Friday, January 29, 2016

City & State: A Clean, Well-Lighted Place

Posted By on Fri, Jan 29, 2016 at 12:27 PM

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I spend a lot of time at City & State. It is a clean, well-lighted place (sic). Literally. It is flush with northern light from the sweeping wall of windows across the front — a great draw for an enthused iphoneographer. The decor is simple, industrial and graceful. The shop makes me feel creative just looking at all of the handmade goods, both local and national. And I can get a lot of writing done there.


At least these are the things I tell myself. Really, I’m pretty sure it’s the sugar demon that lives inside of me that disguises itself as someone with taste.


Because really, I want the Lumberjack Latte and the sticky bun from Porcellino’s.


The Lumberjack Latte is a latte with maple, pecan, and cinnamon. You forget that there’s an end to it, or you just don’t care, because you look down, and it’s gone. I think they named it that because it could serve as a meal. Or does it have something to do with the beard trend? Maybe that’s too last year?


The sticky bun is technically a bun made out of croissant bread flavored with lemon zest and fennel pollen and sealed with caramelized sugar. What that translates into is a croissant marinated in heaven and encrusted with God’s tears of joy. They’re fun to eat too. There are so many textures which lead to the gooey center, it’s like Candyland came to life and got a Pastry Arts Management degree.

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Recently I went by and met with a friend, and because I did not want the extra caffeine (see: sleep issues), I got the Matcha Latte with honey and cinnamon. It’s made with tea and full of antioxidants. At least that’s what I tell myself, while it keeps the sugar demon, let’s call her Lucy, short for Lucifer, at bay.

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I also picked up a jar of the Big Spoon Almond Cocoa butter from the Pantry, which offers small-batch, handcrafted edibles and mixables, including Maple Bacon-flavored Serious Cheesy Puffs, hot fudge, drink mixers, Himalayan salts, vegan-Paleo chocolate bars, and other fancy stuff.


And I dare someone to finish one of their pecan croissants. They are croissants filled with pecans, brown sugar, and butter, a sort of celestial paste inside the croissant that dopes Lucy up so much that she passes out, and I can’t finish them. So I dare you.

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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

At the OiShii Japan Event

Posted By on Tue, Jan 26, 2016 at 2:18 PM

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The annual OiShii (Delicious) Japan event was held last Saturday. It featured Japanese cuisine, sake tastings, a Japanese tea ceremony performance, and performances by the Maid Cafe Dance Team.


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Monday, January 25, 2016

Stoney River Steakhouse and Grill Opens Monday

Posted By on Mon, Jan 25, 2016 at 1:48 PM

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I walked into the soft opening of Stoney River Steakhouse and Grill with high expectations. They definitely delivered.

The meal started with an appetizer for the table, a San Francisco Spinach dip. It was creamed spinach and water chestnuts served with Parmesan flatbread. The spinach dip was fantastic! It was hot, creamy and thick. The Parmesan flatbread was crunchy and you could taste the sharpness of the Parmesan cheese.

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Next up was biscuits and a salad and then the entrée. I’m all about ribeye steak so I went with the 14-ounce ribeye, what the restaurant describes as a tender, well-marbled cut of aged beef. The steak was juicy, filled with flavor, cooked to perfection. The mashed potatoes were smooth, creamy and thick.

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Last but not least was the dessert. The general manager, Sherif Reyadh told me that I had to try a dessert that had ice cream with it because the ice cream is very special. So I went with chocolate fudge cake that came with fudge and vanilla ice cream on top. The chocolate fudge cake was rich and chocolatey.

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As for the ice cream, Mr. Reyadh wasn’t kidding. It was creamy, airy and rich. It wasn’t until after I ate it that he proceeded to tell me that the ice cream is flown in from Humboldt Creamery in California. Unreal!

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Thursday, January 21, 2016

Say Cheese's Cluck Me

Posted By on Thu, Jan 21, 2016 at 10:50 AM

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On a recent Friday at the Ridgeway Loop in East Memphis, people lined up to get a grilled cheese from the Say Cheese food truck during their lunch break, and I was one of them. I went with one of best sellers, the Cluck Me ($7). It’s a grilled cheese that has buffalo chicken, bleu cheese, and pepper jack cheese on sourdough bread. I paired it with the homemade tomato soup ($2.)

