Weekend Picks, May 20–22

Posted: May 20th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Event, Lynn, Marblehead, Newburyport | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

It’s a good thing the weather is finally clearing up (fingers crossed) because there are some great outdoor activities this weekend.

First, we’ll tell you how to start the weekend off right. Head over to Lynnway Liquors in Lynn this afternoon and say hello to the effervescent Emily O’Brien. She will be on hand from the Urban Wine Project, and will be pouring tastes of their brand new Oxford Street Pinot Noir and Central Square Chardonnay from 4:30 to 6:30.

On Saturday from 11:00 to 2:00, The Food Project is holding its second-annual Lynn Farm Fest. There will be a plant sale that includes seeds and garden supplies, a workshop on planning and planting a raised-bed garden (at 11:00 and again at 1:30), and you can sign up for CSA shares, which start on Monday. More CSA info is here.

From 1:00 to 5:00 on Saturday, you can get your sugar fix at the Newburyport Chocolate Tour. Pick up your ticket ($15) and goodie bag at the Unitarian Church (26 Pleasant St.), then walk the downtown route and partake in delectable chocolate treats from more than 20 participating vendors.

Shubie’s Food and Wine Festival will take place from 1:00 to 5:00 in Marblehead regardless of the weather, and it promises to be a doozy. There will be more than 40 wines for tasting, and purchasers will receive 20% off a case or 25% off two cases. There will be many food samples, including a Olympic extra virgin olive oil, Sailor’s Swagger pineapple hot sauce, and Chef Lynne’s papas fritas (hand-cut fries). The one we’ll be checking out is an exclusive debut of a new Jasper Hill cheese, Conundrum. It promises to be a cross between the Winnimere and the Moses Sleeper; spoonable, slightly sweet, slightly woodsy. We’ll try not to swoon.

And as usual, we’ve got links of interest from our pals in the North Shore Blogger’s Consortium:

Madman Seth has a weekend chock full of fun outlined in Lynn Happens.

Rob and Laura range farther afield for with some great ideas at The Two Palaverers.

And while our friend Jane Ward lists several events, but the most exciting by far is her own book author reading at Jabberwocky Bookshop, Newburyport. Stop in and see her tomorrow night!

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Our Weekend Picks

Posted: October 28th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Event, Shubie's Market Place | Tags: , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

It looks like we’ll get the fall weather back this weekend, just in time for Halloween. The biggest Halloween party in the nation happens right here on the North Shore, and if you’re the partying kind and have never been to Salem for the big day, get thee hence; it really is a scene like no other. Just take heed when deciding how to get there.

Whether you have little ones looking forward to trick or treating, or you’re stocking up on candy to hand out to the neighbors, here is a list of the official trick or treat hours in North Shore communities.

For those of you who prefer smaller crowds and fine wines, on Saturday October 30, Shubie’s is holding their Corks and Forks Annual Fall Wine & Food Festival. From noon to 4:00, they will be pouring with over 50 wines, featuring The BZ Collection, MS Walker, European Cellars, Old Bridge Cellars, Wildman Imports, Grange Fine Wines, and Classic Wine Imports.

There will also be tastes to try along with the wine. Among others, Chef Lynn Aronson will be debuting her new cheese fondue, Fantastic Fortunes will be on hand with samples of the giant fortune cookies, and Tea Forte will be demonstrating their innovative teas and delicious blends.

The event is free to the public and special discounts on wines will be available that day. We’ve really enjoyed these tastings in the past, and you can read about our experience here.

While not happening on the weekend, next Tuesday’s Take a Bite out of Trafficking is an important event everyone should be aware of. Restaurants, chefs, and businesses located north of Boston will join together in support of Anuradha Koirala, one of CNN’s Top Ten Heroes of 2010 nominees. Her Maiti Nepal is a non-profit organization that combats the sex trafficking of Nepali women and children.

Held at the Ipswich Country Club, the event will kick off at 5:45 with a special chef’s tasting featuring samplings from various restaurants, including 62 Restaurant & Wine Bar, Tryst, The Blue Ox, Pellana, 15 Walnut, Shea’s, Ipswich Country Club, Salem Waterfront Hotel, 9 Elm, American BBQ, Mr. India, Ithaki, Bradford Tavern, and The Green Land Cafe.

In addition to culinary samplings from some of the area’s most recognized chefs, the evening includes an exclusive movie screening and an auction featuring a variety of fabulous items. Tickets are $45 presale, $50 at the door. Cash bar. All proceeds of the event go directly to Maiti Nepal.

For more things to do this weekend, checkout these choice picks from our North Shore Bloggers Consortium pals:

Seth’s rundown of what’s up in Lynn this Halloween Weekend at Lynn Happens.

Joey C’s Halloween edition of his weekend picks at Good Morning Gloucester.

Jane’s got some spooky cool events listed in her  picks over at Food & Fiction.

Rob and Laura have scouted out hauntings all over New England at The Two Plaverers.

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Corks and Forks and the Best Cheese Ever

Posted: May 12th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Event, Marblehead, Marketplace | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

corks2Saturday we took some time to check out Shubie’s First Annual Corks and Forks event, which ran from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. We got there just before 2 p.m., and the place was packed. There were seven distributor tables in a relatively small space, with each pouring six to eight wines and so many people milling around it was almost sensory overload.

While we are far from being true oenophiles, we love wine and really enjoy learning about and tasting new vintages. Most of the wines were in the $11 to $25 range, and discounts were offered when purchasing six or more bottles. A few of the whites we liked were the Siblings Sauvignon Blanc, which was full of super sassy citrus; the Domain de Huards Cheverny, which was grassy and crisp; and the Zenato Pino Grigio, which was light and summery.

Reds we enjoyed included the Carpe Diem Pinot Noir, which was rich and fruity; the Casa Castillio Monastrell, which was savory and a bit peppery; and the Jiminez Landi Tinto, which was strong and direct but quite beguiling. Andrew Crookes, who poured the Jimenez and other Eric Solomon Selections, was by far the most engaging of the reps. Young, chatty, and enthusiastic, he knew his stuff and seemed to genuinely love his job.

cheeseThere were also several tables of cheese vendors set up, various chips and dips and sweets set out throughout the store, and servers circulating with appetizer sized tastes from Chef Lynn Aronson’s kitchen.

Our favorite cheeses were the Springbrook Farm Tarentaise, a Vermont Alpine cheese similar to a gruyere; the Vermont Butter and Cheese Coupole, another of their “age in your fridge” offerings; and several selections from Jasper Hill Farms.

While their Constant Bliss and Bayley Hazen Blue were both excellent, the knock-your-socks off star of the day was the Jasper Hill Farms Winnemere, which is only produced November to April. This was simply the most amazing cheese I have tasted. It is an aromatic raw milk cheese that has had its rind washed in lambic beer and wrapped in a strip of spruce. Everything from the cow’s milk to the wild yeast for the lambic and the spruce bark is harvested from Jasper Hill’s Vermont farmland. The result is complex: a smooth and creamy yet bright tangy flavor with an earthy, almost woody, note that is truly addictive. We brought some home, and it is only through sheer force of will we haven’t inhaled it all and licked the package clean. Yet.

Another discovery of note was the Fra’Mani handcrafted salumi which was tasty in the extreme. We tried the salametto, the soppressata, and a rosemary ham, all of which had us snitching extra samples.

While the event really only offered bargain prices if you were interested in buying larger quantities, Corks and Forks was  a terrific opportunity to widen our taste horizons and take home a few new favorites. Certainly worth checking out the next time Shubie’s hosts it.

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