Shhhh…don’t tell my doctor about this week’s food frenzy.
By Judi Gallagher
In lieu of incriminating myself if my doctor is reading this, I will not go into full details; but let’s just say it was quite an eventful week of eating.
Right out of the park I started the weekend with a quail appetizer on the recommendation of fellow SarasotaMagazine food writer John Bancroft. It was sautéed with a buttery grape sauce—I nearly licked the plate.
It is NOT my fault that the Lung Association asked me to be a judge at their food and wine event. I swear fellow judges Larry Hoffman and chef Derek Barnes forced me to eat the second apple pie donut from Buddha Belly. Yup—second one was as good as the first and solidified a judges’ favorite for the Main Street decadence shop. To make sure, I even went to their shop last Tuesday to try a few more and even sampled the donut French toast.
Michael Saunders toasts with Chateau Beychevelle president at Libby’s.
I might end up with my own Buddha belly.
Thinking I was beating the cholesterol check before my physical, I headed over to Steak ’n’ Shake. I know, I know, but someone on the food network picked it as his favorite burger place. While I must disagree (and clearly they haven’t had a brunch burger at Knick’s Tavern or Fleming’s prime burger with cheddar cheese), I do say the chocolate shake was fantastic and the service provided by young man from Kentucky delightful.
Then I discovered the apricot Danish ring at Yoder’s produce, which I am turning into an apple-brandy French toast on ABC 7 today with cinnamon whipped cream.
The crescendo of the week was the Bordeaux wine dinner at Libby’s Café. A 1998 Chateau Beychevelle St. Julien paired exquisitely with chef Fran’s Colorado lamb chop, off the bone with melted shallot pain perdu.
To not leave any crumb untouched: The Grand Tasting for Forks and Corks led me to my three top tastes of the event—Tommy Klauber’s butternut squash bisque, Andrea’s short ribs and a very, very, very sweet and dense chocolate butterscotch dessert from Bijou.
A few weeks ago, John Bancroft asked me why I like desserts so much. “Clearly, John, you don’t know me that well,” I proclaimed. “I am not much of a sweet eater.” And then I reread this blog.