City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Archive for January, 2009

But I must flip the salads…

I don’t know what it is, but whenever I see fruit salads in clamshell boxes I get this overwhelming urge to flip them…


taken at Michael’s Cafe, Marietta St., home of a not-bad turkey burger

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Love the Bagel You’re With

When I pulled into Toco Hill mall on Sunday morning, Stephen Stills was on the radio making a very good point that applies to many situations in life: “If you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with.” This advice was serendipitous, as I was headed to Bagel Palace.

I’ve always liked this bagel bakery/Jewish deli well enough. It isn’t as good as the delis I grew up with in Washington, D.C. (faint praise damnation if ever there was), but it hits the spot. The couple of meals I’ve eaten in the restaurant have been pretty mediocre, so I  join the line snaking around the pastry counter for carryout.


The black and white cookies and Danish pastries never tempt me (they always look a little too shelf stable), but never mind. I’m here for the bagels.

I’m sorry this picture looks more like a Borg hatchery than actual bagels, but you’ll have to trust me that there are over a dozen varieties of bagels plus bialys — most of them still warm from the oven.

Next I head …

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My favorite afternoon snack

Greek yogurt with pumpkin seeds and agave nectar — kinda/sorta healthy.

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Buddha’s Hands at Whole Foods Market + bergamots!

Yes, the zest of this ancient variety of lemon is wonderfully fragrant. But do you really want something that looks like an octopus from the Alpha Centauri system in your kitchen?


The fruit, native to northern India, is presented as an offering to Buddha in temples. People reportedly look for fruit where the “fingers” curl around and touch each other like mudras. 

But as far as incredibly fragrant yet hard-to-find citrus varieties go, my heart belongs to the bergamot.



Credit: Wikimedia



California Citrus Specialties, a company that trades in exotic varities of citrus, recently sent a sample box to the AJC. I could smell the exotic perfume of the rind as soon as I opened the box. Some were green, others had ripened to the orangey-yellow color of a Meyer lemon. 

If you like Earl Grey tea, scented with bergamot zest, you know the smell — it’s that top note or, really, that top chord. Three notes — tang, tropical flowers, and fresh lumber — in harmony. As least, that’s how …

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Restaurant Stories

Here’s this week’s column — a trip to Marietta to eat New York-style pizza with pizza expert Jeff Varasano and my balky 11-year-old:

Restaurant Stories

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Candy obsession

A couple of months ago I spent a long weekend in London with my wife and daughter. While my wife was working, I took the poor kid on a forced march through food markets, museums and tourist sites. After 5 solid hours of walking, I let her pick out anything she wanted from a convenience store in Mayfair. This is what she chose:

The Nestlé Aero bar — basically a chocolate bar that’s so puffed up with air bubbles it thinks it’s a piece of Styrofoam packing material — comes in regular and mint versions. This is the mint, and its insides are the color of a cartoon crocodile:

(Yes, the picture is fuzzy: I warned you about photo-suckage.)

I became kind of obsessed with these things — that rush of minty, melty cheap chocolate — and ate as many as I could in England, cobbling together my last few pence in the airport. I recently (uh, oh) found them again at Cost Plus, where they cost a dollar and change. Also, Sawicki’s Meats Seafood and More in Decatur carries them for a heftier …

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