Category Archives: Eats

Welcome to the late Ken Kesey and son Zane’s magic bus Further

Florida visitors Sharon St Clair and husband Chuck King rolled into Gloucester about four weeks ago. By chance, they stopped into Charlie's Place and bumped into the Merry Pranksters. This trip, made by son Zane Kesey, replicated the journey from CA to NY made by renowned author Ken Kesey (One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest, starring Jack Nicholson) in 1964.

Florida visitors Sharon St Clair and husband Chuck King rolled into Gloucester about four weeks ago. By chance, they stopped into Charlie’s Place and bumped into the Merry Pranksters. This trip, made by son Zane Kesey, replicated the journey from CA to NY made by renowned author Ken Kesey (One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest, starring Jack Nicholson) in 1964.

1013384_699246396828088_3453607676989411140_n 1601386_699243326828395_4654099066811579173_nAfter the success of Ken Kesey’s novel “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Ken and this band of Merry Pranksters drove from The West Coast to the East in 1964. Fifty years later, on September 24, 2014, they came to Gloucester, and had breakfast at Charlie’s Place https://www.facebook.com/pages/Charlies-Place/111697215533360. My friends were there…

Sharon photographed the Furthur crew at breakfast. She and husband Chuck gave them their table for the bus crew. Ken Kesey’s son Zane sits center waving his hand. Sharon and Chuck leave tomorrow for home. I got to know what wonderful and generous people they are… and like me, they’re adventurous. Fair winds and smoothe seas, my friends forever.

Zentagle and Attack of the Cucuzza!

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GMG FOB Renate Paster-Pusch writes the following ~

“It was so nice to talk to you at the Block Party. As I said, I enjoy your contributions to the GMG blog so much and we listen to the podcast, when we are going on drives. We have not listened to the latest podcast, but will be able to hopefully later today

As promised, I am sending you the picture of Werner being attacked by the snake gourds, that Joey put on the blog 2 (?) years ago. I am also attaching a picture of what I am doing with the dried gourds. I am using Zentangle patterns. I am a certified Zentangle Teacher and am teaching these patterns. You can find out more about zentangle (if you are interested) at www.zentangle.com. I would be glad to give you a complimentary lesson, but I know that you are extremely busy and might not have the time, but it is a great stress reliever and is also called “Yoga of the brain”.

Hope you enjoy the pictures and keep up the good work!”

Thank you Renate for your very kind words and for the offer to learn Zentagle. Your hand painted cucuzza is stunning and reminds me of aboriginal art for didgeridoos. So glad to know you are enjoying the podcasts and Love the photo of Werner!

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YUMMMMMM ~ Get Your FRESH HOT APPLE CIDER DONUTS at BROTHERS BREW!

Brothers Brew Rockport  Laura© 2014 Kim Smith. .

After the chill of early morning filming, my favorite place to stop along the way home is Brothers Brew. The coffee is really, really good–smooth, flavorful, never bitter, and always super fresh (even the decaf). Their housemade doughnuts, TO-DIE-FOR!

Brothers Brew Donuts Rockport © 2014 Kim Smith. .Brothers Brew’s current seasonal selection of delicious donuts includes apple cider and pumpkin glaze.

Brothers Brew Rockport -2 ©2014 Kim Smith. .Morning Mecca!

Brothers Brew Rockport © 2014 Kim Smith.Terry Bracket Brothers Brew Rockport © 2014 Kim Smith. .Laura, left, and Terry Brackett, Donut-Maker Extraordinaire!

Big Block Party Bash Celebrates End of Summer

Even after dark, the street is packed. Here is my neighbor Jalapenos Mexican Restaurant. Always busy and always tasty. All the restaurants serve late.

SATURDAY from 6-11, this year’s final Block Party features a stellar mix of entertainment, including The GHS Docksiders Big Band, a quintet of Boston jazz maestros and a variety of other talent on five outdoor stages PLUS The Brass Fed Horns (featuring Carlos Menezes, Jr., the hardest working musician on Cape Ann) roaming Main Street with Gloucester’s version of Little Italy at the West End (from THE CAVE to Washington).

