair with our dinner, David Danforth selected several heritage production, single-harvest ciders. Rather than some of the mass production ciders, which are produced year round, these ciders are far more unique and produced in much more limited quantities. The first cider of the evening was the Farnum Hill Semi-Dry Cider from Lebanon, New Hampshire. At 7.4% ABV, this cider was only mildly sweet with a tart undertone and plenty of delicious apple flavors. It went well with out first course, and certainly is a food friendly cider. I've enjoyed a number of Farnum ciders before, and they have an excellent portfolio.

The second course was named Sing a Song of Sixpence, after a nursery rhyme which mentioned 24 blackbirds baked into pie that sang once the pie was opened. This dish was comprised of a roasted young pigeon with a moutarde violette, rye & honey crumble, apple tarte tatin, and a blackberry-rosemary jus. Mutsu apples were used in this dish and the tarte tatin was based on an old recipe. The pigeon was delicious, with tender and flavorful dark meat, enhanced by the rest of the ingredients. The apple tarte tatin was also quite good, moist and with an intriguing taste. Another powerful hit by Executive Chef Nick Deutmeyer.

For the "wildness" of our pigeon dish, we drank the Shacksbury Lost and Found, from Vergennes, Vermont. For some more background info on Shacksbury and some of their other ciders, check out a prior post of mine. At 6.9% ABV, this cider is from the 2016 harvest, and has a very earthy aroma, though on the palate you'll find it is crisp and light, with more subtle and complex apple notes. It is that more wild nose that certainly brings to mind wild game, like pigeon.

The final savory course was Hand-Carved Heritage Porchettea, with an apple & sage bread stuffing, wild mushroom velouté, pumpkin mousse, and a cider reduction. The Friday before, they received a 236 pound pig, and this was one of their preparations. Swiss Gourmet apples were used in this dish and they also used some of the Kimball's new cider in the reduction. This ample dish once again brought a tasty and interesting melange of flavors and textures. Succulent slices of pork, earthy mushrooms, sweet mousse, and crunchy stuffing. The dish worked on several levels and it was clearly Autumn on a plate. A slam-dunk from Executive Chef Nick Deutmeyer.

Our next pairing was the Eden Specialty Ciders Ezekiel, a single varietal cider made in Newport, Vermont, from Kingston Black apples of the Windfall Orchard. Kingston Black, a British cider variety, is considered one of the most bitter of the cider apples, with a bitter/tart profile. It is also said to be a " of the few apples that has sufficient sugar, acid and tannin to make a balanced single variety cider." This cider was also aged about about 12 months in an oak barrel and only 100 cases were produced. For more background on Eden, please check out my prior article,

With an 8% ABV, this cider possessed an alluring aroma and on the palate it was a stunner. With a full body, it was elegant and crisp, complex and subtle, intriguing and delicious. It was dry, well-balanced and had a lengthy, satisfying finish, pairing very well with the porchetta. Frankly, it was one of the best ciders I've tasted in quite some time. This would be perfect for Thanksgiving too. My highest recommendation.

For dessert, we enjoyed a Warm Apple Spice Cake, made with Honeycrisp apples, accompanied by vanilla ice cream and a maple glaze. The cake was moist, spicy and scrumptious, as well as not too heavy. For dessert, we enjoyed some of the Eden Heirloom Ice Cider, which is sweet, yet well balanced with a good acidity. A fitting ending to a superlative dinner.

At only $55 per person, this was an excellent value dinner too, considering all of the quality food and cider you received. Executive Chef Nick Deutmeyer put together a compelling dinner, a true taste of the Fall, and Beverage Director David Danforth compiled an excellent set of cider pairings. I strongly recommend you visit Post 390 this month to check out these dishes which are being offered. And you also should check out the next Farm to Post dinner, Local Roasters: Chocolate & Coffee, on November 14.

Monday, October 8, 2018

Portugal Bound: Porto & The Douro

"Of all the places where men have planted vineyards the upper Douro is the most improbable."
--Hugh Johnson 

Tonight, I'll board an Azores Airlines plane, crossing the Atlantic, and headed to Portugal, specifically the city of Porto. Who wouldn't be excited?

I'll be journeying to this country as part of a FamTrip, a familiarization trip, with a number of travel agents and other media people. The trip is being organized by the Associação dos Empresários Turísticos do Douro e Trás-os-Montes (AETUR), a nonprofit, private collective entity that has gathered together over 200 tourism-related businesses. Established in 2002, AETUR's primary areas of operation include the Douro and Trás-os-Montes.

We'll begin our tour in Porto and then travel to the Douro region, the home of Port Wine though they make some excellent still wines as well. I'll likely be stopping at places including Bragança, Tarouca, Ucanha, Salzedas, Lamego, Matosinhos and Leixões. We also should be visiting Quinta do Paço, Casa do JoaQuinta da Casa Amarela, Quinta do Vallado, Quinta de Covela, and Graham's. My itinerary looks to be quite full so I definitely won't be bored.

Last year, over 12.7 million tourists visited Portugal, an increase of about 12% since 2016. In 2016, in the northern region of Portugal, tourism, which included an overnight stay, reached about 6.8 million people, an increase of 10.7% over 2015. And in 2017, there were about 1.2 million tourist who traveled by boat on the Douro River, an increase of an astounding 35% over 2016. Clearly, Portugal and the Douro region are seeing significant increases of tourism, and such increases are likely to continue in the near future.

