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Saturday, October 13, 2012


Mrs. SNarolina Foodie and I spent last weekend in Asheville, and truly had some amazing meals. I was sans camera for much of the time, however, Sunday morning with camera in tow, we tackled EARLY GIRL EATERY in D``owntown Asheville. I had heard about EARLY GIRL EATERY numerous times before and decided that this had to be one of our places to try.

I like a BBQ and I like a good breakfast. How could I not try the Porky Breakfast Bowl, which consisted of
Homefries, BBQ pork, scrambled eggs and farmstead cheese smothered in Benton’s smoky bacon gravy.  It was very good, might I add.

The EARLY GIRL has  a bohemian atmosphere to go along with it's gluten free and vegan options, hence it's in Asheville. Very friendly staff and they try to use mostly regional ingredients as well.

Other places that I would also recommend if you are spending a weekend in Asheville:

CURATE - a top notch and highly touted Spanish Tapas restaurant.

TUPELO HONEY CAFE - Another very popular Regionally focused restaurant. They have two locations in Asheville and are expanding regionally as well.

CORNER KITCHEN - Located in Bilmore Village. Always a 30-40 minute wait, but worth it.

Friday, October 5, 2012


This Blog has been on hiatus for some time. No promises of daily or even weekly updates, however, I need to get my act together. Over 5,500 views within the past year, and that is without really trying!

The latest posting comes from ESQUIRE and their annual list of Best New Restaurants. I am reposting this, because two Charleston area restaurants were listed. The highly regarded, "The Macintosh " in Charleston and the out of nowhere, "Carter's Kitchen" on I'on in Mt. Pleasant.

I've held out from eating at The Mac for some time. I guess I am due to be there soon.

I now have some work to do, on this Blog and to try these establishments!

Saturday, March 3, 2012


Everyone knows of my love for HUSK and its founder Sean Brock. This week he was interviewed by Charlie Rose in New York. Great interview, about 16 minutes long. This is an inside look at the man and what inspired him to become one of the most talked about chefs in the country at one of the most talked about restaurants.

I never thought that I would see him in a suit. Enjoy!


Saturday, February 25, 2012

CURRY UP! - Doughnut that is.

During my last post, I talked about GLAZED Gourmet Doughnuts in Charleston, SC, and I mentioned my curiosity in trying their curry doughnut. Well, word got out and they asked when I would be in, as they would make sure to have them that day. Flash forward less than a week later, I was back in Charleston and stopped in, when they opened at 7AM and got the obligatory "Curry Up"!

With regards to curry, either you like it or you don't. And from those that like curry, even less of them would like to see curry in something sweet, much less in a doughnut. Well folks, I am here to tell you, try it! It is absolutely wonderful and definitely brings together your taste buds in the morning.

The Curry Up is made with a combination of chocolate, curry (of course) and topped with crystallized ginger. The combination of each of those ingredients, all unique on their own, makes for a wonderful marriage of flavor. Some of you are still afraid, with notions of that curry taste lingering in your mouth for the rest of your day. Rest assured, there is enough curry to taste, but certainly not overpowering enough for a lasting aftertaste.

I use SNarolina Foodie to promote food, places and people that are unique and work hard to create amazing food and drink. I want people to branch out of their comfort food zones and try things that they might not venture into. The Curry Up doughnut, my friends, is a good way to start.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Glazed Gourmet - Charleston, SC

For the past few years, cupcakes have been proliferating across the US, along with some excellent and creative flavors to go along with them. So what is the next big thing in the creative food trend? I say doughnuts! To start that trend at least here in the Carolinas, there is GLAZED gourmet doughnuts on King Street in Charleston.

Opened in 2011, GLAZED has made a name for itself with their unique creations, created fresh each morning. And when I say created, I'm not talking about just the dough. They make their jams, fillings and even the glaze for their amazing doughnuts.  The menu  is different each day and always changing in flavors. Lately, what I've been seeing in their lineup online is the word, "curry". Who would've thought, curry and doughnuts? The next time that I am in Charleston and curry is on the menu, I am definitely ordering one, or two.

