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If the thought of eating a frozen burrito for the third night in a row is starting to bring you down, don’t fret. Hit up Green Hills’ Homegrown Tasting Festival, 5933 South Salina St., on Friday, Sept. 5, to stock up on locally grown and organic produce from area farms. A caveat emptor to all the lazy chefs out there: no freezer-burned products will be available.
The free festival, which runs from 4 to 7 p.m., will feature freshly grown produce and other products from Central New York farms and stores, as well as opportunities to meet and interact with the farmers and food makers.
Although the price of gas may have kept traveling to a minimum this summer, Albany, Columbia and Rensselaer County’s first annual Garden of Eating Tour is the perfect excuse to spend a few bucks at the gas pump and take a mini road trip… culinary style.
The week-long driving tour, which runs from Sept. 15 to 21, will lead participants to farm stands, markets and country stores that feature all Capital District outlets. “Over 40 restaurants and 100 local farms are participating,” says Michelle Vennard, president of the Albany County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.
Ideas for the tour came from a variety of sources. Not only did collective county representatives seek to highlight the plethora of local farms spread throughout the region, but they wanted to showcase their restaurants’ ability to make specialty dishes, as well as keep up with the trend of local eating.
Joe Whiting: Headlines the Skaneateles Seafood Jazzfest this Sunday. MICHAEL DAVIS PHOTO
Seafood and jazz create a very strange dichotomy. One word brings to the mind the images of smoky bars and backstreet clubs, while the other concocts memories of bibs, warm butter and salt water. Yet, when combined at the 17th annual Seafood Jazzfest this Sunday, Sept. 7, the pairing will provide the perfect mix of sultry tunes and laid-back beach attitude.
The event, which will take place on the west lawn at the Sherwood Inn, 26 W. Genesee St., Skaneateles, will be hosted by local deejay Eric Cohen of WAER-FM 88.3 and will feature a large array of regional jazz talent.
Performers include Syracuse New Times Syracuse Area Music Award-winner Joe Whiting and his band, party dance-band Dave Hanlon’s Coobook, as well as the Skaneateles High School Jazz Band. Loren Barrigar, Brian Murphy, Angelo Condelo and Grupo Pagan are also set to play.
Barbecue, Jambalaya, seafood gumbo, steamed clams, soda, wine and beer provided by the Sherwood will be served at the show. Festivities kick off at noon and music starts at 1 p.m. Make sure to bring a lawn chair or blanket to lounge on the lawn. The event is free and open to the public.
For more information, call 685-3405.
to a weekly Yappy Hour
By Jessica Skeldon
If your pent-up pooch is looking for some quality time with fellow furry friends, listen up. Laci’s Café at the Palace, 2384 James St., serves sandwiches, salads and smoothies for humans, but once a week they cater to a very different kind of customer. The Eastwood venue is home to “Yappy Hour” every Wednesday from 6 to 8 p.m., a time when dog lovers and their canine companions can spend time with fellow enthusiasts. Simply put, dog owners bring their companions to sit outside and enjoy music and good company while the pooches gobble gourmet treats and water.
The whole thing started last year when owners Laura Serway and Cindy Seymour (the name of the café comes from the first two letters in each first name, hence, “Laci’s”) got together with their friend Ruth Sturgis, of Dog Daze Bakery, and tried to find some kind of event to encompass their love of dogs. Sturgis came across the Yappy Hour idea on the Internet, an event other restaurants had adapted.
Vegetarian fare for the common man comes to the New York State Fair
By Kevin Corbett
Fabulous aromas engulf you moments after you hand over your ticket and push through the turnstile at the New York State Fair. As you head for the food stands, Bob Gibbons’ melodious voice floats from the PA system to offer a gracious welcome and the announcement, “Today is Tofu Day at the Fair.”
especially this time of year
By Molly English-Bowers
We all know by now that green is the new black, and there’s no better way to bring that home than to literally bring it home, from local growers. A nationwide initiative known as Eat Local America! wants us to consume 80 percent of our diets (think four out of five meals) from locally grown foods. While farmers’ markets, farm-delivered produce at grocery stores and roadside stands all provide upstate New York fodder, so, too does the Syracuse Real Food Co-op, which is participating in the challenge during our peak harvest time, which is, ahem, now through Sept. 15.
tasting at these close-to-home vineyards
By Erin Bartolo
The jargon, the ceremonial tastings, the sticker shock. The whole wine tasting phenomenon might have taken you by surprise. But, in contrast to its association with connoisseurs, wine tasting is probably the best way for a beginner to get introduced to wine. The Finger Lakes region’s cup runneth over with a host of tasting opportunities for aspiring wine enthusiasts. This win-win situation gives vintners a chance to share what they know while newbies get an idea of how their taste buds respond to each wine.
Enjoy a taste of honey with a bottle of mead
By Tom Kahley
Next time you plan a romantic evening, instead of wrapping wrists with your honey and tipping back a glass of red or white wine over a candlelight dinner, sip the sweet nectar of honey itself. Gagging while trying to swallow honey’s viscous texture might take the steam out of a sultry night. But mead, on the other hand, is an alcoholic drink made with honey instead of grapes that goes down just as smooth as wine—albeit a touch more sweetly.
The array of Asian noodles available means you can take an Eastern culinary journey without leaving Syracuse
By Lorraine Smorol
When asked to name the staple food in Asian countries, Westerners will undoubtedly answer “rice.” While rice is certainly prominent in the cuisine of the East, to the surprise of many, noodles are just as popular.
For the hungry, the donated food they get from local pantries is like manna from heaven
By Ed Griffin-Nolan
It was barely 10 a.m. and Marie Cullen had already filled three food baskets for hungry families. Then the phone rang. It was another family looking for help. “Since the prices went up, it’s been like this,” says Cullen, who runs the food pantry at St. Charles Borromeo Church in Westvale. “All the pantry workers will tell you the same story: Our numbers are up.” St. Charles, 417 S. Orchard Road, is among those spots listed with the InterReligious Food Consortium as an emergency pantry.