CULINARY-OCCASIONS

FIRST COURSE
Weekend Pick: Bacon, Sports & Beer Celebration at Chicago Union Station

If bacon and beer are your two major food groups, this Saturday is going to be your idea of heaven, because Chicago Union Station is turning into the second annual Bacon, Sports & Beer Celebration.

A ticket to this three-hour-long bacchanal will get you unlimited bacon-based treats from some of Chicago’s finest restaurants, more craft beer tastings than you can shake a Solo cup at from over twenty different breweries, as well as a variety of sports-themed events.

Expect games and competitions, a photo booth, trivia and even a costume contest for the best sports-themed attire. And of course there will be a DJ spinning hip-hop. Does life even get better than that?

What: Bacon, Sports & Beer Celebration

When: Saturday, August 23rd, 3pm

Where: Chicago Union Station, 500 W Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL

FIRST COURSE
Weekend Pick: Blues BBQ at Hudson River Park

This Saturday, August 23rd, Hudson River Park will be hosting an event with good food and good music. While that should be more than enough of a reason to be present at this shindig, the Hudson River Park’s Blues BBQ will include some of your favorite blues artists and premium BBQ. With names like Mighty Quinn's Barbeque, Delaney Barbecue and Dinosaur Bar-B-Que serving some of the best BBQ NYC has to offer, where else would you want to be?

Come out this Saturday and get a taste of some good food while listening to artists like The Slide Brothers, Samantha Fish and more. Not to mention, it’s completely free to attend! We can’t think of any other reasons to convince you to show your face at the 15th anniversary of this festival. For years, it has dominated part of New York and this year will be no different.

FIRST COURSE
Weekend Pick: Lobster Boils at Hearth Restaurant

Looking for an intimate dining experience? Well we have a unique weekly event that is sure to pacify this craving. With the motivation of Chef Marco Canora's family lobster boils on Martha's Vineyard, guests get an experience that one may not expect in the city of New York.

These lobster boils offer an exclusive dining adventure for anybody searching for a differently styled eatery. This three course meal begins with an intricate tomato and watermelon salad, shared among the table. This is immediately followed by a lobster pot containing 1.25 lb lobsters. Finally, if you have room for more, there is peach cobbler with vanilla ice cream.

FIRST COURSE
All the Bacon You Could Ever Want/Need

Zeppelin Hall has held mouthwatering events all summer long, and they’re doing it again with their Summer Bacon Festival starting August 14th and ending August 24th. A festival dedicated to one of America’s favorites eats, and it’s not too good to be true.

The festival will allow attendees to sample bacon thirteen different ways. Options include Bacon Lobster Taco Thermidor (taco shell made of bacon stuffed with green cabbage and sautéed lobster with apple wood smoked bacon and pepper jack cheese), Bacon Sausages Trio (three types of bacon sausage-cracked black pepper bacon sausage, hickory apple wood bacon sausage, and aged cheddar bacon sausage served with arugula salad and bacon potato salad or bacon French fries), Bacon Encrusted Pork Rib Eye Steak, Bacon Wrapped Buffalo Frankfurter, and more. And the best part? They are all for under $17!

FIRST COURSE
Weekend Pick: No Middle Ground Tasting

There’s nothing we love to drink more than beer – except, maybe, coffee. Now what if those two could be united in some single, flawless beverage? Well, All About Beer Magazine, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., and Counter Culture Coffee have worked together to make that dream a reality. This new beer, called No Middle Ground, has infused Counter Culture’s incredible coffee into an experimental IPA to create an amazing concoction like nothing you’ve ever tried before.

You can try out this limited edition beer completely free at a tasting this Friday. For two hours you can sip the unusual brew as well as sample hot and iced Counter Culture Coffee and light snacks. Attendees will also get a free trial of All About Beer Magazine, whose 35th anniversary is coming up soon this year.

