Thursday, June 24, 2010

Bradley Digital 4 Rack Smoker - It's HERE!!!!!

Well, after much thought on buying a smoker for the last year or two, I finally broke down and ordered my smoker, and today it arrived!  A day late, but worth the wait, and at least it is here!

I have read extensively about smokers, and everyone swears by one method or another.  Some swear that you only need to cook with the heat of the wood, while others swear by their charcoal smokers.  Yet others say that the best way to smoke is with a propane or electric smoker.  So in doing my research, I found a million and one opinions, but you know what they say about opinions.  "Everyone has one!"

I wanted something that wasn't going to take up a ton of space, and something that didn't involve me messing around with vents and dampers, adding wood or coals, etc.  I didn't want to be stuck at home all day gazing boringly at smoke coming out of a vent, so I went the electric route.  Sure, a lot will say that this isn't smoking, and I will never get that true smoke flavor from an electric smoker.  Maybe they are right, but I took my chance.

With that said, I ordered the Bradley 4 Rack Digital Smoker Product Code BTDS76P as I mentioned in a post a couple of days ago.  You can read more about the specs and what not in that post below if you chose.

So when I got home from work tonight, I read through the manual and decided to "season" my smoker tonight.  I mean really, what guy doesn't want to play with a new toy?  So after finding the box that FedEx left behind my gate, I took it into the backyard and started to unpack it.

Let me say that the smoker is packaged very nicely in the box, and everything is packed securely with cardboard, styrofoam, and plastic.  Packing was easy to discard, and everything that was supposed to be included with the unit was there.

The smoker was very easy to put together.  The smoke unit/bisquette injector/computer just slides into place, first inserting the bisquette track into the side of the smoker, then sliding the control box onto the two screws on the side.  After this, I unwrapped the metal water bowl, drip pan, drip pan catcher, and the racks, and washed them as directed.  I also wiped down the inside of the smoker to make sure it was clean, and we were ready to break this bad boy in.

Per the directions, it said to run the heating element at 150 degrees with smoke for one hour.  This would take 3 bisquettes, but I decided to double that and shoot for two hours.  I would assume that a longer break in can't hurt, and this was actually recommended by fellow Wine Berserker John Gardner, so that is the route I took.

The directions for the seasoning smoke were easy enough, and with the click of a few buttons, we were starting to season the Bradley.  For seasoning, I went with the Special Blend bisquettes as I have a rather large box of them, but there are many options that I could have gone with.  The bisquettes come in the following flavors:  Alder, Apple, Cherry, Hickory, Maple, Mesquite, Oak, Pecan, Special Blend, and a Jim Beam varietal that is made from old Jim Beam whiskey casks.

As a test measure, I inserted both probes of my Maverick ET-7 temperature gauge, one on the top, and one on the bottom, just to see how accurate the temperature setting was on the Bradley.  Needless to say, once the smoker got to the 150 degrees that I set it at, the probe on the top was reading 163, and 159 on the bottom probe.  This was a lot closer than I had expected, and I was pleasantly pleased.  I am sure the variation and temperature swings will be a lot different when I start loading this up with meat and poultry to smoke, but that will be in another post.

I will say that 2 hours is a long time to wait, and I spent a lot of that time out in the yard smelling the smoke, looking at the oven, and watching the bisquettes being injected onto the smoke burner every 20 minutes.  What a great feature.

In the meantime, I couldn't let the night pass without smoking something!  Unfortunately, I didn't want to be up until 6AM to smoking a brisket, so I opted to try to hot smoke some peanuts and cashews once the break in smoke completed, so I got these ready to go.

For the cashews, I wanted to try something out of the ordinary, so I put them into a stainless steel mixing bowl, added a bit of olive oil, a few drops of truffle oil, and then pulled out my spice grinders.  First I added some dried garlic and sea salt, and I then added some dried garlic and peppercorn.  I am very excited to see how these turn out!  For the peanuts, I pulled some hot sauce from the fridge, added some salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper, and mixed those up as well.  See the picture at right.

