FOOD NEWS by Sonia Alexander Hill
If weeks of Olympics coverage didn't satisfy your hunger for all things Greek, come to Bartlett to celebrate Greekfest 2004. St. George Greek Orthodox Church, 6984 Highway 70, will host this 43rd annual event September 18th.
"Watching the Olympics you see all the beauty of Greece," says Kathy Zambelis, publicity chairperson. "Now, Greece is coming to the Mid-South. It is a great way to share our heritage."
There will be crafts, games, dance troupes, and music from the Lazarus Band from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Admission is free. A traditional Greek dinner will be served from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. The complete meal, which includes an entrée, sides, salad, and dessert, is $12 for adults and $6 for children 12 and under. Advance tickets can be purchased for $10 and $5, respectively, by calling the church at 388-5910.
Stay all day or just drive through and carry dinner home. And don't forget: The Greek Pastry Shop will offer a variety of homemade treats, and stands will sell gyros and souvlaki.
Cafe Society, 212 N. Evergreen, has a new look. Since closing its gourmet market Epicure in June, the restaurant opened up that space by enlarging the bar, adding a dining room, and updating the appearance, all while preserving the upscale French café atmosphere.
"The new bar is beautiful," says bartender Leanna Tedford. "It's made of Brazilian redwood, and it follows the same curve that outlined the old Epicure. It's double the size of the old bar."
Enlarging the bar also allows room for smoking tables. The renovations include a banquet room that can be reserved for private functions. Artwork by husband and wife Anton Weiss and Lisa Jennings adorn the walls.
"We've been in business 17 years, and it was time for an update," says Telford. "We've added a few new items to the menu, but there will be more changes. We wanted to wait until we got comfortable with the renovations."
For now, new menu items include osso buco, a veal shank braised for 12 hours; pan-seared flat-iron steak with andouille, succotash, and a Gran Marnier-scented lobster glaze; and the chef's daily selection of fresh fish.
Senses, 2866 Poplar, may be best known for its pulsing music and cold drinks, but the club also features a full kitchen. The best time to sample the more unusual menu items, like the endame (salted soy beans), is Monday through Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. when free appetizers are served in the Martini Bar.
Chef Robby Alexander, who formerly worked at Automatic Slim's, helped owners George and Dennis Mironovich create an assortment of light and tasty finger foods.
"We didn't want to offer a big cheeseburger, so we created four mini-cheeseburgers," says George Mironovich.
The Asian-influenced menu mostly features appetizers to be shared among friends and a couple of entrées for bigger appetites.
Now that the club has found its niche in the nightclub industry, it is carving out a spot in the catering business as well. It offers themed buffets, such as "Caribbean Carnival" or "Tea Time," as well as nearly 50 finger food or plate dinners.
"Whether it's a business meeting for 40 or a wedding reception for 700, we can provide everything -- food, drinks, servers, sound, lighting, and even decoration," says George Mironovich.
Cookbook compliments of the Woman's Exchange will be published in the fall of 2005 to share recipes and raise funds for an organization that has been in Memphis since 1933.
"We've done cookbooks in the past, but this will be the biggest and the best," says Libby Aaron, a member of the organization. "The book will be hardcover and include about 250 recipes."
The Woman's Exchange is a national nonprofit organization that sells products and crafts made by people who work from home because of disabilities or other reasons.
"The Woman's Exchange is helping people help themselves," says Aaron. "Changes in the economy have been hard, and consignors are a dying breed. Women just don't sew like they used to and the operating costs are increasing, so we just need a good fund-raiser."
The Memphis chapter's store at 88 Racine also features a tearoom. Three-course meals with a selection of three entrées are served for lunch Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.