Friday, August 26, 2016

Eat This Tonight: Super fancy ice cream sandwiches

The cream of the crop

Posted by John Jarvis on Fri, Aug 26, 2016 at 10:03 AM

News flash: It's still hot. The good news? The summer sun has many local confectioners helping people beat the heat with delicious, handcrafted ice cream sandwiches. Now these aren't your regular gas station freezer bars. No, these desserts pack a punch with house-made cookie buns and, in most instances, house-made ice cream and fillings as well.
Kaminsky's - PROVIDED
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  • Kaminsky's
Head down to long time dessert powerhouse Kaminsky’s on the Charleston Market to try what they call their Cookie Sunday. This ice cream sandwich has two house-made chocolate chip cookie buns, vanilla bean ice cream, and Kaminsky’s delicious chocolate syrup starting at $5.25.
Brown's Court Bakery - PROVIDED
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  • Brown's Court Bakery
For a different scene and take on the ice cream sandwich, Brown’s Court Bakery on St. Philip Street offers an entirely in-house made treat, with flavors like Chai-Graham which has a brown sugar graham cookie with chai vanilla ice cream in the middle, and a Mocha brownie cookie with espresso ice cream in the middle, both $5.50.
Wich Cream - PROVIDED
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  • Wich Cream

Another Charleston area sweet shop to stop by is the Wich Cream stand, which is set up at the Mt. Pleasant, downtown, and future West Ashley Farmers Markets as well as many Charleston restaurants and bars. Two of their most popular creations are the Elvis Pretzley with peanut butter & banana ice cream w/ a crushed pretzel rim, and the Summer Harvest which subs Geechie Boy blue cornmeal for cocoa with roasted local blueberries and peaches in the ice cream. Prices range from $3-$5 depending on size and location.
Parlor Deluxe - PROVIDED
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  • Parlor Deluxe

Parlor Deluxe, located on St. Philip Street, actually features ice cream sandwiches with some components made by local Brown’s Court Bakery, but PD puts their own spin on the chilled treat with an in-house created waffle sandwiching the ice cream ($7).
Peace Pie - PROVIDED
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  • Peace Pie
Last but definitely not least is the new Meeting Street sweet shop Peace Pie, which specializes in only selling ice cream sandwiches. Each ice cream pie is $6 and they come in over two dozen flavors ranging from Red-Velvet Cake to Keylime to Pecan Pie.

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Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Blind Tiger is days away from reopening

The cat came back

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Thu, Aug 25, 2016 at 3:51 PM

The exterior may look the same, but the Tiger got a spit shine inside - KINSEY GIDICK
  • Kinsey Gidick
  • The exterior may look the same, but the Tiger got a spit shine inside
Owner Mike Shuler is staying mum on the official opening date, but he did reveal today that he is just days away from reopening The Blind Tiger. The Broad Street watering hole closed in January and since then Shuler has had a team working on updating the space.

"It's the same old Tiger, but dramatically different," he says. "I have every confidence in the world that people will appreciate it and flock back. I’m proud of what we’ve done."

We peeked in the windows today and it appears there's new flooring, seating, and light fixtures. We've also heard word that the back patio has had a significant upgrade with fresh landscaping as well.

It certainly looks like The Tiger's grooming will be finished just in time for a Labor Day party.  

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Cane Rhum Bar offers veterans and active service members free Navy Grog

The sailors say brandy — er — rum

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Thu, Aug 25, 2016 at 1:13 PM

Cane owner Paul Yellin is nicknamed “The Rhum Chef" - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Cane owner Paul Yellin is nicknamed “The Rhum Chef"

As Robert Moss wrote in his 2013 story, "Bourbon be damned, it's time to return to rum," until 1970 the Royal Navy officially issued rum to its sailors as part of their daily rations. As an English captain wrote in the 18th century about his Caribbean sailors, “I really do not think it an exaggeration to say that one-third of every ship’s company were more or less intoxicated, or at least muddled and half stupefied, every morning.”
Thank you kindly, rum.

According to the DrinkingCup website, "a final act cemented the role of rum in the Royal Navy" in 1740. "Vice-Admiral Edward Vernon was — among other things — well known for his silk, wool and mohair gum-stiffened grogram coat to which his men affectionately referred to him as ‘Old Grog.’ In an effort to maintain control amid a commonly intoxicated Royal Navy, Vernon issued Order No. 394. Addressed to all Royal Navy Captains the order stated that a sailors rum allowance

'…be every day mixed with the proportion of a quart of water [around 1.13 litres] to a half pint of rum, to be mixed in a scuttled butt [dispensing barrel] kept for that purpose, and to be done upon the deck, and in the presence of the Lieutenant of the Watch who is to take particular care to see that the men are not defrauded in having their full allowance of rum.' 
Spirits were handed out of a drinking at the tub, a.k.a. grog tub, twice a day between 10 a.m.-12 p.m. and 4 p.m.-6 p.m. to avoid binging. Not so surprisingly, the term groggy shows up in the English language soon after to describe the effects of grog on its imbibers.

