Category Archives: Eats

Judith Robinson Cox at Cake Ann

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Next time you are at Cake Ann, be sure to have a look at the fun and whimsical work of Judith Robinson Cox currently hanging in the bakery. Judith has arranged and photographed her miniatures atop Cake Ann confections.

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FABULOUS UPCOMING WINE DINNER AT PASSPORTS AND CHECK OUT THE NEW ART WORK ON DISPLAY

dscf4337My husband and I like to make it to every wine dinner event at Passports because it is a wonderful opportunity to taste outstanding and delicious entrees, appetizers, and wines that we wouldn’t ordinarily try. For example, I LOVE Passport’s lobster roll and think it is the absolute best around. So that’s what I usually have when there and it is always fabulous. At their upcoming wine dinner, which is this coming Thursday, September 22nd, the first course is Captain Joe’s lobster in sherry cream sauce with Pastaio’s handmade campenelle pasta. Doesn’t that sound simply splendid? Each course at Passport’s wine dinners are paired with a thoughtful selection of excellent wines, and with the lobster, we will be enjoying Stags Leap Chardonnay from Chef Eric’s special reserve. Come, I guarantee you will not be disappointed!!

September Wine Dinner

1st Course: Captain Joe’s lobster in sherry cream sauce over Pastaio’s handmade campenelle pasta, served with Stags leap Chardonnay.

2nd Course: Jerk pork shank w/sweet potato hash accompanied by Hess Select Trio, Red Blend.

3rd Course: Pepper crusted Brandt beef tenderloin, grilled polenta, radish and tomato Béarnaise with Rodney Strong Brother’s Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon.

4th Course: Pumpkin pie, from locally grown pumpkins, and pistachio crumble, with Argyle, Vintage Brut.

To reserve a seat and for more information on the September Wine Dinner call 978-281-3680.

While there check out the new paintings by artists Elizabeth Bish and Coco Berkman. 

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Brunch at the 525 is back

SUNDAY BRUNCH is back! You asked, we listened! EVERY SUNDAY 10am to 3pm

12 Lexington Avenue
Magnolia Gloucester, MA 01930
978-525-3230

All your favorites…..Omelets, Eggs Benedict, Pancakes, Mimosa, Parfait, Bacon Bloody Marys, Monte Cristos, Fried Dough, Burgers & more!

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Post storm Hermine: see the sea of seaweed and mosses on Long Beach

During the last days of summer, the sands at Long Beach shift to form a ledge that we affectionately call the ‘August shelf’. The slant is a challenge walking or running and a ramp or jumping platform if the tide is right.  Children engage in all manner of parapet building and collapsing. The ocean remains warm and the waves can seem bigger. These marks –annual gifts from nature– gently nudge us to fall. This year, as a result of tropical storm Hermine, there is a bonus shelf of seaweed brought in by majestic tumultuous waves. Don’t miss a fantastic chance to inspect species common to Gloucester, Cape Ann and the East Coast. Seagulls and clothing pop against a uniform blanket of red.  From a distance, the deep color of the seaweed seems the natural inspiration  for the architectural details of Cape Ann Motor Inn.

Look closely as there are so many species intertwined and clumped together teeming with texture and color! Be inspired to create: the Cape Ann Museum includes volumes of pressed seaweeds and mosses. Learn more: Isabel Natti did the algae plant drawings for The Sea is All About Us, a pioneer book on local marine life and shores by Sara Fraser Robbins and Clarice Yentsch. Visit Maritime Gloucester to learn about life at the shore. Garden: a friend collects some seaweed for her beds. Eat: I haven’t tried making my own seaweed salad but I have eyed Irish moss pudding recipes. Pudding anyone?

Irish Moss pudding:  1 cup (dead, rinsed, cleaned, possibly soaked) moss with a quart of milk in a double boiler for 15 – 30 minutes, strain out the moss. Add sugar to taste, and optional flavoring (citrus, coffee, vanilla, green tea, whatever you like). Pour into mold and refrigerate or blend a health drink. The consistency is thicker relative to time.

