Gourmet Living

22 May 19
Tried and True Traveler

July 9, 2016 After a relaxing last week in Cusco, we said goodbye to South America (and concluded the first third of Remote Year!) after four adventure-filled months. Three flights later, we landed at London Heathrow to start the European leg of our journey! For the first time on RY, I LOVE our accommodations. We […]

22 May 19
Archy Worldys

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22 May 19
Block Club Chicago
LOGAN SQUARE — When Skip Murray opened an inventive hot dog joint in the Uptown neighborhood of New Orleans, he didn’t expect it to take off. But the counter-service spot exploded in popularity, its alligator and crawfish dogs flying out the door. Now, after conquering New Orleans, the Louisiana native is taking on the hot dog capital of the country, where he’s long dreamt of opening a restaurant. Murray’s Chicago debut, Doggone’s, opens Saturday in Logan Square at 3301 W. Armitage Ave., across the street from popular bar Best Intentions. Doggone’s is a hot dog joint “with lashings of Louisiana.” Like Murray’s New Orleans restaurant, Dat Dog, the Chicago spot is all about gourmet hot dogs ($5-$9.50) with bold New Orleans flavors and unique toppings. Alligator and crawfish dogs sourced from New Orleans and fries covered in étouffée and andouille sauce are among the offerings. Murray sources some of his dogs from Five Star Brand Meats in Cleveland, Ohio, founded by a second-generation German family. The New Orleans-style dogs, like the hot and smoked and alligator sausage, come from Crescent City Meat Company in New Orleans. The buns, which are all steamed and toasted, are locally sourced. Many of the dogs are topped with fresh tomatoes and onions. “I’m looking for you to say, ‘Wow.’ Then we’re heading in the right direction,” Murray said. Fries covered in étouffée at Doggone’s. Murray was born and raised in New Orleans like his mother but has spent a lot of time in Chicago, where his father grew up. Opening a restaurant in Chicago has always been a goal of Murray’s. As a kid, he spent many afternoons at Wrigley Field: “I have a tear-stained pillow from all of the games that were lost,” he said. Despite the success of Dat Dog, Murray could never shake Chicago — and its reputation for great hot dogs. “New Orleans is not a natural fit for this, but Chicago is,” he said. Dat Dog started as a 475-square-foot hot dog stand and quickly grew into a booming restaurant with a dedicated following. In recent years, Dat Dog has expanded to Houston and Baton Rogue. After the success of Dat Dog, Murray opened Dis & Dem, a hamburger joint which has since closed. But last year Murray sold all of his shares in the Dat Dog company to his founding partner, Constantine Georges. On his departure from Dat Dog, Murray simply said, “They’re moving in a different direction.” Murray plans to focus his energy on making Doggone’s a success. Getting Doggone’s off the ground proved trying. Murray signed a lease on the Logan Square storefront about a year and a half ago. It took months longer than anticipated to get the proper permitting and licensing. “Chicago has a lot of rules and regulations that make it tough,” he said. Then, around the time Murray got his permits and licenses in order, he had a stroke. Work on the restaurant came to a halt as he went through recovery. For Doggone’s to be finally opening on Saturday is a major win for Murray, his partner, Sam Elliott, and their staff. “I’m here to tell the story,” Murray said. ‘It Wasn’t In My Script To Be The Hot Dog Guy, But I Am That Guy’ Murray talks about his life leading up to Dat Dog with an enthusiasm unmatched by most people. He graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans with a degree in communications. After college, his dad, the Chicago native, got him a job in the kitchen at Brennan’s, a New Orleans staple since 1946. “Everything I know about the restaurant business I learned at Brennan’s,” Murray said. From Brennan’s on, Murray was hooked on cooking. His next job was for a fish restaurant in the United Kingdom, where he introduced the owners to gumbo, blackened fish, jambalaya — and all things New Orleans. He went on to live in Paris and then the United Kingdom for more than 25 years. During his time in London, he opened his own restaurant there. “What started out as a job opportunity ends up being a monumental move to live in London,” Murray said. Skip Murray (left) and his partner, Sam Elliott, in front of their new restaurant, Doggone’s. It was while Murray was living overseas that he first started cooking gourmet hot dogs. A lifelong fans of the Cubs, Murray joined a softball league and the woman overseeing it asked him to organize food for an upcoming tournament. Murray didn’t want to organize it at first, but he eventually agreed to make hot dogs. I got all of the ingredients to make a Wrigley Field, Yankee Stadium, great American hot dog,” he said. From then on, Murray was the “hot dog king.” He went on to do hot dog catering for Major League Baseball International for British baseball. “It took on a life of its own,” Murray said. After several years of catering overseas, Murray returned home to New Orleans to open Dat Dog, first as a cart and then as a stand. Much to his surprise, the tiny hot dog joint was a huge success in New Orleans, especially among nearby college students. “From day one, the queue was all the way down the block,” he said. “Is that going to happen [in Chicago]? I don’t know. What I believe is we will do the best dogs we can. It wasn’t in my script to be the hot dog guy, but I am that guy, and it’s taken me to all kinds of places.” Doggone’s opens Saturday, when it will be open 11:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Moving forward, the restaurant will be open 11:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. everyday except Mondays and Tuesdays, though the hours are subject to change. Do stories like this matter to you? Subscribe to Block Club Chicago. Every dime we make funds reporting from Chicago’s neighborhoods. The inside of Doggone’s, a new fast-casual hot dog joint in Logan Square.
22 May 19
New Mexico Living Local

