Friday, March 8, 2013

CWFF: Our best bites of the festival

Without further ado

Posted by Stephanie Barna on Fri, Mar 8, 2013 at 1:56 PM

We ate and drink a lot during the Charleston Wine + Food Festival, but we did it for you Charleston. Here's a roundup of our favorite bites and sips from last weekend. Got any of your own? Share in the comments.

Pimento Cheese Macaroons from Linton Hopkins of Restaurant Eugene in Atlanta. Frank Stitt Tribute Dinner.
Don't have a picture of these little gems, but they were mini, yellow macaroons with three or four flakes of salt on top and a smear of spicy pimento cheese inside. Spicy, sweet, salty perfection. I think I ate five or six during cocktail hour. —Stephanie Barna

Capers Blade Oysters with Uni from Mike Lata of the Ordinary. Frank Stitt Tribute Dinner.
When I wasn't stuffing my face with macaroons, I was slurping down icy cold oysters with a slice of uni on top. A briny pop of awesome. —SB

Ravioli alla Genovese, Veal Brains, Sweetbreads, Veal, and Spinach from Jeff Michaud of Osteria in Philadelphia. Perfectly Paired Dinner at Trattoria Lucca.
Despite the gruesome description, this was an understated lesson in deliciousness. The pasta was gorgeous (tasting not necessarily looking) , and the ravioli stuffing was sublime. Memorable.


Pork Jowl Ravioli and Raw and Roasted Vegetable Salad with Crispy Pig Ear from Michelle Bernstein of Crumb on Parchment and Michy's. This Little Piggy Popup.
Bernstein's ravioli was pillowy perfection, but we also have to give her credit for serving a refreshing salad at an otherwise meaty event. Crispy pig ear aside, it was a nice palate cleanser — if you've got her recipe for jalapeño-ranch dressing, send it our way. —Susan Cohen

Vagos Motorcycle Club cocktail from the Gin Joint in Charleston. Jailhouse Shake-Up
With a bit of spice and sweetness, this cocktail made with Milagro Anejo tequila was my favorite of the festival. Even the garnish from the drink became an impromptu accessory for many of the ladies at the party as they slipped the yellow flowers into their hair. —Erin Perkins


Braised Oxtail Empanadilla with Chimichurri and Local Radish from Barsa Tapas Lounge and Bar at Festival After-Hours
A tiny bite of perfectly fried dough filled with rich and savory braised oxtail. The crunch and spice from the watermelon radish was a nice contrast to the lavish filling. —EP


City Slicker Cocktail from Miles Macquarrie. Southern Foodways Alliance & Jim 'N Nick's Barbecue Coronation Supper
A cocktail made with 10-year-old, 107-proof Old Rip Van Winkle Bourbon with a mysterious lemony iced-tea-like touch: a smooth, delicious way to kick off a coronation.—Robert Moss

Roasted Pork with Sea Island Purple Cape Beans and Braised Collards from Joseph Lenn of Blackberry Farm. A Taste of Two Souths Wine Seminar
I was so haunted by the simple but deep flavors of Lenn's pork, greens, and beans that I went out and cooked almost the exact same thing at home Sunday night, though I had to substitute blackeyed peas for Lenn's delightful Purple Cape beans. —RM

Barbecue pork shoulder. Helen Turner, Helen's Barbecue, Brownsville, Tenn. SFA & Jim 'N Nick's Barbecue Coronation Supper
Pulled pork that is about as tender, moist, and intensely smoky as it could be. One taste and no one doubted Helen Turner deserved the crown as the South's Queen of Pig and Smoke. —RM

Corned beef hash from Joe Palma. High Cotton Media Breakfast
Rich corned beef, smoked red peppers and onions, and a few fried eggs strewn over the top: I could have eaten an entire plate full of that hash, except that my plate already runneth over with scrambled eggs, a fried pork belly biscuit, and a whole lot of breakfast charcuterie.—RM

Rabbit confit from Josh Keeler. Two Boroughs Larder Breakfast.
The two slices of braised rabbit loin and fried farm egg that topped Keeler's bowl of Brewster oats were pretty tasty, but the tender, juicy shreds of rabbit confit tucked under the egg stole the show.—RM

Crispy Duck Tongues from Nate Whiting. Perfectly Paired Dinner at Tristan
Nate Whiting garnished a scoop of Acquerello risotto with crisp, light, and salty fried duck tongues. Hands down the best duck tongue I've had in over a decade.—RM

Deviled Eggs from Stuart Tracy. VIP Lounge
Butcher and Bee had a great platform for impressing out of town media and chefs at the VIP Lounge. There, Tracy served up a variety of sandwiches and bites, but the most talked about was his deviled egg, which benefited from a hit of fresh mustard. —SB


Otter Island Oysters from St. Jude Farms. Grand Tasting Tent.
Briny, pluff muddy, and ice cold. They shucked thousands last weekend to happy tasters. —Eric Doksa

Beef tongue corned beef from Jeremiah Bacon. Oak Steakhouse After Party
Nothing like a corned beef tongue to get the party going. —ED



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