This will be my first trip to Portugal and I'm very eager to finally visit, greatly looking forward to my explorations. As I've said multiple times before: "I have heard the clarion call for the wines of Portugal, those intriguing wines which seduce with their tantalizing aromas and flavors. It is my desire that many others feel the urge of that clarion call too. To that end, I have become an ardent advocate for Portuguese wines, to share all the excellence I have found in their wines."

I've written over 40 articles on Portuguese wine and food, and I've also referenced Portuguese wines, generally as a category, in numerous other articles on my blog. Over 40 Portuguese wines have ended up on my annual Top Ten Wine lists. At the wine shop where I work, I've often recommended Portuguese wines to the customers, making converts of many people. I'm a Certified Wine Location Specialist, which deals with Port and Champagne. I was also inducted, due to my ardent promotion of Port wine, as a Cavaleiro in the Confraria do Vinho do Porto, essentially making me a Knight in the Brotherhood of Port Wine.

I'm sure that I'll take many hundreds of photos and a myriad of notes of my experiences in Portugal, which I'll share with my readers upon my return. And I'll share some pictures while I'm in Portugal as well.

And I can't wait to enjoy a Francesinha in Porto!

Rappie Pie & Valdespino "Tio Diego" Amontillado: A Comfort Pairing

Rappie Pie, a traditional Arcadian dish. Valdespino "Tio Diego" Amontillado, produced by a bodega where embraces tradition. Together, they produce a compelling pairing that works on multiple levels, satisfying the mind, heart and soul.

International Sherry Weekwhich begins today and runs through October 14, is a celebration of the wonders of Sherry, a fortified wine made in a specific demarcated region in southern Spain. It is a time for the ardent promotion of this fascinating and delicious wine, to expose more people to this wine, hoping some will become Sherry converts. This year, about 2,500 Sherry events will be held worldwide, including several in the Boston area. One of these events is a blogger competition, where 20 chosen bloggers received a bottle of Sherry and had to create a perfect food pairing for it. I was one of those fortunate 20 people and ultimately, after careful deliberation, decided to pair my Sherry with Rappie Pie.

I was sent a bottle of the Valdespino "Tio Diego" Amontillado ($25-$30). The history of this bodega extends back to the 13th century, during a time when the Moors, Muslims from North Africa, controlled most of Southern Spain, including Jerez. On October 9, 1264, King Alphonse X, also known as El Sabio, the “Wise,” successfully conquered Jerez, seizing control back from the Moors. As a reward for their bravery and loyalty, King Alphonse awarded land and vineyards to some of his best knights, including Alonso Valdespino, the start of the Valdespino's involvement in the wine business, making it one of the oldest Sherry bodegas in the region.

During the Modern era, in 1999, Valdespino was purchased by Bodegas Grupo Estevez, a family-owned group that was established in 1974 and owns other bodegas as well. They have allowed Valdespino to remain true to their traditions and old winemaking methods, as well as maintaining their concern for the importance of terroir. Grupo Estévez owns about 800 hectares of vineyards, with 256 hectares in the famed Macharnudo Pago with its valued albariza soils, considered the best place to grow the Palomino grape. There is also a sub-area within this Pago known as the Macharnudo Alto, situated at the highest elevation of the vineyard.

The Palomino grapes for the Valdespino "Tio Diego" Amontillado are all sourced from the Macharnudo Alto, making it a single-vineyard Sherry, which is rare in the Sherry industry. Uniquely, it is also one of the few Sherries that is still fermented in cask, in American oak, with nearly all other Sherries fermented in stainless steel. This Amontillado begins its life by spending from eight to twelve years under flor, like a Fino Sherry, and then spends another five to eight years without flor, aging oxidatively, averaging about 16-18 years in total.

This Sherry has a special place in my heart as I first tasted it back in September 2010, while visiting  Bodegas Grupo Estevez.  My time in the Jerez region, exploring various bodegas, was a fascinating and wondrous trip, with many great memories, helping to solidify my deep passion for Sherry. I previously described the Valdespino "Tio Diego" Amontillado as: "It had a compelling aroma, and the complex taste was nutty with rich caramel, vanilla and spice, as well as lots of acidity. It also possessed a long and pleasing finish, another sherry I would strongly recommend." When I think of this Sherry, I think of it as delicious and comforting, fueling my belly and soul.

As for Rappie Pie, we need to delve once again into history, back to the 17th century, when the Acadians were the earliest European settlers of Canada, having originated in France, and primarily settled in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Unfortunately, the English expelled most of them in the 18th century, with numerous Acadians relocating to Louisiana. When Acadians were allowed to return to Nova Scotia, they found that most of the best land was already claimed by others, so they were left with land that was hard to grow much else except potatoes, making it a central ingredient of their diets. Though there are unsubstantiated legends that rappie pie was first created in the 16th century, there is much more evidence of its origins beginning around 1755, when potatoes became so important to Acadians.

Rappie pie is a made from grated potatoes or in French, "patates râpées." Once the potatoes are grated, most of the water and starch is removed. This used to be done by squeezing the potatoes in a cheese cloth, a laborious process, so that it would take two to three days to make rappie pie. It is thought that the starch that was removed from the potatoes would later be used for their clothing, wasting nothing in the preparation of rappie pie.

