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Food-o-File

Winning piemakers, new restaurant openings, and more

By Virginia B. Wood, Fri., Jan. 22, 2010

A capacity crowd of pie lovers packed the fellowship hall of the historic Sweet Home Missionary Baptist Church in the Clarksville neighborhood Saturday afternoon to celebrate the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday and build community through pie. The second annual ServeaDream Dream Pie Social raised $1,600 for the gracious old church's restoration fund with a silent pie auction. Guests enjoyed stirring music and speeches followed by a piemaking demonstration with donated pies, coffee, and Blue Bell ice cream. Congratulations to the following contest winners: last year's winner Emma Little took the prize for cream pie with Frozen Peanut Butter Pie with burnt-sugar bacon, Jeffrey's pastry chef Sarah Jordan won the fruit category with banofi (banana, toffee, and walnut) pie, Greezy Wheels frontman Cleve Hattersley took the chocolate division with a Fredericksburg fudge pie, and singer-songwriter Leeann Atherton swept the nut category and the overall Dream Pie prize with her Plain Ole' Pecan Pie. All the winners took home custom certificates and prizes donated by Faraday's Kitchen Store (1501-A RR 620 N., 266-5666, www.faradayskitchenstore.com)... As the news of the terrible devastation in Haiti spread around the world, some local businesses and restaurants announced plans for impromptu fundraising events during this past weekend – we'll do our best to keep events listed online even if they can't make the paper's deadlines, because we know Austinites are always on the lookout for ways to help out... Victoria Lynden's (Cissi's Market & Wine Bar) new venture is Town Market (43 Rainey, 499-8696) on the ground floor of the Legacy on the Lake condominiums. Town offers a selection of staple groceries, local packaged foods, fresh-brewed Kohana coffee, fresh pastries, soups, salads, sandwiches, beer, and wine every day. The market also provides delivery service within the building... The fourth Torchy's Tacos (4301 W. William Cannon, 514-0767, www.torchystacos.com) is such a big hit in Southwest Austin, owner Michael Rypka plans to expand the outdoor seating with a big patio in the next couple of months and has already opened a fifth location at 4211 Spicewood Springs, in a building vacated by the Burger House... Carlos Rivero's restaurant group is playing fruit basket turnover with a couple of its popular concepts by moving the full Tex-Mex menu and bar of El Chile Cafe y Cantina (1025 Barton Springs Rd., 609-8923) to a cozy space near the Long Center and Zilker Park and reinstating El Chilito's quick/casual, build-your-own tacos and burritos menu Downtown (918 Congress, 291-3120). Once the liquor licenses are all worked out, El Chilito will serve only beer and wine (think micheladas and sangria) while El Chile will offer a full bar (custom cocktails on a rooftop patio overlooking Lady Bird Lake)... Jack Allen's Kitchen (7720 Hwy. 71 W., 852-8338, www.jackallenskitchen.com) offers a $12.99 à la carte brunch starting this Sunday from 11am to 3pm... Longtime Austin restaurateur and sometimes political candidate Marc Katz celebrated 30 years in business at Katz's Deli & Bar (618 W. Sixth, 472-2037, www.katzsneverkloses.com) on Saturday, Jan. 16, by serving complimentary Champagne to his customers. Mazel tov!

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