I've been in three times and  have tried several of their doughnuts. First, the obligatory glazed doughnut, you can never go wrong with. I've also had the ever popular Maple Bacon. Bacon makes everything tastes better. I, like a kid, have ordered the Chocolate with Sprinkles to relive a childhood favorite of mine, though only better!

If you are in Charleston, I highly recommend stopping into GLAZED and treating yourself! Their menu is posted on Facebok and Twitter each morning, so you can plan accordingly. Many of you will be heading to Charleston to run the Cooper River Bridge Run on March 31st. After shedding some calories from the run, head on over to GLAZED for a much deserved, tasty treat!
Chocolate with Sprinkles

Maple Bacon, yum!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine's Day - How About Macaroons Instead of Candy!

Valentine's Day is this week and of course that means dinners, chocolates and flowers. This year, forget chocolates for your Valentine and go for something cool like, macaroons. Grant it, they can be tough to find them, however Charleston has Macaroon Boutique on John Street and Charlotte's Amelie's Bakery serves them as well.

My personal favorite macaroon is the Chocolate Ganache, pictured below:

Also, I recently started enjoying the Rasberry ones as well:

Friday, February 10, 2012

SINGLE MALT WHISKY - Japanese Style!

I'm a Scotch guy and that's usually my drink of choice if I am not enjoying an excellent wine or select beer.  For Christmas, Mrs. SNarolina Foodie ordered me a copy of 101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die by Ian Buxton, which I have written about before. Yamazaki 12 Year is one of the 101 to try and I had it this past week while I was in Charleston.

Yamazaki is pruduced by Suntory distillery, which was founded in 1923 in Japan. It was actually the first distillery to use copper pot stills of its kind outside of Scotland. This is the most popular whisky in all of Japan and is starting to create a following across the world.

On Tuesday evening, I stopped into the bar at FISH Restaurant to give Yamazaki  12 Year a try. I am now a new fan. This whisky is smooth and you can certainly taste the vanilla/honey flavors that pop into your mouth once you take your first sip. The honey/vanilla taste stays with you throughout and afterwards and isn't overbearing. Apparently at FISH it has developed a slight following as, once my dram was poured, the bartender had to open another bottle.

If you are a whisky drinker, I highly suggest stepping outside of the box and givingYamazaki a try.  For that whisky drinker that has everything, this would make a great unique gift, as a high quality whisky from a country not known as being a large whisky producer.

Lastly, there is also a Yamazki 18 Year Whisky. I will have to seek it out and try it as well.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Blue Cheese, How About a Buffalo Milk Version

Cheese, queso, fromage or formaggio, no matter what you call it, I love it! Mrs. SNarolina Foodie and I like to buy different cheeses to snack on in the evening. Sometimes by itself, sometimes with a bottle of wine. We get most of our cheese from Whole Foods, which has the largest selection in Greenville.

What I like about Whole Foods is that they have a very knowledgable staff that will let you try just about any cheese there, to ensure that you like what you are buying. During our most recent venture for some cheese, to celebrate our anniversary, we were suggested with "Blu di Bufala Mitica", aka Blue Cheese made of Buffalo's milk.

We like Blue Cheese and this by far was some of the smoothest blue cheese that we've ever had. This wasn't your packaged crumbled blue cheese, this was excellent and with maybe a slight sweet taste to it.

If you have a Whole Foods or a local fromagerie, request for it. Chances are, they will have it. I would even suggest asking for a sample, to make sure you enjoy it, before buying it. By the way, if a place doesn't allow you to taste the cheese before buying it, leave. Thats an excellent indication if someone knows what they are talking about. As we try other cheeses, if some are amazing and really stand out, then I will post them.

Finally, I will put a plug in for the Champagne that went well with this cheese, Franck Bonville Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru, which can be found in many wine shops for around $40. Makes a great after dinner pairing with most cheeses.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Three New Restaurants Coming to Main Street Greenville Soon!

