May 21, 2010

Simple Syrups I like to consider myself a “foodie in progress” in that I love to eat, I love to try different foods, and I like to cook.  For the record, I’m an expert in none, but the joy for me is in the trying.  One of my favorite things to do when I am out of town is eat.  I started the trend in Chicago on my last visit, hitting up Friends Sushi restaurant, and really, truly enjoying it.

I spent my first two days down in Atlanta with a co-worker/friend of mine who appreciates food much like (if not more) than I do, so I was in good company.  Sometimes, I think it’s tough to travel with The Boy, because I get the feeling like it’s a race to see who can hold out longer when it comes to food, which often leaves me cranky and deprived.

But not my co-worker: I’d turn to her and say, “I feel like having a snack, how about you?” And she’d say, “Sure.”  Or, as is the case with our drinks, she asked me, “You want to have a drink at the bar?” And I’d say, “Absolutely!”  Hence, the Lavender Drop and the John Daley.

Alas, I did not get many/any pictures of my food, but I thought I would post some recipes/links that are very much inspired by my trip to Atlanta.

Sweet Carolina Tea Vodka (you must be 21 to view this site)
The principal ingredient in the John Daley, this is a vodka infused with the taste of traditional southern sweet tea.  My co-worker and I are now on the hunt to find a vendor in Ohio.

Simple Syrup
Simple syrup is the most efficient way to flavor cold drinks.  I was offered four different simple syrups with my iced tea for breakfast at the Loews hotel.  Below are some recipes that you might enjoy.
Simple Syrup, care of AllRecipes
Peach-Infused Simple Syrup, care of eHow
Ginger-Infused Simple Syrup, care of Martha Stewart Weddings

Corn Bisque
This delicious soup was served at the final day’s luncheon at the W Hotel in Midtown.  It was fantastic, but a little salty.  I’d like to reproduce this recipe so I can taste it not as salty.  Here are some variations on the recipe I had:
Crab and Corn Bisque, care of AllRecipes
Bacon Corn Chowder, care of Good Housekeeping

By far, my favorite food-discovery on my trip, and my new instant-breakfast staple.  There are many variations on grits, but here are some that I’m planning on trying in the future.
Shrimp’n’Grits, care of the Deen Brothers
Fallen Grits Souffles with Tomatoes and Goat Cheese, care of Bon Apetit
Sausage Cheese Grits, care of Gourmet

Restaurants I Recommend:
South City Kitchen – wasn’t busy on a Sunday, but I still think that by the grace of our bartender, Jimmy at Bar Eleven, did we get a reservation for seating for dinner.  I had the Vegetable Plate, and my co-worker had the Buttermilk Fried Chicken.  I tried okra for the first time, and I enjoyed it.  My late granny’s edict still stands, oddly slimy.
Bar Eleven, Loews Hotel – great drink selection, great service.  I had bisquits and gravy for breakfast, and this is where I was given the four different simple syrups for my iced tea.
RA Sushi, Midtown – I didn’t realize that this was a chain of sushi restaurants, but perhaps that’s the best condition.  We ate the Viva Las Vegas Roll, the Tunacado, and RA Chips and Salsa.
Shout Restaurant – the company I work for treated us to dinner on Tuesday night at this restaurant, which was right around the corner from the W.  I ate the Caprese salad, the 10oz NY Strip, and had Blueberry Cobbler for dessert.

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