Putting In Some Perspective…

©Claire Calvin

From Claire Calvin (owner of The Porch, Alma Mexicana and co-owner of Canteen Market and Bistro) and her truly infinite wisdom:

A few more thoughts before I try to meet this new day.
Since the government closed down bars and in-restaurant service today in North Carolina, you may have seen many of your favorite restaurants post on social media that they would move to take-out/curb-side and/or delivery service, and you may have thought, “great! I’ll have so many options whenever I get sick of cooking all of this massive amount of food I just bought!” Maybe you also thought, “great! They’re going to be able to save jobs and stay in business.”
The reality is this:

• many restaurants will only have a few days to determine whether this model is viable, and if they don’t have a high volume of that business right away, they will close that service and shut down completely. If you wait until you’ve cooked through all of your homesteading recipes you’ve got planned, those options will be gone.

• Delivery and take-out, even in a best-case scenario, likely would only require between 50-20% of the back of house staff, and without drink sales and dining room service will not generate the tip income to keep almost any servers. So that’s a ton of employees people are still having to face letting go.

• Transitioning to a completely new service model is not as simple as just shoving the same food into boxes and taking it to your house. Among other things that make it hard are putting in place the technology to get a menu online, figuring out what hours, how far away can you deliver, what menu items, and what containers you’ll put everything in, and on and on and on. Trying to resolve those questions and implement new systems in a 12-24 hour window against the backdrop of laying off at least half of your workforce is challenging, to say the least.

So if your favorite restaurant is trying to throw this Hail Mary, here’s what you can do:

• Order right away for a week or so – you could take a meal to a friend who is struggling with homeschooling three kids while trying to “work from home” (😫😫😫) or an elderly person you know who is nervous to leave his or her home

•. Be patient when your order is messed up/cold/late/difficult to pay for because your favorite restaurant is hopefully not a big chain and not freaking amazon. They may literally be doing it for the first time.

• If you have a skill set that might help (ability to build web pages, graphic design ability to make signs and posters to help them advertise, social media savvy, or knowledge about setting up online credit card payments) and time to help, offer those skills.

• Be patient.
• Be patient.
• Be patient.

• Understand that it may not work anyway, and be supportive either way. Also, understand that there is grief going on behind the scenes either way.

For our businesses, we have one restaurant (The Porch) where a lot of this was already well-incorporated into our system and process, and we will hopefully be able to continue providing that service throughout this time. At Alma, we have made the decision to close completely after two nights of offering take-out only. At Canteen it was simply not feasible to even try because of the overhead of running even a bare-bones operation there because, without drink and product sales, nothing works. It is incredibly, unfathomably hard to watch something you just poured everything into essentially burn down in less than a week, and even harder not to be able to help the creative, hard-working, funny, talented people who helped build it with you.

Thank God we have the window of opportunity that we do at The Porch and Dinners on the Porch, but many independent restaurants do not. So support this last-ditch effort and maybe some independent restaurants will make it to the other side.

(And as a note, I am writing about restaurants because I run restaurants, but I know people in every different situation are suffering the same, so there is no hierarchy of hardship where I’m suggesting you owe anything to restaurants in particular. much of this applies to so many other small businesses and organizations – retail, schools, small non-profits, artists, etc. This horror is facing all of us even if we don’t get sick, so being patient and sticking together is all I can think of to help us weather this season of grief we’re all living through.)
Love to all & thank you again for all of your tremendous support thus far. Onward!

Status of Alma Mexicana, Canteen, The Porch, Burke Street Pizza, West End Poke and Social./Stoked

From the restaurants themselves:


The Porch, Canteen and Alma Mexicana

Starting today, we are officially closing our dining rooms at all of our restaurants for the time being.

However, we are continuing to operate in the following ways this week:

Dinners on the Porch Meal Delivery:
Our pre-order, prepared meals and grocery items will be delivered Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday each week. We are sending our emails and posting the menu order form on our social media, so please make sure you are signed up for those emails and check our Facebook page to place your order. You can find out more information at www.dinnersontheporch.com.

The Porch:
Grab & Go with assorted grocery items (beer, wine, limited product, margarita mix, etc) for sale every day between 10 am – 8 pm. Items will be first-come, first-served and we have production teams working in multiple shifts, so there will be items being made throughout the day every day.