Downtown Greenville's already vibrant restaurant scene is about to get even more crowded! Three restaurants are slated to open between this month and May.

The first restaurant, scheduled to open in February, is Breakwater. Breakwater is going to be located where Rio Grille was once, at 802 South Main Street. They are coming to Greenville via Beaufort where the original  Breakwater location has won many accolades.

The food is considered "New Southern Cuisine", and from what I can tell, looks like a challenger to Greenville's ever popular Soby's.  I will be in Beaufort soon, so I  may need to venture in and try the original before venturing to their Greenville location.

The next restaurant, slated to open in late March is Charlotte's own, Mac's Speed Shop! A barbecue restaurant with a biker theme. In fact their motto is "Beer Bikes BBQ". Mac's Speed Shop will be located at 930 South Main Street, next to Carolina Triathlon and across the street from Liberty Taproom.

I've been to Mac's and I'm a big fan. Their BBQ is great, the beer selection rivals that of Barley's and just because its a biker themed place, doesn't mean that's the core clientele. I visited Mac's Southend Charlotte location last week during lunch and the place was packed with  business men and women enjoying some tasty BBQ.

Over the years, they have developed a loyal following, which I think will be the case in Greenville, once they open. Garden and Gun Magazine described Mac's Speed Shop as, "
If Disney were ever to open a biker bar—focused on craft beers and barbecue—it would look something like this". Needless to say, I can't wait for Greenville to enjoy what people in Charlotte have been enjoying for years!

The final new restaurant opening on Main Street in Greenville within the next few months is a new concept from the people that brought you Larkin's on the River. I'm a fan of Larkin's, so I am sure this will be an excellent concept.  According to General Manager Bob Munich on Fox Carolina, "they have not decided on a name for the new place yet, but it will have lower prices and a more casual feel than Larkin's on the River". Based on that, I am thinking that this is probably going to be a gastropub kind of  place, a la, Nose Dive in Greenville or Red Drum in Mount Pleasant.

I'm having dinner at Larkin's on the River soon. While there, I will inquire more about the new place and if I learn anything new, I will share later.

The new location is going to be located in the old Hot Dog King at 209 South Main Street. I applaud any business that will open a new business in a previously closed establishment.

Sunday, January 29, 2012


About 6 years ago, I was introduced to Scotch. Since then, I've enjoyed my share from each of the Whisky Regions of Scotland!  My favorite Region is Islay, well known for their peaty malts. Probably the most famous Islay whisky is Laphroaig, which I do enjoy.

My favorite Islay whisky is Ardbeg, which can  been described as "monstrously peaty". Ardbeg, according to Ian Buxton in 101 WHISKIES TO TRY BEFORE YOU DIE, " is arguably the benchmark Islay Whisky, against which all others must be judged". I would have to agree. I was first introduced to Ardbeg in 2008, while staying at the Forss House outside Thurso, Scotland in the Highlands. The Forss House bar has about 270 different Scotch Whiskies on the shelf. With so many whiskies to choose from, I asked the bartender what their favorite whisky was, and they said Ardbeg.

A couple of things I want to share regarding Scotch whisky. First of all, when you see the word, "whisky", this is the correct spelling for whiskies that are out of Scotland. Most of us are used to seeing it spelled as "whiskey", which represents the whiskies for the rest of the world.

If you are new to drinking Scotch or have an interest in trying it, I wouldn't recommend Ardbeg as being your first time. I would suggest something like, Glenlivet, an easy drinking whisky that can be found anywhere. I would also suggest for your first time drinking Scotch, to have it with water and on the rocks. If you build a taste for whisky and you want to continue to drink it, then you will get to the point where you will take less water and ice over time.

I prefer my Scotch neat with a few teardrops of water and sometimes with 2 cubes of ice.