Later during the preparation, a hot broth would be added, replacing the lost water, along with meat (such as chicken or pork), onions and pork fat to make a hearty, casserole-type dish. The amount of added broth was usually judged by the consistency of the mixture, and some people prefer a wetter texture while other prefer less. There are also a number of variations on the basic ingredients, some people using different types of meats, from rabbit to beef, or even seafood like clams. Much depended on what ingredients were readily available to the people at that time.

Considering the length of time it took to prepare and cook rappie pie, it primarily was for special occasions. Preparation was also a joint effort, with both the men and women taking on specific roles, the men engaged in the laborious task of removing the water and starch from the potatoes while the women would prepare the both and pick the chickens clean of meat. The men and women continued working together on the rest of the tasks, a true family project, and the rappie pie would commonly be made and served in large rectangular pans. Recipes generally weren't written down, instead being passed down from person to person, generation to generation.

Once you have a plate of rappie pie in front of you, you might top it with butter or molasses, and there is an old adage that the English use butter and the French molasses. Some people may even top their rappie pie with other items, such as even ketchup, but that is much less common. My personal preference is butter, though some of my family like molasses.

My wife and her family, the Babins/Babines, are originally from Nova Scotia and they introduced me to Rappie Pie. The family didn't write down their recipe, but passed it down from generation to generation. As making rappie pie was a special occasion, we decided to transform it into an annual family event, a time for everyone to gather together outside of the usual marriages, christenings and other formal family functions. In fact, we ended up holding these gatherings two to three times a year, inviting all of the family, from great-grand children to cousins, and many friends as well. They were informal gatherings, with plenty of delicious food and drink, and brought our family closer.

We are fortunate that making rappie pie has gotten easier to prepare, as you can now purchase frozen, pre-grated potato blocks, so we don't need to spend all the laborious time removing the water and starch. However, it still remains an all-day task, though that is better than two or three days. We do have family that still makes it in a traditional manner. We have also written down the recipe, so future generations will be able to continue the tradition, to ensure it endures. We are not alone, with numerous other families with Nova Scotian connections making their own rappie pie. There is even a Facebook group Rappie Pie Rules, with over 3500 members, from all over the world, sharing a love for making rappie pie. 

So, does Rappie Pie pair well with an Amontillado Sherry? 

Let's first consider the geeky science behind Sherry and food pairings. As Sherry contains approximately 307 volatile compounds, far more than most others wines, it is extremely versatile and good friendly. Because of all these volatile compounds, Sherry has an affinity for many different foods, which share the same aromatic family. No other single wine has an affinity as many different aromatic families. Unlike other wines, Sherry also contain a group of compounds, called diketopiperazines, which enhance the flavor of umami-rich foods. As Amontillado is an oxidative style, its dominant phenols include benzoic acid (almond aroma), cinnamic acid (cinnamon aroma), phenolic aldehyde (walnut aroma), and coumarin (vanillin, tonka bean and cut hay aromas).

In summary, and at its simplest, all of this scientific information means that Sherry is a killer pairing for a wide variety of foods. That is all many consumers want to know.

The Valdespino "Tio Diego" Amontillado is a silky, elegant wine, with an alluring aroma and pleasant, complex and primary flavors of nuts, caramel, and vanilla. There is also a hint of salinity, beautiful acidity, and a lengthy, soothing finish. Its flavors complemented and enhanced the mild flavors of the chicken and pork, touched by the herbs and seasoning, we added to the rappie pie, as well as the slightly smoky bacon atop it. Chicken and pork are traditional ingredients for my family, and they are also traditional pairings for Amontillado Sherry. The sweet onions and glutinous potatoes also meshed well with the slightly, almost sweet flavors of the Amontillado. When you also consider how numerous people enjoy molasses, with its sweet and strong flavors, atop their rappie pie, then it's very easy to see how this Amontillado, certainly milder than molasses, would be even more pleasing. Everyone at dinner was impressed with this pairing. 

Let's now consider a different rationale for wine pairing, one which seems especially fitting for this pairing. Rappie pie is hearty comfort food, filling your belly with joy, especially during the Fall and Winter. It's not an intellectual dish, but one which appeals to your soul. When you enjoy such a dish, you probably don't want to think much about the wine pairing, preferring to revel in the simple joy of the food. Thus, you desire a "comfort wine," something which you don't have to think much about but which will give you much pleasure.

The Valdespino "Tio Diego" Amontillado fits that description, its elegant smoothness and pleasing flavors easy to love. Each sip makes you smile, and you feel it in your heart and soul. You certainly can intellectualize this Sherry and food pairings, but you can ignore that aspect as well and simply enjoy it as a comfort wine, one which would pair well with many different comfort foods. Most consumers don't understand the science behind food pairings, but they can easily understand the idea of pairing a comfort wine with a comfort food. Maybe that is the best, and easiest, path to getting more people to enjoy Sherry.

The next night, we ate leftover rappie pie, fried up in a pan, and sipped the rest of the Valdespino "Tio Diego" Amontillado. It still felt like a delicious pairing, a cozy duo that continued to bring me comfort and joy.