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a few seaweed examples I teased out from the pile

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Henry Allen & The New Swingset welcomes New England Conservatory bassist James Heazlewood Dale tonight! Join us for a late supper, great drinks, and great entertainment!

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86 MAIN STREET,

GLOUCESTER, MA

(978) 283-8228

www.jalapenosgloucester.com

Holy Antipasto!

Back in June I had a work gathering at a friend’s house and promised to bring something. After working all day and then bringing the boys home to Rockport before heading back up to Hamilton, I didn’t leave enough time to finish preparing what I had originally planned to bring.  So…. I picked up the phone.  I called Mike’s Place in Gloucester and ordered a 1/2 tray Antipasto.  It was ready in 15 minutes, it was HUGE, it came with lots of homemade pita pockets, and it was only about $25.

As simple as it was, it was a big hit.  And…there was a ton left over to bring to work the next day to feed the troops.

Once this summer I ordered the same salad tray again and packed it a few days in a row for easy beach lunches…and for a couple quick light dinners. The only downside is that the salad is SO incredibly big that we could probably eat it two meals per day for five days in a row….but that would be a bit monotonous….even though it is yummy enough to do so.

After heading back to work full-time yesterday to plan for a new school year…and with the boys having a 1/2 day soccer camp each day all week long…the same 1/2 tray antipasto was calling my name.  It made for a nice dinner last night for all four of us, it will be my lunch today at work, it will be waiting for the boys after 4 hours of soccer this afternoon, and will probably be lunch and dinner again once or twice Wednesday and/or Thursday.

Long story short…. order one!   Perfect during a super busy week….especially when it is too hot to cook.

Mike’s Place

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Throwback Thursday: Founder of Farnham’s Restaurant grew up in Gloucester

Matilda “Tillie” Farnham was born and raised in Gloucester, before moving to Main Street in Essex where her husband Joseph ran a clam shucking business in the backyard. Twenty years later they opened their business on the gorgeous site overlooking the marsh and Hog Island. That year was 1938.

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Northshore Magazine: August 2016 issue Best of North Shore includes so much on Gloucester and Cape Ann!

20160815_100527Before we dive into Northshore Magazine’s Fall Favorites September issue, let’s take a moment to acknowledge its Best of North Shore August issue. Although votes did not come in all Cape Ann for categories you thought might be a shoe-in: best beach, bakery, breakfast, burger, clam chowder, farmer’s market, art gallery, art anything (!), museum, or attraction — Gloucester and all of Cape Ann businesses receive a lot of deserved attention! Signing in to vote may be a barrier to entry for some. Still, 150,000+ votes were cast. You can check out what won in many additional categories in the 300pp monster issue.

Congratulations to Cape Ann 2016 Best of awardees!

DINE ALFRESCO – The Market Restaurant, Gloucester

FRIED CLAMS- Seaport Grill, Gloucester and Top Dog (seasonal), Rockport; reader’s choice: Woodman’s

LOBSTER DINNER- Roy Moore Lobster, Rockport; reader’s choice Woodman’s of Essex

LOBSTER ROLL- Seaport Grille, Gloucester

PIZZA- Short and Main, Gloucester in a three way tie

ROMANTIC- Duckworth’s, Gloucester

SANDWICHES- Willow Rest, Gloucester

WATERVIEW RESTAURANT- The Market Restaurant, Gloucester

HOTEL BAR- Beauport Hotel, Gloucester

CHOCOLATE- Rockport Fudgery, Rockport (seasonal)

HOTEL- Beauport Hotel

CHARTER BOAT- Schooner Thomas E Lannon

COMMUNITY WALK RUN BIKE BY SEASON – summer Twin Lobster Half Marathon & 1 mile Race, Gloucester; winter Happy Holidays Half Merrython, Gloucester;  reader’s choice, Motif #1 Day 5K, Rockport

FESTIVAL (FALL)- Essex Clamfest, Essex

GOLF COURSE- reader’s choice Bass Rocks Golf Club, Gloucester

MARINA- Cape Ann Marina, Gloucester

NATURE TRAILS- Ravenswood Park, Gloucester

BOOKS-The Bookstore of Gloucester

MATERNITY CLOTHING- The Urchin Exchange, Gloucester

CONCIERGE- reader’s choice Tending the Sweet Life, Gloucester

DANCING- Minglewood Tavern, Gloucester

LIVE MUSIC VENUE INDOORS- Shalin Liu, Rockport

 

 

 

PIGEON COVE FERMENTS OPENS IT’S DOORS! Free Beer and samples tonight!

