Tag Archives: Date Night

Triadfoodies Chef’s Table Recap: Cille & Scoe

As the sun set on a popular restaurant in downtown Greensboro, a new concept emerged. Forged from a childhood spent with grandparents on an urban farm. a dream was being woven and a little boy learned how to grow his own food each season, harvest it, and prepare it for dinner. That lifelong love and learning of a true farm to table experience has brought to life a restaurant, that calls itself “Southern, redefined.”

Roscoe and Lucille Reaves

Lucille and Roscoe Reaves taught Chef Sean Reaves so much of everything that he knows, that the namesakes and their passion for growing their own food are at the heart of ‘Cille & ‘Scoe, affectionately adopting the nicknames of the two people who’ve impacted him the most.

I usually don’t inundate (haha) a new restaurant with one of our events so soon, but to know Sean and his wife, Tara, is to love them, and I couldn’t wait to show them off a little bit. I strongly encourage you to listen to my podcast as we interviewed this beautiful couple about their life, Sean’s career, their family and this new “baby” they’re nurturing.  Speaking of babies, the Reaves already have two very little “littles” and another one on the way. Yes. They’ve been busy. 

Open for about a month in the location that once was 1618 Downtown, we enjoyed a November Chef’s Table at ‘Cille & ‘Scoe where our sold out “small group” of 25 shared multiple courses family-style. The place was jumping, no question about that and what goodness it was to our eyes to see this early on.  Let’s take a look at the courses, shall we? 

Course One: Charcuterie

Course 2: Shrimp & Grit Cakes

Course 3: 4-Day Chicken (this chicken has been brined, dry rubbed over then coure of 4 days, then roasted)

Course 4: The R & R, Rabbit Ravioli

Course 5:

Beef & Beet (Beef with homemade spaetzle and beet consomme)

It was so nice to meet Sean and Tara and I know our guests enjoyed talking to him toward the conclusion of the evening.

We think ‘Cille & ‘Scoe have a successful road ahead. As many restaurants that are new and young, the Reaves are working out some of those early kinks with execution and getting things to the table quickly. And some dishes are so popular, they’ve sold out of them on some nights. The love affair with local is real and you can see the passion in Sean’s and Tara’s eyes. If you attended our Chef’s Table, we thank you so much for supporting our local chefs. We’ll see you again at the table in the new year!

Wanna go?
‘Cille & ‘Scoe is located at 312 S. Elm Street, Greensboro
336-522-6592
cilleandscoe.com

Triadfoodies Chef’s Table with Chefs Swing & Andrews at Young Cardinal Cafe & Co.

Breakfast for dinner anyone? If that’s one of your favorite things, you would’ve loved our latest Chef’s Table at Young Cardinal Cafe & Co featuring Chefs David Swing and owner and chef Adam Andrews. You probably know Chef Adam as owner of Jeffrey Adams on 4th, The Trophy Room, Dogwood Hops & Crops and Twisted Pine Catering. Though no longer an owner, he helped Fourth Street Filling Station become what it is today. And as if he’s got any time on his hands, he also has a farm which supplies produce to his restaurants. David Swing was a featured chef back in October 2019 and we were excited to work with him again at his new digs in a completely new way.

Young Cardinal opened its doors at 424 4th Street, Winston-Salem, in February 2020 just before the Covid pandemic hit. No one could’ve seen what was coming as the dining public waited anxiously for downtown’s newest breakfast and lunch spot to open. YC barely skipped a beat once restrictions were handed down. They pivoted and offered a to-go menu and even had a little market set up for downtown residents to quickly grab a few grocery items. In fact, Young Cardinal was busy during those lockdown days and more and more people enjoyed the deliciousness and were happily sharing their experiences with their friends on social media.

At June’s Chef’s Table, I wasn’t quite sure if there would be a July event as staffing issues still were projected to be a factor and many restaurants are not back to either capacity or normal hours. But I reached out to Chef Swing and he and Adam Andrews gave me an enthusiastic thumbs up. Twenty-four hours after the tickets went live, we had a sold out event.

This spread was amazing. The Scotch eggs were so tasty.

