A Few of my Favorite (Foodie) Things

While out with friends recently, I made a few suggestions on things they HAD to experience at a particular restaurant. It reminded me of a few texts exchanges I’ve had where friends ask, ‘Where should I go for a great dessert?’ or, ‘What was that one dish you said I should try here?’. So, in the spirit of the year-end round-up I’ll share a few of my favorite foodie things.

As you’ll quickly discover, I love gluten…and dairy…and meat. So this is by no means a list for those starting off on a health kick in 2014 :)



Croissant @ Janjou Patisserie (aka best damn croissant you’ll ever have)

Oatmeal Souffle @ Red Feather (will make you rethink your relationship with oatmeal)

Vanilla Latte @ Flying M (a personal obsession from a latte addict)

Main Auction Cafe @ Main St. Auction, Steak Ranchero @ Los Betos (aka best hangover or diner fix breakfast)

photo_33-scaled1000CHEESY GOODNESS

(Any) Grilled Cheese Sandwich @ Bleubird (aka nirvana for cheese freaks)

Sage Grilled Cheese @ The Dish (Sage + prosciutto + cheese? Um, yes please!)

Mac n’ Cheese or Gnocchi @ The Modern Bar (it’s totally mood-dependent)


Carne Asada @ Campos Market

Gyro @ Bosnia Market

Empanadas @ Tango’s

Any fresh fish @ Reel Foods Fish Market (yes, I know it may not be technically ‘meat’, but Proteiny Protein sounded weird. Love the vibe, offerings and insights of my local fish monger!)


Patio Paella @ The Basque Market (every Wednesday/Friday @ Noon & Thursday nights)

Ramen @ Yoi Tomo (not on the menu, but there for the ordering)

Poutine @ Bittercreek (thanks Canada for this gluttonous insanity)

Croquetas @ Bar Gernika (must experience with Tiger Sauce)

Lasagna @ Cucina di Paolo (they will make it right into your own dish if you like, so you can totally claim credit for the deliciousness :))

Garganelli or Pappardelle @ Alavita (meat + homemade pasta = my happy place)


The Layover @ The Modern Bar  (not on the menu, but there for the ordering. Only around in the winter!)

Kalimoxos @ Bar Gernika (coke + red wine. I know it’s blasphemous to oenophiles, but it’s so delicious!)

Wine @ Bodovino (perfect for the indecisive and adventurous)


Butter Cake @ Fork (I’m not a cake fan, but I will fight you for that last bite of Butter Cake)

Beignets @ Red Feather (I never find them on the menu, but have had luck ordering at weekend brunches & dinner)

Vanilla Budino @ Alavita (custard & caramel lusciousness)

Sticky Toffee Pudding Cake @ Fresh Off the Hook (don’t be turned off by the chopped dates description. It is gooey amazing)

photo_1-scaled1000FOODIE EXPERIENCES:

Fuel for the Soul: A true foodie experience in the home kitchen of Chef Tizi & her husband Joel. Classes in Italian and Thai are offered for small groups. Here’s a post about one of my experiences.)

The Basque Market: From paella to tapas classes, pairings and tastings galore – The Basque Market offers a wide variety of experiences for the foodie interested in all things delicious from the Iberian Peninsula. If you haven’t yet, sign up for one of the monthly Sheepherder’s Breakfasts!)

The House of Wine: Curated and taught by wine educator Kat House, the classes offer deep – but approachable – dives into all things wine. And all things that go with wine (like cheese!) A fun evening experience in an urban chic winery setting just outside of Downtown Boise.

So, which one of your favorites did I miss?



Culinary Collaborations at the Cabin, on the Farm, In the Field

What does it take for a place to truly establish its culinary chops? (pardon the pun)

How about collaboration between chefs at the top of their game?

Or, the ongoing creation of separate intimate foodie experiences?

Or, synergy on display between producers, farmers, vintners, brewers and distillers?

Check, check and check.

Foodie experiences are popping on Idaho’s calendar. And I’d be remiss to not recap one and preview two (and give props to the passionate people making them happen)

Edible Idaho’s Trail Creek Dinner Benefit for the Hunger Coalition


Chef John Murcko & Chef Gary Kucy

Take two of Idaho’s James Beard Foundation semi-finalists (Chef John Murcko, Director of Culinary Operations for the Sun Valley Resort, and Chef Gary Kucy of Rupert’s Restaurant at Hotel McCall), create a meal sourced from the region’s producers (Homestead Natural MeatsBallard CheeseBlue Sage Farm and Southwind Potatoes) and toast with 44 North VodkaCinder WinesHuston VineyardsTelaya Wine Co in a true Idaho gem of a location – and you have Edible Idaho’s first foray into must-attend Idaho foodie events.