Here is a Recipe for Rappie Pie:

20 lbs  Potatoes
2          3-4 lb chickens
2 lbs     Pork chops or boneless pork chops
6           Medium onions
1 tsp     Ground thyme
1/2 tsp  Ground bay leaves
1/2 tsp   Poultry seasoning
2 tbsp    Salt
1 tbsp    Pepper
20          Strips of bacon

1) Place the cleaned chickens, pork chops and seasonings into a large pot covered with cold water. Simmer for 1.5 to 2 hours until the meat falls easily off the bones.
2) Remove the meat and cut into small pieces, placing them into a large bowl. Return the bones to the pot and continue cooking until the stock is required.
3) Peel the potatoes, soaking in cold water to retain color until needed. Finely grate about 10 potatoes at a time with a hand grater or in a food processor. Place the grated potatoes into a cheesecloth bag and squeeze until all the water and starch is removed and the potatoes are quite dry. Repeat for the rest of the potatoes. Measure the liquid removed from the potatoes as equal amounts of stock will be added later.
4) Finely dice the onions and then caramelize them in a pan.
5) Put all of the dried potatoes into a large bowl and gradually add the hot stock in the amount equal to the liquid removed from the potatoes. Stir slowly to scald the potatoes until they have a jelly-like consistency, making sure there are no lumps.
6) Cover the bottom of a well-greased 20 x 12 x 3.5 inch pan with half of the potatoes. Place a layer of the chicken and pork mixture atop the potatoes. Then, place a layer of onions atop the chicken and pork. Cover all of this with the rest of the potatoes. Place the bacon slices atop the potatoes.
7) Bake in a preheated over at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 3.5-4 hours, or until a golden crust forms on top.

Serves about 20 people though you can easily cut the ingredients in half to make a smaller portion. Instead of chicken and pork, you could also substitute rabbit, lamb, beef, clams, scallops or some other protein.

(For more background and information about Sherry, please check out my 40+ articles on All About Sherry.)

Friday, October 5, 2018

Culinary Creativity: Chef Brian Poe

Chef Brian Poe was born in the town of Macon (GA) and grew up in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Poe went to school at Auburn University (AL) where he soon found himself in the kitchen, working his way up the back-of-house ranks at the Auburn University Hotel & Conference Center. From there, he was promoted to sous chef at the Northeast Atlanta Hilton – during the Olympics. Next Poe relocated to Scottsdale (AZ) as chef at Steamers Oyster Grill in Phoenix and then executive chef at the American Grill.

Over time, Poe moved to Massachusetts, currently living in Danvers, and eventually manned Poe’s Kitchen at the Rattlesnake Bar & Grill. It was there that Chef Poe became business partners with Gordon Wilcox of the Wilcox Hospitality Group. Together, in 2012, they opened The Tip Tap Room in Boston’s Beacon Hill neighborhood. Then, in 2015, they joined forces for the Bukowski Tavern. Their collaboration continued, and in 2018, Chef Poe became a partner in Parish Café, a Boston institution. In addition, Chef Poe is an active board member of the American Institute for Food & Wine and a board member of several local and national charities.

(Check out my Introduction to the Culinary Creativity series.)

Now onto the interview--

How important is culinary creativity to you? Why is it important?
Creativity is truly one of the most important aspects of cooking and hospitality. One should constantly be creatively thinking how and why can I do this better for the guests, for the flavor, for speed of service, and for highest quality taste and experience.

What are your most significant inspirations for your culinary creativity? What makes those matters so inspiring?
I read everything I can get my hands on old and new- I think there's close to 1,000 cookbooks in the office at Tip Tap and probably another four or five hundred at home. There's a few books at a time always on my desks or a table near me. I watch everything I can from the Masterclass Series of Thomas Keller or Alice Waters to the excellent Eat the World series on Amazon. When I feel in a slight rut, I'll re-watch Charlie Trotter’s The Evolution of Creativity on Amazon followed by something more modern (Ugly Delicious) or pull from the file cabinets to tap into old dishes that can be revisited and revised and then move on to watching or reading something modern to inspire new ideas. I also believe in management books like Creativity Inc. I've read it a few times and mentally sub out the word "movie" or "pixar" to restaurant- and it helps to remind me that creativity is a key player in all walks of life. Two other lifetime reference books that I turn to are Becoming a Chef & Culinary Artistry by Dosenberg & Page. I'll often pick those up to remind me of when I was a 20 year old cook- to balance back to what I love about creativity and cooking.

I also look around me everywhere I go. One of my favorite creative moments was at a beach bar, having a couple of beers and oysters in Nahant- a woman came up with the thickest New England accent, cigarette hanging out of her mouth, sunburnt, frizzed beach hair, holding her kids hands- and yelled "You guys serve Lime Rickey’s here?!?!?" Ding ding! A Cranberry & Angelica Lime Rickey Vinaigrette was born!

Where do you get your ideas for new recipes/dishes?
Reading, writing, traveling, eating, gardening, farmers, chefs and weather are top influencers.

What is your process of creating a new recipe or dish?
The night before I'll jot down ideas I didn't have time to get to today - before I leave the office. The next morning at the house, I go into the garden to see what's looking the best, then back at the restaurants - into the refrigerators to see what fits the weather outside, what came in fresh, what is at its peak. Then at the cutting boards in the basement kitchen at the Tip Tap Room it all begins to come together. So many of the specials that go on to the other restaurants are either inspired by what I cook at home or the Tip Tap. The Tip Tap Chalkboard Special dishes often become menu items at the other locations.

Do other members of your staff assist with creating ideas for new recipes/dishes?
I love cooking with the chefs at each restaurant. There's often moments where I'll stop them and say "Pretend I'm not the chef or owner today and pretend that we're just a couple of guys hanging out cooking"- and then there is a specific moment that you can feel the edge drop and we just start cranking out fun ideas- these moments carry on much further than just today’s special- the moment of just being cooks transcends into the vibe of the restaurants for weeks to come. I have so much fun doing this with all the guys and girls at Tip Tap, Parish, Lower Depths and Bukowski Cambridge. We all get to learn together and it builds a very special bond and energy between cooks.

