April 27, 2010

Farm Burger Arrives in Decatur!

So, I finally made it over to FarmBurger for lunch yesterday. Seems like I was there with half the city, as the FarmBurger has created some buzz right out of the gate. Several local bloggers already have nice reviews on the place: See The Food Abides for a good one.

In case you haven't heard about FarmBurger's mission, here's a blurb from the website:

Farm Burger wants you to think about your burger - what it is and where it's from. Our burgers are made from 100% grassfed beef that is dry-aged for two weeks and ground daily. Our cows are raised on the sweet grasses of the southeast, and never fed antibiotics, hormones, or grain. Our menu is seasonal and sourced from local farms. Our space is convivial and comfortable - because eating is a celebration to be shared. Our food makes ethical eating easy.
The No.1

The cool thing about FarmBurger is that your burger topping options are nearly endless. From the standards like lettuce, tomato, and pickles, to the sublime...including pickled beets, aged gruyere, and BONE MARROW. It's definitely a cool format and sets up the possibility that every visit to FarmBurger brings a unique burger experience. 

For my first visit, I had the No.1. It was a rather vanilla choice, I know, but I wanted to see how they knocked out a rather everyday burger. The No. 1 features caramelized onions, cheddar, and FarmBurger sauce. The burger was great, really juicy, and seasoned well. I don't know what the best burger in the world tastes like, but I know this was a damn fine burger. I also ordered the sweet potato fries. They were okay, slightly soggy, but that seems to be the norm with sweet potato fries. Often, they just don't work. 

My lunch companion (The Legend) ordered the No. 6...topped with bacon and fired egg...to which he added on jalapenos and bone marrow. I didn't try this hedonistic burger, but it sure looked fine. See the pic below. We also had some beer battered onion rings that were delicious with smoked paprika mayo dipping sauce. All-in-all, it was a fine lunch and I look forward to a return visit.


The No. 6: w/ House-Cured Bacon, Sunny side up egg, pepperjack, salsa verde, jalapenos and bone marrow. (Photo courtesy of The Legend)

Farm Burger on Urbanspoon

April 22, 2010

Further Down the Slippery Slope: All Roads (Slopes) Lead to Burgundy

Got together with a couple of good dudes last night for our ongoing Burgundy education and tasty food. The inimitable Rowdy was our host, and EatItAtlanta put stopped eating grits long enough to attend. A good time as usual.

Didn't really take notes, but scribbled some thoughts on a paper towel. Some real fine Premier and Grand Crus here. Thanks Rowdy.

1999 Clos des Lambrays-Some structure here. Weightless, but firm. Minerals and herbs. Dark cherry lurking. Lots of energy here. Quite nice, bordering on inspiring, but even brighter days ahead. A fine youngish Grand Cru from Lambrays in Morey St. Denis.

2002-Louis Jadot Couchereaux
-Underbrush and cherry nose. Candied red fruit palate. Rather soft on the palate. Herbal and slightly spiced. To pick, a whisp of heat on the finish. No biggie, but good drinking anyway.
2003 Louis Lequin Corton Charlemagne-Really my wine of the night and a nice surprise. Slow to show anything, but after about 15 min my glass just popped. Floral and lemony with sweet oak and herbal notes. Long finish that was touched with a slight bitter note that was just a bit of a detractor. I like this.

I'm no expert, but pretty damn sure the 2004 Meurgets Corton Charlemagne was premoxed. Bummer, but the only downside to another great night of wine, food, and revelry.

April 19, 2010

Summer Drinking: 2008 Navarro Vineyards Rose

Y'all know I love the wines from Navarro Vineyards. In today's modern landscape of often overpriced, over-hyped, over-manipulated wines, Navarro is a contradiction. They continually crank-out interesting, natural wines that speak of a place and a variety. They also do so efficiently, offering many wines in the $15-$20 price range. Thing is, you won't find them everywhere, but it's worth getting on their mailing list and getting in on some of these wines. They often run specials like one cent shipping on 6-pack or case buys.

