Weekend Picks, April 1-3

Posted: April 1st, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Event, Marblehead, News, Salem | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

After a few quiet weeks, there are a slew of interesting food events this weekend.

First up is Salem’s Spring Fling on Saturday from 6:00 to 9:00 in Salem Old Town Hall. Tickets are $25 in advance or $30 at the door and include craft beer from Magic Hat, Ipswich, Stone Cat, Cape Ann Brewing, Clown Shoes, and more. There will also be wine from Pamplemousse and Market Wine & Spirits and food and desserts from several Salem favorites, including 62 Restaurant, Lobster Shanty, Victoria Station, Café Polonia, Gulu-Gulu Café, and Greenland Café. This is an over-21 event featuring music from Big Ol’ Dirty Bucket. Tickets are available at several Salem locations and online here.

Also that night is the Art Auction to benefit the Marblehead Festival of Arts. The silent auction begins at 5:00 at Abbot Hall, followed by a live auction at 7:30. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door; they include hors d’oeuvres and wine tasting during the first part of the evening, and dessert and coffee later on. More information is here.

This weekend is the beginning of an epic Salem Restaurant Week, which runs Sunday through Thursday and has been extended to run the following Sunday through Thursday as well (April 10 to 14). Meals are $15 for two courses and $25 for three courses. A complete list of restaurants is here.

Last but not least, this weekend marks the end of prohibition in Salem. Well, the winter kind, anyway. All the restaurants with partial and seasonal liquor licenses can begin serving again on April 1, and they are celebrating. The Lobster Shanty is throwing an opening day open mic shindig and rolling out a new menu, and 62 Restaurant and Wine Bar is unveiling their spring cocktail list. 62 will be serving complimentary hors d’oeuvres from 5:00 to 7:00 in the lounge. After 7:00, they’ll serve a complimentary signature spuntino with each drink purchased from the new cocktail menu in the lounge.

From 8:30 to 11:00 over at Howling Wolf, there will be free Mexican wings and buffalo wings. Lee Hawkins will be singing the blues, and there’s a raffle for Red Sox and Revolution tickets. And starting at 8:00, there’ll be live music by Clay Ventre and the Bond Girls and complimentary passed hors d’oeuvres at Café Polonia.

So ignore any white stuff that happens to be falling from the sky today and get out there and enjoy!

We’ve also got some great things to do from our pals in the  North Shore Bloggers Consortium:

Seth is all over Lynn at Lynn Happens.

Jane Ward has some great ideas for  this weekend.

Kimmy has her weekend picks in addition to another great recipe over at Lighter and Local.


Hometown Food Fun for the Holiday Weekend

Posted: July 2nd, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Amesbury, Danvers, Event, Manchester, Marblehead | Tags: , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

The Fourth of July weekend isn’t about fancy foods and upscale restaurants; it’s about family and friends, picnics and barbecues, and celebrating our small historic towns.

So if you’re looking for sustenance in between the friends and the fireworks, here’s a handful of hometown-style food events that may be of interest.

As part of its Amesbury Days celebration, the town will be hosting Amesbury Brewfest 2010 tonight, July 2, at 5:00, an invitational craft brewer festival. It’s geared toward smaller, lesser known brewers who put quality above quantity and features locally-produced faves from the likes of Cape Ann Brewing and Haverill Brewery.

Marblehead holds its annual Festival of the Arts this weekend, and one of its yearly traditions is the St. Michael’s Church Lobster Roll Luncheon and Snack Bar. A better bargain can’t be found—you can get an excellent lobster roll, drink, chips, and dessert for $14, or substitute a hot dog for the lobster roll, and it’s only $5. All proceeds go to local charities, as well as St. Michael’s sister parish in Arcahaie, Haiti. The luncheon is available from 11:00 to 3:00 on July 3, 4, and 5.

In Manchester By The Sea, the Rotary club will host its annual Red, White & Blue Pancake Breakfast at Tuck’s Point on Saturday July 3rd. Strawberries, blueberries, and whipped cream not only make the pancakes patriotic, but extremely tasty. Tickets are $7 in advance or $8 at the door. Tickets can be purchased from the Parks & Recreation Department Office. They will also be available today from 12:00 to 3:00 in Manchester front of Crosby’s Market.

