Monday, June 18, 2007

Raw Food

The Sprout, a new raw food restaurant, has opened on Johnnie Dodds Boulevard in Mount Pleasant. There's no meat served, just fruits, vegetables, nuts, and grains, and nothing is heated over 116 degrees Fahrenheit--for reasons involving enzymes and "natural digesters" that are detailed in the Charleston City Paper's review of the restaurant.

It all sounds interesting enough, but it leaves me with the same questions I have often had about vegan cooking in the past: if this sort of diet is more natural for our bodies, why do its proponents try so hard to make it seem like "regular food"? On the meatless side, vegetarians are endlessly experimenting with black bean burgers and tofu "chicken wings" and other dishes that resemble good old American meat-based junk food. On the raw food front, The Sprout simulates spaghetti and meatballs with pasta made from raw squash and zuchinni and "meatballs" made from mushrooms, walnuts, and ginger. All well and good, but it seems like our tastebuds should naturally like raw food in its purest forms if that was what was really good for us.

Maybe someday when I'm feeling like getting back to a more natural diet I'll stop in and see what looks good . . .

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Lowcountry Nibbles - June 10th

Charleston Coffee Roasters, which makes ridiculously good coffee, is moving in with the Palmetto Brewery, which makes ridiculously good beer, at 289 Huger St. (between King and Meeting). CCR will take over the front portion of the warehouse and will be able to expand their roasting operations. You can't buy a cup of coffee at the facility, though you can buy fresh-roasted beans by the pound. On Friday, June 15th, you can tour the roasting operations at a free open house from 2 to 8 pm.

Ciaran Duffy down at Tristan's has launched a chef cam:

As of last month, you can now purchase "high-gravity" beers (those with greater than 5% alcohol) in the state of the South Carolina. Beer afficianados are celebrating with a few exotic brews.

Berlin's Restaurant Supply, which has been selling to the trade for some 20 years now from its River Ave. location in North Charleston, has now opened a new store called Berlin's Restaurant Essentials down on Meeting Street. This version will be more aimed at the home cook than the restaurant professional, but since it's only open Mon.-Fri. 9 to 5, this non-restaurant professional hasn't had a chance to check it out yet.

A little out of town accolades: Jim Flynn's Best Vacations, a travel website and vacation planning outfit, just named Mount Pleasant's Your Place as one of its three picks for Best Burger in the US (along with Burger Joint at the Parker Meridian hotel in New York and Mrs. Bartley’s Cottage in Cambridge, MA). And, Charleston cooking gets a good write up in the Montreal Gazette.


A good article on grits from the Baltimore Sun.

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