How do you test new recipes/dishes?
First round is typically inspired by cooking/creating with the crew. The next round I try to remember everything we did. Then we write the recipe and have one of our lead people test the recipe to see if we missed anything (there is literally a moment in creativity where I "go blind" in having so much fun that we have to have another person test to see if we left something out) Then if all of that works- we take it to another restaurant or another cook to see if our writing of the recipe translates correctly. If it does- we put it on.

What is the most difficult part of culinary creativity?
Keeping the creative juices flowing. Some days after a tough run with the grown up side of the business (cooks calling out, equipment failures, snow storms or 100 degree days when the heat/air decides not to work, leases, licensing, plus an unexpected string of extra-long days) can stifle the creative juices. Creativity is often my medicine for stress.

Do you ever experience “writer’s block,” an inability to be creative, and if so, how do you deal with it?
Writers block does occur. That's when I go down to the farmers market and just stroll- or read something else nonfood related- to find my way back. I'm lucky to be at an age where I have recipes that I can pull to get us through a jam- but I most love creating new flavor experiences. Sometimes pulling from a fun time period in my career can help me reset and get going again. I'm also in a very interesting/lucky part of my career where I could feel like I'm not contributing a lot of creativity today at one restaurant but 30 minutes later I'm at another restaurant and I have an idea that then creates/inspires four new dishes at each restaurant.

Relate an unusual or interesting anecdote about the creation of one of your dishes.
Partnering into the Parish Cafe was one of the more unusual and interesting moments of my career. Here's an entire side of the menu that was created by the most talented chefs in the city. The other side of the menu has been staples of the restaurant for 25 plus years. Ultimately, it was the first time I've been in a restaurant that I didn't create every dish on the menu for probably 20. How can one politely create without offending the guests or former partners while still providing fun new dishes to help support and represent all of the culinary talent in the city? That has reinforced my philosophy that creativity in cooking should happen, and always do so respectfully. 

One last addition to creativity comes from Chef Chris Bianco in Phoenix Arizona- "The hardest thing to learn in cooking is restraint." My early days of creativity (my twenties) I went a little too far in trying to make it cool- learning to back off by an ingredient or two in an effort to make it delicious also requires its own sort of creativity. And some dishes may just need to be the classic that they are- so you have to creatively explain to a young energetic cook- that this dish is a classic and maybe we should just respect that- while somehow creatively building upon that great energy they bring to the table.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

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) Abe & Louie’s celebrates its twenty year anniversary with a sweet gesture for some of the area’s charitable organizations. Starting October 1st, the restaurant will feature a deliciously designed signature dessert that gives back to a different non-profit each month as part of their "20th Anniversary Community Give Back” program.

The specialty desserts are $12 each, with 20% of the proceeds being donated to the corresponding charity and matched by Tavistock Restaurant Collection– the parent company that owns Abe & Louie’s, as well as other restaurants in Massachusetts and throughout the country.

The campaign kicks off October 1st with a special red velvet cake topped with cream cheese icing and pumpkin Oreo ice cream to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society®(LLS) a dessert inspired by Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) survivor Mary Shertenlieb, whose inspiring story and efforts in the fight against cancer have touched hearts of the Boston community and beyond. Funds raised throughout October from the sale of the red velvet cake will support Light The Night®. Mary’s team of family & friends, ‘March with Mary’, have participated in the walk since 2013, raising more than $130,000. This October 17th, they will once again gather on the Boston Common with more than 5,000 participants to lift their lanterns and raise funds for research and support for patients and families. To find a walk in your area or support their efforts, visit

In the three months following October, specialty desserts will be designed for the Ellie Fund in November, the Last Call Foundation in December, and the Pedro Martinez Foundation in January.

Guests can order the specialty desserts at any time during the operating hours.

2) Puritan & Company of Inman Square announces a very special upcoming winemaker dinner with Schramsberg Vineyards of Napa Valley. Join winemaker Hugh Davies on Tuesday, October 16th, from 6:30pm-9:30pm, for the opportunity of tasting exquisite sparkling wines followed by a four course lamb dinner prepared by chef/owner Will Gilson.

In 1965, Jack and Jamie Davies established Schramsberg as a sparkling wine estate on the property originally founded in 1862 by German immigrant Jacob Schram. At a time when there were only 22 bonded wineries in Napa Valley and fewer than 100 acres of California vineyards planted to Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, they set out to make world-class sparkling wine in the true méthode traditionelle style. Theirs was the first California winery to provide a Blanc de Blancs in 1965 followed by a Blanc de Noirs in 1967. Now their son Hugh Davies, who was born the same year the Davies arrived at Schramsberg, leads the winery’s management and winemaking team. This is an extraordinary opportunity to taste what are arguably the best sparkling wines made in America

The Menu includes:
2014 Blanc de Blancs North Coast, California
sourdough waffle (caviar and crème fraîche)
First Course
2014 Blanc de Noirs North Coast, California
2015 Brut Rosé North Coast, California
seared and chilled scallop salad (pear purée, sea beans, brown butter bread crumbs)
Second Course
2016 Davies Vineyards Pinot Noir “Nobles Vineyard” Fort Ross-Seaview, Sonoma County
charcoal-grilled duck (lentils, potato purée, onions, cranberry jus)
Main Course
2015 J. Davies Cabernet Sauvignon Diamond Mountain, Napa Valley
smoked rack of lamb (mint salsa verde, heirloom carrots, roasted parsnip)
2009 J. Schram Brut North Coast
aged goat cheese (figs, pistachios, toasted brioche)

The $145 tickets are inclusive of dinner, wine, and gratuity and are available at EventBrite. Please email if you have any allergy or dietary restrictions that chef should be aware of.