Meanwhile, Zelda and I enjoyed our stuffed breads from the Bordentown City Farmers market last night, and waited for the two hours to pass.  By the time we had finished dinner, we were ready to go, so in went the nuts.  Unfortunately, I haven't found a screen or anything to put on the racks yet for smaller item to keep them from falling through, but this is something that I need to do as this will help the smaller item absorb more smoke.  In the meantime however, aluminum foil will have to do, and I poked several small holes in the bottom for the smoke to penetrate.

Being a complete newbie, I have no idea how long to smoke these for, so I went with 2 hours at 200 degrees with full smoke.  We'll know in an hour or so how they come out.  I have the vent open about 1/2 way to help trap some of the smoke, and to keep the smoker hot inside to help dry out the nuts.  I will report back shortly, but much more to come!

Bordentown City Farmers Market

Well, last night brought the 3rd week for the Bordentown Farmers Market, and once again, it did not disappoint.  As usual, it was a nice stop for some fresh local produce and other goods, as well as our dinner destination for the evening.

As I have said before, Bordentown City is a charming little town located in Central NJ, just minutes off of the NJ Turnpike, 295, Route 130, or Route 206.  It is a great, historic old city with a ton of charm.  So when Zelda got home from work, we took a drive over to Bordentown, and were greeted by many familiar faces.

The farmers were out with their fresh produce as usual, but we weren't thre for produce tonight as we had our pickup at the CSA last night.  Our first stop was the Busy Bee Farm tent where we picked up some fresh, local apple mint jelly.  This was very tasty when we tried it last week, and makes a nice addition to the pantry, right next to their wildflower and lavender honey that I picked up at week one of the Farmers Market.

Our next stop was at the tent set up right next to Busy Bee’s for some fresh cheese, hosted by the Cherry Grove Farm  located in Lawrenceville, NJ.  Cherry Grove Farm is a certified organic farm that raises and sells anything from raw milk cheeses made from grass fed cows, to beef and lamb, beef and lamb sausage, whey fed pork, and eggs from free range chickens.  Today, they had a gentleman letting people taste the different cheeses that they were offering, and we absolutely loved the peppercorn jack that we sampled, so we picked up a block, as well as some brie.  They also had some nice meats, and I think that I just might have to pick up a brisket from them in the future to throw in the smoker.

The next stop was the bakery from Pennsauken, who always has some great baked goods and pasties.  Tonight I was very pleased to see the return of the stuffed breads, and I picked up a cheese and pepperoni bread for myself, and a broccoli and cheese stuffed bread for Zelda.  At a price of 2 for $10, can you really beat that?  I don’t think so!

Our final stop tonight was Oliver-A Bistro’s booth for some of Big Matt’s Burrito’s for dinner.  This week, we both opted for the chicken, which is nicely braised and pulled in house.  First Matt threw our flour tortillas on the grill t warm them up, and then started filling them with deliciousness.  First was a nice heaping helping of chicken, and in all actuality, I could have used less chicken, but who am I to complain!  Next, the rice and beans were added, although I opted for rice only as I am not a big fan of refried beans.  Next, lettuce, pico de gallo, cheese, guacamole, and some mild salsa were added, and we bagged them up along with an order of guacamole and chips, and headed towards our bistro for dinner.  Still warm when we got home, these were once again delicious!

What is there to say other than a great night in little old Bordentown City.  We always enjoy our visits to Bordentown as we see so many familiar faces.  Last night we were greeted by Deputy Mayor Cheesman, Jim Brimmer, and Larry Denney who were working the table when you walk in.  They were selling environmentally friendly reusable bags with the Bordentown Farmer’s Market logo on them, and these are perfect for carrying all of your goodies home.  Buy one and reuse it on each visit!  These are similar to the bags that you can purchase at your local grocery store.  Larry was also handing out some great vegetable recipes to give people ideas for their newly purchased veggies.  We also ran into Jeff Tober who is the farm manager at our CSA, Fernbrook Farms.  I wonder if someday Fernbrook will have a booth set up here.  I sure hope so!

