The Man Who Ate the Town Podcast Episode 35

In Episode #35, proudly recorded from Test Pattern Studios:

Don’t forget my sponsor, Washington Perk & Provision Company. Better than a convenience store but not quite a grocery store, in the heart of Washington Park and Downtown WSNC.

The Man Who Ate the Town is part of The Less Desirables Network. Give it a listen on iTunes, Stitcher, Podcast Addict and TuneIn, basically anywhere you can listen to podcasts. Or you can listen here (at the bottom of the post).

Bon Appetit!

The Man Who Ate the Town Podcast Episode 34

In Episode #34, proudly recorded from Test Pattern Studios:

  • Quiet Pint gets a parking lot makeover.
  • Providence Restaurant and Triad Community Kitchen hold Fresh Start Full Plates Gala
  • Food holidays and history.

Don’t forget my sponsor, Washington Perk & Provision Company. Better than a convenience store but not quite a grocery store, in the heart of Washington Park and Downtown WSNC.

The Man Who Ate the Town is part of The Less Desirables Network. Give it a listen on iTunes, Stitcher, Podcast Addict and TuneIn, basically anywhere you can listen to podcasts. Or you can listen here (at the bottom of the post).

Bon Appetit!

The Man Who Ate the Town Podcast Episode #33

Mike Rothman (©Winston-Salem Journal)

In Episode #33, proudly recorded from Test Pattern Studios:

  • Hope du Jour is tonight!
  • Mission Pizza holds Knife Fight Vol. 3 on May 8.
  • Skippy’s founder, Mike Rothman passes away.
  • Food holidays and history.

Don’t forget my sponsor, Washington Perk & Provision Company. Better than a convenience store but not quite a grocery store, in the heart of Washington Park and Downtown WSNC.

The Man Who Ate the Town is part of The Less Desirables Network. Give it a listen on iTunes, Stitcher, Podcast Addict and TuneIn, basically anywhere you can listen to podcasts. Or you can listen here (at the bottom of the post).

Bon Appetit!

The Man Who Ate the Town Podcast Episode #32

Sonny Davis (r) with son, Spencer.

In Episode #32, proudly recorded from Test Pattern Studios:

  • Mission Pizza holds Knife Fight Vol. 3 on May 8.
  • Tim reviews Irie Rhythms.
  • Sonny Davis of City Beverage passes away.
  • Food holidays and history.

Don’t forget my sponsor, Washington Perk & Provision Company. Better than a convenience store but not quite a grocery store, in the heart of Washington Park and Downtown WSNC.

The Man Who Ate the Town is part of The Less Desirables Network. Give it a listen on iTunes, Stitcher, Podcast Addict and TuneIn, basically anywhere you can listen to podcasts. Or you can listen here (at the bottom of the post).

Bon Appetit!

The Man Who Ate the Town Podcast Episode #31

Maria and Tony DiLisio

In Episode #31, proudly recorded from Test Pattern Studios:

Don’t forget my sponsor, Washington Perk & Provision Company. Better than a convenience store but not quite a grocery store, in the heart of Washington Park and Downtown WSNC.

The Man Who Ate the Town is part of The Less Desirables Network. Give it a listen on iTunes, Stitcher, Podcast Addict and TuneIn, basically anywhere you can listen to podcasts. Or you can listen here (at the bottom of the post).

Bon Appetit!

The Man Who Ate the Town Podcast Episode #30

In Episode #30, proudly recorded from Test Pattern Studios:

Don’t forget my sponsor, Washington Perk & Provision Company. Better than a convenience store but not quite a grocery store, in the heart of Washington Park and Downtown WSNC.

The Man Who Ate the Town is part of The Less Desirables Network. Give it a listen on iTunes, Stitcher, Podcast Addict and TuneIn, basically anywhere you can listen to podcasts. Or you can listen here (at the bottom of the post).

Slàinte mhath!

Happy 25th Rooster’s: A Noble Grille

This past weekend, Stephanie and I attended the 25th Anniversary Celebration of Rooster’s: A Noble Grille.

Guafrette (top), Lamb liver (bottom)

It was a pretty big day for them. I’d say around 200-300 people were in attendance throughout the day. Draft beer and a fine selection of wines were there and flowing freely, both in the physical and financial senses of the word. Fantastic appetizers and hors d’oeuvres like NC Oyster salad bites wrapped in a spinach leaf. Great crunch to the oyster while leaving it soft on the inside. Stauber Farms lamb liver mousse crostini with an onion jam. The liver was creamy and smooth with just that hint of tang that you’d expect plus the onion jam was added, too. Wow. And the Sunburst Farms smoked trout dip with roe on guafrettes. I think this was my favorite because of the saltiness the waffle chip brought to the savory trout and eggs.

Oyster salad bite

When the time came for the main attraction food, they had a large outdoor buffet setup next to a cooker that was almost as large as my en suite bathroom in my house. It was massive. There were cold and hot items on the buffets.