3) If you love spicy cocktails and tequila is your poison, meet Sumiao Hunan Kitchen’s The Devil’s Nest, an October cocktail special created by the Kendall Square restaurant’s bar team just in time for Halloween. "The Devil’s Nest might sound evil but the flavors are angelic, featuring sweet ingredients like passion fruit puree, lime juice and a dash of grenadine. Staying true to its name, it also packs some fiery flavors with muddled jalapenos that are shaken with tequila. Chile “horns” as a garnish brings it to life."

WHEN: Available during normal operating hours throughout the month of October.
COST: $10 per cocktail

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Cockburn’s​ ​Special​ ​Reserve​ Port: Break Out The Cheese, Chocolate & Twizzlers

"A major turning point for port came when Guy Ritchie’s father John, Madonna’s ex father-in-law, and a partner in Cockburn’s advertising agency, launched Cockburn’s Special Reserve in a television advertising campaign at Christmas 1969. Success was immediate and Cockburn’s became brand leader overnight."
--Real Men Drink Port…and Ladies Do Too! by Ben Howkins

Next year will be the 50th anniversary of Cockburn's Port Special Reserve, a Port wine that was revolutionary at its inception. The history of Cockburn's itself extends back over two hundred years, to 1815, when the company was founded by Robert Cockburn and his brother John, both from Scotland. They were successful wine merchants in England and established a brand of their business in Porto. Over thirty years later, in 1848, the Cockburns partnered with John Smithes, who helped to make Cockburn's a well respected Port house.  In 1962, Cockburn’s was purchased by Harveys of Bristol and later was sold to Beam International. Finally, in 2010, Cockburn's was acquired by Symington Family Estates.

For a time, Cockburn was the largest Port shipper into the United Kingdom market with their Fine Ruby Port, and then in the 1970s, their Special Reserve became the best selling Port brand. The Special Reserve was the first of its kind, and it wasn't until 2002 that the authorities authorized a "Reserve Port" category. Though the definition is a bit broad, most Reserve Ports can be considered to be higher quality Ruby Ports, and they must be approved by the Câmara de Provadores (the tasting panel of the IVDP). Cockburn's though still maintains a trademark on "Cockburn’s Special Reserve".

Cockburn’s​ ​Special​ ​Reserve​ Port ​($18)​ is made from a blend of some of their best grapes, such as Touriga Nacional and Touriga Franca, from their vineyards at Quinta dos Canais. These excellent vineyards encompass about 240 acres and has been a part of their company for well over 100 years. The grapes are foot trodden, a traditional practice that has almost vanished on the Douro region, with about only 1% of all Port production conducted in this manner. The wine will age in seasoned oak barrels, created by their own coopers, and it will mature for a longer period, about five years, than many other reserve Ports.

This is intended to be an easily approachable and value Port, and I agree that it fits those intentions. With a rich and dark red color, the Port has an appealing nose of red fruits with a hint of spice. On the palate, it is smooth and elegant, with delicious flavors of plum, black cherry and strawberry up front. There is a spicy undertone, especially on the long finish. The tannins are well integrated and it is far more dry than sweet, a pleasing and easy drinking Port that is perfect for the fall and winter. During the summer though, it is said you could serve this lightly chilled. And if you open a bottle, it should remain good for about six weeks.

The Port will pair well with various cheeses, especially blue cheese, and would also go well with various chocolate desserts. It was also suggested to me that the Cockburn’s Special Reserve Port would pair well with Twizzlers candy, with the bright fruit of the Port matching the red fruits of the Twizzlers. I like Twizzlers so I had to buy some to try this intriguing pairing. Sure, purists might look askance at even attempting such a pairing but I'm open to thinking outside the box.

Initially, the red fruit flavors of the Port and Twizzlers complemented each other, though the Port added a pleasing, spicy element to the finish, helping to mute some of the sweetness. It isn't a pairing I might frequently partake, but it was fun and created something tasty and different.

At less than $20, this is an excellent Port, offering plenty of complexity, flavor and quality at this price point. I like its style, being more dry than sweet, with such bright red fruit flavors up front. With fall here, and winter coming, this is a very good choice to help warm those chilly evenings, and to pair with dessert. The next time you shop at your local wine store, look for Cockburn's Special Reserve Port.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

National Seafood Month: Eat Seafood Twice A Week

In 1990, Congress designated that October would become National Seafood Month, to highlight the role of seafood in a healthy diet. In addition, the month is intended to honor and celebrate everyone associated with the seafood and fishing industry. Seafood may be one of the healthiest foods you can eat, with thousands of scientific studies indicating that eating seafood twice a week can reduce your chances of heart disease by 36%. As heart disease kills almost 600,000 people each year, reducing your chances by eating seafood is a wise choice.