[anvplayer video=”3643421″ station=”KRQE”] From a small family-owned grocery store to one of the premier producers of Mexican style foods in the southwest, Bueno Foods has come a long way in the last 68 years. To celebrate the years of service, Bueno Foods is partnering with Read to Me, an organization that provides books to children […]

22 May 19
KraziliaLove's Sims 4 Place

Make sure to read Part 1 and Part 2 first! It had been a few weeks since Eugenia’s sister sashayed back into her life and, from where she was sitting, it could not have been sweeter. After all, baby sis was doing all of the heavy lifting in preparing for Eugenia’s upcoming nuptials. It did […]

22 May 19
The Mercury News
Luxurious homes along Blackhawk Road in Danville grace both the gated and open neighborhoods with exceptional-looking and fine-crafted designs. When you arrive at Wood Creek, one particular home takes high-end luxury a step further, a step outside to an amazing backyard also brimming with amenities and possibilities. This high-end six-bedroom home delivers a backyard of creative and delightful amenities. Welcome to 1305 Still Creek Place located along a quiet cul-de-sac of stately homes that are embraced with mature landscaping and towering trees. Updated finishes and a meticulously maintained open concept floor plan on the almost half acre level property create a stunning turnkey property. The more than 3,900 square feet of living space drenched in natural light is on two levels with six bedrooms including a main-level guest room/office, three full bathrooms, expansive formal rooms and an over-the-top gourmet eat-in kitchen that is open to the enormous family room. Come for the surrounding tranquility and stay for its convenient proximity to top-rated schools, downtown, freeway access, the Blackhawk Plaza and Country Club, walking trails, and Mount Diablo State Park. As the temperature cools, cozy up by the stacked stone fireplace. Friends and family will delight in gathering in this amazing backyard that offers multiple venues for a variety of activities. Relax on the slate tile patio by the stacked stone fireplace with a raised hearth, or grill up a feast at the built-in barbecue designed with a granite counter under the vine-covered arbor. The built-in barbecue under a vine-covered arbor is just the right spot to dine and chat the night away. Play at the in-ground trampoline or sports court, relax in the hot tub, or practice your putts and long shots at the putting green complete with a sand trap and net. Pathways meander throughout the lush gardens filled with colorful foliage, a dry creek bed, mature shade trees, redwoods and a variety of fruit trees. Enjoy as is or customize with a pool, or a detached guest cottage. Whitewashed red oak floors flow throughout this home that also features decorative crown molding, Milgard dual-pane windows, a Pella sliding glass door and high ceilings. Spacious formal living and dining rooms flank the elegant foyer and each showcase a front-facing window seat. Flexible space in the large casual dining area includes a built-in workstation and floor-to-ceiling cabinetry ideal for backpacks, shoes, and sporting equipment. The generous-size family room features a high ceiling and oversize windows including a sliding glass door to the backyard. Anchored by built-in cabinetry, the family room also features a dual-sided gas fireplace that it shares with the outdoor patio. The gourmet kitchen is filled with an abundance of updated amenities and includes a charming stone fireplace. Two-tone cherry wood cabinetry including upper glass front-paneled cabinets and an appliance garage wraps around the kitchen. There is an apron sink, walk-in pantry, and an oversize island/breakfast bar with a hammered copper sink. The kitchen stands out with two-tone cherry wood cabinets, an oversize island and a stone fireplace. Granite slab counters are complimented by a beveled diamond patterned tile backsplash. Stainless appliances include a GE Monogram range with six-burners, griddle, and dual ovens, and custom tile backsplash, Miele dishwasher, dual Fisher & Paykel dishwasher drawers, Sub-Zero refrigerator, and a GE microwave. Six bedrooms include a main-level bedroom/office space with built-in cabinetry and backyard garden view. The adjacent full bathroom features convenient access to the backyard. The sumptuous master bedroom retreat on the upper level is complete with a vaulted ceiling, chair rail molding, plush carpeting and walk-in closet. A stylish bathroom includes a radiant-heated travertine tile floor, built-in dresser, dual vanities with granite tops and rubbed bronze fixtures, makeup vanity, and oversize steam shower including multiple showerheads and body jets. Four additional bedrooms feature sliding mirrored close doors, closet organizers, crown molding and wood blinds. A full bathroom features a dual-sink vanity area with a coffered ceiling separate from the tub and shower combination. Additional features include a three-car garage with an electric car charger, work bench and storage cabinets, surround sound in the family room and kitchen, Ring doorbell, owned solar panels, and water well on the property. A gated side yard is ideal for RV or boat parking. There is also new fencing, LED lighting and fresh interior paint. Close to top-rated San Ramon Valley Unified School District schools including Green Valley Elementary, Los Cerros Middle and Monte Vista High School. Price: $1,998,000 Where: 1305 Still Creek Place, Danville Website: http://www.frazzanoteam.com/ Listing Agents: J. Rockcliff Realtors, The Frazzano Team, Alex Tse, 925-7881432, Alex@FrazzanoTeam.com; Joe Frazzano, 925-8900285, Joe@FrazzanoTeam.com.