FIRST COURSE
Dan's Harvest East End Returns to McCall Vineyards and Ranch

For this perfect summertime event, HARVEST EAST END, back for its fifth year, is celebrating the special wines and gourmet cuisine of Long Island. And for the first time ever, Dan’s Papers will join the Long Island Wine Council to produce the rustic food and wine event, newly re-titled Dan's Harvest East End.

Harvest East End will feature 40 wineries and 20 top chefs coming together to celebrate the bounty of the Long Island Wineries. So if you enjoy wine and food this pairing local grapes with local flavors is an event you're not going to want to miss this wine-centric affair.

FIRST COURSE
The Bacon and Beer Classic 2014

Photography by Shiri Lara

CitiField is usually a buzzing place in the summer, filled with fans from all over enjoying the games, atmosphere, concessions, hanging on to every pitch--never an empty seat in the... Ok, maybe not. The home of the Mets may not bring out the crowds on the regular, but what better way to fill the new house than beer and bacon?

On Saturday, July 26th the Beer and Bacon Classic spoiled the hearts and minds of ticket holders with a mind-numbing variety of bacon concoctions that wrapped the interior of CitiField. Dozens of participating restaurants set up booths where they prepared small plates that packed a serious bacony-punch. Participant eateries included: Macbar, Bareburger, Ottomanelli, South Brooklyn Pizza, Wolfgang’s Steakhouse, Whitmans, Friedman’s, Hunter’s and many others.

FIRST COURSE
More and More S'mores…on National S'mores Day, of Course!

Greater Boston area venues are gearing up for this sinfully delicious holiday, spotlighting a decadent campfire classic for all urbanites to relish: s’mores. The restaurants featured in Joonbug’s roundup are taking a creative approach to traditional s’mores this Sunday, August 10th. Get your innovation on with this sugary summertime snack…and take your palate on an enticing adventure.

It’s time to honor this scrumptious treat and celebrate National S’mores Day in Boston…the Joonbug way!

Tama Bistro and Bar at Seaport Boston Hotel

FIRST COURSE
Busting The Bivalves For National Oyster Day

National Oyster Day was this past Tuesday, August 5th, and Grand Central Oyster Bar (89 E 42nd St., New York, NY 10017) went to great lengths to ensure that its guests could celebrate in every way possible. From culinary creations to auctions and demos, the restaurant geared up with entertainment galore to honor its favorite bivalve.

The day began right from the restaurant’s opening, in which two specialty dishes were added to the menu just for this unique occasion. Chilled Wellfleet Oysters with Verjus Mignonette and Citrus Caviar covered all of the bases for a sweet, briny shellfish, demonstrating the versatility of pairings and accompaniments for this dish. That being said, the true star of the menu was the alternative, Roasted Naked Cowboy Oysters with Citrus-Ginger Butter, which melted in our mouths and truly turned us on to a different style of cooked oysters. These large-bite favorites were sweet and tender, bursting with flavor from the butter and browned just enough that guests still received the savory-sweet flavors which should accompany a dish such as this. When paired with its accompaniment — a simple lemon wedge — the entire meal was brightened and came together to capture our hearts.

FIRST COURSE
Brian Poe and Jason Santos Take on National Food Networks


Get your popcorn ready, because two of Beantown’s notorious, beloved chefs will be on national food networks this week.

Brian Poe - Cooking Channel

The renowned and talented Brian Poe of Estelle’s, Poe’s Kitchen at the Rattlesnake and The Tip Tap Room will be on The Cooking Channel this evening, starring in Road Trip with G. Garvin. Host of this popular show, G. Garvin, pursues his 3rd season on a cross-country road trip, relishing the scrumptious flavors of the South. In the Boston episode, G. Garvin meets up with Brian Poe at Estelle’s kitchen, located in Boston’s trendy South End. Be prepared for your mouth to water in delight with G. Garvin whipping up Southern specialties like cheesy scrambled eggs, chicken fried steak and luscious chocolate peanut butter & banana pie. G. Garvin also stops by Highland Kitchen and Darryl’s Corner Bar & Kitchen in this episode. The program begins at 10pm…don’t miss out on the delectable excitement!