Thursday, July 27, 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) Big Night Entertainment Group Chef/Partner Kevin Long and the Empire Asian Restaurant & Lounge team invite guests to kick start their week with the newly-launched Kasai Monday Menu. Every Monday, Chef Kevin Long serves up the Kasai Monday Menu featuring Asian-inspired Bar Bites perfect for post-work snacking or pre-game grubbing.

The Kasai Monday Menu is available in the restaurant’s lounge area from 5pm-10pm and features six bar bites including Wings & Rings pairing of tempura onion rings and jalapeno honey glazed chicken wings; Bao Full of Bull slow braised boneless short rib, crispy bao, jalapeno, mirin pickles; Drunken Chicks on Fire crispy potato starch dusted chicken skewers, bourbon buffalo sauce, bourbon flame – three piece; Long End of the Stick Asian spice marinated beef tenderloin, skewed with bell pepper, sweet onion, Gojujang dipping sauce; Taco vs. Taco one spicy salmon and one spicy tuna wonton taco; and Sushi Cupcakes, Empire’s signature appetizer of broiled lobster and scallops in spicy garlic butter, placed in a sushi rice cup – two piece.

Guests can wash it all down with large-format cocktail specials from Bar Manager Nancy Nguyen that are perfect for sharing with friends like the Pineapple Mai Tai choice of Classic with Bacardi 8 or White Mai Tai with Ciroc Pineapple (serves two) and The Big Kahuna with Grey Goose, fresh watermelon punch, mint and ginger (serves four or more).

For reservations, please call 617-295-0001

2) The Mandarin Oriental, Boston announces the debut of Ceviche@MO, a pop-up tasting menu featuring a selection of fresh New England seafood. An inviting place to gather socially and unwind after a busy day in Back Bay, guests are able sit amongst the lobby’s exotic blonde wood paneling and enjoy a trio of house-made summer ceviche paired with an ombré of rosé, handpicked by sommelier, David Bérubé.

Available individually or as a tasting flight, Ceviche@MO will be served through August 31 in the hotel’s Lobby Lounge.

--SCALLOP CEVICHE ($16): avocado, red fresno pepper, yuzu, cilantro
--SHRIMP CEVICHE ($14): tomatillo, red onion, radish, lime juice, chive, parsley, chervil
--OCTOPUS CEVICHE ($18): sweet bell peppers, cherry tomato, tomato water, castelvetrano olives, parsley
--Glass of Rose $12-$16

3) The Cambridge Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce Cambridge’s newest Summer food festival, The Char & Bar Wars – a head-to-head battle between 30 of the hottest local restaurants and bars benefitting the Rindge School of Technical Arts Culinary Arts and Hospitality Program. On Wednesday, August 2, from 5pm-8pm, Food lovers will take the judge’s seat as they taste slider size burgers and sample cocktails prepared by popular local restaurants, battling to win the title of Best Classic Burger, Best Signature Burger, and Best Summer Cocktail.

Restaurants that will be throwing their hats in the ring include: Glass House, AC Bar and Lounge, Harvard Square Shake Shack, ArtBar Cambridge, Craigie On Main, The Automatic, Forage, Tasty Burger, Boston Burger Company, The Asgard, Atwood's Tavern, Atlantic Fish Co., La Fabrica Central, The Rising Bar, Rindge School of Technical Arts Culinary Program, Café Luna, Nubar and more!

WHERE: 50 Landsdowne Street, Cambridge
HOW: Tickets are available via Eventbrite for $45 and include unlimited sampling of food and drinks – a valid 21+ ID is required to receive the Bar War bracelet. To purchase tickets, visit

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