Young Cardinal is all about breakfast and lunch items, but fun and creative additions to your typical breakfast fare, along with the soul-soothing favorites like eggs, bacon and waffles. Our Chef’s Table was no different. No only were we greeted at the bar with a huge board of delectable snacky and brunchy type items from scotch eggs (OMG sooooo good), pimento cheese, bacon to biscuits, ham and cinnamon rolls, we had four huge courses of breakfast with a twist.

Course 1: Avocado Toast with Tuna Poke

Course 2: “Huevos Rancheros with Pork Belly, Mole Sauce

Course 3: Nashville Hot Honey Chicken & Grits

Course 4: Ube Waffles w/ Duck & Pickled Blueberry Syrup, Matcha Whipped Cream

To say we were stuffed after basically four full brunch courses is an understatement. Good thing we all went home and hopefully to bed because the brunch nap was a felt need after this dinner. But it was delicious and we are so happy Adam opened his doors to us!

We were also so pleased to have Sixth and Vine’s Executive Chef, the stunning Ebony Warfield, with us. She’s featured next month at our next Chef’s Table, which sold out in just a few hours. We are super excited about that!

If you’d like to know more about Chef Swing and Chef Andrews and the Adams restaurant group and everything they’ve got going on (which is a lot), check out my podcast with them here. You can also find the Triad Podcast Network and “At the Table with Triadfoodies” wherever you listen to podcasts.

If you missed out on this Chef’s Table, the good news is Young Cardinal Cafe & Co is waiting for you right on 4th Street in downtown Winston-Salem. You can get your breakfast fix 6 days a week, Tuesday-Sunday 8am-3pm. Be sure to follow them on Facebook and Instagram for specials and their schedule. Chef Swing did tell me they will be closed the week of July 24-30. Annnnnnd….drop me a note in the comment section. Where would you love to see a Chef’s Table in the Triad? Greensboro, Winston-Salem, High Point? Would love to hear from you.

Young Cardinal Cafe
424 4th Street, NW
Winston-Salem, NC 27101
youngcardinalws.com

Your Heart’s Desire For Valentine’s Day

A version of this blog post ran as an article in the Food & Drink section of YES! Weekly. Read this and my other food articles here. 

Taking your sweetie out for the most revered or dare I say, dreaded day of the year gets some extended love this year as Valentine’s Day falls on a Friday. So you know that means most restaurants are offering multiple days of multiple courses of all things date worthy. I’ve done some research and compiled a list of some notable spots to suit your fancy. 

Providence Restaurant, 5790 University Parkway, Winston-Salem

What’s not to love about Providence Restaurant and its mission of changing lives with Second Harvest and its Providence Culinary Training program.

Tuna Tartare, Roasted Beet Salad, a choice of a beef filet, pork osso bucco or snapper for your entree and a choice of dessert. At $80 per couple, it’s one of the best deals in town and a fine looking menu. You can view the menu and make your reservations at providencews.org/valentinesday

Vin 205 Wine Bar, 205 South Stratford Road, Winston-Salem

One of the hidden gems in Winston-Salem, Vin 205 will offer a three-course prefix menu all week leading up to a sold out Chef’s Table on Sunday, Feb. 16th. And don’t just consider the Valentine’s Day meal, Vin205 also offers Saturday and Sunday brunch from 10am-3pm. 336-765-8175

Spring House, Restaurant, Kitchen & Bar, 450 North Spring Street, Winston-Salem

For one of the sexiest spots in town, enjoy lighter fare in Spring House’s Library Bar. Pop in a couple of days earlier for their White Tiger Noodle Shop on Wednesdays this winter or enjoy the main house for a truly elegant experience with approachable food to match. A St. Valentine’s Day Love at First Bite and an early winter menu was just released. Call Spring House for info and to reserve for any of the above. 336-293-4797 springhousenc.com

Di Lisio’s Italian Restauarant, 301 Brookstown Avenue, Winston-Salem

That’s Amore! Italian is always a favorite for Valentine’s Day and DiLisio’s is one of the best spots to consider. You and your sweetheart are invited to a four course wine dinner especially curated by Tony and Maria DiLisio. This is a reservation only event and DiLisio’s will have two seatings available, 5:30 and 8:30. Price $75 per person. You must call to reserve your seat. 336-546-7202.

Undercurrent, 327 Battleground Ave, Greensboro

Always a go-to for a special occasion, once again Undercurrent Restaurant is offering special prix fixe four-course menu on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 14-15. Price is $140 per couple and includes a bottle of wine. Visit undercurrent.com to view the menu and for reservations. 