Other than that, we saw many friends and neighbors, and it was just a nice night, inus the heat, for Bordentown.  I think that the city commissioners are really leading the charge to make the farmers market awesome, and they are doing a great job bringing in vendors, and letting the local area know what it going on.  Big kudos to Deputy Mayor Cheesman for leading this charge!

What I would really like to see is this turn into a great Wednesday night gathering!  Bring in more vendors, and especially bring in more of the restaurants around town.  If each restaurant in town came out with 1-3 dishes, this could be an awesome resource!  Do this every week, and not only will it drawn in the out of town clientele, but it will also give people a chance to try the different restaurants in town.  Why not turn this into a HUGE culinary festival?  Why not make it so that the entire town can have a “dinner out” night once a week?  Not that there is anything wrong with the Farmers Market now.

The restaurants that are already participating:
Oliver – A Bistro – they are already there with Big Matt’s Burrito’s, guacamole, and salsa
Beanwood Coffee Shop/Latin Bistro – they were there last night with their mango ice tea, and I don’t know if they had food or not.

The restaurants that could participate:
The Farnsworth House – come on Fatih, you guys are right there!  Bust out the grill and sell your “Street Fair Chicken Sandwich,” kebabs, hummus, or even falafel if you can get a deep fryer out there.

Toscano – they could serve their signature calamari, or sausage and pepper sandwiches, meatball sandwiches, etc.

The Hob Tavern – OK Mary, bust out the grill and do some burgers, dogs, etc!  This would be awesome!

Marcello’s – Vinny knows pizza, and does it well.  This would be great too!

Jesters Café – OK Mike, how about some of your vodka rig, and other stuffed breads and sandwiches you do at the street fair….and don’t forget the crab cakes.

Under the Moon – OK Momma, Luigi, Santi, and Silvi, bring on the empanadas and some other stuff!

Tsukasa – I’m not sure what the sushi place could do, but I am sure there is something, and a good way to keep it cold.  How about tempura?

The Old Park Street Café – I know there is a new place in this location, and it is a woman’s name, but I can’t remember what it is called.  Regardless, I am sure they could do something good.

Huang’s Garden – I know, I have never even eaten at this place, but I know it is there.  Would it be hard to get a wok out there for some fried rice and egg rolls?

I am sure there are other places that I am missing, so feel free to chime in here on other places you would like to see!

Next, how about a monthly beer garden out there?  I am sure there is some kind of permit that the city would need to get, but I know this has been done before in the town center, and they even had some live music out there.  How awesome would that be to break up the week, and have live music and great beer on tap, to socialize with friends?  I know that the Farnsworth House has really stepped up their beer selection, adding a new beer tower, and featuring 22 different craft beers now on tap.  This would be awesome!  Cordon off an area, and let’s make it happen!   This could truly rock!

So for anyone else familiar with Bordentown City, what are some of your local suggestions?  I am sure there are many that people can think of, and it would be an awesome draw for in and out of towners!

In short, that is my vision to help market both Bordentown City, as well as the Farmer’s Market.  Maybe it is because I have my marketing hat on, and I am a marketing guy by trade, but this could really be benficial for the city!  God knows everyone likes to eat in a "carnival like" atmosphere with the rest of the "carnies" out there!

All in all, another fantastic night at the Farmer’s Market, and I look forward to seeing this awesome resource becoming something much bigger!  What are your thoughts?  Please leave your comments here!  Cheers!  -F. Scott

Conte Farms - Tabernacle, NJ

After a great lunch with my wife’s family, we all took a ride over to Conte Farm in Tabernacle, NJ in search of some fresh blueberries.  I have never been to Conte’s, but I have had their delicious fruit on multiple occasions, so it was nice to finally get over there.