Porch Menu Items available for take-out and delivery. You can place those orders in person at The Porch, by calling us at (336)745-8300 or via our app, which you can find in the App Store by searching The Porch Kitchen & Cantina. At this time, will deliver between 4 pm and 8 pm only, so other orders will need to be picked up for the time being.

Canteen:
Our Market will be open this week from 12 pm to 6 pm.
Our Bistro is closed for the time being.

Alma Mexicana:
Alma is open for take-out only this week from 4 pm – 8 pm. You can place take-out orders in person or by calling (336)918-5605. Alma’s menu is available at www.almamexicanaws.com.

Update: Canteen and Alma have closed until further notice. The Porch is still offering take-and-bake and to go orders.

**

Burke Street Pizza, Quiet Pint and West End Poke (from Dave Hillman)

Burke Street Pizza will continue to have delivery and take-out available. We would appreciate it if you could order online when possible and pay with a credit card so less interaction will be needed. The original store is working towards setting up reserved parking so we can also have curbside take-out. www.Burkestreetpizza.com Thank you. Burke Street (336) 721-0011 Sherwood (336) 760-4888

West End Poke will be re-opening soon…very soon hopefully is NOW open (3/20/20),  with Delivery and Curbside take-out. Check out our website at www.Westendpoke.com to check out our menu or to order online. Visit us on Facebook for announcements regarding the reopening. (336) 842-3712

Quiet Pint will be closing at 5 pm on 3/17 until further notice.

**

Stoked & Social.

Owner Update: Good morning everyone! Social’s dining room will not be open this week. HOWEVER, we will be offering a few dishes and family-style meals beginning tomorrow. For purchasing/staffing etc, we ask that we get as many pre-orders as possible. You will be able to purchase via our website therefore no money & pens will have to be used. You will be welcome to pick up your items or we can deliver them. I will post our menu for the week later this afternoon. Please reach out to me via email if you have any special request for your family this week. If we have the product, we will happily try and prepare it. Our sister restaurant Stoked Woodfired Pub will be offering pick up and delivery as well. Thank you for staying home during this time. I hope that these measures truly help prevent the spread of this awful virus.

Erika & Jeff
Erika@socialsouthernkitchen.com

The Big Eat – February 7, 2017

It’s the fifth and final week of The Big Eat (WSNC) and here’s what I have for this week’s lineup:

6th & Vine: Chicken Marsela with onions, mushrooms, bacon, and tomato, in a Marsala demi-glace– $9.50

Bernardin’s Restaurant: BRAISED AUSTRALIAN LAMB SHANK with CURRY Rainbow Carrots, Fingerling Potato and Jasmine Rice – $13

Bib’s Downtown: Pulled Pork Sandwich Plate: $4.25

Bleu Restaurant: Grilled Mahi Mahi Coconut Rice ,Spinach, Red Curry ,Pineapple Salad$11

Camel City BBQ Factory: BBQ Sandwich Basket and Tea for  $4

Camino Bakery: half-priced cheesecake slices

Hutch & Harris: Choice of their Humorous Hummus App or Tasmania Tuna app free with the purchase of 2 entrees (only with purchase of two entrees).

Jeffrey Adams: Crab Stuffed Salmon 8 oz. salmon , crab, onion, peppers, mashed potatoes, brussels sprouts, bearnaise sauce –  $10.50

Krankies: Sauerkraut-smothered, bone-in Pork Chop with Fries $12

Local 27101: 50% Off all Burgers, Sandwiches, and Salads

Mellow Mushroom: 50% off bruschetta, 20% off large specialty pies

Miami Restaurant & Bar: Media Noche Sandwich Slow roasted pork, Swiss cheese, pickles and yellow mustard on sweet bread, served with French fries. $5

Mooney’s Mediterranean: Garden Chicken Pita OR Garden Pita w/ Choice of Hummus or French Fries $5.50

Old Fourth Street Filling Station: Grilled Salmon with lemon caper dill butter, wild rice, sauteed vegetables $10.50

The Porch Cantina: Porch Naked Burrito Bowl With jasmine rice, borracho beans, veggies, Mimi’s Queso, verde sauce, sour cream, guacamole, jalapeños & tortilla chips.With: Chicken or Avocado – $6 | Steak or Shrimp – $7