Friday, January 27, 2012

CABO FISH TACO - NoDA (Charlotte)

 I'm in Charlotte every week, sometimes for a day or several days. I need to do a better job in promoting Charlotte. I promise to do a better job  in 2012 exploring and promoting Charlotte. One area within Charlotte that's getting much attention is called, NoDa (North Davidson). This is Charlotte's Historic Arts District. According to the official NoDa website:

"NoDa is now the home to the City's best collection of galleries and performance venues; some of the funkiest full service restaurants including authentic Cajun cooking, Southwest cuisine, a Creative pizza eatery and more."

 Recently , I ended up here to meet a friend at Cabo Fish Taco, his suggestion. I'm a  fan of fish tacos,  therefore  I was looking forward to trying Cabo Fish Taco. For a Wednesday night, this place was packed with hipsters, bohemians and business people a like, all enjoying fish tacos, burritos and a good selection of beers. Thats usually a good sign.

Inside Cabo Fish Taco in NoDa
Of course I ordered the fish tacos. An order of Fish Tacos, comes with two, which you can mix and match different types of tacos.  I got the obligatory Beer Battered White Fish Taco and had our server choose the other one. She chose the ever popular Blackened Mahi Mahi taco as my other choice. Each taco comes with a flour tortilla stuffed with cabbage, tomato, avocado, mixed cheeses, & finished with a white cilantro sauce. Pretty good.

Beer Battered White Fish Tace and Blackened Mahi Mahi Fish Taco

When it comes to fish tacos, California is where they originated. I must admit that it is hard to find a good fish taco in the Southeast. Cabo Fish Taco does a good job, but it's no Rubio's of San Diego, where I consider my favorite fish taco. Since I can't have Rubio's, at leasat I have good east coast choice!

Since I got into NoDa about an hour before dinner, I did explore the area and saw some other places that have caught my attention. I look forward to checking them out and giving a report in the future.

I'm always looking for any suggestions for the Charlotte area that I need to try. Feel free to send them my way.

Thursday, January 26, 2012


I've previously talked about the 50 plus Bourbons listed at HUSK Restaurant in Charleston, SC. Well, here is the list!  I must admit, I am keeping tabs on the ones that I've tried. I do have a goal to try each one of these.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Bartenders, Bourbon and Billy Reid, But No Bud Lite, The Bar at HUSK

It’s no secret that I love HUSK and everything it represents. I consider myself fortunate to frequent there when I am  in Charleston.  I still owe a post on my dining adventures there, but I must admit, my creative writing abilities won’t do it justice.
The Great Wall of Bourbon
Late Monday evening, I walked into HUSK for dinner.  I was told that since I was alone, I could get a seat in 30 minutes.  With 30 minutes to spare, I went over to the bar for bourbon on a cube of ice.  HUSK’s bourbon list is vast and unique. Over 50 plus bourbons are listed, and broken down by the city of the distillery. Most restaurants have 3-5 bourbons listed, never mind broken down by city.  A good number of the bourbons are small batch and ones I’ve never heard of.  On this evening, I enjoyed a Ridgemont Reserve 1792, a very smooth, slightly smokey bourbon and one I’d never enjoyed before.  

Not only is the food and drink at HUSK local, but so are the glasses for which they serve their bourbon in. The glasses are based out of Atlanta’s Uncorked Glass, which according to their website:

In addition to bourbon, the Bar at Husk offers a selection of beers from around the Southeast, which brings me to the story from the night. As I was sitting there enjoying my Ridgemont Reserve,  I overheard the bartender state, “Bud Lite, you can go over to the bar next door at 82 Queen, they've got Bud Lite there."  Apparently, a couple who doesn’t appreciate a place that takes pride in using regional ingredients, drinks included, stopped into the wrong bar. After being told "no Bud Lite", they immediately left. We all got a chuckle at that.
Even if you can't snag a reservation at HUSK, I highly recommend stopping in at the bar next door. The bar staff,  stylishly decked out in South's own Billy Reid, is very knowledgeable and have  created some amazing locally inspired cocktails.  

