That's tapas, not topless! Three young female entrepreneurs recently embarked on a new adventure in the restaurant business. Partners Shellie Graham, Stephanie Ware, and Michele Stogner are the owners of Rhythm House (624 W. 34th, 458-4411), Austin's first tapas bar. The women toured the different regions of Spain over the summer, sampling definitive tapas (small savory appetizers) of each area, gathering recipes and ideas for their new venture. They overhauled the former location of Señor O'Brien's and hired Dennis Paddie to run the kitchen and help develop a tapas menu to tantalize Texas taste buds. The new eatery is currently open for dinner from 4pm until midnight, with live acoustic music on some evenings and brunch on weekends from 10:30am until 2pm. Long-range plans include lunch service and the addition of a beer garden.
Though these days it's all the rage for cookbook authors to advocate the use of fresh, seasonal produce in the preparation of both home and restaurant meals, one of the earliest proponents of seasonal cooking was Austrian-born chef Perla Meyers. Her award-winning 1973 cookbook Perla Meyers' Seasonal Kitchen was a groundbreaking work. The Central Market Cooking School (4001 N. Lamar, 458-3068) welcomes Perla Meyers for classes on Monday and Tuesday evenings, Nov 3 & 4, 6:30-9pm, and a book signing Tuesday afternoon.
Dead Bread! At least three local bakeries are selling pan de muerto, the sweetened yeast bread for Dia de los Muertos celebrations: La Victoria Bakery (5245 Burnet, 458-1898), La Mexicana Bakery (1924 S. First, 443-6369), and the in-store bakery at Fiesta (E. 38th & I-35, 406-3900). Get yours for the Day of the Dead this Saturday.