Quanto Basta: Chicken Parmesan – $6.50

Señor Bravo: Steak Fajitas – $n/a

Spring House Restaurant: BBQ BISON MEATLOAF with creamed Spinach, Roasted Garlic Whipped Potatoes Applewood Smoked Bacon Demi-Glace – $10

Thai Harmony: Half Price Pad Thai

Tre Nonne: PASTA BOLOGNESE Beef and Pork cooked in tomato sauce with fresh herbs and served over the homemade pasta of your choice. – $6.75

Twin City Slice: 2 for price of 1 Slices of Pizza

West End Coffee House: Brownie Sundaes and Affogatos for $4 each

Willow’s Bistro: Nashville Hot Chicken and Waffles with blue cheese foam and fried arugula $12

If you are a restaurant that is participating but I haven’t listed you here, please send me a message or call me (336)403-2076 and let me know. I want to make sure that you’re all represented for the awesome work you’re doing in bringing recognition to our town and your restaurants. These specials are dine-in only and on a “while supplies last” basis.

Go out tonight and support your local cuisine and have a great meal in the process!

The Big Eat – January 31, 2017

It’s week #4 of The Big Eat and here’s what I have for this week’s lineup:

6th & Vine: Blackened Chicken over penne with a bacon, basil Alfredo sauce – $9

Bernardin’s Restaurant: Sauteed Black Pepper Crusted Jumbo Shrimp with braised white bean ragout, tarragon, spinach, crispy onion ring – $12 

Bib’s Downtown: Pulled Pork Sandwich Plate: $4.25

Bleu Restaurant: Goat Cheese Crusted Chicken Breast Nicoise Vegetables & Sweet Mustard Sauce$9.50

Camel City BBQ Factory: BBQ Sandwich Basket and Tea for  $4

Camino Bakery: half-priced cheesecake slices

Hutch & Harris: East Asian Orange Salmon 1/2 off

Jeffrey Adams: 14oz. Ribeye served with mashed potatoes and grilled asparagus – $14.50

Krankies: Steak Frittes steak, fries and a salad  $9

Local 27101: 50% Off all Burgers, Sandwiches, and Salads

Mellow Mushroom: 50% off whole order pretzels, 20% off large specialty pies

Miami Restaurant & Bar: Lechon Asado House marinated roasted pulled pork with sautéed onions. Served with white rice, black beans and choice of plantain  $7

Mooney’s Mediterranean: Garden Chicken Pita OR Garden Pita w/ Choice of Hummus or French Fries $5.50

Mozelle’s: Fried Chicken with mac & cheese and haricot vert (substitutions are allowed) – $9.50

Old Fourth Street Filling Station: Shrimp-N-Grits shrimp, andouille sausage, tomato, baby spinach, chipotle cream sauce, grit cake – $10

The Porch Cantina: Porch Naked Burrito Bowl With jasmine rice, borracho beans, veggies, Mimi’s Queso, verde sauce, sour cream, guacamole, jalapeños & tortilla chips.With: Chicken or Avocado – $6 | Steak or Shrimp – $7

Quanto Basta: Chicken Parmesan – $6.50

Señor Bravo: 4 Tacos de pastor marinated pork meat with pineapple,grilled onions on a chile guajillo rub served with corn tortillas, fresh cilantro, onions and hot sauce – $5.99

Spring House Restaurant: BBQ BISON MEATLOAF with creamed Spinach, Roasted Garlic Whipped Potatoes Applewood Smoked Bacon Demi-Glace – $10

Thai Harmony: Half Price Pad Thai

Tre Nonne: SPAGHETTI WITH MEATBALLS A one-of-a-kind, fully homemade experience. Fresh pasta and a generous helping of our special blend of meats and seasoning, served with our very own marinara sauce – $6.75

Twin City Slice: 2 for price of 1 Slices of Pizza

West End Coffee House: Brownie Sundaes and Affogatos for $4 each

Willow’s Bistro: Blackened Grilled Cafe Steak with arugula, french fried potato stick, grape tomato, horseradish aioli and blue cheese crumbles  $12.50

If you are a restaurant that is participating but I haven’t listed you here, please send me a message or call me (336)403-2076 and let me know. I want to make sure that you’re all represented for the awesome work you’re doing in bringing recognition to our town and your restaurants. These specials are dine-in only and on a “while supplies last” basis.

