Treat yo’self and others at Ghyslain on Market’s first anniversary celebration

Chicken curry naan and a side of fruit from Ghyslain on Market.

I love being frugal, but occasionally, you have to treat yo’self and others. 

Ghyslain on Market is a good place to do so.

This French bistro on East Market Street in NuLu has delicious sandwiches, pastries and other sweets that are perfect for a midday pick-me-up.

And next month, Ghyslain on Market will celebrate a year in Louisville by sponsoring a supply drive for Mayor Greg Fischer’s Give a Day, a city-wide service initiative that helps kick off the Kentucky Derby Festival.

On Sunday, April 15, 2012, patrons can receive a free Vanilla Crème Brûlée with the purchase of entrée when they bring in a donation for St. Joseph Children’s Home. Did you read that, people? FREE FANCY DESSERT. Sandwiches and entrees start at $10, and it’s worth every buck.

Here are some of the items that St. Joseph Children’s Home needs:

  • Nightlights
  • Beach towels
  • Wrapping paper and gift bags
  • Adult-size socks
  • Individually-sized snacks

For more info, visit the websites of Ghyslain, St. Joseph Children’s Home, or Give a Day.

Mark your calendars: The Rumble at the River, a Seafood Chowder Throwdown, 3.21.11

The folks over at Louisville Hot Bytes are hosting a chowder competition to benefit autistic children.

The Rumble at the River, a Seafood Chowder Throwdown, which will take place March 21, 2011, at Captain’s Quarters, will pit some of Louisville’s best chefs against one another to find the best chowder in the city. Proceeds of the event will go toward The Hope Center for Growth, an organization that runs a summer camp for autistic youth.

Some participants in the competition include: Theatre Square Market Place, Equus/Jack’s, Dish on Market, NA Exchange and Lilly’s. Tickets are $15 per person.


The Rumble at the River, a Seafood Chowder Throwdown

When: 6:30 p.m., March 21, 2011

Where: Captain’s Quarters, 5700 Captain’s Quarters Road, Harrods Creek, Ky.

Cost: $15 with proceeds going toward The Hope Center for Growth

Got bourbon? Get some and support Brightside at Four Roses Flower Hour

I’ve written before that I’m a fan of charity and food. Add bourbon to the mix, and you’ve got yourself an even better time.

Four Roses Bourbon and Nanz & Kraft Florists will sponsor the fourth-annual Four Roses Flower Hour charity event next week that benefits Brightside, an organization that promotes clean, green activities and initiatives in Louisville. 

Flower Hour will take place from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 11, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Nanz & Kraft, 141 Breckenridge Lane. With a minimum $5 donation at the door, attendees can shop for gifts, drink a little bourbon and have some snacks with Master Distiller Jim Rutledge. All proceeds go to Brightside, so it sounds like a great deal.

What: Four Roses Flower Hour

When: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Feb. 11

Where: Nanz & Kraft, 141 Breckenridge Lane

Cost: Minimum $5 donation with proceeds going to Brightside

Bits and pieces: Marijuana, death of the cupcake and other food news from the web, 1.3.11


Screw you, cupcakes. Long live pie.


  • The cuteness of cupcakes has finally run its course. Trend-watchers (can I get that job?) say that pie is the new hip dessert, replacing cupcakes as the king of receptions and bakeries, NPR reports.


  • Restaurant critics are usually allowed a veil of anonymity in their area food community that allows them to visit restaurants and experience a meal like any other diner. Recently, L.A. Times restaurant critic S. Irene Virbila was booted from the Beverly Hills restaurant Red Medicine, and the eatery posted pics of Virbila to the web. Ouch. However, the Times’ food editor wrote a piece explaining that the critic’s outing might not be a bad thing.


  • Here’s a great way to collect canned goods for the community. A California medical marijuana dispensary “offered a complimentary marijuana cigarette for every four cans of food a patient brought in this holiday season. Each patient was limited to a maximum of three cigarettes a day,” according to an article from the Associated Press. The dispensary collected more than 11,000 pounds of food.