On the cold side they had a kale, farro, pickled apples, chevre, almonds, champagne honey and rye salad. They also had a spinach, roasted beets, walnuts, candied shallots, basil, balsamic vinaigrette salad. And, to finish it off, a purple sweet potatoes, pea shoots, pickled ramps salad with a collard pesto and toasted seeds. I steered clear of that one because I don’t like sweet potatoes. I ate my way around the walnuts and beets in the spinach salad. All that I had was very crisp and flavorful. Tangy dressings and lush greens. Very nice.

Plate of goodness

The hot buffet was the attraction, though. There was prime brisket done Texas bbq style and pork butt done Lexington style. There was an Eastern and a Western slaw. Housemade pickled jalapeno hushpuppies (they were really good), a very creamy and cheesy mac-n-cheese and pan-fried corn were also some faves of mine. There was wood fired beets with sherry and sea salt (again, I don’t eat beets), fried pickled cauliflower with amaranth, chilies and yogurt that I also stayed away from. One thing that I really did like was the toasted curry, basil, potato nest and ginger oil gnocchi. The curry was spicy but not hot. I’d actually say it was spiced to more accurate.

For dessert there was Moravian sugar cake bread pudding, currant Courvoisier caramel and vanilla gelato. The currant Courvoisier caramel was divine! Thick, warm and saucy, it started to melt the gelato just a tad so it was perfect with the pudding.

Moravian sugar cake bread pudding

I really want to thank Chef John Bobby, Chef Jim Noble and their staff for the invitation and for having this restaurant available for the community. Here’s hoping they’re here for another 25 years, at least. Cheers!

You can find more about Rooster’s: A Noble Grille on their website and select the Winston-Salem location or one of the other locations, if you’re so inclined. Roosters in Winston-Salem is located at 380 Knollwood Street. Go have some deliciousness and tell them that I sent you!

Skippy’s Reopens Today

Making one of my two dogs

Skippy’s Hot Dogs reopened today under the Whitley family’s watch. It has old Skippy’s dog mainstays and yes, the pretzel buns are back. I want to talk a little bit about my experience today. Now, as I said, today is the first day open so there’s a lot of kinks to work out. I’m definitely gonna be fair about this.

Let’s start with the menu.

There’s no fries. That’s okay. I’m not a huge fan of fries. I am huge but just not a huge fan of fries. There were some fresh-baked cookies for sale, though. They have canned drinks, just like in the old days (from here in for this blog post only, “the old days” will refer to the old Skippy’s). One thing that is definitely missing, though, is the Pennsylvania Dutch Birch Beer. I don’t know if it’s hard to get around here, they didn’t know where to look, or they just abandoned the idea. They do have Cheerwine which is a fine, local substitute, but not quite the same. Either way, I always thought the birch beer was the best option for the pretzel buns. Speaking of which…

They hadn’t perfected the pretzel bun recipe, prior to opening. They were a little extra crispy, a little tough and really lacking any real pretzel flavor. I trust they’ll get some more practice and hone that skill, as I believe it certainly is a skill to make those things. They will get it. However, for my trip today, and again… it’s the first day, so I understand… the buns actually detracted from the overall flavor of the hot dogs. In the old days, the buns were softer, chewier and their flavor accentuated the dogs. The dogs today were kind of bland. And thin, perhaps slightly overcooked.

Making a Chicago-style dog.

The real side choices for today (other than the cookies) were small bags of Lays chips and Doritos. If you’re only going to offer chips, that’s fine, but get creative. Get some Cape Cods or some gourmet chips; anything other than the same old thing you can buy in bulk at Costco (which I’m sure is where those came from). That’s not a bad thing, just nothing special about it. You’re reopening up a recently designated WSNC “treasure,” you want to do something to make it shine, not plain.

The dog choices are the Reuben (with spicy mustard, kraut and swiss cheese), the Chicago-“style” (with tomatoes, banana pepper, salt, onions, pickles), a chili dog, Mike’s Favorite (or special or something – I just thought it was cool they named something after him) that had kraut, pickle and spicy mustard. There’s also a slew of hot dog fixin’s to do a “make-your-own” dog. The hot dog choices aren’t vast but the fixin’s offer a plethora of creative options.  I had the Reuben and the Chicago-style (yes, Michael Hastings I had onions on it, but “light” on them). The dog didn’t have time to melt the cheese on the Reuben and the bun was overpowering on the rest of the flavor. The Chicago dog was decent, I would have rather them stuff the peppers and tomatoes in a little bit and, as with the Reuben, the bun distracted from the overall dog experience. I still think, though, there’s promise in the dogs, the buns and overall flavor. The dogs are $3.50 each.

The familiar old yellow walls are now bright white and they haven’t completed their addition (the old photography studio), yet so it’s still gonna be a bit crowded and very limited seating until that happens. That’s okay, it will be a lot better when that side expands the restaurant, I’m sure.

Chicago-style (l) and the Reuben (r)

Ordering (even with a slightly limited menu) seems to have been overwhelming for the staff creating the dogs on opening day. They’ll figure it out and that will be smoother. I was surprised that there wasn’t more people there when I got there, a little past 11am.