We parked the car in their gravel lot and walked into their farm stand.   It was a very hot day, so I was very surprised to actually see people hopping on the trailer behind the tractor to head out into the blueberry fields!  WOW, these folks were much braver than I was!

Inside, I was pleasantly surprised at their nice selection of fresh fruits and vegetables.  Blueberries were a given, but they also had fresh strawberries, watermelon, and anything from lemons to limes to citrus which I am assuming they source from elsewhere.  They also had a very nice selection of fresh vegetables, different grilling sauces, dips, and salad dressings.

Next door, they have another building that contains their bakery, and they had all sorts of fresh baked goods.  We picked up their blueberry crumb cake, and it was absolutely fabulous!  Zelda’s Dad had a giant dish of soft serve ice cream that looked great, and we were too full and opted for a refreshing Stewart’s root beer instead that was just what the doctor ordered.

They also have many different baked and stuffed breads, cookies, cupcakes, etc.

All in all, it was a great Father’s Day visit, and I look forward to going back in the future.  And let me tell ya, the fresh blueberries are stellar, and we look forward to making a nice fresh fruit salad or something with them soon.  YUM!  Cheers!  -F. Scott

Conte Farms
291 Flyatt Road
Tabernacle, NJ. 08088
Phone: (609)268-1010
Open 8AM - 6PM seven days a week Mid April until the week before Thanksgiving

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Bradley 4 Rack Digital Smoker - Product Code BTDS76P

I have been going back and forth about a smoker since winter now, as I have always been intrigued by smoking and BBQ.  From watching the competitions on Food Network, to trying different types of BBQ in my travels, it is always something that I have wanted to try to do myself.  That being said, I have been researching for months, and looking at the various models.

There are plenty of ways to smoke, and plenty of methods to do so.  You’ve got the charcoal smokers, propane, electric, cold smoke, smoke box, smoking in the oven, smoking on the grill, etc, etc.  Everyone has their preference, and everyone knows which method works best!  Some will swear by this, other swear but that, etc, etc.

In my research, I have been looking at several models, from the Weber Smokey Mountain, to Traeger with the pellets, etc.  But from all the reading and research, it keeps bringing me back to Bradley (  Bradley makes a range of smokers from propane to electric, and I have chosen to go with the 4 rack digital smoker, Product Code: BTDS76P (  In talking to many old school smokers, who used to have many different smokers and types, ranging from 55 gallon drums to models on rolling trailers, a few of them have given up the hassle, and converted to the digital model, and they now swear by them.

For us, real estate is prime living in “the big city,” and we don’t have a lot of backyard space.  The Bradley however measures just 34” H x 20”W x 18”D, which means we could put it pretty much anywhere, it’ll fit in the shed if need be, or we could even just throw it right on the deck.  The other beauty of this products is the simple fact that it weight just 42 pounds, and could easily be transported to whatever location, so we are mobile baby!

I really got the urge to start smoking last week when I tried the new BBQ base right down the road from my office.  After posting something on Facebook about smoking, I got quite a few responses, and my good buddy Zach really enjoys his Bradley, along with a few other members on the Wine Berserkers Board.  Low and behold, I did a search on there, found some comments, and found a lot of happy customers.  With that being said, it was time, so I logged onto Amazon, and we shall have it by the end of the week.

That said, I look forward to giving it a whirl, and I will have plenty of pictures to come!  Until then, stay tuned!  Cheers!

Bradley 4 Rack Digital Smoker

Product Code: BTDS76P
The 4-rack Digital Smoker includes all the features of the Original Bradley Smoker, along with the benefits of digital technology. Temperature, time, and smoke are now completely controllable so you can decide how much smoke you want, how long your food is going to be smoked for, and at what temperature.

Perfect for entertaining, creating gourmet foods in your own home, or just enjoying the flavor that smoking brings, the new Bradley Digital Smokers offer an easier and better way to automatically roast, smoke and barbecue in the outdoors.