Bartenders in Billy Reid attire, pouring Bourbon, but no Bud Lite!

Speakeasy Social Club - Business After Hours, The Cocktail Club, January 26, 5-7PM.

If you enjoy Scotch, Networking and a classy atmosphere then join Charleston's Speakeasy Social Club's Business After Hours on Thursday, January 26 at The Cocktail Club on King Street. The Speakeasy Social Club was recently launched by a very ambitious forward thinking young couple. They launched this social group, based on an idea from a group in Atlanta, where they previously resided. Speakeasy Social Club not only promotes social gatherings for young professionals, but they also are promoting local businesses as well, which makes every one involved a winner.

Having known the founders for years, I highly recommend getting involved with the Speakeasy Social Club and look forward to seeing what other events that they have in store.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Greatest Steak Grilled at Home, According to Mrs. SNarolina Foodie!

According to my wonderful wife, I grill one excellent steak. Together, we've enjoyed some of the Carolina's best, so when I hear her praises on my grilling, it makes me happy. My steak grilling technique comes from the Morton's Steak Bible.

First, I select high quality beef,  from places like the New York Butcher Shoppe and Whole Foods. I've noticed that when I've gotten beef from other groceries, quality has been an issue. Please note, not all beef are created equal! For our most recent home grilled steaks, I purchased two 8 oz filets from the New York Butcher Shoppe out of Charlotte, NC.

The following are my directions for the greatest steak grilled at home:

1. Bring your steaks out of the refrigerator and let stand for 30-60 minutes. What I've learned, getting the meat to room temperature, aids in the grilling process and the meat cooks evenly.

2. Once the steaks have come to room temperature, I cover them in Extra Virgin Olive oil (EVO).

3. After coating the steaks with EVO, I coat the steaks, liberally with Sea Salt. Actually, most meat that I grill, I coat in Sea Salt.

4. While I am waiting for the steaks to get to room temperature, I get the grill fired up to around 500 - 550 degrees F.

5. With the combination high temperature on the grill and the Steaks at room temperature, it doesn't take long for the steaks to cook, especially the way I like them, RARE! At the high temperatures, most steaks will be ready within 10 minutes or less.

6. Enjoy! No steak sauce is needed, especially when you have a high quality piece of beef!

Grilled Filet Mignon, RARE!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

European Beer Night Fellowship - aka Guys night out!

Every few months, several of us guys get together for beers, games and of course food. We tend to choose 3 or 4 different beers to enjoy. The gathering is always a time we look forward to, since most of us are married with kids and getting out can be tough.

Last night, the theme was European beers, many of which we'd never had. To keep the beer from going to our heads, we enjoyed some spicy chorizo, asiago fresco and crackers.

Spicy Chorizo, Asiago Fresco and Crackers
 The first beer, Estrella Damm,  from Barcelona, Spain, was excellent. This was my first time tasting a beer from Spain. When it comes to Spain, it's all about their Rojo Wines. This beer went well with the chorizo.

The Bavarian beer, Konig Ludwid Weissbier, was our second beer of the evening. It is a typical Bavarian wheat beer, for which I'm a fan of.  Having been to Bavaria, Germany, I've enjoyed some excellent German wheat beers.This doesn't rank as the best, it was nonetheless good.

The final beer of the evening, one that I've enjoyed several times and brought to introduce to the guys, Italy's Birra Moretti's La Rosa, an amber beer. For me, this beer is standard at fine Italian Restaurants around the country.  Most Italian restaurants offer the other Italian beer, Peroni, which I am not a fan of. What I've noticed,  the highest of quality Italian restaurants offer this beer.

The evening was excellent, and I made it passed Midnight! The common joke has always been  that I can't stay up past 10:00 PM, because I start knodding off. My excuse is, I get up many mornings at 5AM and don't stop until about 9:00 PM, so for me to stay up late can be tough.