Go out tonight and support your local cuisine and have a great meal in the process!

The Big Eat – January 24, 2017

It’s week #3 of The Big Eat and here’s what I have for this week’s lineup:

6th & Vine: Peachy Pork Tenderloin with a peach cognac sauce – $9.50

Bernardin’s Restaurant: ROASTED ATLANTIC SALMON with Horseradish crust, spinach, sweet roasted garlic, port wine sauce – $12.50           

Bib’s Downtown: Pulled Pork Sandwich Plate: $4.25

Bleu Restaurant: Blackened Catfish with Dirty Quinoa ,Collared Greens, Crawfish Brown Butter Sauce$10

Camel City BBQ Factory: BBQ Sandwich Basket and Tea for  $4

Camino Bakery: half-priced cheesecake slices

Hutch & Harris: Chicken Pie 1/2 off

Jeffrey Adams: Southern Fried Chicken panko encrusted fried chicken, wild mushroom and bacon gravy, mashed potatoes, brussels sprouts – $9

Krankies: Housemade Bolognese over pappardelle with Parmesan  $9

Local 27101: 50% Off all Burgers, Sandwiches, and Salads

Mellow Mushroom: 50% off hummus, 20% off large specialty pies

Miami Restaurant & Bar: Picadillo Minced beef stewed with peppers, olives and tomatoes. Served with white rice, black beans and choice of plantain  $6

Mooney’s Mediterranean: Garden Chicken Pita OR Garden Pita w/ Choice of Hummus or French Fries $5.50

Mozelle’s: Meat Loaf with collards and grits (substitutions are allowed) – $9.50

Old Fourth Street Filling Station: Filet Mignon grilled 4 oz. beef tenderloin, sauteed vegetables, smashed red potatoes$7.50

The Porch Cantina: Porch Naked Burrito Bowl With jasmine rice, borracho beans, veggies, Mimi’s Queso, verde sauce, sour cream, guacamole, jalapeños & tortilla chips.With: Chicken or Avocado – $6 | Steak or Shrimp – $7

Quanto Basta: Chicken Parmesan – $6.50

Senior Bravo: 4 Tacos de pastor marinated pork meat with pineapple,grilled onions on a chile guajillo rub served with corn tortillas, fresh cilantro, onions and hot sauce – $5.99

Spring House Restaurant: BBQ BISON MEATLOAF with creamed Spinach, Roasted Garlic Whipped Potatoes Applewood Smoked Bacon Demi-Glace – $10

Thai Harmony: Half Price Pad Thai

Tre Nonne: CHICKEN ALFREDO with Our in-house fettuccini, covered in our signature creamy parmesan alfredo sauce –  $7.75

Twin City Slice: 2 for price of 1 Slices of Pizza

West End Coffee House: Brownie Sundaes and Affogatos for $4 each

Willow’s Bistro: Shrimp & Grits with smoked tomato & andouille cream sauce $15

If you are a restaurant that is participating but I haven’t listed you here, please send me a message or call me (336)403-2076 and let me know. I want to make sure that you’re all represented for the awesome work you’re doing in bringing recognition to our town and your restaurants.

Go out tonight and support your local cuisine and have a great meal in the process!

The Big Eat – January 17, 2017

It’s week #2 of The Big Eat and here’s what I have for this week’s lineup:

6th & Vine: Peppercorn-Crusted Sirloin with a creamy cognac sauce  – $11

Bernardin’s Restaurant: SAUTEED BRIE STUFFED CHICKEN BREAST Prosciutto, shitake, asparagus, Turnip, puree potato, thyme natural jus – $9.50           

Bib’s Downtown: Pulled Pork Sandwich Plate: $4.25

Bleu Restaurant: Grilled Angus Flatiron with Whipped Potatoes, Asparagus & Au poivre Sauce– $12

Camel City BBQ Factory: BBQ Sandwich Basket and Tea for $4

Camino Bakery: half-priced cheesecake slices

Hutch & Harris: Olympic Pasta with Chicken: 1/2 off

Jeffrey Adams: Beef-N- Grits beef tenderloin tips, white cheddar grit cake, roasted red pepper, spinach, wild mushroom bacon gravy – $11.50