Eating seafood twice a week should translate into an annual consumption of 26 pounds of seafood. However, most Americans significantly fail to meet this standard. In the last 18 years, the highest annual seafood consumption was in 2005 with 16.6 pounds, dropping to a low of 14.4 pounds in 2012. A positive increase occurred in 2015 when annual consumption actually increased nearly a pound to 15.5 pounds but 2016 saw that figure fall, down to 14.9 pounds. I haven't yet seen figures for 2017.

For comparison, in 2018, it is predicted that Americans will eat an annual average of 222 pounds of red meat and poultry. Annual average seafood consumption is less than 7% of this amount, indicative of how little seafood Americans actually eat. There is so much room for the growth of seafood consumption, with only a relatively minimal decrease in meat and poultry consumption. With all of the health benefit of seafood, why can't you increase your consumption?

The Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP), a non-profit organization dedicated to raising public awareness about the health benefits of seafood, is a leader in seafood education. They have a number of ways that everyone can help celebrate National Seafood Month. First, you can take their Seafood Pledge, vowing to eat seafood twice a week. You can then tell everyone on social media, using the hashtag #Seafood2XWk, that you've taken and the pledge and encourage others to do the same as well. Second, the SNP is always seeking inspiration, recipe ideas, and general tips about buying, cooking, and eating seafood. So, they would like you to share on social what seafood dishes you are eating this month, using the same hashtag as above. Third, they would like people to share their message, to talk about SNP, on social media, making more people aware of their mission.

For more educational information on seafood consumption, you should check out the SNP Resources page, which has plenty of valuable info. You find topics such as Which Fish Is The Richest In Omega-3 to Seafood Food Safety. They also offer a myriad of Seafood Recipes, from Sweet & Sour Scallop Kabobs to Salmon Dip. Check out the entire Seafood Nutrition Partnership and educate yourself about the wonders and health benefits of seafood.

You might also be interested in checking out Dish on Fish, an initiative sponsored by the National Fisheries Institute to encourage Americans to eat more seafood. At Dish on Fish, you'll find numerous seafood recipes, monthly meal plans, and advice on seafood & health

Please also peruse my myriad seafood articles for more information about all the reasons why you should eat more seafood, as well as information on buying and cooking seafood. My new post, All About Seafood, collects all of the links to my seafood articles, compiling them under various subjects.

Eat seafood at least twice a week. Eat more sustainable seafood. Eat more local seafood. Eat more diverse seafood, and not just the usual suspects.

All About Seafood

"In the hands of an able cook, fish can become an inexhaustible source of perpetual delight."
---Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

By some estimates, by the year 2050, the global population might reach nearly 10 billion people, requiring the production of twice as much food as we currently consume. Assuring food security will require improvements in farming methods, new technologies and superior stewardship of finite natural resources. Seafood will play a vital role in a healthier future if wild fisheries can be managed well and best practices prevail in the aquaculture industry. Today, aquaculture provides roughly 50% of seafood, expected to rise to 67% by 2050. When consumers know the facts, we are convinced that they will embrace the ideas and spirit behind sustainable seafood and begin actively to search out producers of authentic, quality, responsible seafood products.

"Globalization may have made the world a smaller place, but it had also created voids and disconnects. Because of the enormous distances between the sources and users of some products, consumers knew very little about the implications of their choices."
--Hooked: Pirates, Poaching, and the Perfect Fish by G. Bruce Knecht

I've currently written over 125 seafood-related articles, indicative of my passion for seafood. For five consecutive years, I won awards for my coverage of the Seafood Expo North America and was also chosen as one of the Gulf Coast Seafood's Top 100 Seafood Bloggers. To help bring more visibility to my seafood coverage, I've compiled all of the links to my seafood posts into this single article. This post will be a repository of those articles and I will update it when I write a new article about seafood. Over time, I will also spend more time organizing these posts into various topics.

How To Cook Seafood 
SENA14: How To Cook Seafood
SENA15: How To Cook Seafood
How To Cook Seafood, Vol.1
How To Cook Seafood, Vol.2
How To Cook Seafood, Vol.3
Louisiana Seafood & Chef Michael Brewer
Nova Scotia Seafood Chowder Recipe

Some Of My Seafood-Related Rants
Rant: Seafood Ain't Cheap, Suck It Up
Rant: Would You Fish For Dinner...At A Restaurant?
Rant: Eat More Seafood, Your Heart Will Thank You
Rant: Be More Seafood Adventurous
Rant: Another Reminder, Eat More Seafood
Rant: Keep Eating More Seafood
Rant: Seafood Fraud & Imitation Crab
Rant: Wake Up Japan, Bluefin Are In Danger
Rant: Stop Worrying, Seafood Is Safe
Rant: Seafood Sustainability Not As Important Now?
Rant: Cook More Seafood, Especially Local
Rant: Should We Take Fish Lessons From Maine?
Rant: Bluefin Tuna Stocks Recovering?
Rant: Eat More Seafood, Especially Local
Rant: Can Bordeaux Save The Sharks?
Rant: Stop Eating Cod, Tuna & Salmon
Rant: Flipper, Fear Northeast Fishermen
Rant: Another Blacklisted Seafood Dinner in Boston?
Rant: A Response To "Another Blacklisted Seafood Dinner in Boston?"
Rant: Too Critical Of Sustainability Proponents?
Rant: Berkowitz Blacklisted Dinner--One Year Later
Rant: Who Can You Trust? The Cod Edition

To Feed The World, We Need More Aquaculture
Updated News on Seafood Consumption, Landings & Aquaculture
Americans, Don't Ignore Farmed Seaweed
SENA15: Aquaculture Stewardship Council Update 
SENA14: Is Aquaculture Sustainable?
SENA14: Updates From The Aquaculture Stewardship Council
SENA14: Baja Seas: A New Yellowtail Aquaculture Project
U.S. Aquaculture Advocacy
Aquaculture & Cobia
Verlasso Farmed Salmon
Verlasso Salmon: A Seafood Watch "Good Alternative"
SENA14: Verlasso Salmon: An Update
Verlasso Salmon: An Update
New MA Seafood Program: But What About Farmed Shellfish?