COME OUT AND PARTY LIKE IT’S STILL SUMMER — ’cause it is!

See the Entertainment SCHEDULE BY STAGE HERE

Entertainment SCHEDULE BY TIME HERE

Participating Restaurants & Merchants here.

GloucesterCast With Guests Kim Smith, Toby Pett and Host Joey Ciaramitaro Taped 09/14/14

GloucesterCastSquareGloucesterCast With Guests Kim Smith, Toby Pett and Host Joey Ciaramitaro Taped 09/14/14

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Topics Include: Kim Smith, Toby Pett, Kim’s Eyewear,Studio Monday Night Football Promo, We Review The Gloucester Trip Advisor Top Ten Restaurants, Little Known Tip About Duckworth’s, Passports, Virgilio’s, George’s Coffee Shop, The Causeway, The Azorean, Café Bishco, Brighams, Beef and Bun, Sugar Mag’s, Topside Grille and Pub, Lobsta Land, Write In A Nice Review For Your Favorite Local Restaurants That You Feel deserve A Good Trip Advisor Rating, Willow Rest BLT, The Bottle Bill Discussion, Toby Really Wants Everyone To Know That He Recycles, Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson, Rape Culture, Cold Brewed Coffee, Bonavita Porcelain Pour Over Coffee Filter, New Method For Handling Press Releases, Christopher Anderson, Hye Tyde, John Hintlian, Saying Goodbye To Summer, Heated Mattress Pad May Be The Greatest Invention Ever.

Subscribe to The GloucesterCast Podcast by Email

Thanks To The Earl Foote Band For The Intro Music. Download Gloucester Til the End Free Here At Gimme Sound

Click to Listen to The GMG Podcast On Stitcher Radio On Demand For Free

Joey and Toby

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Making Limoncello with Friends and Nina Groppo’s Cucuzza

Groppo limoncello Feast of saint Joseph -2 ©Kim Smith 2014 copy

Left to right, front: Nina Groppo and Kathy Pratl; back: Jane Beddus and Catherine Gunn

Groppo limoncello Feast of saint Joseph ©Kim Smith 2014

Kathy Pratl limoncello Feast of saint Joseph ©Kim Smith 2014 copyThis past weekend filming continued on the Feast of Saint Joseph Community Film Project. Nina and Frank Groppo serve the most wonderful homemade limoncello during the Feast and we decided back in March to include limoncello-making in the story of how Saint Joseph’s special day is celebrated in Gloucester. Nina, Kathy, Catherine, and Jane not only graciously agreed to allow filming, but also included me in the preparations and you’ll see what fun we had in the forthcoming film!

Kathy Pratl cucuzza limoncello Feast of saint Joseph ©Kim Smith 2014 copy

While at the Groppo’s garden you can’t help but notice their amazing crop of cucuzza (pronounced ku-koz-za, also goo-gootz), hanging from their handmade arbor. Cucuzza is an Italian squash that from what I understand, in English, means something like “super long squash.” A single squash can grow ten inches in one day!

For our first of several limoncello-making days, Nina created a beautiful lunch. She served cucuzza soup, made from both the fruit and the leaves. It was fabulous and delicious and like no other soup I had sampled before. She also baked wonderfully fresh hake filets and prepared a lovely tomato salad, with heirloom tomatoes from her garden.

Nina described how she hand pollinates the fruit ~ Each plant produces male and female flowers. She explains that it is easy to identify the female flowers as they have a small swollen fruit (ovary) on the stem, just behind the flowers. She plucks the male flowers off the vine and gently brushes together the male’s anther and female’s stigma, the flower’s reproduction parts, which insures good pollination. By removing the male flowers from the vine, you are not eliminating any potential fruit because the male flowers don’t bear fruit.

Cucuzza Groppo ©kim Smith 2014

I have been planning an arbor for my garden patio for sometime and after seeing and tasting the Groppo’s fabulous cucuzza, I am not waiting any longer to build one!

Thank you dear Nina, Kathy, Catherine, and Jane for your continuing help with the Saint Joseph Film Project!