Krankies: Pork Schitzel with spaezle and braised red cabbage $9

Local 27101: 50% Off all Burgers, Sandwiches, and Salads

Mellow Mushroom: 50% off bruschetta, 20% large specialty pies

Mooney’s Mediterranean: Garden Chicken Pita OR Garden Pita w/ Choice of Hummus or French Fries: $5.50

Mozelle’s: Shrimp & Grits – $10

Old Fourth Street Filling Station: Crab Cake Dinner two house made crab cakes, creole remoulade, roasted cream cor sauteed vegetables, smashed red potatoes – $10

The Porch Cantina: Porch Naked Burrito Bowl With jasmine rice, borracho beans, veggies, Mimi’s Queso, verde sauce, sour cream, guacamole, jalapeños & tortilla chips.With: Chicken or Avocado – $6 | Steak or Shrimp – $7

Quanto Basta: Chicken Parmesan – $6.50

Senior Bravo: 4 Tacos de pastor marinated pork meat with pineapple,grilled onions on a chile guajillo rub served with corn tortillas, fresh cilantro, onions and hot sauce – $5.99

Spring House Restaurant: BBQ BISON MEATLOAF with creamed Spinach, Roasted Garlic Whipped Potatoes Applewood Smoked Bacon Demi-Glace – $10

Thai Harmony: Half Price Pad Thai

Tre Nonne: BAKED ZITI Fresh homemade ziti baked with ricotta and mozzarella cheese, topped with our special marinara sauce – $6.50

Twin City Slice: 2 for price of 1 Slices of Pizza

West End Coffee House: Brownie Sundaes and Affogatos for $4 each

Willow’s Bistro: Scottish Salmon with smoked risotto, curry lime aioli $15

If you are a restaurant that is participating but I haven’t listed you here, please send me a message or call me (336)403-2076 and let me know. I want to make sure that you’re all represented for the awesome work you’re doing in bringing recognition to our town and your restaurants.

Go out tonight and support your local cuisine and have a great meal in the process!

Reminder: The Big Eat is tonight!

Just a reminder for you all that tonight is The Big Eat! Here’s a list of who’s participating, once again. I included the special for those that weren’t listed the last time:

6th&Vine
Bernardin’s
Bib’s Downtown
Bleu – Shrimp & Grits with Andouille Sauce, Creamy Grits, Spinach & Cherry Tomatoes – $11
Camel City BBQ Factory – BBQ Sandwich Basket and Tea, $4
Camino
Hutch & Harris
Jeffrey Adams
Krankie’s – House Butchered Pork Chop with garlic green beens and mashed potatoes– $11
Local 27101 – 50% Off all Burgers, Sandwiches, and Salads
Mellow Mushroom
Mooney’s  – Garden Chicken Pita OR Garden Pita w/ Choice of Hummus or French Fries: $5.50
Mozelle’s – Tomato Pie and Cheese Grits $8.50
Quanto Basta – Chicken Parmesan – $6.50
Senior Bravo – Pollo Chicken (no price listed)
Spring House (has changed since I last reported) – BBQ BISON MEATLOAF with creamed Spinach, Roasted Garlic Whipped Potatoes, Applewood Smoked Bacon Demi-Glace – $10
Thai Harmony
Old Fourth Street Filling Station
The Porch – pending
Tre Nonne – RIGATONI Y VODKA – $7 Our smooth homemade tomato vodka sauce seasoned with herbs, heavy cream and cheese, served over fresh homemade penne pasta.”
Twin City Slice – 2 for price of 1 slices.
Willow’s Bistro

Check my previous post or call the restaurant for more info. Reservations are recommended. It’s only for dining in and it’s while supplies last; when they’re out, they’re out. Support your local establishments and enjoy!!

Mike’s Week: the Video Retrospective

The original plan for the video that I made for Mike’s Week was for me to complete it, Mike Rothman could see it and then choose to allow us to to show it to others or choose to keep it for himself. Either way, I would have been okay. Either way, we all know what an amazing journey it was, what it was we experienced, how we came together as a community and how we made a difference. Didn’t work out quite that way, but that’s okay. It’s here for your to 10170796_10152392983624743_4049441617845107446_nenjoy (link at the bottom of the page).

