Tasty Times in Traverse City!

Every Thursday we post a weekend roundup featuring a variety of things to do over the weekend. We had so much fun last weekend that we want to share some highlights and feature a some events this week to keep on your radar!

Comrade John salutes Workshop's Chili Cookoff victory!

Comrade John salutes Workshop’s Chili Cookoff victory!

The weekend also featured the annual Downtown Chili Cookoff which saw hundreds more attendees than usual taste and vote on the best chilis in Traverse City. UpNorthLive reports that over 1600 people packed the Park Place on Saturday:

The Chili Cook-Off winners were as follows: Schelde’s Grille & Spirits for One-Alarm chili; West Bay Beach for Two-Alarm chili; Workshop Brewing Co. for Three-Alarm chili; Scalawags Whitefish & Chips for Seafood and No Bean chili; Oryana: Lake St. Cafe for Vegetarian chili; Minervas for White chili; Harbor 22 for Ethnic chili; Minervas’ White chili for the People’s Choice.

Myles Anton demonstrates at his Pig Workshop

Myles Anton demonstrates at his Pig Workshop

As you know, one of the things that really excites us about the TC food scene is how many of our top chefs take some time to teach cooking classes. Most of the classes are small and sell out quickly, so you need to be watching our Cooking Class Calendar to get them before they’re gone!

On Sunday we got a chance to check out TWO great cooking classes. The first was a rare class from Chef Myles Anton of Trattoria Stella at The Box – an incredible venue for a cooking class where they also hosted Chef Pete Peterson (formerly of Tappawingo) on Saturday. Myles expertly butchered half a pig and served up over a dozen tasty dishes made from all parts of the hog! In case you missed it, we had a short feature last week with Myles talking about what he loves about pig and butchery. The eatdrinkTC Instagram has photos!

Delicious Curries at the Cooks' House - photo by Michelle Rodriguez

Delicious Curries at the Cooks’ House – photo by Michelle Rodriguez

The second class was Chef Jennifer Blakeslee’s Introduction to Curries class at The Cooks’ House.  It was such a great vibe – just a handful of folks and held right in the Cooks’ House kitchen with Chef Eric Patterson and the rest of the crew helping out! One of those in attendance was Michelle Rodriguez of Black Star Farms who is now blogging for The Hungry Dudes, an excellent Detroit-based food blog. Michelle writes (in part):

Today Jen & Eric taught us how to make a few different curries, all have a similar spice base, but each one tasted very different. The Saag paneer was first & it was my absolute favorite. First Jen took a whole gallon of local milk and dumped it in a pot, brought it up to boil & added acid to it, which made the milk separate, and she strained the curd form the whey. Once she got the base of the curry going, she added the spices, then kale and then thickened up the sauce with some of the whey, added some cream, and the paneer curds last. The end result was a bright yellow, creamy curry that was so good I’d bathe in it.

Click through to The Hungry Dudes for more and also head over to the eatdrinkTC Instagram for a few more photos!

Speaking of cooking classes, we’ve got a feature coming Wednesday about the awesome Festival of Foods at NMC. They don’t have the schedule published yet, but some highlights include Discover Beijing Crepes with Pete Peterson (Tapawingo Restaurant), homemade pasta and sauce with Mickey Cannon (Tuscan Bistro), lavender in the kitchen with Sonja Richardson (Harbor View Lavender Farm), Gnocchi with author and chef Nancy Krcek Allen and cooking local without a recipe by Chefs Eric Patterson and Jennifer Blakeslee (The Cook’s House). Click the link above to register today as you get first choice of classes!

Chef-Sarah-PouzarThe TC Record Eagle reports that Sarah Pouzar, graduate of Traverse City West Senior High School and former cook at Aerie Restaurant and Lounge cooked her way to a $10,000 win on the Food Network show Chopped. Sarah is currently the chef at Vida on Staten Island.

Brewery Terra Firma will be on hand Tuesday (Jan 14) at the Cooks’ House for their first Beer Dinner, a fabulous 5 course dinner  will be prepared using Brewery Terra Firma beers, and BTF brews will be served with dinner. They only had a couple of slots left and might be sold out in which case the next beer dinner is with Brewery Vivant on March 4th. Other upcoming pairing dinners to get before they’re gone are Left Foot Charley (Jan 28) and Bowers Harbor (Feb 4). Limited space so call 946-8700 to reserve your spot! Cooks’ House has also launched a 3 courses for $30 special every Tuesday – Thursday (except for nights of special dinners) that’s a great way to get out for a mid-week meal!

You can enjoy a Trappist Beer Dinner at 7 Monks on Tuesday anytime from 3-10 PM featuring a pairing menu designed around the Merchant du Vin portfolio of Trappist ales from Orval, Rochefort, and Westmalle.

Green-Drinks-Name-TagThursday evening from 7-9 PM The Little Fleet will host Chef Anie of Aerie Restaurant at the Grand Traverse Resort to teach the art of sushi making. Japanese-inspired cocktails and sake will be available all night long. No reservations required and it’s free to participate!

TC Green Drinks, an informal, free & open networking event, takes place on Thursday from 5:30 – 7:30 at the Filling Station. Betsy Coffia of Sustainable TC did a Q&A on TC Green Drinks with eatdrinkTC editor Andrew McFarlane that notes that Jon Prins brought the idea to Traverse City 6 years ago. In many cities, Green Drinks and says (in part):

Q. What is the idea behind Green Drinks?

A. The idea is pretty simple: Once a month with people who are interested in talking about green initiatives in TC get together to share a drink and conversation about green initiatives, businesses, organizations and ideas. While we occasionally have a special guest who will share something about a timely topic or new project, it’s designed to be very informal and focus on conversation.

Read on for more! Some other fun stuff coming up this week is Pints for Parkas at The Workshop on Tuesday, a Loma Farm dinner (Friday) at Little Fleet and the Wineries of Old Mission Peninsula’s Winter Warmup this Saturday!