Thanks to a foodie-on-the-inside, we got a sneak peek at the prep and a few plates at the amazing fundraiser…


Menu for the Feast

Idaho morels being prepped for the Amuse course

Idaho morels being prepped for the Amuse course

Wildflower honey & Snake River Brewery Ale braised Idaho Buffalo Short Rib

Wildflower honey & Snake River Brewery Ale braised Idaho Buffalo Short Rib

… and insider scoop on the pristine levels of service. All the servers were Sun Valley restaurant managers, the kitchen staff all restaurant head chefs in their own right.

Cinder winemaker Melanie Krause collaborating with the culinary team

Cinder winemaker Melanie Krause collaborating with the culinary team

Chef Kucy & Chef Murcko collaborating on the l

Chef Kucy & Chef Murcko collaborating on the line

The entire culinary crew were chefs from various restaurants

The entire culinary crew were chefs from various restaurants

From the feedback on this event by attendees and participants – Edible South Idaho has set the bar high.

Dinner on the Farm Series

Up next on the foodie experience calendar is the kickoff to the new Dinner on the Farm Series concepted and carried out by Idaho Preferred: In celebration of its 10th anniversary, the Idaho State Department of Agriculture’s Idaho Preferred® program will host a series of dinners at a variety of farms around the state to promote the quality and diversity of Idaho food and agriculture products. 

Dinner on the Dairy hosts Simon & Mary Ellen Roth of Si-Ellen Farm

Dinner on the Dairy hosts Simon & Mary Ellen Roth of Si-Ellen Farm

I am a huge proponent of diners understanding the full lifecycle of how their food gets from the farm to the plate – and this series should deliver on that. The series kicks off  Saturday, June 8, 2013 with Dinner on the Dairy at The Risk Barn Event Center on the Si-Ellen Dairy just north of Twin Falls beginning at 5:30 pm.  Advance tickets are required and can be purchased atwww.idahopreferred.com (GET YOURS ASAP!)  For more event and ticket information, email info@idahopreferred.com or call 208-332-8542.

In July – it’s Dinner in the Orchard at Symms Fruit Ranch in Sunny Slope.

Outstanding in the Field

Outstanding in the Field

Outstanding in the Field

And rounding out the trio of experiences that have me salivating – the nationally renowned Outstanding in the Field is making its first stop in Idaho as part of its North American Tour this summer.

Reading their mission for the first time – I fell in love: Our mission is to re-connect diners to the land and the origins of their food, and to honor the local farmers and food artisans who cultivate it…Wherever the location, the consistent theme of each dinner is to honor the people whose good work brings nourishment to the table.

The details: Outstanding in the Field is teaming up with James Beard Award Nominee, Chef Taite Pearson Sara Lipton from della MANO (Ketchum). The dinner is hosted by farmers Chris Florence, Chance Morgan and Geoff Neyman of  Sweet Valley Organics and will feature wines from Cinder.  

It’s taken them more than a decade to get to Idaho – so let’s be sure this event sells out! Check it out and register

Here’s the story of Sweet Valley Organics courtesy Guy Hand

Tres bien Janjou Patisserie!


After tantalizing me with its sleek white lines and empty cases promising French pastry nom-ness for months, Janjou Patisserie is open! (www.janjou.com)

I had to make a Saturday morning pilgrimage down to 17th & State (next to the Moxie) to sink my teeth into the flaky loveliness that is a true French croissant. (& to stock up on Moshit’s Palmiers which I dream of)

I’m in love with this little slice of European cafe chic in Boise. And Moshit’s story, passion and determination in bringing Janjou to life is one to toast – with a rich cup of espresso and buttery, flaky pastry.

Put A Bird On It @ the Bleu’

Gotta love when the official food reviewers give a forks up to one of your new favorites.

The Statesman’s recent Dining Out writeup went off with the alliteration on the buzzworthy Bleubird - and it was not without reason.

This. Place. Is. A. Gem.

And you have to support those gems that take the leap and set up shop in Boise.

I was a tad bit eager to try out Bleubird after weeks of stalking its under-construction locale on 10th & Bannock. So the first night it was open my partner-in-crime & I hussled over for some happy hour charcuterie and cheese.


I’m admittedly a sucker for aesthetics – and the interior was just a quaint and hip and casual as I had hoped. Put a bird on it and give me a board of meat please.


Plus, you gotta love a foodie-loving couple (Sarah Kornfield & Dave Kelly|photo courtesy Bleubird) putting their heart and soul into their enterprise and working side-by-side all day to make it happen. Per their website, Sarah’s favorite cheese is St. Agur, Dave’s is Drunken goat (a man after my own heart!)


