At this rate, Tia Sexton will have the forearms of Popeye in about three summers.
Lime after lemon after clementine after whatever else she could dig out of the fruit crisper was squashed to smithereens beneath her kung fu citrus-juicing death grip.
Behind the onyx bar at her 14 Global in Bethany Beach, Sexton squeezed, stirred and shook some of the best cocktails I had last summer. Wild, but expertly balanced creations like The Ginger—made from clementine and lime juice, ginger-pepper syrup, Hendrick’s gin and an array of flavored liqueurs—made her seem like the Walter White of mixology. Her workspace was more a science lab than a bar anyway, with its vats of liquors infusing in rosemary, pineapples and the like, and jalapeño slices spiking a squeeze bottle of simple syrup. For Sexton, the devilish drinks are one of several outside-the-box dynamics she’s built at 14 Global. The smallish, 56-seat dining room, armored in bronze and stonework, aims for a Pangaean, borderless approach to fusion cuisine. Hawaiian opah shares menu space with kangaroo sliders, the tacos go next to the spring rolls. The meatballs are Moroccan, the eggplant Japanese. Localvores, divert thy gaze. The farm-to-table movement was supposed to kill restaurants like 14 Global, which opened in 2012. Lucky for us, it didn’t. When Sexton, along with chefs Shane Kellagher and John Speziale hit their marks, they spun some of the sharpest, most satisfying food going in Sussex County last summer. Find out more about it here.
Leave it to the good people at the Newark Natural Foods Market and eatingwell.com to work seasonal spinach and zucchini into a delicious pasta dish. Here’s the recipe, from Get Healthy, Delaware author Shari Short.
2 medium zucchini, very thinly sliced lengthwise
1 pound fresh or frozen spinach-and-cheese ravioli
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon saltâ€¨
1/2 cup half-and-halfâ€¨
2 teaspoons all-purpose flourâ€¨
1 tablespoon butterâ€¨
1 large shallot, mincedâ€¨
1/4 cup dry white wineâ€¨
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basilâ€¨
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepperâ€¨
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1. Put a pot of water on to boil. Place sliced zucchini in a large colander in the sink. Cook ravioli according to package directions, then pour the ravioli and cooking liquid over the zucchini in the colander.
2. Meanwhile, mash garlic and salt together in a small bowl with a fork to form a coarse paste. Combine half-and-half and flour in another small bowl, then place near the stove.
3. Heat butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallot and the garlic paste, then cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add wine and cook, stirring, until almost completely evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes more. Add the flour mixture and cook, stirring, until the sauce is thickened, about 30 seconds. Gently stir in the ravioli and zucchini, basil and pepper. Divide among four plates. Top each portion with 1 tablespoon Parmesan.
Nutrition per serving: 351 calories; 11 g fat ( 6 g sat , 2 g mono); 53 mg cholesterol; 48 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 14 g protein; 2 g fiber; 541 mg sodium; 345 mg potassium.
It’s Wilmington Beer Week until Nov. 9, which means you can sample the best craft brews at special prices and during special events at many restaurants in and around Wilmington. One such event (a favorite of your humble Insider): a grilled cheese and craft beer tasting at World Cafe Live on Nov. 6. BBC Tavern & Grill will host a firkin party on Nov. 5, featuring brews from Yards, Evolution, Twin Lakes, Abita and Dogfish Head. The parties roll on, so check the beer week website for more, or check in with these participating restaurants: Chelsea Tavern, Columbus Inn, Dead Presidents Pub & Restaurant, Ernest & Scott Taproom, Harry’s Seafood Grill, Iron Hill Restaurant & Brewery, Kid Shelleen’s, World Cafe Live at the Queen and Washington Street Ale House, all in Wilmington; Buckley’s Tavern in Centreville; BBC Tavern and Grill and Pizza by Elizabeths in â€¨Greenville; and Harry’s Savoy Grill, Stanley’s Tavern, Two Stones Pub and Ulysses Gastropub in Northâ€¨Wilmington. Please remember to enjoy responsibly. wilmingtonbeerweek.com
Who won the much-anticipated Delaware Homebrew Championship contest during the Delaware Wine and Beer Festival? Congratulations go to Russell Kobach, of Upper Darby, Pa., who took top honors with his French Saison Brew, winning $500 worth of cash, prizes and bragging rights. Sponsored by How Do You Brew, a homebrew retail store in Newark, prizes were also awarded by the Delaware Wine and Ale Trail, Cabot Creamery Cooperative and Dr. Homebrew Semi-finalists’ entries were judged by the American Home Brewers Association-certified judges. “Home brewers invest their time, money and energy with one or more recipes,” says Charles Gray of Kent County Tourism, producers of the event. “Some turn out good, and some turn out better left alone. With the right recipe and the right handling and timing, Mr. Kobach brewed the winning Delaware Home Brew Championship beer.” A Delaware-grown fruit beer called Peach Saison, an American brown ale, an American IPA called Hop Smack and a specialty beer, Porter, I hardly Know Her, made it to the semi-finals. Contestants came from as far as Washington, D.C., and Basking Ridge, N.J. “The Delaware Home Brew Championship was a huge success for the first year,” Gray says. “Kent County Tourism is looking forward to continuing the championship next year, with sponsors, more entries and a great time for all.” To learn more, check visitdover.com.
“I think we really try hard to be consistent and maintain our standards. People come to trust you,” says Betsy LeRoy, who, with partner Betty Snyder, is celebrating the 20th birthday of their gourmet Pizza by Elizabeths restaurant this year. You know PBE as the place where you can create your own pizza combos from a choice of crusts, sauces , cheeses and a wide range of toppings, some conventional, such as meatballs and pepperoni, and some not-so-conventional, like prosciutto, artichoke and figs. FFor all that has changed in 20 years, the core essence the same. Read more here. 654-4478, pizzabyelizabeths.com
We can always make room for more wine. New to Marydel: Harvest Ridge Winery, officially opened last week. Named after the farm that is its home, the beautiful new facility is the work of Chuck and Chris Nunan, who run the business with their children. Chuck Nunan began making wine in his basement in 1995, then, during a trip to Charleston, S.C., in 2010, he visited a winery that inspired to do something more. He and Chris bought the property as a family farm in 2005, then decided to create Harvest Ridge. The first vines—chardonnay, viognier, malbec and merlot—were planted in 2011, and now there is wine. Open daily from noon till 5 p.m., Harvest Ridge offers tastings of its five wines for $5—and you get to keep the glass. The lace is also open for large functions such as meetings and weddings. Check it out, and say hi. 343-9437, harvestridgewinery.com