Treat Yo’ Self: Brunch at BLU Italian Grille (and a giveaway)

(Blogger’s note: I’m giving away a brunch for two at BLU. Read this post for more info.)
A portion of the brunch buffet at BLU.

I got the chance to celebrate brunch last week at BLU Italian Grille in the Marriott in downtown Louisville. The restaurant is promoting its new brunch concept and invited me to try it out on the house.

The brunch buffet at BLU is $22.95 per person, which puts the BLU buffet firmly in Treat Yo’ Self territory. But the upscale atmosphere, attentive wait staff and wide variety of delicious food choices are worth scrimping during the week to have a nice Sunday brunch, especially if you have some hard-to-please guests to entertain.

BLU offers a variety of dishes to satisfy urges for breakfast, lunch or both. The buffet provides a satisfying preview of what the regular BLU menu offers. Here are some of the foods that were available during my visit:

  • Omelet station
  • Egg benedict station
  • Carving station (a chef carved slices of beef at your request)
  • Antipasto platters
  • Selection of fresh fruit
  • Continental breakfast selections (yogurt, cereal, pastries, etc.)
  • Hot breakfast offerings (eggs, sausage, bacon, waffles, etc.)
  • Premium entreés
  • Desserts
My first two plates at the BLU buffet.

In about an hour, I had sampled from three plates full of food (I was researching for this blog, so I absolve myself of guilt). Some of my favorite selections were the beef filet and scalloped potatoes from the entreé section of the buffet, the scrambled eggs and the fresh fruit. A slice of moist carrot cake was a good cap to my meal.

But it wasn’t just the food that made my experience at BLU enjoyable. A jazz trio played upbeat tunes throughout the afternoon. Our waitress, Mei, was never more than a step or two away with fresh coffee or cold water. These little extras made my brunch a little more classy than what I’m used to, and I’m OK with that.

BLU Italian Grille, 280 W. Jefferson Street, Louisville

Brunch buffet, $22.95 per person

10:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Sundays

BLU would like to offer a brunch for two to one Ashlee Eats reader. Just answer the following question in the comments between now and next Thursday, 10.25.12, for your chance to win:

What is your favorite brunch food?

Don’t waste a failed bread recipe. Transform it in these 4 ways.

It’s easy to save a little money if you are willing to look at something with new eyes.

Take, for instance, when you’re trying to bake bread or a pastry.

I’m more of a cook than a baker, so a lot of my attempts at baking have ended with a something stale and hard. But I feel like I’m dumping greenbacks into the garbage can if I throw away my bricks of bread. Instead, I transform it into something new.

Here are four ways you can save bad bread:

Bread pudding with a bourbon-spiked glaze.
  1. Bread pudding. My mom made my dad a Sock-It-To-Me Cake, but she forgot the sour cream, a key ingredient. She was about to throw the whole cake away and make another. I rescued the cake and used it as the base of a bread pudding. Though I came up with a bread pudding based on several recipes, it was very similar to this Kentucky recipe.
  2. Stuffing. I don’t want to talk about the time I tried to make biscuits. It was a disaster. But I got some good stuffing from it, so everyone was a winner.
  3. Croutons. If you have some stale bread, or a really bad hunk of a loaf that just didn’t quite turn into the bread you wanted it to be, slice it into squares, toss with some olive oil and Italian seasoning, and bake for about 10 minutes or until crunchy. Thank me later.
  4. French toast. When I was a kid, I remember watching an episode of The Babysitters’ Club in which a kid spilled some milk on the counter. A teenage boy trying out to be in the club cracked an egg on top of the milk, dipped some slices of bread in the mess, and fried it on a griddle. That kid was on to something. This is perfect for that half loaf of bread you didn’t get to fast enough.


What do you do with bad bread?

[Events] No plans Thursday? Make your way to Let Them Tweet Cake meet-up, 3.22.12

A slice of pound cake with strawberry filling from Sweet Surrender. Effects by Pixlr-o-matic.

It’s that time of the month — time for cake, tech talk and good times.

The ladies (and couple of gentlemen) of Let Them Tweet Cake will meet at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Sweet Surrender Dessert Café, 1804 Frankfort Ave., Louisville.

Here are some topics that could be discussed, courtesy of organizer and Consuming Louisville blogger Michelle Jones:

As always we’ll be disussing all manner of tech and social media related topics. We might talk about the new iPad, Facebook’s IPO, Instagram coming to Android, Path’s privacy snafu and lots of other interesting topics.

Shout-out to Christine Vaughn and Apple Patch for sponsoring this month’s meeting. Free cake for everyone!