  • I’m familiar with aging wine and bourbon, but what about cocktails? Barrel-aged cocktails are the new thing with mixologists, the New York Times reports. I wonder how an appletini tastes after a six-week resting period.

Bits and pieces: Thanksgiving news from the web, 11.24.10

    Gobble gobble, y'all. Photo courtesy of Alan Vernon via Flickr.
  • Each year, one lucky turkey escapes the dinner table, receives a Presidential pardon and lives a pretty cushy life in the process. The Food Network put together a fun slideshow about the process, and the Washington Post profiled the chosen bird, Courage, and his alternate, Carolina, last year.
  • This Thanksgiving, more folks in Louisville (and the rest of the country, from what I’ve read) need help, but donations have fallen flat, according to an article in the Courier-Journal. From the story:

“What I’ve been really amazed by is the number of people who come in and feel somewhat ashamed because they say, ‘I’ve never been in this situation before,’” said George Sanders, executive director of West Louisville Community Ministries. “They’re almost apologetic.”

  • I’ve never had the urge to try the abomination that is turducken (a turkey stuffed with a duck stuffed with a chicken stuffed with … stuffing), but in case you’re interested, here’s a recipe. Somebody should stuff some Tums in there as well.


  • Some calls to the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line prove that there are such things as stupid questions, according to a piece from Reuters. The story lists some real questions that have been posed to the turkey experts throughout the years, including my favorite: “Is it okay to thaw my turkey in the bathtub while bathing my kids?”


  • Need something to talk about at the Thanksgiving table? The good people of have compiled a list of science trivia about common Thanksgiving foods.

Excuse me for the wonky blog

Life has been getting out of hand lately.

In a good way, of course.

Posts to the blog have been a bit irregular lately because my day job has been keeping me busy. But I feel blessed because when I’m busy, that means lots of people are volunteering at Neighborhood House.

A few weeks ago, the CEO of Humana was on a ladder painting a staircase. Then the president of KFC came by and served Original Recipe chicken to the families that come to Neighborhood House. And we still have more groups on their way to contribute this holiday season.

Thanks for hanging in there with me during this hectic time. I’m still here, running on Diet Coke, coffee and prayers.

Original KFC in Corbin to close, turn into hunger relief kitchen


A view of Sanders Cafe, the original KFC.

It’s a good thing I visited the first KFC in Corbin, Ky., last week.

Yum! Brands, the parent company of the fried-chicken chain, will close the Corbin restaurant, according to Business First of Louisville.

But Yum! plans to turn the Corbin location along with the first KFC franchise in Salt Lake City into “World Hunger Relief Kitchens” that will serve free meals to residents of local shelters, the Business First article said.

Yum! sponsors the World Hunger Relief campaign “to raise awareness, volunteerism and funds for the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) and other hunger relief agencies,” according to the campaign’s website.

Full disclosure: Today, I will see the campaign firsthand – representatives from Yum!, KFC and the World Hunger Relief campaign will visit Neighborhood House and serve food to our kids and their families.

Mark your calendars: Frozen yogurt shop’s Sept. 29 opening will benefit Kosair Charities

I love fundraisers disguised as food events. They combine two of my passions – charity and good eats.

One such occasion will take place this week at 32°, A Yogurt Bar, a frozen yogurt shop that will host its Louisville grand opening from 5 – 9 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 29, at The Summit.

Guests at the celebration can help themselves to a cup of all-you-care-to-eat frozen yogurt and toppings for a $5 donation. 32° will give all proceeds from the event to Kosair Children’s Hospital, according to a news release from the company.

This is 32°’s first location outside of Alabama, where the chain began. The yogurt bar is located between Starbucks and AT&T in The Summit. The Louisville shop will offer 14 daily flavors, which include gluten-free and kosher selections, and more than 50 toppings. The Summit is a bit of a journey from my hood, but some fro-yo sure is tempting.

