Thursday, October 4, 2018

Skytown Beer and BBQ- Wilmington, NC

Skytown Beer and BBQ on New Centre may be the newest brewery in Wilmington, but they are a part of Beer Barrio downtown and have plenty of experience with good food. I stopped by with high expectations for the food and wanted to see how the beer was.

I had a sample of their Creamsicle, an IPA with orange and vanilla beans. It was good, but I don't think I wanted a whole pint so I opted for the New England IPA and found it quite light tasting and refreshing despite the 7.2 ABV. 

I had one of the lunch specials, the Southern Fried Chicken Nuggets, Buffalo style, with a side of mac and cheese for twelve bucks. The chicken was excellent, as was the mac and cheese. 

I decided on a lower gravity for my second pint and went with the Door Mouse Porter at 4.2%. That was an excellent porter. 

Overall, the beer was quite good and since they just started it will only get better. The food was excellent, as was the service. Nice ambiance and convenient to local shopping and businesses. Stop by sometime. 

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Edward Teach Brewery- Wilmington, NC

Finally got a chance to stop at Edward Teach Brewing in Wilmington and I was quite impressed. The interior has a bright, clean nautical look reflecting the Blackbeard influence. I only had time for one so I went with their tangerine IPA. Quite good. I'll get back soon and do some more exploring, and add some more photos, soon. 

They have a website for more information. 

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Common Bond Brewers- Montgomery, Al

We were in Montgomery Alabama to hide out from hurricane Florence at relatives. My brother-in-law took me out to both of the local breweries. The first one was not impressive at all, but the second one we went to was quite good. 

Common Bond is a neat little brewery in a reclaimed factory, or warehouse, with plenty of cool brick, open space, good acoustics, and plenty of places to sit. The staff was quite friendly and the beer was good. I had the IPA, twice. We also tried the Blond and the Stout, both good. 

Nice place. Check out their website for more information. 

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Rams Head Tavern- Annapolis, MD

I have family that just moved to the Annapolis area and they took us downtown for dinner at the Rams Head Tavern. It was a very good experience with excellent service, good food, good beer, and nice ambiance. 

I had the Ram Head IPA which had a nice, clean taste to it. For dinner I had the Dynamite Burger which had candied cayenne bacon, lettuce, tomato, chipotle aioli, American cheese and a fried jalapeño on top. There was a bit of heat to it, but not overpowering.  Very good overall.  

They have a website for more information. 

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Cheese Smith Food Truck- Wilmington, NC

Nothing says comfort food like a grilled cheese sandwich, that taste brings me back to childhood and even a simple one made from American cheese on white bread makes my mouth water. Taking that simple sandwich and ramping it up with artisan bread, different cheeses, and flavor add ons is a great thing. Cheese Smith food truck in Wilmington does just that. 

After having heard some rave reviews of them we decided to stop by Fermental for a try. I got the Brendito which had aged white cheddar, roasted jalapeños, cilantro, cream cheese, bacon, and a jalapeño chutney on a nice bread for eleven bucks. Pricey, but it was absolutely worth every penney. Think of it as a deconstructed jalapeño popper in a sandwich. 

Cheese Smith is amazing and I will be catching them again soon. Check out their Facebook page for more information. 

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Mad Mole Brewing- Wilmington, NC

Mad Mole Brewing kind of snuck up on me. I didn't have any idea it was in the works until I saw a Facebook page about them. I mean I went to the Boathouse Restaurant next door a few times and hit the Salt Works kitty corner from them, but I had no idea that there was a brewery in the works there.

My son-in-law said he was going over with a friend and invited me to come along and of course I said yes. We were quite pleasantly surprised with the build out and the design of what was once probably a failed retail store.  

Since the staff knew we were new to the brewery, they gave us a copious amount of samples. In fact, we tasted just about everything they had to offer and all of them were excellent. I had three pints, the first was the Penitent Mole, a strong golden Belgian. I followed that up with a Tunnel Digger, a New England IPA, and I finished with a Boston Mole Party, another variation of a New England IPA. All were excellent.

Overall, the brewery has all of the right elements to lead to success. excellent brews, nice ambiance, friendly staff, and adequate parking. When we were there Kristie Lynn was playing music and the acoustics were great. You could here her sing while people were talking. She was quite good. There is an outside seating area too.