I’m having a sad because I will be out of town that night, so someone pour a little out for the homie who won’t be there.

It’s that time again — Let Them Tweet Cake, 6:30 p.m. today, 1.25.12

You’ve missed the boat if you haven’t come to a Let Them Tweet Cake tweet-up yet.

There’s lots of ladies and a few gents, eating cake, drinking coffee, and talking about the latest technology news.

I’ve been to several of these informal meet ups and met a lot of great people. Plus, the event takes place at Sweet Surrender Dessert Cafe, a delicious bakery on Frankfort Avenue. And since friend of the blog Michelle Jones is the organizer, you know it’s going to be fun.

And did I mention there will be free cake? You read it write. The Small Business Shamen Conference is sponsoring Let Them Tweet Cake this month, so it’s time to get your complimentary grub on.

Let Them Tweet Cake

6:30 p.m. today, Jan. 25, 2012

Sweet Surrender, 1804 Frankfort Ave., Louisville, Ky.

Cost: FREE

Join me at Let Them Tweet Cake’s November meetup tonight, 11.10.11

Want to eat some cake, talk technology and hang out with me and a bunch of cool ladies?

The next meetup for Let Them Tweet Cake, an organization for women interested in technology and media, is today at 6:30 p.m. at the bakery Sweet Surrender, 1804 Frankfort Avenue. Don’t worry, dudes, you’re welcome, too.

Tonight’s event is sponsored by local author Shiloh Walker, who has a new book out called “If You Hear Her.”

So now it’s time for a roll call: Who’s going to join me? This is a great way to meet interesting, fun people in Louisville.


Let Them Tweet Cake November Meetup

6:30 p.m.

Nov. 10, 2011

Sweet Surrender, 1804 Frankfort Ave., Louisville, Ky.

Time for some dessert and technology talk at this month’s Let Them Tweet Cake meet-up

It’s that time again, ladies.

Let Them Tweet Cake, a meet-up for women (and a few dudes) who are interested in talking tech and eating sweets, will take place at 6:30 p.m. tomorrow, August 3, at Sweet Surrender at 1804 Frankfort Avenue. Here’s a blurb from Michelle at Consuming Louisville, the organizer of the Tweet Cake events:

A lot has happened in the world of technology, mobile apps, social media and the internet this summer so we’re going to have lots of good stuff to talk about.

I’ll be there. Who else is coming?

Bits and pieces: Cheesecake Factory, downtown distillery and other food news from the web, 7.11.11

  • Ever wanted to try all the cheesecake selections at the Cheesecake Factory? A group of writers did, and they lived to blog about it. And you can check out this slideshow to see if how many you have tried. (Serious Eats)
  • Some kids in a Cleveland suburb were robbed at their lemonade stand. The bandits made off with at least $13.50. Somewhere, an angel is crying. (Huffington Post)
  • A Michigan woman could face 93 days in jail for planting a vegetable garden in her front yard. Yikes. (Gawker)
  • A distillery is going to renovate and set up shop in a historic building in downtown Louisville. Operations are expected to begin n 2013. (Business First of Louisville)

Get an ice cream cone for 25 cents Saturday at Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen

Got a quarter and some free time this weekend?

Swing on down to one of nine Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen locations for Quarter Day this Saturday, June 18. From noon to 5 p.m., customers can get a one-scoop ice cream cone for 25 cents.


The dessert shop has 32 flavors of ice cream from which to choose, so I would study up before you go to avoid being “that guy” (or gal) holding up the line with indecision. I’ve narrowed my selections to either butter pecan or strawberry shortcake. Or I might go crazy and spend an extra 25 cents for two cones. You only live once, amirite?

Click here to find your nearest Pie Kitchen. And if you see me munching on the melty end of a sugar cone, don’t be afraid to say hi.

Like sweets, soldering and technology? Join me at the next Let Them Tweet Cake event

I’ve attended a few Let Them Tweet Cake meet ups, and I’ve had a blast at each one.

A bunch of ladies (and occasionally a few dudes) sit around at Sweet Surrender, eat some cake and talk about technology, social media and whatever else comes up.

This week’s Tweet Cake event is going to be a bit different – we get to use tools. It’s about to get crazy.

The meet up (or Tweet up?) will take place at LVL1, where we will build MintiBoosts, USB charges made out of empty mint cases.

Interested? Michelle of the Consuming Louisville blog is the wonderful organizer of the Tweet Cake events, and she has more info here.

What: Let Them Tweet Cake

When: 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011

Cost: $35 (you can pay at the event)