First Annual Summer Wine Festival

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Mark your calendar!  The First Annual Summer Wine Festival is scheduled for next weekend, beginning Friday, August 18th.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Friday, Aug 18

  • 5pm  Open Hearth Dinner Under The Stars Featuring Chef May and Vara Wines
  • Live Music by Ry Taylor

Saturday, Aug 19

Taos Wine Fest Adult Activities (Included with Registration)

Taos Wine Fest Adult Activities (Additional Fee)

12pm

  • Wine & Swine! Wine & Pig Roast at Bavarian
  • Sponsored by Sonoma Cutrer
  • Live Music by The Trummors

5pm – 8pm

  • INDULGE : A Grand Tasting Event at Taos Ski Valley Plaza
  • 30 wines, 15 restaurants, 10 breweries, 3 hours
  • Live Music & Dancing By Sol Connection

VIP Tasting  Lounge Experience Sponsored by Gruet,  Edible Magazine  &  Brown Forman

Sunday, Aug 20

11am

  • Champagne Brunches Sponsored by Vara Wines, Steorra & Yalupa

Several local restaurants, including The Blonde Bear Tavern, will be participating.  See you there!

For more information, click here.

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Kitchen sponges are festering germ dens—and sanitizing them doesn’t help

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Some germy places in the house include the kitchen faucet and sponges. Typically people wash their hands after handling raw meat in the kitchen and frequently use sponges or cloths to wipe germs from surfaces in the kitchen. (Photo by Zbigniew Bzdak/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images)

Scientists have long thrown shade at the unassuming kitchen sponge. The household staple skulks in sinks amid dirty dishes and soggy food scraps, sopping up and amplifying microbial forces capable of invading clean food spaces. The savvy kitchen-goer may think they have this situation locked down—a simple toss through a sanitizing dishwasher cycle or a sizzling swirl in the microwave… and done. Sudsy germsplosion averted.

Nice try, says science.

In a comprehensive study of 14 household sponges and their microbial inhabitants published in Scientific Reports, researchers confirmed that kitchen sponges are indeed domestic abominations. Moreover, any sterilizing attempts only seem to temporarily free up sponge-space for potential pathogens, which rapidly recolonize the festering scrubber.

I haven’t used a sponge in my personal kitchen for years.  Blech.

Read the whole thing at ARS Technica.

Further Reading:

The New York Times:  We Need to Talk Some More About Your Dirty Sponges

 

 

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The New Mexico Restaurant Association Names The Blonde Bear Tavern as Restaurateur of the Year Nominee

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Well, this is an honor!  I’ve just been informed by the New Mexico Restaurant Association that The Blonde Bear Tavern and I have been nominated for its 2017 “Restaurateur of the Year” award.

The award will be presented on September 11, 2017.  I will keep you posted.

 

 

 

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Happy National Tequila Day!

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Today is National Tequila Day.  I will be doing my part to support this important national holiday.  I hope you will, too!

GRAN PATRÓN BURDEOS TEQUILA

If you’re ready to take your celebratory boozing to the next level, Gran Patrón Burdeos Tequila ($740) is just the stuff. Distilled from the finest blue agave, this ultra-premium dark tequila is matured in a blend of American and French oak barrels and aged for a minimum of 12 months. It’s then distilled again in vintage Bordeaux barrels from France. Each unleaded crystal bottle comes in a black walnut box with a special corkscrew and a crystal bee stopper.

 

Food & Wine magazine helpfully furnishes 10 terms every tequila drinker should know.  Do you know them all?

 

  • Tequila
  • Mezcal
  • Jalisco
  • Agave
  • Normas Oficial Mexicana (NOM)
  • Mixto
  • Blanco
  • Joven
  • Resposado
  • Añejo
Blue Agave

Here are some fun facts about Natinoal Tequila Day from The Huffington Post.

Drink responsibly and have fun!

 

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Don’t Believe the American Heart Association — Butter, Steak and Coconut Oil Aren’t Likely to Kill You

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Investigative journalist Nina Teicholz, author of The Big Fat Surprise: Why Butter, Meat and Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet, pens an op-ed in today’s Los Angeles Times:

Last month, the American Heart Assn. once again went after butter, steak and especially coconut oil with this familiar warning: The saturated fats in these foods cause heart disease. The organization’s “presidential advisory” was a fresh look at the science and came in response to a growing number of researchers, including myself, who have poured over this same data in recent years and beg to differ. A rigorous review of the evidence shows that when it comes to heart attacks or mortality, saturated fats are not guilty.

To me, the AHA advisory released in June was mystifying. How could its scientists examine the same studies as I had, yet double down on an anti-saturated fat position? With a cardiologist, I went through the nuts and bolts of the AHA paper, and came to this conclusion: It was likely driven less by sound science than by longstanding bias, commercial interests and the AHA’s need to reaffirm nearly 70 years of its “heart healthy” advice.

 

Plus this:

The diet-heart hypothesis has been tested more than any other in the history of nutrition, and thus far, the results have been null.

Read the whole thing.

 

Further Reading:  “Don’t Believe the American Heart Association — Butter, Steak and Coconut Oil Aren’t Likely to Kill You” – The Los Angeles Times

 

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You’re Using your Nonstick Pans all Wrong — Here’s the Right Way to Care for Your Pans

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Most of this is obvious; and I agree with the part about using olive oil or butter instead of cooking spray. I usually heat my pan before adding oil or butter, but I guess I’ll change that when using nonstick!

 

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The Blonde Bear Tavern Earns TripAdivsor’s 2017 Certificate of Excellence

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I’m pleased to announce that TripAdvisor has informed us that The Blonde Bear Tavern has just earned its 2017 Certificate of Excellence “based on the consistently great reviews you’ve earned on TripAdvisor.”

Of all the reviews written about us during the past ski season, 79 percent were 5-star reviews, the most in Taos Ski Valley.

Thanks to all of you and we promise not to rest on our laurels!

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