I want to thank Artist and Entrepreneur, Bruce Plourde of City Story Greenville for hosting last night's group and providing the excellent French Press Coffee with real whipped cream, to ensure that I stayed awake well into the evening!

French Press Coffee, Real Whipped Cream and Sugar Cubes

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


The Charleston City Paper is a free publication that comes out weekly discussing food, music and social trends within Charleston, SC. In August, a cover story was titled, “101 Things, to Savor, Slurp and Suck Down in Chucktown”.  I’ve used that as my guide in finding and trying new places in Charleston.  I do plan to try almost all 101 items listed!
The infamous  Dell!
One of the foods listed was the “Rice and Bean Bowl” at Dell’z Deli. The article stated:
Dell'z rice and bean bowl is one of the best lunch values in town. It's packed with rice, black beans, salsa, fresh avocado, and, for an extra buck, gooey melted cheese. It's healthy, filling, and affordable, like everything else on Dell'z menu.”
I ordered the Rice and Bean Bowl and became speechless. 6 months later and Dell’z is now my go to spot for lunch when I’m in Charleston for lunch. Dell’z isn’t your typical deli, where you pick a sandwich, a bag of chips and a drink. Dell’z offers wraps, salads and pizza to name a few. Everything  on the menu can be made vegetarian and vegan.  Since my first visit, I’ve been venturing further into the menu, and I haven’t been disappointed.
Dell'z Jazzy Pizza
Lately, I’ve been ordering two item, the “Beach Bum” which is a wrap with spicy shrimp and the other, Dell’z Jazzy Pizza, which consist of rice, black beans, salsa, avocado, cheese, some type of amazing sauce called “da sauce” and fresh field greens on a large tortilla. This pizza was meant to be shared, but twice I’ve been able to down a whole one myself, much to the amazement of Dell herself. Fortunately, training for a marathon has allowed me to do so and not gain weight.
Dell’z is located at 1-A Cannon Street, just off King Street.  Seating is very limited, only 4 seats at the counter. I suggest either get it in early for lunch or get it to go.

<a href=" alt="Dell'z Deli on Urbanspoon" src="" style="border:none;width:200px;height:146px" /></a>

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Cook Out comes to Greenville!

I like a good cheeseburger as anyone. If you make a good cheeseburger, people will come. North Carolina has been lucky. For years, North Carolinians have had an excellent chain called Cook Out. This place offers burgers, bbq, hot dogs, chicken and milk shakes all of which are excellent. Within the past two years, Cook Out has been aggressivley expanding south of the border into South Carolina.

The latest addition in SC is their Greenville location, right next to the Cherrydale Shopping Center. We've enjoyed Cook Out before, but are excited that they are located down the street from our house, which is dangerous in itself. What's good about Cook Out is not just their food, but their prices as well. You can get a lot for a little, especially with their Cook Out Tray combo's.  (See Below)

Cook Out Tray = Lots of  Quality Food and Little Price
Cook Out offers many different options for their burgers. My personal favorite is the Steakhouse Style, which consist of a hamburger, cheese, grilled onions, lettuce, A-1 sauce and mayo. I love this burger because it's what my Dad called a three napkin burger because of how messy it can get.
While I am a big fan or Cook Out's burgers and shakes, I must say, their fries aren't as good as say, FIVE GUYS, but that is another story in itself. If you are looking for a tasty burger with some interesting choices for sides, head to cookout.

Charlotte Restaurant Week - January 20-29, 2012

This week is Restaurant Week all across South Carolina! In two weeks, it will beCharlotte Restaurant Week.  There has some outstanding restaurants that I am starting to discover.

If you live in the Charlotte Metrolina area, this is an excellent time to take advantage of great restaurants with excellent Restaurant Week deals.

As I continue to discover Charlotte, where should I be eating?

Monday, January 9, 2012

Restaurant Week - South Carolina

Its Restaurant Week all over South Carolina! I urge all of you to take advantage of this and try some place new. This is definitely an excellent opportunity to taste some of the state's best menus for a low price!