22 May 19
East Bay Times
Luxurious homes along Blackhawk Road in Danville grace both the gated and open neighborhoods with exceptional-looking and fine-crafted designs. When you arrive at Wood Creek, one particular home takes high-end luxury a step further, a step outside to an amazing backyard also brimming with amenities and possibilities. This high-end six-bedroom home delivers a backyard of creative and delightful amenities. Welcome to 1305 Still Creek Place located along a quiet cul-de-sac of stately homes that are embraced with mature landscaping and towering trees. Updated finishes and a meticulously maintained open concept floor plan on the almost half acre level property create a stunning turnkey property. The more than 3,900 square feet of living space drenched in natural light is on two levels with six bedrooms including a main-level guest room/office, three full bathrooms, expansive formal rooms and an over-the-top gourmet eat-in kitchen that is open to the enormous family room. Come for the surrounding tranquility and stay for its convenient proximity to top-rated schools, downtown, freeway access, the Blackhawk Plaza and Country Club, walking trails, and Mount Diablo State Park. As the temperature cools, cozy up by the stacked stone fireplace. Friends and family will delight in gathering in this amazing backyard that offers multiple venues for a variety of activities. Relax on the slate tile patio by the stacked stone fireplace with a raised hearth, or grill up a feast at the built-in barbecue designed with a granite counter under the vine-covered arbor. The built-in barbecue under a vine-covered arbor is just the right spot to dine and chat the night away. Play at the in-ground trampoline or sports court, relax in the hot tub, or practice your putts and long shots at the putting green complete with a sand trap and net. Pathways meander throughout the lush gardens filled with colorful foliage, a dry creek bed, mature shade trees, redwoods and a variety of fruit trees. Enjoy as is or customize with a pool, or a detached guest cottage. Whitewashed red oak floors flow throughout this home that also features decorative crown molding, Milgard dual-pane windows, a Pella sliding glass door and high ceilings. Spacious formal living and dining rooms flank the elegant foyer and each showcase a front-facing window seat. Flexible space in the large casual dining area includes a built-in workstation and floor-to-ceiling cabinetry ideal for backpacks, shoes, and sporting equipment. The generous-size family room features a high ceiling and oversize windows including a sliding glass door to the backyard. Anchored by built-in cabinetry, the family room also features a dual-sided gas fireplace that it shares with the outdoor patio. The gourmet kitchen is filled with an abundance of updated amenities and includes a charming stone fireplace. Two-tone cherry wood cabinetry including upper glass front-paneled cabinets and an appliance garage wraps around the kitchen. There is an apron sink, walk-in pantry, and an oversize island/breakfast bar with a hammered copper sink. The kitchen stands out with two-tone cherry wood cabinets, an oversize island and a stone fireplace. Granite slab counters are complimented by a beveled diamond patterned tile backsplash. Stainless appliances include a GE Monogram range with six-burners, griddle, and dual ovens, and custom tile backsplash, Miele dishwasher, dual Fisher & Paykel dishwasher drawers, Sub-Zero refrigerator, and a GE microwave. Six bedrooms include a main-level bedroom/office space with built-in cabinetry and backyard garden view. The adjacent full bathroom features convenient access to the backyard. The sumptuous master bedroom retreat on the upper level is complete with a vaulted ceiling, chair rail molding, plush carpeting and walk-in closet. A stylish bathroom includes a radiant-heated travertine tile floor, built-in dresser, dual vanities with granite tops and rubbed bronze fixtures, makeup vanity, and oversize steam shower including multiple showerheads and body jets. Four additional bedrooms feature sliding mirrored close doors, closet organizers, crown molding and wood blinds. A full bathroom features a dual-sink vanity area with a coffered ceiling separate from the tub and shower combination. Additional features include a three-car garage with an electric car charger, work bench and storage cabinets, surround sound in the family room and kitchen, Ring doorbell, owned solar panels, and water well on the property. A gated side yard is ideal for RV or boat parking. There is also new fencing, LED lighting and fresh interior paint. Close to top-rated San Ramon Valley Unified School District schools including Green Valley Elementary, Los Cerros Middle and Monte Vista High School. Price: $1,998,000Where: 1305 Still Creek Place, DanvilleWebsite: http://www.frazzanoteam.com/Listing Agents: J. Rockcliff Realtors, The Frazzano Team, Alex Tse, 925-7881432, Alex@FrazzanoTeam.com; Joe Frazzano, 925-8900285, Joe@FrazzanoTeam.com.
22 May 19
BERKSHIRE ON STAGE

On Saturday, May 18, 2019, Hubbard Hall celebrated its 41st year as a regional arts leader, serving Washington County and the Capital Region with the best in arts education programming and in developing, producing and presenting world-class art and artists year-round.    At the same time, Hubbard Hall honored Joe Donahue for his work in making art and […]