Monday, October 13, 2014

St. Germaine at a sports bar?!? The Local Cue

So, I think I have found my new favorite bar, actually let's face it any place with a bar, good bartender and some great people watching is my favorite bar. This is a sports bar with St Germaine! So, good drinks with burly men, yes! (Don't worry, I don't act this gay in public) Here's a quick and funny story: I came in and sat down. I typically try to space one bar stool between me and the next fella, just feel that's proper etiquette-if there is such a thing. So, I look at the menu and see St Germaine! I almost want to squeal but I feel Mr. man to my left is judging me. I am approached by the bartender and just order a vodka cranberry. Don't worry I had my St Germaine later and a guy gave me suggestions on what to try it with, so good story! Right? I thought it was funny at first.

Tonight I had dinner at The Local Cue, a newer restaurant in the Greenville market. I'm not sure how new it is because it just kind of showed up on my Facebook timeline one day, but it is new. It is located off of Haywood Road in the location that used to be Stax Peppermill and has quite the menu anchored in barbecue. 

The Local Cue has a great menu with things such as BBQ pork or chicken nachos and wings as appetizers to a Guinness bratwurst and BBQ burrito in it's sandwich category. They also have a main entree menu which has their brisket pot pie, shrimp and grits, ribs and The Kings Plate (a turkey leg as the meat). The dessert menu isn't what you'd expect, fried everything-fried funnel cake bites and fried candy bars (snickers, whatchamacallit, or Reece's).

I had trouble deciding what I wanted to eat because it all sounded so good that I just ordered the Small Sampler platter off of the snack menu. I figured it was the best way to get a taste of everything. It was pretty good. My only real complaint was the amount fat on a piece if my brisket. The fat took about half of my meat.

The Small sampler also comes with their three different slaws. I was not a big fan of any of them. One didn't have much flavor. The blue cheese had a little flavor, but just didn't do anything for me. The last one had great flavor, but I don't like hot things and it had a but too much heat for me. 

I sat at the bar, where service wasn't the greatest, but I did have a bartender that could mix one hell of a drink.

This is definitely a place that could be a stop with my friends during a night on the town. There are pool tables, old school arcade games, ping ping, shuffleboard and board games, whatelse do you need? Oh TVs, they have those too. 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Euphoria Weekend!

This weekend was a much anticipated event on my calendar for the year. Greenville's Euphoria was this weekend and I have to say I had a blast despite my fighting a sore throat. For the past few weeks I've been bragging, if you will, to friends, coworkers, and family about attending this event, and now I get to brag to everyone about how amazing it was! 

In case you've never heard of Euphoria, it is a 9 year old food, wine and music festival started by Greenville restaurantuer Carl Sobocinski and singer and songwriter Edwin McCain. Euphoria allows the Greenville area a chance to show off it's culinary and arts scene, which has definitely taken off in the last decade. It is also a charitable event, in which it's net proceeds go to Local Boys Do Good.

Now, this was my first Euphoria and after attending my first Atlanta Food and Wine Festival in May, I can honestly say Greenville competes with the big boys. A few months ago as I was looking at packages and deciding what events I wanted to check out I ran across a livingsocial deal that helped me make my decision. I also ran across a few discount codes at the pre-Euphoria event Tapas and Tinis and through the Good Eats and Meets meetup that I have joined.

Taste of the South

My first Euphoria event was on Friday night, Taste of the South. It was a beautiful night to hang out outside with great food, music and drinks. When I walked into the Peace Center's Wyche Pavilion, where all of the food was, I got so excited! Like I told a lady I met from Charlottle the next day, "all of my favorites were there." There were also beverages from Firefly Vodka, Chateau Élan vineyard and winery, and one of Greenville's microbreweries, Thomas Creek. 

I really enjoyed Firefly's specialty cocktails for the evening. They had a Peach Moonshine margarita, which had all of the ingredients of a traditional margarita just substituting tequila for Firefly's peach moonshine. The other specialty cocktail was called a Fuzzy Fly, modeled after a fuzzy navel. 

I also enjoyed the music from Nasheville's own, Sixwire. 

Tasting Showcase

My second Euphoria event was the Tasting Showcase on Saturday. Now, this is where I was able to see if I had learned my lesson from the Atlanta Food and Wine Festival. The lesson learned was "pace yourself", by the way. Upon walking in, you can get very overwhelmed and drunk if you're not careful. There were vendors from wineries, moonshine distilleries, breweries, as well as local eateries. 

Wine and a cupcake...2 of my favorites! 

Music by local talent...Erica Berg Collective. I wish you could've seen the lady dancing on the side. She was so funny.

I hate beer, but I tried 2 for you beer drinkers!