 

 

Destination Gloucester….celebrity run in.

As if some steamers and a good drink at Halibut Point with a great friend isn’t excellent enough….last night I happened across a wonderful party of about 20 diners out to celebrate a wedding of dear friends.  While we didn’t chat long, the happiness exuding from their large table was palpable and I was so happy to have had the chance to meet them.

The fact that I met them at all stemmed from the fact that some of the younger-than-me wait staff recognized one of the guests as a very handsome actor. Doing my due diligence as a GMG contributor (who happened to be wearing my GMG baseball hat…go figure) I introduced myself and got a bit of the scoop.

Yanic Triesdale, a Canadian actor, also adored in the United States as Michael on The Gilmore Girls in addition to other series and mini-series, is in town to celebrate the destination wedding of dear friends Isabelle Lafleche and very soon-to-be-husband, Patrice.  While, maybe not as recognizable in person to those dining at Halibut, Isabelle is the fantastic, and incredibly beautiful, author of the novels J’Adore New York and J’Adore Paris.  I can’t get to Barnes and Nobles fast enough.  She also happens, as it turns out, to be good friends with GMG’s own, Kim Smith.

They were completely charming and talking with them made me smile.  I was, for the record, incredibly happy to learn that my own dear friend, while recognizing that I was mildly intruding on a rehearsal dinner of sorts, bought the table a couple of bottles of wine in thanks for humoring me.

Excellent examples of friendship on both sides of my iPhone last night.

Cheers to friendship….mine, Kim’s, everyone’s.  Cheers to Isabelle and Patrice on a glorious wedding and a lifetime of happiness. How special that they chose Rockport, of all places, to seal the deal.

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Welcoming Lunch at Passports Restaurant

India, Lyla, Shawna Passports Restaurant Gloucester MA ©Kim Smith 2014Over Labor Day weekend we went with our daughter’s boyfriend, Matt, to Passports for a beautiful lunch. We were greeted by wonderfully friendly, helpful, and super professional India, Lyla, and Shawna.

Passports Restaurant Popovers ©kim Smith 2014 copyAs all who have eaten at Passports know, within a few moments after being seated, guests are immediately served fresh from the oven, piping hot popovers. This is always a welcome treat, and was especially so for Liv and Matt that afternoon as they had been hiking all around Coolidge Reservation earlier in the day.Passports Restuarant Fried Oysters ©Kim Smith 2014

Next we shared a plate of Eric’s fried oysters and without a doubt, I think they are THE BEST FRIED OYSTERS in town! What makes Passport’s oysters so special you may be wondering? Because every single time we go, their fried oysters are fantastically crisp on the outside and sweet-salty fresh oyster perfection on the inside; Passports oysters are never, ever soggy or greasy.

Passports Restaurant Lobster Roll Sald ©Kim Smith 2014We ALL ordered Eric’s fabulous Lobster Salad Roll and it was divine–big chunks of fresh sweet Captain Joe and Sons succulent lobster meat, surrounded by a lovely array of fresh seasonal veggies (mine is pictured, requested without roll).

Thanks Eric, Lyla, India, and Shawna for welcoming Matt and showing him one of the reasons why we love Gloucester!

Peaches Ripening in the Warm Sun ~ Do I Hear Bellinis, Anyone?

Belle of Georgia peach ©Kim Smith 2014 copy

Bellinis would make a festive addition to your Labor Day/Schooner Festival weekend brunch or dinner, especially at this time of year when the farmer’s markets and grocer’s shelves are brimming with tree-ripened fresh fruit.

Our ‘Belle of Georgia’ white-flesh peach tree never disappoints. Each and every year since first planting, this semi-dwarf peach tree gives us mouth-watering sweet peaches. Not all of the peaches are perfect and the ones that are not eaten out of hand are whipped into smoothies, cooked in confections, or macerated with Prosecco.

~ Bellini Recipe ~

Marinate peeled, pitted, and sliced (halved or quartered) peaches in Prosecco for several hours. Just before serving, puree the peach-Prosecco mixture. Spoon the puree into champagne glasses, about 1/3 to 1/2 filled, and to taste. Gently add more Prosecco to the puree. Add a drop of raspberry liquor, Chambord, or a few fresh raspberries to the puree, to give the drink that beautiful pinky-peach glow.

