Win Dinner With Scott at Crave

Written by Scott Joseph on .

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Stop by Booth 756 at the Central Florida Home & Garden Show this weekend for a chance to win dinner for two with me. You’ll go with me when I visit Crave, the new restaurant opening April 12 near Mall at Millenia, and I’ll use your quotes in my review. All you have to do is fill out an entry form at the booth. I will also have free copies of Orlando Home & Leisure magazine and the new food section called Flavor while supplies last.

Also Friday at the Home Show, Tim Keating, executive chef at Flying Fish Cafe on Disney’s BoardWalk will be doing a demonstration at noon in the ScottJosephOrlando.com Grilling Garden. At 2:30, Dan Drayer has fish and steak (I believe he’s bringing some Kobe beef!) to grill -- and sample.

Sunday at 12:30 p.m. in the Grilling Garden, John Rivers of Four Rivers Smokehouse is going to show you how to make a pizza on the grill. He’ll be using some of the delicious brisket that has people lining out the door of his Winter Park ‘cue joint. (Yes, you’ll get samples of that, too.) And award-winning pastry chef Laurent Branlard will demonstrate a very special kind of ‘smores at 4.

In between the cooking demos on Sunday, at 11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m., I’ll be helping master sommelier Brian Koziol with tastings of Mondavi Wines.

Saturday evening, of course, is the big food & wine event benefitting the Little Haiti House, the manufactured homes that Harris Rosen is sending to the earthquake devastated region. Chefs David Ramirez, Michael Mullen, Jorge Olivera and Michael Rumplik will prepare such items as Focaccia-Crusted Lamb Chops, Tropical Crab Cakes with Mango Salsa, Tobias-Braised Short Ribs, Pan-Seared Diver Scallops, and Chocolate Sabayon for dessert. In addition, we'll be pouring wines from Rodney Strong and Opici. The chefs are going to demonstrate their dishes there, too.

If you don’t yet have your tickets to the Home Show, click here and enter promotional code SJO for a special $6 ticket. Tickets to Saturday’s food & wine event, from 6-9 p.m., are $25 -- that ticket also gets you into the show Saturday, so you don’t have to purchase a separate ticket.

It’s going to be a lot of fun, so come on out. And stop by Booth 756 to say hi and enter to win dinner at Crave!

Homeowners for Haiti Update - David Ramirez Will Appear

Written by Scott Joseph on .

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Award-winning pastry chef David Ramirez
More details are coming together for this Saturday's Homeowners for Haiti event at the Central Florida Home & Garden Show. Award-winning pastry chef  David Ramirez will be part of the team cooking a fabulous menu for attendees. Ramirez was the captain of the 2009 Team USA, representing the country in the internationally acclaimed Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie, aka the World Pastry Cup, competition in Lyon, France.

Ramirez will join fellow chefs Michael Mullen, Jorge Olivera and Michael Rumplik to prepare such items as Focaccia-Crusted Lamb Chops, Tropical Crab Cakes with Mango Salsa, Tobias-Braised Short Ribs, Pan-Seared Diver Scallops, and Chocolate Sabayon for dessert. In addition, we'll be pouring wines from Rodney Strong and Opici.

Tickets are limited and MUST be purchased in advance. The cost is $25 and includes admission to the Central Florida Home & Garden Show. All proceeds from the event -- and by that I mean every cent of the $25 -- will go to purchase housing for victims of the Haiti earthquake. The Little Haiti House, a prototype of the specially designed homes that will be manufactured in Central Florida and shipped to Haiti for assembly, will be on display at the show.

This is a really wonderful event, and I know the food of all of these chefs and can tell you, this is an amazing deal.

The Homeowners for Haiti food and wine event is Saturday, March 20, 2010, from 6-9 p.m. at the Orange County Convention Center, North Concourse. Click here to purchase tickets.

Rangetsu Closing

Written by Scott Joseph on .

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Rangetsu, the Japanese restaurant and sushi bar that has been a prominent fixture on International Drive since 1986, will close at the end of the month. General manager Takashi Kikuchi told me that the economy was a deciding factor. "We used to get big parties," said Kikuchi, "but conventions are down, Japanese tourists are down, and we have too many employees."

He said the building was under contract to be sold, but could not give any details about the prospective buyers. The current owner, according to Kikuchi, is in Japan. He also couldn't say what will happen to the many koi in the ponds in front of the restaurant, although he was certain they would be cared for.

Rangetsu, which was spelled with a hyphen for many years and whose name means orchid moon, has 350 seats and a staff of 40. The last day will be March 31.

Get Grilling Tips From the Pros in Scott's Grilling Garden at the Central Florida Home & Garden Show

Written by Scott Joseph on .

 

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Spring is here. It’s raining outside right now (March showers bring April...that doesn’t sound right). It has finally warmed up to a temperature resembling Florida. And Daylight Savings Time returns this weekend -- don’t forget to set an alarm so you can watch all your atomic clocks reset at 2 a.m. Or is it 3 a.m.? I forget.

Anyway, it’s spring, and that means grilling outdoors. It means doing some other things outdoors, too, but for now let’s keep our minds on grilling, shall we?

I love throwing things on the grill. I like to cook a nice juicy steak, of course, but I’ve also done a prime rib and a stuffed turkey on the trusted Weber. Sometimes I use a gas grill, but I prefer the heat of charcoal. That’s just me.

But I’m no expert by any means. And I can always use some advice. That’s why I’ve invited chefs who have a particular skill with the grill to be part of my Grilling Garden cooking stage at the Central Florida Home & Garden Show. The show is March 19-21 at the Orange County Convention Center, and I’ll have chefs each day doing demonstrations and giving tastes and recipes.

On Friday, at noon, Tim Keating, executive chef at Flying Fish Cafe will whip up some gazpacho and cook some of the fish he’s known for at the popular Disney’s BoardWalk restaurant. Then at 2:30 Dan Drayer, executive chef for Talk of the Town restaurants (Charley’s Steakhouse, FishBones, MoonFish, Vito’s Chophouse) will be cooking some halibut and talking about the best way to cook a big hunk of meat.