Raimondo Family Winery owner Margie Raimondo, who recently acquired Kent Walker Artisan Cheese, has unveiled some plans for the space. Raimondo is changing the name of the business to Southern Table, a name she hopes portrays a sense of hospitality and community. “I chose Southern Table to evoke the idea of sharing,” Raimondo said. “I really like the table because the table is the place that you share. You share food and conversations, friendships and camaraderie. It’s the place where food and friendship come together.” Southern Table will focus on cheese, wine and beer at its retail location. It will also sell plenty of take-home goods; in fact, all of the charcuterie boards will be made with items you can buy for home, such as cured meats, pickled vegetables and tapenades. Raimondo is still shooting for an early June opening and says things appear to be on target.
The 33rd Annual International Greek Food Festival is just over two weeks away, and there are some changes in store for this year’s celebration. The biggest change is a new $3 admission price, the first time in the festival’s history that people have been charged to get in. However, that admission will be waived with the donation of three canned food items that will be given to the Arkansas Food Bank (the $3 admission will also be given to the Foodbank). Festival organizers say they wanted to find a way to give even more to charity. Also this year, the festival is offering the “My Big Fat Greek Platter,” which contains pastitsio, spanakopita, Greek chicken and Greek salad all in one order. It should be a great way for two or more people to share a meal together. As usual, the festival will have plenty of baklava and will run its drive-thru service. The festival runs Friday, May 19, through Sunday, May 21.
Congratulations are once again in order to Rock Town Distillery for yet another impressive achievement. This time, the distillery’s Four Grain Sour Mash Bourbon Whiskey was awarded Gold Medal at the 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. This competition is one of the most hard-fought every year, and a gold medal here means your product is close to the very top of its class. Just in case you’re wondering, this one is available for sale at Rock Town Distillery on 6th Street just east of Interstate 30.
This news came out a bit too late for our weekly Growlers section, so we’re including it here: Diamond Bear Brewing Company is set to release its Honey Weiss brew this coming Friday. This one will be Diamond Bear’s summer seasonal brew, and at 4.2 percent ABV, is a very easy sipper. Diamond Bear will be bottling this one, though I haven’t yet heard if it will be sold around town or just at the Arkansas Ale House.
After getting used to the flow of business, District Fare will be moving to its regular hours starting this coming Monday. The restaurant and foodstuffs store will be open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. until 7 p.m. and Sunday from noon until 5 p.m.
And finally, longtime Riverdale establishment Shogun Japanese Steakhouse has closed for good. The restaurant was open for almost 35 years before closing last week. The Shogun staff has reportedly moved to Kanpai Japanese Steak and Sushi on McCain Boulevard in North Little Rock, which has the same owner. No reason was given for the closure.
Conway’s food scene has been slowly growing for a while, but now it’s about to get a big boost. The terrific Ceci’s Chicken and Waffles is moving there in June, and we talked with owner Ciceley McDowell this week about what she expects to bring to her new Dave Ward Drive location.
Saige Anderson won The Root Café’s 3rd Annual Pie Bake-off and Recipe Swap this weekend. We talked with her yesterday about her work at Honey Pies and how she found her passion in baking.
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