Bellinis are traditionally made with white-flesh peaches such as ‘Belle of Georgia,’ but any variety of sweet peach will do.

Peach tree blossom Belle of Georgia ©Kim Smith 2011‘Belle of Georgia’ Peach Blossoms

In flower and in fruit, the peach is a pretty tree for your landscape ~

Belle of Georgia peach -2 ©Kim Smith 2014.j

Read an excerpt about the ‘Belle of Georgia’ from my book Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities ~ Notes from a Gloucester Garden here ~

Read more

Gloucester Welcomes Schooners with Loaves of Warm Virgilio’s Bread!

Joe Virgilio ©Kim Smith 2014 -2.This past spring while working on Gloucester’s Feast of Saint Joseph film project, I filmed Joe Virgilio making Virgilio’s Saint Joseph rolls and wrote a post for GMG about Virgilios. At that time, Al Bezanson, owner of the Green Dragon Schooner, shared that during Schooner Festival, Joe Virgilio welcomes the schooners with warm loaves of freshly baked bread as they sail into Gloucester Harbor.

Al provides more details:

“Hi Kim

Virgilio’s started donating bread to the visiting schooners two years ago, and it now threatens to become a popular new tradition.  The first year Brett and Max Ramsey, in Brett’s high speed inflatable, met up with schooners as they entered the harbor and presented them with a loaf or two along with a pineapple.  In some cases the bread was still warm from the oven.  When that happened with Adventurer, out came the butter, and the bread was enjoyed in a flash. Last year Max and Dom Nesta made the deliveries, and more of the Sea Scouts may be handling it this year.”

Schooner welcome

In the photos Al provided, Green Dragon had just received a delivery in the outer harbor as she entered from Manchester.

Schooner welcome 1

I was so struck by the Virgilio’s generous, welcoming gesture and thought what better time to pass along Al’s story than the night before the Schooners begin to arrive. As Al points out, “When you get around schooner people you may hear them talking about the need to have extra butter aboard in Gloucester. This is a very big deal in fending off other ports that are vying for schooners that same weekend. Thanks Joe and the high speed Ramsey/Nesta delivery guys!”

Joe Virgilio bread gloucester ma ©Kim Smith 2014

Virgilio's ©Kim Smith 2014

10606178_718995488173406_6058799094986917975_nDuring summer months Virgilios makes fabulously delicious and delightfully refreshing Italian ice, created only with pure fresh fruit juices and cane sugar (not corn syrup).

For store hours and menu visit their Facebook page here.

Read more about Virgilio’s Saint Joseph rolls here.

Joe Virgilio St. Joseph Bread ©Kim Smith 2014Joe Virgilio Making Saint Joseph Rolls

 

 

 

Isn’t it Ironic?

An ironic place for some seagulls to snack on lobster legs, isn’t it?

Brazen little buggers sat right on top of our live lobsters to dine on some of their cousins.  Well, I can’t really prove that they’re actual cousins…but, you know what I mean.

I can almost hear the lobsters in the crate….”Enough already.  I can’t take it. STOP!  Why are you doing this?  What more do you want from me?”

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Back To School: Then and Now

A great friend from High School shared this with me last night and it made me laugh.  As it is so timely (and funny) I thought it was totally worth sharing with you all.  As a child of the 70s and a harried mom of two young boys…plus a Montessori Elementary Teacher….I can SOOOO relate.

Many of my back to school memories from the 70s indeed include several of the things that are mentioned (god, I loved those thermoses)…and, between you and me, I see a bit of myself in the “today” routine also. :)

http://www.scarymommy.com/back-to-school-the-70s-vs-today/

Back in the 70s and early 80s much of my back-to-school shopping was done at Hill’s in Ipswich and included a trip to Pennyworth’s across the street (was that the name?).

Some of my must-haves from waaaay back then you may ask?

Happy Back-to-School!

 

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