Gia, Drink, Eat, Listen, New Garden Road, Greensboro

We’ve always thought Gia as a great place for a cozy date night. Chef Anders Benton says he is adding an aged steak for two, a shareable scallop dish, and heart shape dessert to their existing menu Feb. 14-16. Reservations always recommended. 336-907-7536

 

Sophie’s Cork & Ale, 23 West 2nd Avenue, Lexington

Getting a jump on things, Chef John Wilson is offering a 5-course (yes, five) wine dinner on Monday, Feb. 10 at 6pm. Cost is $80 per person. Call for reservations. 336-300-7338

Your Dinner Awaits

Literally. Perhaps you’d rather go a different route this year and let a personal chef come to you. Chef Angelica Dantzler offers a personalized experience in your own home and takes care of all the clean-up and customers say your kitchen will look better than before they arrived. Your Dinner Awaits. Find Angelica at Your Dinner Awaits on Facebook for information and to contact. 

Chef Dion Sprenkle is also offering a Valentine’s Day special with his Table ‘0 on February 14 from 6:30-9:30. Cocktail hour with hors d’oeuvres, multiple course dinner with wine pairings. Space is very limited so please call for your reservation, 336-343-9314.

Roselli’s To Go & Dessertery, 2190 Boone Trail Road, North Wtilkesboro

John Roselli will have your favorite Italian dishes or even pizza ready for you to take home but what he’s really loving this year is his heart-shaped Red Velvet Cheesecake. We suggest you call ahead for your order 336-818-4343.

Stay for awhile….

Butcher & Bull, 425 N. Cherry Street, Winston-Salem

The restaurant is featuring a Valentine’s Day menu in addition to their regular menu Thursday, Feb.13-Saturday, Feb.15. And if you want to make it a little mini-getaway, the restaurant, along with the Downtown Marriott, are offering a deluxe room package.  It includes:

-Deluxe Room

-Bottle Champagne & Chocolate Covered Strawberries upon arrival

-$100 Food & Beverage credit for Dinner in Butcher & Bull

-Breakfast for 2 the following morning 

$229 plus tax

(The package is available Friday, Feb. 14 and Saturday, Feb. 15)

You can reserve the room at Winston-Salem Marriott 336-725-3500. Dinner bookings can be made at Butcher & Bull 336-722-5232.

Have a sweet time with your sweetie, foodies! And comment below so our friends might learn where you love to go on Valentine’s Day. 

Sir Winston Restaurant & Wine Loft

It’s time you all tried Sir Winston!

Years passed as many walked by wondering what is going to become of the The Pepper Building, a 1928 art-deco landmark ,when several years ago, it was announced that the building had been sold and would become a boutique hotel and restaurant.

Indigo Hotels, owned by IHG, like to spring up in areas that provide their guests with a more local experience. As you walk into the hotel, you’re at once in the Sir Winston Restaurant & Wine Loft and immediately are immersed in a local experience. From the walls adorned by local artists, to Sunnyside Millwork’s handcrafted banquettes, tables, chairs, in fact all of the new woodwork in the restaurant, the focus on those local details are quite obvious.  The restaurant was at one time in the basement of the Pepper Building and the new Sir Winston is a nod to its predecessor of the 1960s and its inspirational namesake, Sir Winston Churchill. People who have eaten at Sir Winston in the 60’s, will see familiar quotes as well as light fixtures found in the sub-basement that have now been repurposed in the bar and dining room. The attention to detail is impeccable.

I mean it’s just lovely. Go upstairs in the loft and enjoy the view. I first enjoyed Sir Winston right after it opened on a date night with my 10-year-old.  Chef sent out a few things for us to try, a boiled egg appetizer, a flat bread with lamb meatballs. My seared scallop dish with pickled local melon was outstanding.  I knew David would kill it at at a Chef’s Table.

I spoke with him for my podcast, “At the Table with Triadfoodies” which you can hear here. 

David was hired to design the menu and lead the kitchen of the new Sir Winston, which opened in the spring. Swing, was born in Winston-Salem, grew up in Wilmington, gained his culinary skills in New York City and worked his way back to the City of Arts and Innovation several years ago. He says to build the menu, he had to go all the way back to the late 60’s. “I was given the original Sir Winston menu. I took some ideas from that, but I had to assure management that I would not implement that pricing structure,” David joked.