A friend, who is responsible for my knowing of Navarro, brought the 2008 Rose over with some other wines Saturday night for sliders out on the deck. From a mix of Grenache and 70 year old Carignan vines the wine shows clean strawberry and cherry fruit with a nice peppery finish. Clean and crisp palate with a touch of sweet oak on the finish. A very fine Rose that is just perfect for spring and summer cookouts. Get some.

April 14, 2010

More Love for Santa Cruz Mountain Pinots: 2005 McHenry Pinot Noir Estate Bottle

The Santa Cruz Mountains AVA has a history of producing long-lived, some may say Burgundian-styled, pinot noir over the past few decades. The Santa Cruz Mountains enjoys a proximity to the ocean and the benefits of its coastal climate: warm days, cool nights, coastal fog in the morning, and soft breezes by afternoon to dry the vines without stressing them – all so important to growing premium Pinot Noir. The tradition of world-class pinot noir coming out of the SCM continues today, with some of my favorite producers such as Rhys, Windy Oaks, and McHenry.

2005 McHenry Pinot Noir
Santa Cruz Mountains
McHenry Vineyards is a small family operation that produces tiny quantities of top-notch Pinot Noir from the Santa Cruz mountains. There were only 150 cases of this 2005. For those looking for value, McHenry is the real deal as these wines are less than $30 from the winery and often can be found at retailers for around $25. But, there's not a lot, so you have to poke around to find some.

The 2005 shows a smoky, dark cherry nose. The palate is full of pomegranate and cranberry fruit with earthy, soft clean flavors. Slight bit of heat the permeates the backside, but otherwise quite fine again. Acid spine that dances on the palate with precision and poise. Another woot! for Santa Cruz Mountain Pinot! One bottle left I'll hate to part with one day...

April 12, 2010

The Mean Greenies: 2004 Henri Perrot Minot Chambolle Musigny La Combe D' Orveaux

2004 was a rather difficult vintage in Burgundy. There was a cool July, that led to mildew on the vines, as well as late thunderstorms and hail in August. In addition to those challenges, numerous 2004s have shown signs of unpleasant, green, medicinal flavors in bottle. The causes of the "mean greenies" has been debated, as to whether or not the condition exists at all. For one example of the ongoing debate on the "mean greenies" among Burgheads, see this recent thread at Mark Squire's Bulletin Board via Robert Parker's website, with opinions and tasting notes from acclaimed winemakers and Burgundy collectors.

I haven't had a ton of 2004 Burgundies, but the half dozen Premier Crus I've opened in the past year or so have been tasty, and free of the greens. Well, Saturday night, I finally caught some greenies.  This one, the 2004 Henri Perrot Minot Chambolle Musigny La Combe D'Orveaux, was green, overtly tart, medicinal, and slightly volatile. Despite a somewhat alluring nose, I really struggled to get through one glass. Too bad, but my first obviously not right '04.

April 8, 2010

2007 Navarro Vineyards Muscat Blanc

Navarro Vineyards is a favorite of mine. This is especially so when warm weather hits as I really like Navarro's white wine program. Their 2007 Gewurtztraminer was one of my favorite white wines of 2009. Navarro's club is definitely worth checking out as they frequently run specials and many of the wines are available for $15-$18.
The 2007 Muscat Blanc is a bone dry wine. Nearly clear in the glass, void of color but for a faint yellow tinge. Tropical fruits on the nose. Delciously stony and crisp. Nice blast of acidity. Great with spicy fish tacos on a hot spring night. Terrific value once again from Navarro.

April 7, 2010

Beach Wine- 2005 Arcadian Chardonnay Sleepy Hollow Vineyard

Spent a few days in St. Petersburg last week basking in the warm Florida sun. Brought a few wines, nothing too special, but the Arcadian Chardonnay was the star on a hot spring afternoon. Matched perfectly with fresh salt water trout that my dad caught earlier that day...As you know...I love me some Arcadian.

2005 Arcadian Chardonnay Sleepy Hollow Vineyard--This wine again balances hints of vanilla oak and buttered popcorn goodness with a bracing acidity. It's the acid profile that sets this apart from most Cali Chards, and it really sharpens the edges and keeps the wine fresh and lively. The buttered popcorn and honey up front give way to slate and a long, lively finish. Great with the grilled trout...Just a pleasure again.