Friday Foodstuffs 8.27.10: Whoa Whoa, Those Wildwood (Restaurant Week) Days!

File this under the You Just Never Know category.

We list hundreds of events on our blog in an effort to give all parts of the region some mention. I never know what event is going to draw more interest to our blog; certainly Chowderfest on LBI got some attention last year due to the contest we ran, and this year we talked quite a lot about the Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival. But there is clearly one event that seems to drive quite a bit of traffic our way…

…and that’s Wildwood Restaurant Week.

I have to figure that it’s because it’s the end of summer, people are trying to get their last licks of beach time, and having a restaurant week at this time is drawing the attention of those who might be coming down to the shore already. Mind you, it’s just a theory.

Anyway, for those who might be viewing our site for the first time, nice to meet you and we hope you come back. If you’re looking for information on Wildwood Restaurant Week, which runs from August 29 to September 3, just go the Restaurant Week website for participating eateries and where they are located in town.

There’s another restaurant week that’s starting on the same day, and it has a smaller focus. How so? Well, these restaurants are focusing on meals for those little ones that follow you around and always seem to be buzzing with energy. Any ideas? If your guess is Mosquito Restaurant Week, just remember that nobody likes a smart aleck.

No no, it’s Kids Restaurant Week! Brought to you by the good folks at SJ Culinary Events, they will be serving a 3-course meal for your little ones for only $9.99. And if you’re just a bit skeptical as to what will be offered to the kids, here are a couple of menus:

From Tortilla Press in Collingswood…

Starters

Beef Flautas with Cheddar Jack Cheese Dipping Sauce Black Bean Tostada – cheese, sliced avocado and diced Jersey tomato Nachos – House fried corn chips with cheese sauce and mild salsa for dipping

Entrees

Soft Tacos Plate Flour tortillas, cheese, choice of chopped grilled chicken or taco beef, lettuce, tomato and sour cream on the side. Served with red rice and pinto beans

Macaroni and Cheese A great classic made our special way! Blends of Mexican cheese in a creamy sauce baked and topped with crispy corn tortilla strips, then served with buttered peas and a corn muffin

Brandon’s Pizza Quesadilla Open faced flour tortilla topped with grilled chicken, melted cheese and oh-so-fresh Jersey tomato sauce. Served with fresh sautéed green beans.

Grilled Chicken Breast with Jersey Peach Salsa Served with coconut rice and sauteed green beans

Dessert

Strawberry and Banana Quesadilla Cinnamon cream cheese filling scoop of chocolate ice cream

Churro Sundae Fried Mexican doughnut stick topped with cream vanilla ice cream, then drizzled with caramel sauce and chocolate sauce.Topped with whipped cream and a cherry!

Warm Peach Cobbler Home grown fresh Jersey peaches, brown sugar, butter and sweet crumb topping.

And, from Blackbird in Collingswood…

First Course:

Choice of:

*Pizza Soup (Fresh Tomato Soup, Crispy Baguette with Melted Cheese)
*Chinese Food (Thai Chicken Spring Rolls, Vegetable Fried Rice)
*Mozzarella Sticks (Fresh Fried Mozzarella, tomato compote)

Second Course:

Choice of:

*Mac and Cheese (Petite Pasta Shells, Mixed Cheeses, Seared Chicken)
*Cheese Burger (Seared Sirloin Burger, Vermont Cheddar, Pomme Frittes)
*Fish Sticks (Polenta Battered Tilapia, Steamed Vegetables)

Pastry:

Choice of:

*S’mores
*Orange Creamsicle

Not too shabby, I’d say. And, if the adults feel left out, they can always choose from the same menu for $16.99 a person.

What’s going on this weekend? I anticipated that question…

Today, you can have a Wine Tasting at Glassboro’s own Hops and Grapes from 4PM to 7PM. On Saturday, you have the annual Peach Festival down at the Malaga Camp Meeting on the Delsea Drive in Newfield from 10AM to 3PM. Aldo starting at 10AM is the first annual Cohansey RiverFest, which will be having events and tours in Bridgeton, Upper Deerfield, Hopewell, Greenwich and Fairfield. The Cohansey River is kind of the forgotten river in South Jersey, and it’s great that such an event will bring attention to it. For $12, you can enjoy the crab dinner at the RiverFest. Or, maybe you just to do something simple like a Tasting Party at Carriage Trade Cheese Shoppe from 1PM to 3PM.

On Saturday and Sunday, the Camden Children’s Garden will be holding its annual Chocolate and Vanilla Family Festival from 12PM to 4PM both days. Sharrott Winery in Winslow will be having its Harvest Festival on both days as well. You could even do a double shot of winery events on Sunday, between the Harvest Festival at Sharrott and the Grape Stomping Festival and Craft Show at Renault Winery in Egg Harbor City. Sunday is also the day for the Wine and Cheese Party at the Barnegat Light Historical Society at Barnegat Light from 4PM to 6PM.

You know, John – you never talk about Mondays. Tell me why? I don’t like Mondays. Well, that’s not entirely true, but if every Monday was a Taste of the Quarter at the Tropicana Monday, it would make the day much more fun. But sadly, it’s only once a year – but it is this Monday, so enjoy!

And now, here’s your farmers’ market report…

There’s a sale at Penny’s!!! Oh wait, I mean…there’s a sale at Johnson’s Corner Farm!!! It’s a peach and nectarine sale this weekend. Fill a bag, and it will cost you only $5.

Chef Fred Kellermann from Elements Cafe will be having a cooking demo tomorrow morning at the Burlington County Farmers’ Market.

And celebrate the music and food from the Latin community at the Hammonton Farmers’ Market today!

Looking to get edumacated culinary-wise? Check out the weekend schedule:

Today: Best of Class: Thai and Date Night: In The City at the Viking Cooking School at Harrah’s in Atlantic City.

Tomorrow: Exploring Your Local Farmer’s Market at Sur La Table in Marlton, Savory Pies and Tarts Workshop and Girls’ Night Out: In Rome at Viking Cooking School, and, once more,Pizza Making Class at Tony Boloney’s in Atlantic City.

Sunday: Celebration Brunch and Date Night: In Rio de Janeiro at Viking Cooking School, Jewish Holiday Baking at Sur La Table, and Kids in the Kitchen at Kitchen Kapers in Moorestown.

And in the news…

The Saga of Elite Catering in Voorhees continues: a veteran caterer takes over the space at the Coliseum (and read the comments at the bottom…interesting…), and Elite owner Ira Siegel claims that he was withholding rent due to dissatisfaction with the building.

The long march towards allowing direct sales of wine in New Jersey continues: a possible fall hearing may take place in the General Assembly.

This year’s cranberry crop may not be as bad as what was predicted.

Meanwhile, blueberry farms continue to be held under a great amount of scrutiny over their labor practices. Farms have paid fines for a number of violations, including three farms that were in violation of having children working in their fields.

On a more positive note, some kudos need to be handed out. First, some nice reviews for wines from Amalthea Cellars in Atco by Tastings.com. Nice job, Lou! And, for the second year in a row, Mud City Crab House in Manahawkin took home the people’s choice award at the Crab Cake Festival at Monmouth Park last weekend. Congrats to Melanie and Eric!

A longtime Philly candy company is moving its operations to Pennsauken.

And after all this time, White House Subs will be opening a second Atlantic City location next spring.

Have a great weekend!

– John

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