One other thing that is really cool is that they brew using a rather large array of solar panels on the roof. It's nice to see that they are eco-responsible. I will certainly be going back for a few more pints Stop some time and see for yourself. They have a website for more information.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Beach Bagels- Wilmington, NC

Coming from New York originally, the state not the city, I know what a bagel is supposed to be. Beach Bagels is as good as any I have had in Upstate New York, and the best in the ILM. I spend a couple of mornings a week taking sunrise photos at the beach and quite often stop by to pick up a nice pair of bagels for the wife and I. 

They make some interesting looking sandwiches too and one day I'll try one. Friendly service, excellent bagels, and a cool shop. Stop by sometime. 

Update- I did stop by for lunch and had the Jose Carne on a poppy seed bagel. Excellent. 

Monday, August 13, 2018

Catch- Wilmington, NC

Catch is one of those places I have wanted to go to for quite some time, so when our anniversary rolled around we decided to go. I have visited their food truck and was impressed and I wanted to see what they had to offer at their restaurant.

Catch bills themselves as modern seafood cuisine and the owner has been on Top Chef, as well as having won many awards. They are located in a small strip mall on Market Street, a quite unassuming place for a slightly upscale dining place. The inside is well appointed and the service excellent. 

We started with the calamari and I got one of the specials, seared divers scallops and mussels over sweet potatoes in a medium curry sauce. Excellent. Teresa had ribs and shrimp which were also excellent. Everything was amazing. 

We'll definitely be  headed there again sometime. 

Monday, August 6, 2018

The Original Salt Works- Wilmington, NC

We stopped by The Original Salt Works on Sunday for breakfast and I must say that we were quite impressed. It's a small, homey place with excellent service and very good food.

I had the sausage and cheese omelet, a three egg omelet, with a side of grits. The omelet was very good, but the star was those amazing grits. They were quote probably the best I ever had. I complemented the chef and he said that he uses a lot of butter and slow cooks them for an hour to get that flavor in. 

Teresa had eggs over easy with bacon and home fries. The fries were cubed and had a nice crust on the outside with a soft middle. Excellent. 

We'll head over for lunch sometime. You should too. If you go bring cash, they don't take credit cards. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Bills Front Porch- Wilmington, NC

I have been meaning to get to Bill's Front Porch for some time now. I have heard good things about them, especially that they have amazing fried chicken. Well, better late than never and I must say that I was quite impressed.

The place has a warm rustic feel to it that would be at home in the mountains and the staff was friendly and helpful. I started with a Curl Your Toes, a small batch variant of their flagship Citra and it was good. I followed that with an English Pale Ale that was excellent. As good as, if not better than, any I've had in Britain. 

I didn't get the chicken because on Wednesdays they have a special where if you order a pint, you can get a classic burger for five bucks. No brainer there. The burger was quite good and the fries were outstanding. Teresa had the Philadelphia cheese steak sliders which she said were good.

I'll be back for that chicken, and a few more pints in the near future. They have a website for more information. 

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Roadhouse of Wilmington- Wilmington, NC

Our after church breakfast group has been to the Roadhouse of Wilmington, on Wrightsville avenue, for the past three weeks and each time every one of has truly enjoyed our meals. The food is excellent, the service wonderful, and the ambiance very nice. Even though they get busy, the acoustics are just right to quietly have a conversation with six to ten people. 

This place has had a few iterations, most recently as the Salt Works II which was featured on Restaurant Impossible. This time the people who own the Dixie Grill downtown have done a major remodel and turned it into a successful restaurant. 

Today I had the corned beef hash, shown above, which had house made brisket, potatoes, peppers, onions, a healthy dose of provolone cheese, and two eggs on top. It was great and the portion so large I had trouble finishing it. Teresa had a Greek omelet, also excellent. Looking over the lunch menu I know that I have to get there sometime and have a burger. 

This will become a regular place, and I wish them all the best. Stop by sometime and see what I mean. 

Saturday, July 21, 2018

MeMa's Chick'n and Ribs- Burgaw, NC

About a year ago we stopped to eat at a restaurant in Burger and later walked into MeMa's to see what it was like. We quickly realized that we should have gone there instead. Well, that was easily corrected when we stopped off for lunch today. 

The decor is really nice with a very warm and welcoming staff. After perusing the menu for a couple of minutes I ordered the catfish with sweet potatoes and fried green beans. It was the best catfish I have ever eaten. Very moist with a nice crisp on the breading. The sweet potatoes had a touch of cinnamon added and were excellent, as were the green beans. 

Teresa got the special, a brisket sandwich with provolone and caramelized onions. I took a taste and the meat melted in my mouth. Amazing. 

It won't be another year before we go back. Stop by sometime and see what I mean. They have a website for more information. 