Wine & Seafood
2012 Bodegas Martín Códax Albariño: A Seafood Companion
Starting The New Year With Cremant d'Alsace & Lobster
Sake, Seafood & Lobster Anywhere
Wine & Seafood

Seafood & Health
Seafood: Fighting The Mercury Myth
Seafood Fear Mongering: The Mercury Myth
SENA15: Seafood Nutrition Partnership & Eating Heart Healthy
The Healthiest Food You Can Eat?

Specific Seafoods
Cannonball Jellyfish: Eat Up Americans
The Endangered Vaquita: A Cautionary Tale
Maine Lobsters: Endangered?
SENA17: Sea Urchin Master Class
SENA15: Master Class--Canada’s Organic Blue Mussels 
Eating More Mussels
Want Cheap, Tasty, Healthy & Sustainable Seafood? Choose Mussels
SENA15: Maine Dayboat Scallops & Merroir
SENA15: Paiche, the "Cod Of The Amazon"
SENA14: Sustainable Caviar In Florida
SENA14: Maine Lobster from Trap to Table
SENA14: Estuario del Plata Caviar
SENA14: Chilean Sea Bass--Back From The Brink
Norweigan Skrei: Sustainable & Tasty Cod
Maine Scallops: Restrictions to Rebounding

Fish Fun
SENA17: Fish Fun & Photos
SENA15: Fish Fun & Photos
SENA14: Fish Fun & Photos
An Interview With Monty

More Seafood Posts
Seafood Mislabeling: How Prevalent?
Seafood Sustainability & Social Issues
The Origins of Ceviche, Tempura and Fish & Chips
The Largest Marine Reserve in the World
Boring Americas: The Seafood Edition
Lucky Peach: The Seashore Issue
Consumers & Seafood Certification
The 3 Rules Of Eating Seafood
Pirate Fishermen: No Peglegs Nor Parrots
Miya's Sushi & Chef Bun Lai: Like A Haiku
Rant: Seafood Sustainability Not As Important Now?
Red's Best Seafood: Local, Traceable & Flexible
SeaShare: Seafood For Hungry Americans
International Boston Seafood Show: Japanese Pavilion
Perceptions of Seafood Sustainability
Eat More U.S. Seafood: The Gulf Coast
How A Restaurant Becomes Sustainable
State of Fisheries Address
Consumers Purchasing Sustainable Seafood
Status & Safety of Japanese Seafood
Buy American Seafood: Four Excellent Choices
Seafood Prices & Fate of Local Fishermen
Roger Berkowitz and OAWRS
Roger Berkowitz & Vietnam Shrimp Farms
Berkowitz & Legal Sea Food: A Matter Of Trust
Fish Restaurant: Calamari, Sword Fish Chop & Bacon Beignets
Bonefish Grill: A New Seafood Restaurant in Burlington

SENA18: The Seafood Expo (Part 3)
SENA18: The Seafood Expo (Part 2)
SENA18: The Seafood Expo (Part 1)
SENA 17: Chefs & The Business of Seafood
SENA17: "We Don't Know How To Talk About Seafood"
SENA17: Seafood of Interest
SENA15: Rant--Seafood Expo For The Public
SENA15: Sunburst Trout Farms Jerky & Caviar 
SENA15: The Changing Landscape of Sustainable Seafood 
SENA15: Inupiat, Kotzebue & Sheefish
SENA15: Marine Stewardship Council Update

SENA15: Twelve Things You Should Know
SENA15: 2 Billion People Are Coming To Dinner, Let's Feed Them Fish!
SENA15: Blue North and Humane Harvest Initiative
SENA15: Ocean Executive & Seafood Trading Platform
SENA15: Food of Interest
SENA15: Rant--Understanding the Seafood Retail Consumer
SENA15: Saucy Fish--Sustainable, Easy To Cook & Inexpensive
SENA15: Combating IUU Fishing & Seafood Fraud
SENA15: The Evolution Of Seafood Sustainability
SENA15: Final Ponderings
Seafood Expo North America: Why You Should Go
SENA14: How Can we Increase Seafood Consumption in the US?
SENA14: Chefs For Seals
SENA14: FSMA & Imported Seafood
SENA14: Eleven Things You Need To Know
SENA14: Food of Interest
SENA14: The Seven Keys of Sustainability
SENA14: Pathways to Sustainability & Global Salmon Initiative
SENA14: Brief Items Of Interest
SENA14: Final Ponderings

The sea can bind us to her many moods, whispering to us by the subtle token of a shadow or a gleam upon the waves, and hinting in these ways of her mournfulness or rejoicing. Always she is remembering old things, and these memories, though we may not grasp them, are imparted to us, so that we share her gaiety or remorse.”
--H.P. Lovecraft