Last night I got the chance to sample the absolute best sauerkraut I’ve ever tasted, no doubt! After talking with Kristin and Dylan Lindquist, the owners and creators, you quickly realize how much passion and excitement has gone into creating this very unique product right here in Cape Ann. It’s small batches, hand made, locally sourced, and damn tasty. What’s not to love?  For more on their story please go to their new website http://www.pigeoncoveferments.com  and have a look, or like them on Facebook.

Meanwhile, plan on going down to see them for free beer and samples tonight Aug.6th from 5:30 until @ 10 Blackburn Center, Gloucester Ma 01930. 

With 4 flavors for sale, and another on the way, you will not be disappointed!  TRUST ME!

http://www.pigeoncoveferments.com

A & B Burgers

I finally made it to A & B Burgers on Cabot Street in Beverly the other day.  I had always meant to go when they were in Salem after hearing such great things from so many friends, but never did.  Now they are just a couple of miles away from where I work and it still took me several months to pay them a visit.

Several of us went Friday evening after work.  We had a great time and a pretty yummy burger.  I’m a sucker for sweet potato fries….and my blood orange margarita was pretty refreshing too.  For the record, I went with the Sweet and Salty Burger.  Burraga cheese, fig jam, bacon, and arugula.  Kind of tremendous…if you’re in the mood for a burger.

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Call ahead for the best subs of summer. Gloucester beaches sandwich directory.

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Hungry? Pack light. You’ll pass great sandwich shops, locally owned and operated, en route to Gloucester’s magnificent beaches. Jeff’s Variety can set you up for a good lunch to go wherever you’re headed including Good Harbor Beach, Long Beach, or the back shore. Jeff says that there are many repeat customers that come back each and every season–for years–on their way to Good Harbor Beach. IF you have a big group, you can order trays with finger sandwiches. Sandwich platters featuring Virgilio’s rolls need at least two days notice to prepare. They’re open Sundays. What else? “Yes!” the answer to my question if they have plenty of call ahead requests from cars caught in traffic. Passengers calling only, please!

Scroll down the post for a one-stop, sub-shopping Gloucester directory with phone numbers and links. I could add in our favorite choices from each place.

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GLOUCESTER BEACHES SANDWICH DIRECTORY

*the great 2013 Good Morning Gloucester Italian sub winners

on the way to Gloucester’s GOOD HARBOR BEACH

on the way to Gloucester/ Rockport LONG BEACH

on the way downtown headed in any direction to Gloucester beaches: Pavilion, Cressy, Half Moon, Niles, Good Harbor

  • Cafe Sicilia (978) 283-7345 sandwiches and pizza slices
  • Cave (978) 283-0896 for baguette/cheese French picnic style fare
  • Cupboard (978) 281-1908
  • *Destino’s Subs 
  • Cape Ann Farmer’s Market (Thursdays) fresh produce & baguette/cheese French picnic style fare
  • *Jeff’s Variety (978) 281-5800
  • Leonardo’s  (978) 281-7882
  • Last Stop (978) 281-2616
  • Mike’s  (978) 282-0777
  • Morning Glory (978) 281-1851
  • Poseidons (978) 290-4313
  • *Sclafanis (978) 283-6622
  • *Virgilios (978) 283-5295
  • Yellow Sub Shop (978) 281-2217

on the way to Gloucester’s NILES BEACH

  • Last Stop (978) 281-2616
  • Sailor Stan’s to go (978) 281-4470

on the way to Gloucester’s PLUM COVE BEACH / ANNISQUAM/ LANESVILLE 

  • Captain Hooks (978) 282-4665
  • Plum Cove Grind (978) 281-3377
  • Willow Rest  sub and/or the farmer’s market fresh produce, cheese, specialty prepared meals picnic option (978)283-2417