On Sunday the 4th, the traditional Highland Bean Supper returns to Danvers from 2:00 to 6:00 on the Village Training Field. On offer will be hot dogs, rolls, beans, coleslaw, bottles of water, and possibly candy and coffee sold separately. Price for adults is $5 and $3 for kids, with the proceeds going to Troop 155 Boy Scouts. This Danvers tradition was retired last year, but dedicated locals brought it back.

And if you are looking for local activities and fireworks, check out this handy list of celebrations by town. Wherever you end up, have a terrific holiday weekend!


Marblehead Festival of Arts Kicks Off In Style

Posted: July 1st, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Event, Marblehead | Tags: , | No Comments »

A chance to support the arts while drinking champagne and nibbling on goodies? Sign us up. The sky was gray over Sunday night’s Marblehead Festival of Arts Champagne Reception at Fort Sewall, but that deterred precisely no one from turning out in their summer finery, complete with lavishly decorated hats.

Fourteen local restaurants and bakeries donated food to the event, and attendees sipped and sampled while listening to lively Reggae and Caribbean tunes from Señor Perfecto & The One Drops.

It was a great chance to get a taste of a variety of dishes, and we found lots to like (and a few that weren’t worth the calories). The Landing provided hot, creamy clam chowder and a wonderfully spicy crab cake. Also in the fried-nuggets-of-goodness category were crunchy arancini from Caffe Italia.

Best sandwich goes to Jack-Tar’s pulled pork sliders (a bit hard to eat but truly delicious), followed closely by Manhattan Sandwich, which had many deli selections and adorable cups of cole slaw. (By the way, we’ve tried several varieties of sandwiches from Manhattan on recent picnics and recommend them. They offer a variety of extremely fresh bread including pumpernickel and bulkie rolls, the meats and cheeses are high quality and generous, and the condiments and pickles are deli-worthy.)

We give Foodie’s Feast (above) best overall table with a great looking display of bite-sized meat pies, brownies, and mini-chip pound cake that never seemed to dwindle. Other desserts included cookies from Starlight Creatives and a dense Mediterranean almond cake called nammoura we’re hoping we can order at Le Bistro.

We were disappointed that Sticky Rice ran out of Thai food before the event was half over, and although the cakes from Ladycakes looked good, they were freezing cold and thus had no flavor. Fortunately, the Cook’s champagne (surprisingly dry) held out, as did the band, so these issues were easily overlooked.

This is a fun event for a great cause—if you plan to attend next year, we suggest going early for the best food experience and buying one of the logo wineglasses to make sure you don’t spill a drop of champagne.


Foodie Offerings at Local Festivals

Posted: June 5th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Event, Marblehead, Salem | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Two upcoming arts festivals have culinary components worth a look. The first is the Salem Arts Festival this weekend. It starts tonight at 5:00 at the Old Town Hall with an art exhibit and live music.

On Saturday, there are cooking demonstrations at Pickering Wharf restaurants throughout the day as follows:

11–12 Capt’s. The Art of Salad: Chef Raphael Liberty demonstrates how to turn the common garden salad into a work of art

2–3 Victoria Station. Dessert Flambé

3–4 Finz. Oysters Inside & Out: what you need to know about oysters

4–5 Capt’s. The Art of Salad


The second event is the Marblehead Festival of Arts Champagne Reception on Sunday June 28 from 5:00 to 7:00 at Fort Sewall.

Along with champagne and reggae/carribean music from Señor Perfecto & The One Drops, tastings will be available from more than a dozen local restaurants. The lineup includes Le Bistro Café & Grill, Café Italia, Capt’s, Foodie’s Feast, Jack-Tar, Ladycakes, Manhattan Sandwich Company, Marblehead Café and Chowder Company, Starlight Creatives, Sticky Rice, Sweeney’s Retreat, and The Landing.

To attend the reception, you must donate to the festival, which can be done by mail or online at the donations section of their Web site. A $65 contribution gets you one invitation; a $150 donation gets you two.