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Nigori Gourmet & Sushi Bar- Castle Hayne, NC

Nigori Gourmet & Sushi Bar recently opened a few miles from the house and we'd heard some good things about it. Here in the Wilmington area Chinese restaurants can be hit or miss so we were hoping for a hit.

I ordered the Dragon and Phoenix,, shown above, and Teresa got the chicken with broccoli. Both were excellent. 

Turned out to be a hit and given the proximity we'll be going there often. 

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Tazys Burgers and Grill- Wilmington, NC

We stopped by Tazys Burgers and Grill on Oleander yesterday for a quick burger. It is a nice place with an a beach theme, fitting for the area. What you do is decide the size of your burger, or sandwich, and fill out an order sheet with whatever topping and side you'd like. 

We went with the 8 ounce Aussie burgers for nine bucks. I had cheddar, tomato, mustard, and ketchup and added bacon for an extra buck. I had the fries. Teresa had remoulade on hers with a side of pasta salad. 

Overall, not bad but I wish they would have melted the cheese instead of simply adding it as an afterthought. 

The concept is the same as PT's Grille, but I think PT's does it better and includes a beverage for the same price. 

Monday, June 11, 2018

Daniel Boulud will be at the 2018 Greenwich Wine + Food Festival

Worldwide culinary icon Daniel Boulud, who is celebrating 25 years as a French Chef and Restauranteur at his Michelin-starred restaurant, DANIEL, in New York in 2018, has joined the roster of award-winning culinary talent appearing at September’s annual Greenwich Wine + Food Festival (September 21-22 at Roger Sherman Baldwin Park).  He will join previously announced talent Alex Guarnaschelli and Scott Conant, as well as returning favorites Adam Richman, Mary Giuliani, Kevin Des Chenes and Lindsay Perkins, to this year’s line-up.

I know that I am looking forward to this event. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Greenwich Wine + Food Festival 2018 Announced

Okay everyone, the best wine and food festival has announced the lineup and dates for 2018. Mark your calendars and go. We're driving all the way from North Carolina for this one. Plus your entry fee goes to a great cause.


Festival Weekend Returns September 21-22 and Welcomes Back 
Alex Guarnaschelli and Scott Conant

Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation to be Primary 2018 Beneficiary

Greenwich, CT – The Greenwich Wine + Food Festival presented by PepsiCo will return for its eighth year, hosting a Master Chef Wine Dinner on Friday, September 21 and a full day of food, drinks, music and fun on Saturday, September 22 at Roger Sherman Baldwin Park in Greenwich, Connecticut. This year, the fourth annual Serendipity Golf Classic presented by Pure Leaf, to be held June 12, and the inaugural Serendipity Fun Run presented by Aquafina, to be held on May 13, will also fall under the Greenwich Wine + Food flagship brand.  

“After seven successful years of hosting the festival weekend, we’re excited to expand the event this year to also include our annual golf outing and first-ever family run,” said Suni Unger, founder and CEO of Unger Media, the parent company behind Greenwich Wine + Food and Serendipity. “Also new this year, we’re proud to announce PepsiCo and two of its brands – Aquafina and Pure Leaf – as presenting sponsors of these three events. Their dedication to the community mirrors our own. Our mission for Greenwich Wine + Food remains to strengthen our community’s non-profit partners, local businesses and renowned food culture. This year, the money we raise will benefit Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and the Town of Greenwich Parks & Recreation Foundation.”

The Greenwich Wine + Food Festival presented by PepsiCo will honor Alex Guarnaschelli at the Friday night Master Chef Wine Dinner, and welcome Scott Conant as a special guest, as well as provide live musical entertainment (TBA). Guarnaschelli is a Food Network star (“Chopped,” “Iron Chef”), cookbook author and New York City chef/restaurateur (Butter, The Darby).

“Alex has been a favorite celebrity guest at our Saturday event the past three years, conducting demos, sharing stories in the greenroom and signing cookbooks for fans. We are ecstatic to be recognizing her as an iconic female chef in the culinary world, throughout this year’s festival weekend,” added Unger.  “Friday evening will also honor this year’s class of 2018 SerendipityMost Innovative Chefs, continuing our tradition of identifying the top culinary talent in Connecticut and New York….and of course, we’re thrilled to welcome last year’s honoree, Scott Conant, back to meet our guests and enjoy the evening!”