on the way to Gloucester’s WINGAERSHEEK BEACH

  • main concession stand at Gloucester’s Wingaersheek beach (978) 281-9785
  • Annie’s Variety  (978) 283-2887
  • Marshall’s Farm Stand (picnic route rather than sandwich counter)  (978) 283-2168 (pints of fruit, munchies, loaf artisan bread, mozzarella specialty cheeses)

I haven’t forgotten Magnolia–just missing Magnolia’s House of Pizza. ON Mondays there’s Cape Ann Farmer’s market for Magnolia. “M” for Mondays, “M” for Magnolia.

SENSATIONAL FRENCH WINE DINNER!!!

Words won’t adequately describe how delicious was Passport’s French dinner. I had only my cell phone camera with me but I think you will get the idea. 

IMG_97271st Course ~ Superb panko crusted super fresh big eye tuna, crispy rare, with sweet and spicy sriracha glaze, and carrot snow pea slaw. My husband says it is his new favorite entree, anywhere, anytime. Served with sparkling Brut Dargent Blanc de Blanc

IMG_9730Rock shrimp in basil pesto with Danielle’s Pastaio escarole, radicchio, and cheese ravioli. U-n-b-e-l-i-e-v-a-b-l-e! With Jean and Paul Benoit Droin Chablis.

IMG_9740Beyond amazingly delicious hard sear all natural sirloin with marchand de vin, potato gratin, and braised kale. Served with Louis Latour Pinot Noir Domaine de Valmoissine. 

Nick DiFazio from M.S. Walker did an outstanding job selecting the accompanying wines. The three entree-sized servings were simply exquisite and, along with the blood orange sorbet for dessert, it was one of my favorite dinners I have ever experienced. Thank you Passports for the wonderfully joyful cooking. Hats off to Chefs Eric, Jeremy, and Alex!

The cost of the wine dinners is 45.00 per person, which in my opinion is an extraordinarily low price considering the caliber of the food and wine. Each course is served with a VERY generous glass of perfectly paired wine, four glasses in all. IMG_9752

Nick DiFazio from M.S. Walker

Another perfect night for a FREE Movie at I4-C2 – Finding Nemo Tonight – Bring Food Donations for The Open Door

Last week over 700 people (including plenty of “Pink Ladies”) flocked to I4-C2 to enjoy “Grease” under the stars. Tonight will be just as beautiful, if a tad cooler. Perfect viewing weather for “Finding Nemo.” Bring non-perishable food to donate to The Open Door Food Pantry and do some good while having fun with the family!

Had My 1st Beer at Top Dog

My husband, Finn, and I went for a bike ride throughout Rockport yesterday while Thatcher was out sailing.  We stopped at Top Dog for lunch and, after hearing that if I were to order a beer it would be the 1st one they poured that day, I had to have one.  Mind you it was 1:30 in the afternoon…and perfectly acceptable.

Super yummy lunch and a very cold beer.

The last photo shows a VERY happy customer raving to the owner and cook about the fact that her fried clams were the absolute BEST she has ever had.

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Muffin and a View

If someone were to ask me what my favorites foods are, I’d have to say a really good cheese, sushi, a perfectly ripe watermelon, a delicious piece of fish, and the cranberry nut muffin from Helmut’s Strudel in Rockport.

So, as often as possible, I steal away solo or with the boys (who worship at the altar of the raspberry cream croissant) and grab a quick treat at Helmut’s on “the Neck.”

Last week, Finn and I enjoyed a quick muffin and croissant on our own….only to be interrupted (happily) by Thatcher who arrived on his bike on the way to his early morning sailing lesson.

Monday, prior to heading off to work for a few hours, I hit Helmut’s on my own and ate my muffin at the end of the new Rockport Breakwater.  A great way to organize my thoughts and do some strategizing before leaving town to start my day.

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