Birthdays, grapes, pork belly and social media marketing

Okay, let me start from the beginning of this story….
For that, I have to go back to my youth, growing up in Georgia and spending summers in Mississippi.  Meaning, I’m from the South.  Meaning, the extent of my experience with local alcohol of any kind extends to Moonshine, Muscadine Wine, and – if you’re lucky – Whiskey.
Fast forward quite a few years.  I start this little food blog, and I sign up with Foodbuzz as a Featured Publisher.  I start syncing my posts on Foodbuzz with my Twitter account.  Why?  I don’t know – I don’t “tweet” normally, but I thought (I guess) it might increase traffic, which might increase revenue.

Join us March 19th at 6:30pm for a magnificent evening at Montaluce as we celebrate Montaluce being featured at the James Beard house in NYC.  Chef Steven Hartman will be previewing the 5 course menu he’ll be preparring for the James Beard Foundation event. The cost is $100 per person ($170 in NYC).  Seats are limited, so call 706-867-4060 for reservations.

James Beard Foundation Menu

hour d’ oeurves:
crispy whipped mead, chicken liver mousse, honey roasted peanuts. *2010 montaluce, mead

pickled ga shrimp: house cured rainbow trout roe, sesame cracker.*2009 montaluce, primoro

benton’s bacon pound cake: sweet and sour huckleberries, maple crème fraiche. * 2009 montaluce, risatta

on the table:

house cured ham and buttermilk biscuits, whipped butter, peach jam. *2009 montaluce, viognier
1st Course

pickled beets-whipped spinning spider goat cheese, sorrel,  house made vinegar, extra virgin olive oil. * 2009 montaluce, tramonto
2nd Course

georgia lamb terrine-radish pods, persimmon preserve, mint. * 2008 montaluce, cabernet sauvignon

3rd Course

bramlett farms trout- baby bok choy, smoked trout, sorghum.  * 2009 montaluce, chardonnay
4th Course

riverview farms slow cooked pork shoulder -spring onion, young mustard greens, rhubarb. * 2008 montaluce, centurio

5th Course

local organic farm fresh egg custard- crème caramel, candied pecans. * 2009 montaluce, dolce

Check out this intro to Montaluce on Youtube!


American wine aficionados know that a winery renaissance is taking place across North Georgia, where a new wave of vintners is producing wines of truly exceptional quality. One such winemaker is Maria Le Roux of Montaluce Winery, who will be pairing her vineyard’s offerings with the artisan-inspired cuisine of executive chef Steven Hartman.

See the post at  http://www.jamesbeard.org/?q=node/2665


Saturday, January 29, 2011

Listen to the girls squeal!

I was talking with a very distinguished and frequent regular at my restaurant and he was asking about the unusually high concentration of ladies today. My answer is 3 fold: 1) It is football season; and the women that have been with their men long enough to realize that it is no longer amusing to coddle a man’s fascination with violence and chicken wings, realize that their time is much better spent enjoying the company of friends, drinking wine and gossiping.2) It was a sixty degree sunny day in January. Earlier this month we were all iced and snowed in. and 3) Bubbles.

I cannot say that the ladies came out to the middle of north Georgia in January because I made a flight of sparkling wine on the menu but I can honestly say that there were squeals of delight from said women upon the discovery of a sparkling wine flight. Hugh Heffner would be proud. He would never expect women to go without  arguably the best treat in the world…Sparkling wine. May I remind you of the names Thomas Mario uses in the Playboy’s New Host and Bar Book circa 1971 for the bubbles: “nosetickler,” “gigglewater,” “fizz,” and “bubbly.” Sexy stuff. So here is the bubble flight:

bubble flight $15

nv adami, prosecco 9/36
lovely, elegant scents of green apples, white wildflowers, minerals, and glazed almonds. the palate is dry but still generous with flavors of yellow cherries and tropical fruits, and a very long finish.
nv lamberti, rose spumante 10/40
bright and refreshing with lasting apple and raspberry flavors, this wine is light and cool, simple yet delicious. try it with toasted almonds
nv bortolotti, prosecco e. d. 11/44
elegant, fresh and lively, with floral aromas and white fruits and a creamy mousse. this is easy to drink and rounded with apple flavors.
nv casteggio, moscato 7/35
golden color, aromatic nose of ripe apricots, sweet and fruity with flavors of apricots and tangerine. well balanced.
2009 ricossa, moscato d’asti 10/40
pale straw color, floral apricot and orange blossom aromas, round and silky with  great intensity and a long, mouthwatering finish.

I feel that I might squeal now if I don’t down some bubbles! Cheers!

Check out the full posting at http://behindbarscocktailblog.blogspot.com/2011/01/listen-to-girls-squeal.html


Check out the AJC’s Food and More Blog which describes our new Catch, Clean & Cook program as a “true river-to-table” experience. Join Chef Steven Hartman for a truly unique culinary experience. Perhaps the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for your food & outdoor enthusiast loved ones.   http://tinyurl.com/625n5wv

Join us Valentine’s Day weekend for a fabulous 5 course wine dinner at Montaluce.  Voted #1 Romantic Restaurant in Georgia by subscribers of opentable.com, Montaluce is THE place to celebrate your love with that someone special.  Executive Chef Steven Hartman will be preparing an amazing 5 course dinner with available wine pairing options.  The cost is $75 per person.  Please call 706-867-4060 for more information.