Shipping Box Weight: 42 lbs
Shipping Box Dimensions: 34" H x 20" W x 18" D
Construction - Exterior: Powder Epoxy Steel
Construction - Interior: Polished Stainless Steel
Internal Cooking Vol: 2288 cu in
Internal Heater: 500 watt cooking element / 125 watt smoking element
Power: 120 V 50 - 60 Hz , - 5.5 Amps (240 Volt Model TBA)
 ETL & CE Listed
Max Temperature: Controllable up to 280F.
Min Temp: subject to ambient temperature
Digital Controls: Temperature, Time, Smoke
Adjustable racks: 4 racks (11" X 13" cooking space each)
Warranty: 12 Months from data of original purchase

Includes:User Guide
  Recipe Booklet
  Comes with Rectangular Tray and Drip Bowl
  Bisquettes not included


17”W x 14”D x 31”HT - 24"W with Generator on side
Inside15”W x 11.5”D x 25.5”HT
Smoking Area19"HT useable smoking area above drip tray
Rack Area520sq" (4X10X13)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Japanese Beetle's in New Jersey

The last couple of weeks the Japanese Beetles have been pretty bad here in NJ, and have overtaken a hibiscus tree that I have outside of my office.  Not only have they been eating the leaves on the hibiscus, but they have also been migrating over to the vegetable garden that we have here on the side of our office.

This year, we decided to plant a little veggie garden here at work, and we 4 different kinds of tomatoes, 5 different kinds of peppers, zucchini, basil, etc.  I will be sure to post some pictures soon.  Even so, our veggies have been thriving, we have tomatoes and chili’s growing nicely, and all kinds of blooms on the other plants that continue to thrive.

 But early last week we noticed that the Japanese beetles were making their way over to the veggie garden, and we eating the leave son the sunflowers, as well as the marigolds.  I know what you are saying, and I don’t care for marigolds much either, but they are what the base purchases for base beautification, and we used them to try to keep the critters out of the garden, as it is said that a lot of animals do not like them.  I don’t know if it is the smell that marigolds put off or what, but it has keep a lot of the bad things away thus far.

So today, one of the guys in my office suggested I picked up a product called Sevin – 5, made by Garden Tech.   That said, I ran over to the BX/PX at lunch time, and purchased a can of the Sevin-5 powder, applied it, and then came in to enjoy my leftover cheese steak from DiVello’s.  About a ½ hour passed and I went back outside, and sure enough, this stuff worked like a champ.  99% of the beetles are gone from both the hibiscus and the vegetable garden, and the best part about it is that Sevin-5 is vegetable and plant safe.

So with that said, if you are having a problem with Japanese beetles attacking your plants or vegetables, this is a great option.  For more information, check out  Hopefully this is a great solution, and I will keep you up to date with how our beetle problem progresses, and how effective the Sevin-5 is working.  Until then, cheers!  -F. Scott

Sunday, June 20, 2010

2005 Domaine Drouhin Oregon Pinot Noir Willamette Valley

Popped and poured after Father’s Day with Zelda’s family, this showed a gorgeous Burgundian ruby color in the glass.  Let me say that this wine will age for a good 10 years, and will be absolutely gorgeous in that time frame.  Definitely would have benefitted from a 3 plus hour decant, but still nice popped and poured.

Nice Burgundian nose with some rich cherry and raspberry, with absolutely no candied fruit at all.  Super young on the nose, with nice floral notes, black fruits, and hints of cranberry and mocha.  The nose is rounded out with some nice earth tones and a bit of barnyard funk.

On the palate, the cherries are the star here, light, and subdued, and very young.  Again, a 3-4 hour decant would help this wine, but it is still in a nice place popped and poured.  Typical Burgundian style here, and not fruit forward in the least.  Subtle hints of black cherry, spice, and strawberry finish off the palate.  On the finish, the tannins seem nicely integrated, and the alcohol seems to have integrated nicely as well.

