Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Garrison's Tavern and Wine Cellar, Montgomery, NY

We've been to Garrison's Tavern and Wine Cellar a couple of times before and had appetizers at Happy Hour, the calamari and chicken strips were very good as I remember, and we've been meaning to stop by to eat for a while. The other day our son Mark was over and he asked if we'd been there recently and we said no. He then told us on Wednesdays they have some $5.00 specials and we made up our minds to go. It turned out to be a good idea.

The location of Garrison's, 11 Union Street in Montgomery, once housed a place called The Daily Bean, a coffee and sandwich place. When it changed hands they renovated a bit and added a bar that is now home to 35 beers, sorry there are none on tap, and a good selection of wines. We both ordered the five dollar burger special and it included the cheese and fries. I'd recently had a fifteen dollar burger at another place and here this five dollar burger was every bit as good, for one third of the price. The regular menu has a couple of interesting burgers, including one that has pulled pork ribs, roquefort cheese and Vidalia onions mixed in for fourteen bucks. That sounds interesting, as do some of the other selections on the menu.

We also had a dozen steamers for five bucks. They were steamed in a delightful broth with lots of garlic. I asked for spoons so we could finish the broth. It was that good and it would have been great over a plate of fresh pasta. I will do the steamers again next time we go.

I had two Goose Island IPA and with the three items the total bill came to $27.00, plus tip. Good food, good friendly service, nice atmosphere. Well worth a visit. They have a website for more information.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Grilled Twinkies Recipe

I decided to delete my recipe blog after checking the stats and finding that I have no readership. I did however notice that one recipe does get hits and that's the one for grilled Twinkies, so I transfered it to this blog. Try it sometime, you'll find it interesting and delicious.

Grilled Twinkies, that's right, grilled not fried. Now the fried ones are amazing and have a unique flavor, but there is the whole deep fried aspect. Grilling is healthier (marginally anyway) and imparts a flavor that is a cross between toasted marshmallows and toasted sponge cake, with a hint of smoke.
First, unwrap the Twinkie (the plastic would melt into it otherwise) and spread some butter on the bottom. Get your grill fairly hot, then place the Twinkie bottom down. They will be some quick flames as the butter burns and this adds to the flavor. Give it about a minute and a half on the bottom and a minute or so more on the other three sides. Be careful or the Twinkie will stick to the grill. Get it browned like the top photo, or the bottom one. You decide how brown you want it.
Next, plate it and eat. You can add some ice cream, chocolate syrup, anything you like. It's your Twinkie.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

New World Home Cooking, Saugerties, NY

Ric Orlando, the owner of the New World Home Cooking in Saugerties was on Food TV's Chopped three times. The first time he won, the second was for champions and he won the first round as well. Unfortunately after making it to the final two, he was chopped. He was also at the Garlic Festival this fall giving a demonstration which we watched. So having watched him on TV three times and once in person, we decided to visit his restaurant.

We had gone up to Woodstock Chimes for the annual factory sale and took a drive over after wandering around Woodstock for a short time. We were early, they don't open until five, so we sat at the bar for fifteen minutes and read the menus. This way we knew what we wanted when Josh came to take our order. We started with an appetizer, the Saigon Street Calamari with peanut and chili sauces for 9.95, see the picture above. It was delicious. The calamari was cooked perfectly and the chili sauce had just enough heat without being obnoxious. Good start, especially with the Hurricane Kitty I'd ordered. By the way, Ric was in the kitchen cooking along with his chefs as you can look right through windows and see the kitchen. That's something I like, a restaurant that has nothing to hide.

I had the Northwinds Farm burger (named for the farm the beef came from) with blue cheese and bacon with fried plantains for my side. I'd ordered it medium, but it arrived much closer to well. Even so, it was still juicy and had a nice fresh taste that comes with quality beef. There was a charred sear on the outside, like a steakhouse burger done in the broiler. The bun was a brioche roll and the cheese was melted perfectly. The bacon was delicious too. The plantains had a slight sweetness and were a nice change from fries. Oh, and that green thing on the lettuce . . . it was a pickled caper berry and it was delicious with a nice tart bite to it.

It was a good burger, but be aware that this was a fifteen dollar burger. That's right, a fifteen dollar burger, thirteen for the burger and a buck each for the blue cheese and the bacon. Like I said, it was a good burger but for fifteen bucks it had better be (I'm going for a twenty dollar one in Ellenville at some point and that one better just amaze me). Teresa had the Ropa sandwich for 11.95 which was a roast done somewhat like pulled beef on a roll with a rice side dish. It was good, but she did have to take quite a bit of fat out of it before she could eat it. She said it was good, but nothing great.

Total bill? $42 buck plus tip for an appetizer, two dinners and a beer. Definitely worth the trip. The service was excellent and very attentive. They have a website for more info.