We'll Drink to That

The owners of The Grape Escape (314 Congress, 236-9463) must consider the Paramount Theatre (713 Congress, 472-2901) to be their favorite Avenue neighbors because they're donating their most exclusive, expensive dessert wine for a Paramount fundraiser. On Sunday, March 7, 5-7pm, 65 lucky patrons will have the opportunity to sample Chateau d'Yquem 1984 in limited edition, one-of-a-kind wine glasses created by local artist Robert McCandless, along with selections from the Grape Escape's cheese and dessert menu. All the proceeds will benefit the theatre. Tickets for the event are $50; reservations may be made by calling the Paramount: 472-2901x36.

Grand Opening

Chef Steve Mannion and director of education Glenn Mack, owners of the brand new Culinary Academy of Austin (formerly Creative Cuisine & Catering, 2823 Hancock, 451-5743), welcomed the public to an open house last weekend to introduce the new school to potential Austin students. The academy offers both professional and recreational courses and will also, from time to time, sponsor culinary tours. Their first such tour is set for New Orleans for Thursday, May 20-Sunday, May 23. The tour includes round-trip airfare, airport transfers, three nights at the Hotel de la Poste in the French Quarter, tours, cooking classes, dinner at Bella Luna restaurant, and some free time to explore New Orleans.


The talented chefs at both Brio Vista (9400-B Arboretum Blvd., 342-2642) and Mezzaluna Gateway (9901 Capitol of Texas Hwy, 372-8030) encourage you to check out their new spring menus... After 15 years of lovely weddings and creatively decorated theme events, Assorted Affairs Catering owners Carol Buchanan and Sherry Smith have sold their business to Adrienne Clay of An Affair to Remember (891-0276). Assets included a turn-key commercial kitchen and a healthy client list...

Thai Menu (2514 Guadalupe, 472-8306) is the new venture from partners Vicki and Sutut Vicha, and Pat and Orasinee Ratana-Apron. The busy partners already have Thai Spice Buffet and Thai Spice Cafe here, plus two locations in Houston...

Hot sauce entrepreneur J.P. Hayeshas joined forces with the owners of O'Shucks Tamales to create Tears of Joy Hot Sauce Museum (618 E. Sixth, 499-0766). This new Texas gourmet shop offers tamales in various flavors and a vast selection of hot sauces and condiments with a tasting bar for sampling...

The burnmeisters from Austin Slow Burn captured three Scovie awards at this weekend's 11th annual National Fiery Foods Show in Albuquerque. Owners Jill and Kevin Lewis proudly report that their Jerk Marinade took first place in the jerk seasoning category, their Southwest Pasta Sauce won third place among pasta sauces, and the Salsa con Habanero captured third place in the habanero division. Austin Slow Burn products are available locally at Central Market, Whole Foods Markets, Wheatsville Co-op, Sambets Cajun Store, Sun Harvest, and Tears of Joy...

Threadgill'sWorld Headquarters (301 Riverside, 472-9304) has joined the musical brunch business with a $12 brunch buffet that opens at 10am Sunday mornings and features live music in the saloon 11am-noon. The Asylum Street Spankers will be onstage every Sunday in March. A trip to the buffet is only $7 for folks who aren't seated in the saloon to enjoy the music.

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