TNT Diner

Good eats and drinks around Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound

Archives: March 2006

March
31st

Unappetizing exhibitionism

"I’m ready to leave now."


A woman said this as she walked out of the IACP trade show. It was just past 1. The trade show, and lunch, started at noon.


Seen one trade show, you’ve seen ‘em all. From the Fancy Foods Show to Comdex to AdultEx, they’re all fairly dull displays as far as I’m concerned.


Jenn-Air. Cuisinart. Le Cordon Bleu Academy. Coca-Cola. All the usual suspects are here.


Over at the New Orleans tourism booth, they’re handing out beads. But the closest thing to an exposed breast is the processed turkey hanging

Read more »

March
31st

Cooking for diabetics

More than 18 million people in the United States have diabetes. That’s 6.3 percent of the total population.


How many restaurants provide meals tailored to this demographic?


About zero.


And that’s one fat problem, said Jennifer Bucko, associate dean of the Robert Morris College Culinary school in Chicago. In an IACP panel called Cooking for People With Diabetes, Bucko urged chefs at restaurants, hotels and nursing homes to start cooking meals that aren’t just good for people, but taste good too.


She applauded Applebee’s Weight Watchers menu.


"The food’s pretty darn

Read more »

March
31st

Slow foodie movements

Compared to yesterday, attendance and buzz is sparse this morning. I don’t think it’s the Cuisinart-sponsored breakfast (although the bacon was limp). I’m guessing last night’s round of food fetes is hanging over attendees like a hangover.


Last night’s events included: Food Meets Art at Dale Chihuley’s Boat House; a salute to famed chef Jacques Pepin, for whom IACP has named a scholarship for minority students in the culinary field; and a Liquid Kitchen evening of "creative cocktailing" with master mixologist Ryan Magarian and Seattle uber-foodie Kathy Casey.


That was in addition to intimate gatherings at

Read more »

March
30th

They smoke ‘em ‘cuz they got ‘em

My last IACP panel of the day was like cultural dinner theater, filled with song and dance.


Historical Food Practices of the Quinault Indian Nation started out like any highly informative slide-show presentation, but once the Quinault Drummers and Dancers Group got started, the room rocked. Men sang and chanted while children performed ritual dances celebrating elk and whale hunts.


A Quinault tribal leader described his people’s historic protein-based diet thusly:


Breakfast –- smoked clams and smoked fish.


Lunch –- elk … and smoked fish.


Dinner –- bear … and smoked fish.

Read more »

March
30th

Intense whiff

Bob Betz of Betz Family Winery in Woodinville admitted his PowerPoint presentation was "geeky," filled with charts, grafs and references to "structured integrity" and "fruity intensity" of Columbia Valley vino.


So I’m assuming the real appeal of the IACP panel he moderated, Uncovering the Inspiration Behind Washington Wines, was the intoxicating aroma of the conference room itself.


At least that’s how it smelled from my seat near the back row.


The conference room smelled like the inside of a cask. By my count, there were 9 rows of tables, with 12 chairs at each table. At

Read more »

March
30th

Lunch

Starter: Oranges with honey, Spanish olive oil and mint. A fresh balance of flavors.


Entree: Roast pork stuffed with gorgonzola and hazelnuts with sherry cream, with roast fingerling potatoes, corn, red bell peppers and green beans. My pork was on the dry side, although my tablemates cheered their entrees.


Dessert: Chocolate marquis, covered in hazelnuts. Said one tablemate: “Chocolate is to me like heroin is to Keith Richards.” Guess he liked it. Not wanting to indulge in too much of a good thing, I managed just one bite of the dense, dark chocolate square. Chocolate filagree,

Read more »

March
30th

Art of words and food

Before I started writing about food, I was a poet, which meant I wrote a lot of unpublished stuff for free and hung out with a bunch of slackers who considered it a crime to rhyme. One IACP workshop, Unleashing the Poet Within You, held particular appeal.


Gail Bellamy is the managing editor of Restaurant Hospitality magazine and author of "Victual Reality: Food Poems." She and Karen Bonaudi, a Washington poet and potato promoter, held forth on the history and recent trends of pairing poetry with food – from restaurants promoting poetry dinners to the intoxicatingly rhythmic language of

Read more »