Dave was a great host, walking us through the cheese & charcuterie board we picked. For two hungry charcute-fantatics it was more than enough to satisfy.

I returned a few weeks later for a girl’s post-work night and again was enamored with the accoutrements and options (and am now obsessed with this mini-cleaver.)


Once the CCDC upgrades to the sidewalks on 10th are complete it will be a perfect patio-sittin-cheese-nibblin spot. (Two small requests – more local wine on the menu and weekend hours in the future :-)


I haven’t had the chance to make it over for lunch – but I have drooled a bit just staring at the chalkboard of options. Grilled cheese with aged cheedar, provolone, fig jam and garlic butter? Hells yea!

It’s a foodie hole in my life I’ll be filling soon with a jaunt over to Bannock to fight the crowds for a slice of cheesy-delights over the lunch hour. Bring on the Bleu!



No hole in the wall


How about turning the phrase on its head and instead calling this a ‘Gem in the Wall.’

Let’s add Cucina di Paolo to my trio of Italian rockstars in the Treasure Valley – joining Gino’s and Uncle Giuseppe’s.

Quaint Italian cafe with drool-worthy glass cases of goodness and a husband and wife running the show who make everyone feel like part of a big Italian family.

Head up to Vista to mangia with the best of em!

Mama Mia! Finally a great Italian deli in the Valley

After a night at the racetrack I finally made it over to check out Uncle Giuseppe’s Italian & American Eatery at Glenwood & State.


Mama Mia I’d been missing out on some mangia-worthy nomness!

Above – fresh muzz (or mozzarella for the rest of you :-) and The Naples sandwich: Prosciutto, Capocollo, Mozzarella, Roasted Bell Peppers and Balsamic Vinegar.

Kevin went for the most popular sandwich The Italian Giuseppe: Prosciutto, Capocollo, Sopressata, Salami, Mortadella, Provolone…

Amazing selection of imported meats and cheeses and Boar’s Head products (Here’s the menu.)

A must-visit for those yearning for great Italian sammies…and to support the family enterprise from transplanted New Yorkers. (even though it appears they are Yankees fans I’ll still make a return visit :-)

Basque Market Announces Changes to Menu and Service

Kinda love when people send news releases and media advisories my way about the goings-on in the Idaho restaurant scene. Full disclosure on this one: the Basque Market is NOT a client of Red Sky PR where I work. However, we find them fantastically delicious and imbibe and indulge there often for Tapas Tuesdays, Paella Wednesdays & the Sheepherder’s Breakfasts.  All that being out in the open – here’s the media advisory of some changes to their offerings!

The Basque Market, located on the Basque Block in Downtown Boise, is a purveyor of imported goods from Spain and the Basque Country offering customers one of the largest Spanish wine collections in the West.

WHAT:           The Basque Market will no longer offer made-to-order lunches but will instead feature tapas from noon ?? 3 p.m., Monday thru Saturday. Mini versions of the favorite sandwiches (Bocadillos) customers love, along with other selected items such as, croquetas, meatballs, soups, salads, olives and rice pudding will still be available, every day. In addition, The Basque Market will stay open late on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays offering more elaborate tapas from 5 ?? 7 p.m. The popular noon offering of Paella on the Patio Wednesdays has expanded to noon on Fridays, as well.

Tapas @ The Basque Market:

Mid Day Tapas  Tapas Bar will be open at noon & replenished until 3 p.m. Monday – Saturday. Meat/cheese plates & soups will be available all day.

Happy Hour Tapas Tuesday, Thursday & Friday evening from 5 to 7pm, we serve tapas “Spanish” style, in addition to three or four delicious Spanish wines and two-for-one Sangria. 

WHEN:            Beginning Friday, July 1st, 2011

WHERE:           The Basque Market

                        608 W. Grove Street (On the Basque Block)

                        Boise, ID 83702

                        (208) 433??1208


Foodgasm courtesy @BoiseFork Restaurant

Yeah, I said it. And it’s really not hyperbole.

The Butter Cake at the newly opened Fork? The one they tout on their dessert menu & the waitress raves about?


Word is…they spent weeks perfecting the recipe.

It’s worth the hype.

Calling it a cake does it an injustice. And it’s definitely now one of my ‘must mangias’!

Sent from my iPhone

Boise Fry Co foodgasm

On the left – yam fries with cinnamon ginger salt and warm marshmallow sauce.

On the right – The Bourgeoise – hand cut Russets flash fried in duck fat and dressed with black truffle oil. (Best. Fries. Ever.)

And on the far right – as a side of course – the delicious (but pretty much unneccessary) bison burger :-)


Sent from my iPhone