So, in keeping with this port city's long naval and rum history, beginning tomorrow Cane Rhum Bar & Caribbean Kitchen is offering veterans and active service members one Navy Grog on the house.

The promotion is in partnership with Rational Spirits whose founder Alexander Burns say in a press release, "The Royal Navy offered grog for almost two and a half centuries to British sailors — we felt it was high time someone offered our nation’s armed forces and its veterans a proper drink.”

Cane's take on Grog will include lime juice, sugar, water, and Santeria rum. The first one is on Cane, and all additional Navy Grog's are $10. To claim your Grog, show a military ID to a bartender. 

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'Top Chef' winner Kristen Kish's Charleston restaurant plans on hold

Kish that goodbye?

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Thu, Aug 25, 2016 at 12:16 PM

With Top Chef: Charleston filming wrapped and the season debut not yet announced, the Colicchiwhoa hype has died down. But what about a Charleston restaurant Top Chef winner Kristen Kish and restaurateur Brooks Reitz announced they were working on back in March? Well, you may not see that happen for a while either. 

"We’ve really pumped the breaks on the project," Reitz said in an email. "It was my sense that with the boom in openings, and the persistent city-wide staffing issues, it’s best to give the city a few years and see how things develop."

The lack of F&B staffing in the city has been a frustration for many restaurateurs for a while now. In one of the more dramatic cases, the severe lack of staffers was cited as one of the reasons owners Josh and Heather Keeler closed Two Boroughs Larder in July. 

Reitz, who opened his second restaurant, Little Jack's Tavern, in April, is playing his cards cautiously. "A lot of good places have opened up, and I think the smart play is to hold tight, focus on the existing spots, and make sure we continue to offer a great experience in the wake of all the recent additions."

Meanwhile, Kish — who told us all about her love of Charleston back in March — continues to travel the globe. "I think she has filled her schedule with a new cookbook and lots of travel," Reitz says. 

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Leftovers: 5 sandwich photos that made the Dish cutting room floor


Posted by Jonathan Boncek on Thu, Aug 25, 2016 at 9:40 AM

The older I get, the more I become a control freak. I want to try and control situations to obtain my desired outcome, but part of being a civilized human being is realizing when you can’t control certain circumstances. Take being a photographer, for instance. My eye has to be different than who I'm working with. I'm the one on shoots meeting the individuals that I am photographing, and in the case of food, I see what physically goes into a dish or menu item. I try to talk with the chef/restaurateur to decipher how I want to capture a plate in the desired feel/direction of a story.

Which brings me to the DISH Dining Guide. It's one of my favorite assignments of the year, but, for numerous reasons, some photos get axed in the selection process. In this latest installment of Leftovers, I'd like to share some of those chopped images. Now try and control your appetite.
Mercantile, Pastrami Cured Salmon sandwich - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Mercantile, Pastrami Cured Salmon sandwich
The smoked salmon on this combo isn’t your typical lox. The chef here chose to cure salmon belly for its rich fat content. The silkiness of the selection shines when paired with the subtle heat of the horseradish dijon. The image of this sandwich made the print issue of DISH, hell, it was even a finalist for a cover slot. I loved this image of the moment before the halving of the sandwich. This angle gives the salmon its spotlight. The fattiness of the salmon belly shines through with the layering of protein.
Leon’s Chicken Sandwich - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Leon’s Chicken Sandwich
This sandwich is from our DISH article on how to make Leon's fried chicken sandwich at home. Better yet, forgo the hassle and visit the establishment. You will not be disappointed. For photography, I wanted to bring some color into the image since the sandwich is comprised of brown hues. Pulling a server in a red apron over complimented the green glass of the Sprite bottle, adding life to the composition.
Lewis Barbecue, El Sancho - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Lewis Barbecue, El Sancho
This Lewis Barbecue meat mountain deserves to be seen and gawked at in all its smoked glory. Brisket, pork, and hot guts! Meat sweats, anyone? My intent with the image was to give this sandwich height. Shooting level with the table does the job. I added in accent lights to help round out the shape as well as add detail to the meat stacks.
Park Cafe, Mushroom Banh Mi - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Park Cafe, Mushroom Banh Mi
For this shot, I wanted to use the green in the sandwich and plate to give a light, vegetarian feel. The challenge was getting detail out of the mushroom pate. A near top down composition and some light manipulation did the trick. And as for the sandwich itself, as far as a vegetarian options in the city go, Park Cafe's mushroom banh mi is one of the most flavorful. Beautiful, silky mushroom pate combined with the bite of pickled mushrooms makes this sandwich not just for the herbivores out there.
Raw 167, Scallop Po Boy - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Raw 167, Scallop Po Boy
We all know about the lobster roll at 167 Raw. But the scallop po' boy trumps the crustacean creation in my book. Only those who have tried it really understand. The guys at Raw have done a great job creating a feel in their establishment. My goal was to capture that ambiance. Pulling in a server whose uniform is part of that design seemed like a natural choice. I utilized the color of the beet brown butter, paired with the color of shorts to pulls the viewer through the composition.

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