Traffic Jam

Traffic Jam at The Old Cigar Warehouse in the West End was my third Euphoria event. This is the only event I didn't do solo, I brought my sister along with me and we had a blast! Traffic Jam is basically Euphoria's food truck rodeo. In it's second year, it was a hit and was sold out. I would say that was in part to Wingmen's stars, Corey and Ramone, bringing in their stuffed wing food truck, 2 Fat 2 Fly, but I talked with a few people who weren't sure who they were. My sister became very fond of Bo Daddy's Smokehouse, which is an upstate favorite! 

Somehow we took over this hammock and kept enjoying the strawberry moonshine cocktails by Firefly and music by Seven Handle Circus.

Shredded pork sandwich from Bo Daddy's Smokehouse with the Carolina vinegar BBQ sauce. The chicken with the Apple BBQ sauce was also really good.

Stuffed wings from 2 Fat 2 Fly!

Unfortunately, I didn't make it to my last Euphoria event, which was the South State Bank Jazz Brunch due to a REALLY bad sore throat. I'm sure it was phenomenal! 

I'm definitely looking forward to next year! Mark your calendars for September 17-20, 2015!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Happy 5th Birthday TCMU!

The Children's Museum of the Upstate celebrated their 5th birthday this past weekend and what better way than to do so than by throwing their annual fundraiser, Grown Ups Night Out, 5th birthday style.

I have to say I have really enjoyed this event for the past two years. It really gives me and a lot of other adults the chance to let loose for a couple of hours. I was a little disappointed by the turn out this year, but the low numbers could reflect the increase in price this year. 

Going into Grown Ups Night Out, I couldn't help but wonder why the increase in price, but once there I could see it. This year a couple of extra pieces of entertainment were brought in to go along with the theme. They had a magician, who was actually pretty good. This was my first time interacting with a magician, so I was slightly amazed by his tricks. 

There was also a balloon artist, who I loved. He made everyone a different balloon. I saw a poodle, someone wearing a horse, another wearing a giraffe, and a diamond ring. I, of course, got a stripper I named Chuckie. 

The food this year was also a treat, with Table 301 doing the catering I didn't expect anything less. There were chicken sandwiches, hamburgers, and spinach dip. It was all very good.

Another addition they made was a photo booth. Who doesn't love a photo booth. My pictures were a little screwed up, but it was still a blast.

It was fun to live a couple of hours as a child again, but went back to reality at 10. I can't wait to see what's in store for next year.

Happy birthday TCMU!!!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Foodie Fest 2014: Stella's Southern Bistro

It's Foodie Fest, which means Mrs Brûlée and I went to dinner at restaurant neither of us had visited before. To be honest, that's getting a little difficult considering we have knocked out the majority of the restaurants on this year's list.

In case you don't know what Foodie Fest is, it is basically Greenville's Restaurant Week. Many restaurants in the area offer a special menu in which you can get a 3 course meal for $30. Amazing right?

This year we chose to go to Stella's Southern Bistro in Simpsonville. I must say it was definitely a treat and Simpsonville has a hidden gem. It is tucked away in a little strip off of Fairview Rd. Once inside, you kind of forget you are in Simpsonville.

I will be honest, Mrs Brûlée and I had a lot of catching up to do so when we received a couple of unexpected dishes compliments of the chef, I didn't get all of the notes I should have.

Our first two dishes were compliments of the chef. The first dish was a local heirloom tomato and mozzarella salad, pinkeye peas, basil purée and red wine vinaigrette and served with a pepperocini crostini. I loved it! It was very light and refreshing.

The second dish was bacon steak (forgot the name they called it) with a grape risotto. It was actually my favorite dish of the night. The meat had a nice crust on the outside and was very tender on the inside with amazing flavor. Mrs Brûlée and I tried each piece separately and then it all together. The grapes added an amazing burst of flavor. I'm typically not a risotto fan but with the flavors and textures mixing together I enjoyed it.

This dish is not on the menu just yet. Hopefully we will see it soon though! I think it would be a great addition.

Typically we don't order the same thing, but both of us were actually feeling the same things on the menu that night. Our true first course was a sweet potato and peanut soup with a bacon jam and sesame seeds. It was different and an interesting combination of flavors. We both really enjoyed it, until I took a sip of my champagne with it. I do not advise that. The champagne enhances the salt. 

For our entree we did Stella's mixed grill, which was barbecue chicken, duck, and grilled andouille served with dirty cheese grits, braised turnips and a gumbo-like sauce. This was a really good dish. The duck and turnips were my favorite parts. The andouille was a bit too hot for me, but I'm a wimp when it comes to spice.

Mrs Brulee and I did go different routes for dessert. I couldn't make up my mind between the two choices, and she was really feeling the peach cobbler which wasn't included in Foodie Fest, so we asked our waiter to just surprise us. He did the safe thing and brought us one of each. Even though we basically shared both desserts, I had the blueberry Swiss roll, a vanilla sponge cake with blueberry preserves and served with a white chocolate toffee. The dessert as a whole was descent. Our favorite part was the white chocolate toffee. Unfortunately the chef that makes it does not sell it outside of the restaurant. 

