Food-o-File

Off with our heads on some misreporting of the Lazy Fork Barbecue legacy; plus, an Independence Day Event Menu

In the off-with-our-heads department, we need to correct some erroneous information from Mick Vann's glowing review of the new Lazy Fork Barbecue in last week's issue. Lazy Fork owners Roger and D'Ana Mikeska are indeed not related to pit master Clem Mikeska or his branch of that famous Central Texas barbecue clan. The Lazy Fork is not affiliated with the Clem Mikeska family of restaurants in Temple or along I-35. Roger's folks, Janell and the late Reuben Mikeska, are the owners of Cyclone Corral Barbecue in the hamlet of Cyclone, about 15 miles east of Temple, and that's where Roger learned the business. Roger and D'Ana are the second generation of their own barbecue dynasty, and while they have the utmost respect for Clem Mikeska's well-established legacy, they make no claim to it. The mistake was entirely our own, and we regret the error.

Making a list of meals I've put together with fresh produce and prepared foods from area farmers' markets this month reminded me of a tidbit of news I picked up while shopping. Jam Sanitchat of Thai Cooking With Jam and her partner Bruce Barnes welcomed son Leo Daniel Barnes (7 lbs., 10 ozs., 21 in.) into their family earlier this month. Sanitchat expects to resume her cooking/catering/teaching schedule sometime later in the summer... Here's a list of some of my recent market-meals: a Niçoise salad with Amador Farms butter lettuce, Chautauqua River School Smoked Salmon and Green Wing Balsamic Vinaigrette; Bandera Ranch Beef strip sirloin with Boggy Creek Farm Silver Queen corn and tomatoes; Spinach Ravioli filled with artichoke hearts and Asiago cheese from Pasta & Co., Chef Keem's macaroons; BLTs with Peach Creek Farm bacon, BCF tomatoes, and Amador Farms lettuce on wonderful bread from Mandola's; the Soup Peddler's Chicken Big Mamou and Macque Choux; cobbler made with Rhew Orchards peaches and blackberries from McKemie HomeGrown. Area farmers' markets are full with the bounty of summer – the possibilities are amazing, so don't miss out... From what we hear, the Best on Ice Tea Tasting at the Tea Embassy (900 Rio Grande, 330-9991) was a refreshing success and will become an annual summer event. The Moroccan Ginger Mint Tea from the upcoming Lambert's Downtown won both the Critics' and the People's Choice awards with Arkie's Secret Blend placing second with the critics and Berryhill Baja Grill's Baja Tea placing second with the crowd. Congratulations to the winners... Speaking of Lambert's Downtown, construction has finally begun on the long-anticipated project in the historic Schneider building at the corner of West Second and Guadalupe. They're hoping for a fall debut. I've seen the menu cooked up by chefs Lou Lambert and Larry McGuire and can't wait to eat there!... If you're looking for catering options that are attractive, tasty, and healthy for the heart, the folks at Zen Japanese Food Fast (three area locations; www.eatzen.com) have good news. Their healthy and affordable menu items are now available to take out on attractive sampler trays. For full menu information, visit their Web site or one of the three convenient Austin locations... Ron Flores reports that his original Habana (2728 S. Congress) should receive a certificate of occupancy from the city and finally be back in business by mid-July. He's also excited about the recent opening of an Habana outlet in San Diego.


Event Menu :: June 30-July 8

Celebrate the red, white, and blue of Independence Day at Texas Hills Vineyards (830/868-2321; www.texashillsvineyard.com), where they'll provide the red and white wines and the Ben Beckendorf Trio from Luckenbach will supply the blues. The $25 ticket price includes a fruit and cheese plate paired with wines and a Texas Hills logo glass to take home. Reservations suggested; Saturday, July 1, 7-10pm.

The Star-Spangled Celebration at Spicewood Vineyards (830/693-5328; www.spicewoodvineyards.com) features live jazz on the veranda from the Cassie Jazz Trio and the debut of three new estate bottled wines: Cabernet Franc, Zinfandel, and Merlot 2003. Bring your own picnic to enjoy under the live oaks while the music plays, sample the new wines, and shop for your cellar. No reservations are required, but there is a charge for tasting wines. Saturday, July 1, noon-4pm.

The "Way Out Wineries" – Alamosa Cellars (325/628-3313, www.alamosawinecellars.com) near Bend and Pillar Bluff Vineyards (512/556-4078; www.pillarbluff.com) at Lampasas – will host the first-ever-in-Texas Barrel Tasting, Future Sales, and Gulf Coast Shrimp Treat. Both wineries will afford guests the opportunity to sample their 2005 red wines directly from the barrel and will offer futures on half- and full-case lots at discounted prices. They will also feature a tasty dish made with Texas Gulf shrimp to complement their white wines. $10 advance tickets that are good at both locations can be purchased at either winery until July 1. Tickets at the door will be $15. Saturday, July 8, noon-5pm.

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