A version of this article first appeared on

Hunger Walk benefiting Dare to Care food bank, World Food Programme to take place at Waterfront Park this weekend

With one in seven Americans living in poverty, there is a great need for organizations that can help the impoverished meet basic, immediate needs.

This weekend, Kentuckiana folks will have the chance to support a couple of these agencies.

The 2010 Hunger Walk 2010 will take place Saturday, Sept. 19, at Waterfront Park in downtown Louisville. The event will benefit Dare to Care Food Bank and The World Food Programme, two programs that address hunger on a local and international level.

The 5K run/walk begins at 2:15 p.m. A festival with food and entertainment starts at noon. Registration for the race is closed, but you can still support the agencies by donating online.

I get to see Dare to Care’s work each day at my day-job at Neighborhood House. Five nights each week, my organization hosts Kids’ Café, a Dare to Care program that provides kids with a free, nutritious meal. This summer, we set a record by serving 114 kids in one night, no doubt a result of the recession and the poverty it has caused.

Emeril Lagasse loves Louisville, and so should you

Chef Emeril Lagasse cooks some pork chops, potato salad and cucumber cocktails during a demonstration Sunday during the Fork, Cork & Style festival at Churchill Downs.

Emeril Lagasse’s history with Louisville is as rich as the cherry cornbread pudding he created during his visit to Derby City.

The chef, TV host and creator of kickin’ it up a notch was in town Sunday for the inaugural Fork, Cork & Style festival at Churchill Downs. I had the opportunity to ask Emeril a few questions before his first cooking demonstration at the finish line of the Churchill Downs track.

In person, Emeril is more toned down than what viewers saw on Emeril Live, the show that catapulted the chef into superstardom. Instead, the Emeril I met reminded me of the man I watch on Essence of Emeril – passionate about food, but more approachable and subdued.

During my few minutes with the chef, I learned a lot about his relationship with Louisville, his charitable works and his desire to promote more farm-to-fork eating:

Emeril’s connection with Louisville goes way back. Emeril said he was on the board of Sullivan University “back in the day” (a gentleman never reveals his age, I guess). At the time, Lilly’s Bistro was the go-to spot for culinary innovation. Since then …

“Louisville has just evolved tremendously as an American city,” Emeril said. The chef, who has 12 restaurants of his own, said he is impressed with the gastronomic presence that has emerged in Louisville. The night before Fork, Cork & Style, Emeril had a meal at Proof on Main. “I felt like I was in SoHo,” he said of the restaurant.”It’s incredible what’s going on in town. There’s a lot of exciting things happening in Louisville.”

He’s never been to a Kentucky Derby. Emeril hasn’t witnessed the most exciting two minutes in sports because the race takes place during the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. He’s lived in New Orleans for 28 years, so I understand his allegiance.

Emeril’s favorite Kentucky dishes? Spoonbread and trout. Emeril is also a fan of bourbon, which he said he poured on his French toast that morning (just joking, right?).

Anyone can be a good cook. For chefs-in-the-making, Emeril said it is important to find a mentor, listen to their advice and taste everything you cook. Follow these tips, and “you might be able to whip up a sandwich,” he said.

Between building a cooking empire, Emeril gives back to the community. The Emeril Lagasse Foundation “supports non-profit organizations that provide educational programs, life skills development, culinary training and cultural enrichment, creating opportunities in the communities where Emeril’s restaurants operate,” according to the foundation’s website. Emeril said the foundation is in the process of buying a farm to teach kids about where their food comes from and the importance of local agriculture. “They have to know that orange juice doesn’t come from a carton, it comes from a tree,” he said.

The chef promoted farm-to-fork eating before it was trendy. Emeril said he has always been passionate about using seasonal, local ingredients at his restaurants. “If you have great ingredients, you have great food,” he said. His latest book, Farm to Fork: Cooking Local, Cooking Fresh, is a testament to his work.