Mrs Brûlée had the spice banana rum cake, which was served with a cajeta mousse and coffee caramel. The dish all together was good. Mrs Brûlée really enjoyed the cake without all of the trimmings though. 

Service at Stella's was absolutely wonderful. Our server Levi, was very attentive and we enjoyed him a lot. 

As you can see, we started off Foodie Fest this year with a bang and we have once again found another amazing place to dine. If you haven't picked out a place to eat during Foodie Fest, Stella's is highly recommended.
Stella's Southern Bistro on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Cured my shrimp and grits craving: Breakwater Restaurant and Bar

Monday night I decided to take myself out to dinner and for some reason I was craving shrimp and grits and sushi. I know sounds like a weird combination, which is why I had to choose one over the other. I decided to go to Breakwater Restaurant and Bar.

The appetizer menu ranges from southern favorites such as pimento cheese and southern fried shrimp to humus and calamari. I had the souther sampler because I couldn't decide what I wanted. My four choices were duck pastrami, fried oysters, pimento cheese and fried shrimp. I loved the duck pastrami. It had a great flavor. The oysters and pimento cheese were great as well. The shrimp was good, just wasn't impressed by it.

For my entree I had shrimp and grits, which I'm sure you guessed. It was probably one of, if not the best shrimp and grits I have had in a while. Some other entree options are surf and turf, salmon, a grilled rack of lamb and, of course, southern fried chicken.

To drink I had the Bellini-tini, which if memory serves me correctly it was St. Germaine and peach Ciroc, and I'm missing an ingredient. It was a very good drink.

I sat at the bar with what seemed to be quite a few regulars. Service was great! I'm actually thinking about going back for Foodie Fest (Aug 21-31, 2014)! 
Breakwater Restaurant and Bar on Urbanspoon

Weekend Whereabouts

Last weekend was quite different from what I'm used to. I'm a planner and enjoy being busy, so Saturday when my plans didn't go as planned, it kind of threw my day off. I will say I had a very productive morning. I got the house cleaned and even pulled some clothes out of my closet to give away. 

I ended up going to a friend's house for a wine gathering he was having. Unfortunately, we had some pretty heavy rain, which I read flooded Interstate 85 and Interstate 385, so I spent the night at there. 

I did have a blast with them, playing Cards Against Humanity and drinking wine while nibbling on cheese and crackers. 

Sunday was a little more interesting with brunch at Waffle House. It was probably my most awful Waffle House experience ever. Dinner was at Universal Joint with Mr Homewrecker. It's always good to hang out with a good friend.

Sunday night ended with a drink Downtown with a friend of mine. Somehow we got into a discussion of beer with the bartenders. In case you didn't know, I hate beer. I've only found 1 beer I like, and that's a raspberry wheat from Shock Top. I do get picked on because of this but whatevs.

Well, my new friend and the bartenders at Rey's got to see my beer face. It's awful! After trying a Red Stripe, they gave me a taste of an IPA they have on tap. It's probably a good thing I don't know the name. It was terrible! Check out my Instagram mr_j_sully to see a 15 sec clip.

That's about it for my weekend. I know, disappointing, but I did take myself out for dinner Monday. Review coming soon!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

One of my faves: Adams Bistro!

I'm ridiculously excited about this post! I've been doing this blog for about a year and a half yet, and have done all of these restaurants except one of my Greenville favorites, probably because I didn't want to let the secret out.

So I call it a secret because it is a place that is quite popular, but whenever I say something about it no one has heard of it. It's crazy to me. Anyway, I had dinner with a guy and my suggestion was Adams Bistro. It's one of my favorite places, I hadn't been in a while and it's very close to his house. Considering he is newer to town, I didn't want to have him drive all over the place.

Adams Bistro is a small family-owned restaurant on Pelham Road with a pretty big menu. They have everything from stuffed mushroom caps as appetizers to soups, salads, burgers, steaks and seafood. They even have a meat and two menu. They do serve alcohol, it is a pretty basic cocktail menu and they use to allow you to BYOB wine for a corking fee. I'm not sure if that is still in affect.

For dinner I chose to do the meat and two with grilled barbecue chicken, collard greens and fried okra. Yes, that's right the southern fellow went very southern! As usual, dinner was delicious. My friend had the Cobb salad, which he described as very good and partly blamed the blue cheese crumbles.

We didn't have any room for dessert, but they do have an amazing red velvet cheesecake. 

I can honestly say, I've never had a bad meal from here and the service is always great! So, now that I have let the cat out of the bag, be sure to check this place out.
Adams Bistro on Urbanspoon