For context, prime rib back in the day was $2.25.  Sir Winston endeavors to take you back in time enough to appreciate classic details and flavors but bring you back to today’s modern techniques and flair and Swing’s influence of southern cuisine.

Chef took the popular items like seafood and prime rib and put his own spin on it. “Shrimp cocktail was very popular, so I came up with Sutler’s gin pickled-shrimp, which is on our small plates menu as well as on our NC trout dish.” David says they didn’t want to be a steakhouse but did want red meat options on the menu. “To play off the prime rib, all of our signature steaks come off the rib loin, which we break down in-house, including my personal favorite, the cap steak which is featured in the Bulldog’s cut.” He says this steak made the menu after he got his hands on Sir Winston Churchill’s personal cook’s cookbook. Between researching original menus and Churchill’s indulgences, writing and re-writing menus, Swing says he spent at least two months preparing for this gig.

Chef Swing introduced a few new ideas to the guests that will be featured on the upcoming fall menu, but the tasting courses were a great balance of the tastes of summer and a nod to the spiciness of fall.

Course One

Pimento Cheese Stuffed Squash Blossom, Apricot Mango Chutney

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I love the delicate texture of a stuffed squash blossom that’s been flash fried and it seems like they were made for pimento cheese. This appetizer tasted like summer in the South.

Course Two
Texas Pete Dust Cinnamon Maple Smoked Pork Rind Encrusted Chicken Lollipop

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This beautiful chicken drummie was a conversation starter at most tables. The sauce was rich and robust and the pork rind crust added another crispy dimension. I could see this dish on a menu anywhere and it would be a fun lunch item. And Swing must think so too. “I’m playing with smoking Cornish hens and preparing them the say way, with bacon jam and the pork rind crust.”

Course Three
Seared Scallop, Pork Belly, Beet Purée. Pickled Watermelon

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Our very own version of surf and turf. I’ve enjoyed scallops, which are currently on the menu at Sir Winston, and the culinary team prepares them to perfection.

Course Four
Seared NC Grouper, Black Truffle Risotto, Raspberry Mole, Blood Orange Purée

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Sea dwellers…twice in one night? What a lovely treat. 

Course Five
Cheerwine Braised Boneless Short Rib, Chipotle Grits, Gremolata

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This course was the most comforting of the night. And Swing says there is a variation currently on the menu.

Course Six
Orange Ginger Cake, Wasabi Mousse

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Beautifully presented, the orange and ginger on this petite little cake were definitely reminiscent of the coming season. The mousse on top was definitely adventurous to say the least.

Sir Winston is a hotel restaurant but Swing says he appreciates the company’s approach to embracing the local story. “It does have this corporate backing, but the fact that it’s a chef-driven restaurant and that they said to me, ‘alright chef, here’s very little direction and the ball is in your court,’ was something that I’d been looking for a long time.”

 Sir Winston Restaurant & Wine Loft is located at 104 W. 4th Street, Winston-Salem.

sirwinstonrestaurant.com.

Review: Full Kee Chinese Restaurant

UPDATE:

Several weeks after this blog post, Full Key closed for business and Sue Chen retired. Since then, former owner George Yu came OUT of retirement and bought his restaurant back. It’s now called Tasty 100 and the menu and same great taste is back!  I hope to visit there soon and hopefully even have a Chef’s Table again. Until then, stay tuned and please visit Tasty 100 and show George some love!

You probably know by now (if you’ve been opening your email and clicking on the blog) that I’m am HERE for Full Kee Chinese Restaurant, a local eatery that calls itself “gourmet Chinese.”  We went back for a taste because I wanted to “research” it for a possible future Chef’s Table. And it did not disappoint. So here’s the review when I brought Sister Foodie with me on our foodie exploration.

You can read the full article for YES! Weekly here.