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The grilled cheese and tomato soup are packaged in a to-go box, and trust me when I say that you know it’s good when there’s grease on the box.

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The grilled cheese is lightly spicy in a fantastic way. It tastes like a light buffalo aioli sauce over a buffalo dip. It’s delightful! The grilled cheese isn’t heavy and the buffalo chicken is pulled chicken. It’s so soft that I would guess it was slow cooked. The chicken melts away in your mouth and the sourdough bread is toasted to the point where there’s just the right amount of crispiness to it. Everything is very well put together and it’s not even messy. The blue cheese and pepper jack cheese blend right into the sandwich. That’s probably where the slight creaminess I tasted was coming from, but overall it’s a spicy taste.

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The tomato soup is to die for! I know this food truck is all about the grilled cheese, but I have to say that the soup is right up there with it and gives the sandwich a good run for it’s money. That’s why it’s so perfect that they are paired together. You can taste what I assume are pieces of tomato, pepper flakes and spices… or maybe all of the above! I loved feeling the texture change as I ate my soup! The tomato soup is thin, slightly creamy and very filling. It was the perfect thing to warm my tummy up on a cold day outside. Of course I dipped my grilled cheese into the soup like any grilled cheese connoisseur would. It made the grilled cheese that much better. It was softer and melted in my mouth. A win for lunch.

To find out where you can catch the Say Cheese food truck next, follow them on Facebook at Facebook.com/SayCheese901 or on Twitter, @SayCheese901.

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Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Hog & Hominy's Thunderbird! 40 Twice!

Posted By on Wed, Jan 13, 2016 at 1:57 PM

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Hog & Hominy is known for its great food like the Red Eye pizza. However, if you take a minute to look at the rest of their menu, it’s more than just the Red Eye pizza that stands out. In fact, my waiter for the evening, Mickey B., verified this when going over everything. “Some things have changed, other’s haven’t. For example, our pizzas are still fantastic,” he said. So I decided to go with the one I couldn’t stop staring at, the Thunderbird! 40 Twice ($16)! Turns out it was my waiter’s favorite pizza on the menu.

The Thunderbird! 40 Twice! is made up of fontina and mozzarella cheese, pepperoni and spicy honey. The two cheeses blend well together and melt in your mouth. The pepperoni is savory and well cooked. As for the pizza crust, it’s thin, crunchy and has a small coating of oil on it. Overall, the pizza is very spicy. The spicy honey kicks in immediately, but after a while the spiciness dies down, the sweetness of the honey kicks in and the pizza becomes this amazing spicy and sweet mixture. Try this pizza immediately! There wasn’t one slice left!

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Thursday, January 7, 2016

Bogie's Pimento Slam

Posted By on Thu, Jan 7, 2016 at 1:04 PM

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If you haven’t tried one of Bogie's deluxe grilled cheeses, you’re missing out big time. There’s so many to choose from, but the Pimento Slam was screaming my name.

The Pimento Slam is homemade pimento cheese on wheat berry bread ($5.29). The bread tasted like French toast. It was lightly toasted, buttery, crunchy and sweet… exactly how bread on a grilled cheese should be. The pimento cheese is really interesting melted. It’s hot, creamy, cheesy and a bit spicy. It wasn’t gooey like I thought it would be. I can also tell that the pimento cheese is homemade. It’s excellent. I loved that the sandwich didn’t fall apart, making it easy to eat.

This sandwich is the perfect kind of comfort food. Let’s just say it was gone quickly.

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Monday, January 4, 2016

Guess Where I'm Eating Contest 88

Posted By on Mon, Jan 4, 2016 at 11:05 AM

And we're back ... 
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The first person to correctly ID the dish and where I'm eating wins a fabulous prize. 

To enter, send your answer to me via email at ellis@memphisflyer.com

The answer to GWIE 87 is the Duffin at Bluff City Coffee, and the winner is ... Kim Gullett!

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