The video is 23 minutes long. That’s a long time for a retrospective video, I’m well aware, but there was too much to show. Editing down the video from nearly 90 minutes of footage was hard enough. But, I needed this 23 minutes to show the awesome dedication of those who were behind the counter and behind the scenes. I needed this 23 minutes to show the amazing community that came to spend and/or donate their dollars to help their fellow man. I needed this 23 minutes to show the atmosphere, the magic and power that community can create. While a few seconds could come off of it, I felt the 23 minutes was needed to get the full effect.

I do want to say that I really appreciate Will Kingery, Dana Moody and Vivian Joiner for spearheading the effort, along with all the other restaurateurs, volunteers and the Winston-Salem (and neighbors) and thanks to Dana for asking me to participate by filming the events. I can’t explain how proud I am of that.

Now that all of that is done, you can see the video, yourself, by clicking HERE. Enjoy and thanks for watching (and reading!)

Winston-Salem and Hot Dogs: A Love Affair

When it was announced, several weeks ago, that the local restaurateurs were going to reopen Skippy’s Hot Dogs in Winston-Salem, for just a week (actually eight days) and try to raise money for Skippy’s owner, Mike Rothman, the goal was to bring in a few, possibly a few tens of thousands of dollars to send to Pennsylvania and help Mike get back on his feet and pay some of the medical bills and incidentals he’s amassed since having surgery to remove tumors from his brain. That goal was met. That goal was met in a really, really big way.

Eight days of hard work, dedication, sweat and tears (we don’t like to think about blood with food, usually, right?) and 13,009 hot dogs later, the Winston-Salem community, its citizens and its neighbors helped to raise over $111,000.  Read that again: One Hundred Eleven THOUSAND Dollars!

13095840_10154193544504743_7386309517562254345_n

Photo ©Skippy’s

I had the pleasure of capturing each shift, albeit just seconds at time, for a private video I’m making, on behalf of the organizers, just for Mr. Rothman and I saw an awesome sight. All these different restaurants, ordinarily, all doing their own thing, in their own worlds, standing shoulder to shoulder, hip to hip behind the counter of this small venue, working together for a wonderful cause. Not only that, I watched a 5 gallon water jug (the kind that you put in an office water cooler) fill to the top with money. This was not a one-time thing. It filled to the point that they had to push it down to allow more money to go in. Then, they’d empty it and start all over again. There weren’t just singles, either. There were $5s, $10s and I saw plenty of $20s. There were also some very big orders. I don’t have solid numbers so I’ll not put that out there, but a few companies ordered sizable quantities of “dogs.” And, although, I’ve no confirmation of this, either, there’s a rumor that I’m trying to verify, that someone paid $1000 for one hot dog.

This community, all aspects of it, came together. They did good; for good, for Mike.

I love this city. I have always loved this city. I have always loved and supported the restaurants in this city, especially the downtown establishments. But, now? I am absolutely in love with my city and its citizens. In this time, when tensions are always high, over both important issues and trivial ones, we came in and showed one person – a person that many (I’d venture to say “most”) have never even met – an all-inclusive and unconditional demonstration of love and respect.

“Mike’s Week” wouldn’t have been possible without a plethora of volunteers, not only from the area restaurants, but from the community, as well. The thank you list is quite extensive and I won’t list them all here, however, their time and care made this the success that it is. My thanks, as a member of the community, especially being in there to observe not only from the front of the counter but behind it, goes especially to Dana Moody (West End Coffeehouse), Vivian Joiner (Sweet Potatoes) and Will Kingery (King’s Crab Shack, Willow’s Bistro and Silo Bistro). They were there everyday, making sure all was set and running well. This is not to diminish anyone’s time put in; everyone was immeasurably essential to the cause. I personally thank each and every one of them. And to anyone who bought a hot dog, put a bill of any kind into the water jug or purchased any of the swag, you’re awesome as well.

There is a separate GoFundMe page that is still open and you can still donate to (it’s raised over $15,000 of a $10,000 goal so far) by following this link. Thank you, again, Winston-Salem. And Mike, here’s hoping for a very speedy recovery.