Saturday’s events take place in the Culinary Village, with the Grand Tasting tent at the heart of the festival. Guests will enjoy tastings and demonstrations from more than 150+ of the area’s finest food, wine, spirits experts, as well as other tents celebrating burgers, BBQ, tacos and more. They will also experience sommelier, mixologist and brew master presentations, celebrity book signings, Q&A sessions with top culinary experts, a celebrity green room with live interviews and an exclusive Meet the Masters’ Panel discussion with Scott Conant, Alex Guarnaschelli and more (TBA). The 7thAnnual Burger Battle will return, as will the 4th Annual Top Bartender Showdown, providing heated competition between area restaurants. The festival will come to a close with a headlining live musical performance (TBA).
Tickets for the Festival All Weekend Pass, Friday’s Master Chef Wine Dinner, Saturday All Day Pass (General & VIP) and more will be available in the coming weeks via or by calling 203.588.1363. The festival weekend will be held rain or shine, and anyone under 21, including infants or strollers, will not be admitted. Animals are also not permitted. 

The inaugural Serendipity Fun Run presented by Aquafina will celebrate Greenwich’s beautiful parks on Sunday, May 13 at the Eastern Greenwich Civic Center in Old Greenwich, Connecticut. The 5k run/walk will begin at 9:00am welcoming participants of all ages, and will offer food trucks, prizes and family fun, all to benefit Greenwich Parks & Recreation Foundation. To register for this event, visit

The fourth annual Serendipity Golf Classic presented by Pure Leaf will take place Tuesday, June 12 at the GlenArbor Golf Club in Bedford Hills, New York. The event will kick off with an early lunch, and include a round of 18 holes, exclusive gifts and prizes, an auction, wrap-up dinner and live music, to support Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation. To register as an individual or team, visit

Greenwich Wine + Food celebrates community, charity, food, beverage and more in the Connecticut and New York area with multiple events throughout the year, including the Greenwich Wine + Food Festival presented by PepsiCo, the Serendipity Golf Classic presented by Pure Leaf, and theSerendipity Fun Run presented by Aquafina. The 2018 beneficiaries include Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and the Town of Greenwich Parks & Recreation Foundation. Greenwich Wine + Food is a part of Unger Media. For more information, visit

The Greenwich 2018 Wine + Food Festival presented by PepsiCo is a multi-day event celebrating the area’s rich culinary landscape and showcasing innovation in the food and beverage industries. It will benefit multiple charitable organizations including Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and the Town of Greenwich Parks & Recreation Foundation. Sponsors to date include PepsiCo, Pepsi Zero, Alfa Romeo, Stella Artois, Empire City Casino, Pure Leaf, Hospital For Special Surgery, Lifewtr, Coldwell Banker, 90+ Cellars, Rudy’s Limousine Service, Ruffino, Meiomi, Kim Crawford and Serendipity.*  For more information, visit

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

South Beach Grill- Wilmington, NC Revisited

Since moving to Wilmington and settling in, we don't get out to eat as often as we did when we visited. That said, we have narrowed down our list of favorites and South Beach Grill on Wrightsville Beach is one of our top places. We've been there multiple times and have found a consistency in food and service. Well, they've been there for twenty years or so and that is a testimony to their quality.

I was excited when they announced that they had added a few new menu items, and had refreshed the interior, so we headed down and I had the Nashville hot chicken and waffles appetizer. The waffles were made from sweet potatoes and visalia onions and there was a mild heat to the dish. Excellent. 

I had the blackened salmon BLT wrap and it was also excellent. Teresa got the Maker's Mark salad, one of her favorites, also excellent.

South Beach Grill has great food and true Southern hospitality. If you haven't been there yet, what are you waiting for? Stop by and tell John I sent you. 

Monday, February 12, 2018

Your Pie Pizza- Wilmington, NC

We were invited to the soft opening of Your Pie Pizza at the corner of Oleander and College, behind the pharmacy, and I must say I was impressed. The concept is that you build your own 10 inch pizza, well they actually build it using the ingredients of your choosing. The same idea applies to panini and salads and they all have a price of $7.99. 

If you can't figure out what you want, they have a few signature pizzas, which can be customized. I went with the Southern Heat, shown at top, with chicken, buffalo sauce, red onions, jalapeños, and mozzarella cheese. It was quite nice. Teresa had the Nat which had pesto, feta cheese, mozzarella, sun dried tomatoes, and spinach. Also quite good. The ten inch pie is just the right size for lunch.

They also have gelato, soft drinks, wine, and a decent selection of craft beers. 

The design of the interior has a nice modern feel, the people are friendly, and in spite of the lack of experience that seemed to know what they were doing. We'll pop in again. They have a website for more information.