My assessment is that there’s plenty of potential and there’s plenty of growth opportunity for the restaurant, both in size and in quality. I’m not going to rate anything because I plan on going back in a few weeks to see if there are a few less kinks in the system. I won’t say it wasn’t good, because it was. It was just “green” and has a bit of company growing to do. That’s just my opinion and I hope great things for the establishment and the Whitleys. I’ll let you know what I think after a few weeks go by. 

You can find Skippy’s Hot Dogs at 624 W 4th Street, downtown Winston-Salem. Check them out, support local!

Listen to the latest podcast HERE.

Thanks for reading!
Slàinte!

The Man Who Ate the Town Podcast Episode #29

In Episode #29, proudly recorded from Test Pattern Studios:

Don’t forget my sponsor, Washington Perk & Provision Company. Better than a convenience store but not quite a grocery store, in the heart of Washington Park and Downtown WSNC.

The Man Who Ate the Town is part of The Less Desirables Network. Give it a listen on iTunes, Stitcher, Podcast Addict and TuneIn, basically anywhere you can listen to podcasts. Or you can listen here (at the bottom of the post).

Slàinte mhath!

From the Home Kitchen: Szechwan Shrimp & Broccoli w/Garlic Butter and Cashews

Welcome to the first of the actual “column” of “From the Home Kitchen, here on The Man Who Ate the Town.

A few weeks ago, Stephanie, Trey and I made this Asian treat for dinner. Szechwan Shrimp and a Broccoli with Garlic Butter and Cashews side. Sweet, slightly spicy (our choice) and very delicious. We don’t rate our food in any way other than: “would we make it again?” and in this case, it was certainly a resounding yes.

The Recipes:

Szechwan Shrimp (from FOODGU1 on All Recipies)

  • 4 tbsp water
    2 tbsp ketchup
    1 tbsp soy (we backed it to half and used lower sodium sauce)
    2 tsp cornstarch
    1 tsp honey
    ½ tsp crushed red pepper
    ¼ tsp ground ginger
    1 tbsp vegetable oil (we subbed olive oil)
    ¼ tsp chopped green onions/scallions
    4 cloves of garlic minced
    1 pound of shrimp, tails removed
  1. In a bowl, stir together water, ketchup, soy sauce, cornstarch, honey, crushed red pepper, and ground ginger. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in green onions and garlic; cook 30 seconds. Stir in shrimp, and toss to coat with oil. Stir in sauce. Cook and stir until sauce is bubbly and thickened. Serve over rice. 
  3. Makes 4 servings. About 20 minutes total time. 142 calories/serving.

Broccoli with Garlic Butter & Cashews (from SALSIEPIE on All Recipes)

  • 1½ pounds of broccoli but into bite-sized pieces
    ⅓ cup butter
    1 tbsp brown sugar
    3 tbsp soy (we backed it to half and used low sodium sauce)
    2 tsp white vinegar
    ¼ tsp ground black pepper
    2 cloves of garlic minced
    ⅓ cup chopped salted cashews (I put a handful in a resealable bag and used the bottom of a glass spice jar to crush the cashews, worked perfectly)
  • We also added mandarin orange slices to the mix because this is an Asian inspired dish and I thought it would be a great addition and I think we all felt that it was
  1. Place the broccoli into a large pot with about 1 inch of water in the bottom. Bring to a boil, and cook for 7 minutes, or until tender but still crisp. Drain, and arrange broccoli on a serving platter.
  2. While the broccoli is cooking, melt the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Mix in the brown sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, pepper and garlic. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat. Mix in the cashews, and pour the sauce over the broccoli. Serve immediately.
  3. Makes 6 servings and can stand on its own as a dish. About 20 minutes total time. 187 calories/serving.

These two dishes were a very wonderful one-two punch if you’re in the mood for some good Asian dishes. It was healthy (especially when we backed off the low-sodium soy sauce), too. That’s what we’re trying to do with the cuisine we choose for our family cooking adventures: have a bit of time together, listen to some records, choose healthy but very tasty meals and just have fun.

If you’ve never used All Recipes, I’d highly recommend it. You can find just about anything there. Many of their recipes have video demos as well. You can visit their YouTube channel for more videos. I also recommend any videos by Food Wishes and Chef John. He’s entertaining and insightful. I’m a member of the All Recipes site and a subscriber to the magazine. I am not endorsed by All Recipes and this isn’t a paid or implied advertisement for them, I’m just a fan and get a lot of food recipes from there.

I hope this sounds intriguing to you. I’d love to hear that you tried it for yourself, if you modified it, if you did or didn’t like it, and I would love to see your pictures of it. Send it to our Facebook, Twitter or Instagram page. Or, you can email me at tim@themanwhoatethetown.com. Tell me if you don’t want me to publish any of it. It can be public or we just have a conversation about it in private. Either way is perfectly fine.

Thanks for reading and thanks for listening!
Slàinte Mhath!