Full Kee has been located at 3793 Samet Drive since 2005.  It was owned and operated by George Yu, who had a very popular restaurant in Washington D.C. before he and his family moved to the Triad. What started as a takeout restaurant, Full Kee expanded into a cozy restaurant with beautiful Chinese art, dim lighting, and a full bar.  In May of last year, George retired and moved to Florida.  Sue Chen had been a partner with George in the early days but had since moved on. Now there was a very brief period of time between George selling and Sue buying the space that the restaurant was not itself.  For one, the restaurant was operated by someone else. Full Kee’s Chef, Carlos Lopez, who had worked under George’s tutelage for nearly a decade, had left to pursue another opportunity while that owner was in charge. The restaurant experienced some not so great reviews for a few weeks. Sue ultimately purchased the restaurant in November and the space its in and brought Carlos back. And now Full Kee has risen to its former glory. Some say it’s better than ever. Update: Carlos has moved on and Sue has a new chef in the kitchen, but all the recipes are the same.  UPDATE ON THE UPDATE: Sue retired and George Yu bought the place back and is in the kitchen. 

Back before my food writing days, Full Kee became a favorite. You can read that initial view here. I found it so interesting that there was actually a Chinese restaurant that claimed to be “gourmet”.  It just wasn’t the norm. Chinese was and is almost entirely takeout and often quite low-key (no pun intended). Full Kee invites your casually dressed self into an ambiance that feels like fine dining, but is very comfortable and inviting. The dim lighting is soft and elegant. And what was more thrilling, amazing, astonishing, is that my children ate their food. At a restaurant. It was then and there that my children discovered they love Asian food, specifically dumplings, stir fry rice and “sweet chicken” (as my son calls it). To this day, General chicken is is favorite food (besides brownies). 

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Egg Drop Soup: If you’re an egg drop soup fan, you’ll love this light broth with the ribbon of yolks. It doesn’t have that off-putting corn starch-like consistency. My sister, who was dining with me the evening we visited, it’s the best egg drop soup she’s ever had and that she ever feels a cold coming on, she knows where she’s headed.

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Lettuce Wraps: A perennial favorite with romaine lettuce and finely minced chicken with  vegetables. They are always a crowed pleaser for the table. The chicken was mild and seasoned wonderfully and the cool, crisp lettuce acts in contrast to the tiny hint of heat.

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Dumplings: Carlos makes all the dumpling wrappers from scratch. The result is a delicate dumpling exterior, tender on top, crispy on the bottom, while it lets the filling shine through. It comes with the typical sweet and savory dipping sauce. It is the perfect appetizer. 

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Spring Rolls: You just can’t not get some spring rolls when you eat Asian food amirite? They were super hot, super crispy, came with two dipping sauces and fab.

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General Tao Chicken: According to Sue, it is one of the restaurant’s most popular dishes (as it is in just about any Chinese restaurant). Full Kee’s General chicken, with its secret ingredient in the sauce, is light and crispy and not full of breading like you might find with ordinary takeout. “We wanted it ti be a bigger piece of chicken, but not heavy with flour and not cooked too long. It’s crispy outside and tender inside,” Sue told me.  It’s wonderful. And what often comes off as an afterthought, the broccoli is al dente and actually flavorful. Sue says, “It used to be just very plain, but I asked Carlos to add more seasoning.” The result is broccoli with a hint of garlic and it’s perfectly cooked.

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Walnut Shrimp: These firm, juicy jumbo shrimp are lightly crisped in the same manner as the General Tao’s, but the sauce is a bit more robust and amber in color with crunchy walnuts in the mixture.  I highly recommend this dish as well as the Philomela Shrimp, which has a creamier sauce. Or you can get the Full Kee Shrimp, which is a combo of the two. Both come with the same tasty garlic.

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Mongolian Beef: Customers will notice a change to this dish as the protein portion has been increased and the onions have decreased. It’s very savory and peppery and hearty.

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The menu includes a wide variety of traditional Chinese noodle and rice dishes, including Stir-Fry Rice, Stir Fry Sea Bass, Boneless Duck and Curry. Sue has also recruited a wine connoisseur to help patrons with the perfect wine selection.  We agree with Sue that everyone in your dining party should order something different from one another.  “We want everyone to be able to try a little bit of everything.  It’s the best way to enjoy Chinese.”

Full Kee has retained its loyal following of customers, some of whom have a place at the table every Friday night. Andrew Priddy, who lives outside Winston-Salem, says they’ve been loyal since 2010. “We travel a lot. And this by far is our favorite restaurant. Great food, great service. They’re like family. We just love it.”

Tasty 100 Asian Restaurant
3793 Samet Dr, Ste 140
High Point, NC