All in all, no reason at all to hold these, but I guarantee this wine will get better with another 5 years in the bottle.  Pop and pour, decant 3-5 hours, etc.  It’s a good wine, and from this showing, seems very flexible.  Continued to evolve in the glass over the course of 3 hours, and a great wine!  91 points with 1-3 points possible with some more bottle time.  Cheers!  -F. Scott

DiVello's Deli - Medford, NJ

I can’t tell you how many times I have had a hoagie or cheese steak from DiVello’s Deli in Medford, NJ, but I have yet to be disappointed.  First off, I hope all of the father’s out there had a Happy Father’s Day.  I can say that we had a great afternoon with Zelda’s family today, and sometimes it is just too hot to cook, or go out to eat, so DiVello’s was a great option.
We ordered carry out from DiVello’s today, and the hoagies ranged from turkey, to cheese steaks, to chicken cheese steaks, etc.  My cheese steak was in the traditional style, with just fried onions.  It was a monster, and I only ate half of it, but I am sure that the other half will make its way to my belly for lunch at my desk tomorrow!
Great steak, and great cheese, with some nicely friend onions, served on a nice soft hoagie roll.  These cheese steaks are always tasty, and I have probably had a couple dozen from DiVello’s over the years.  Even their seafood salad and potato salad sides were good, and I am usually not a big potato salad fan.   But for whatever reason, theirs appeals to me, with a nice crunch, and nice mustard flavors.
Unfortunately, I cannot find a website for them, however, I did find their menu online at:
All in all, you can get some great sandwiches, sides, and entrees from DiVello’s, and I highly recommend it.  We have been there dozens of times, and will continue to visit when we are in that area.  Thumbs up!  Cheers!  - F. Scott
DiVello’s Deli of Medford
122 Medford – Mt. Holly Road
Medford, NJ  08055
Phone:  (609)654-4780

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Big Matt's Burrito's - by Oliver-A Bistro

Dinner tonight took an unplanned turned, when we saw that Oliver-A Bistro had a tent set up at the Bordentown City Farmer’s Market.  On the menu, were “Big Matt’s Burrito’s,” filled with your choice of braised chicken or pork!  This was a nice surprise, and as always it was great to see Matt and Danielle out spreading the Oliver name around town.

Zelda went for the chicken, and I figured I would try the pork.  You have a great choice of ingredients, and I ended up passing on the refried beans, but went for the rice, cheese, pico de gallo, sour cream, guacamole, and lettuce.  I can’t remember for sure if that was everything or not, but we also got a ½ pounds of guacamole and chips to go.

We waited to eat until we got home, and the burrito’s were still plenty warm and flavorful.  The pork was nice and tender, and finely pulled, as was Zelda’s chicken.  The portion size was plenty large, and I didn’t even finish the entire burrito.  Part of this may have been attributed to the mound of nice guacamole that I had consumed as well though.  In short, what is there to say other than another great meal?

I don’t know the plans for Big Matt’s Burrito stand, but hopefully they are regular visitor’s at the Bordentown City Farmer’s Market, as it adds yet another great stand worth visiting.  As always, kudos to Matt and Danielle!  Cheers!  -F. Scott

iPad Menu Hits Restaurant in Australia

Every morning I make it a point to listen to WPST and listen to Chris and the crew.  This morning, I heard Newman, PST DJ extraordinaire, morning show producer, and my future soccer teammate talking about a restaurant in Australia that has taken on the iPad instead of having the traditional style menu.  This article can be found at: 
As a new iPad owner, thanks to the most awesome birthday gift from Zelda, I think that this is a great idea.  Not only is it environmentally friendly as they do not have to print their menu’s, but it is also just plain cool.  I remember sitting at a corner restaurant in Doylestown, PA a few years ago, where the servers had a Palm Pilot looking device instead of a pad of tickets, and thought that was awesome.  They took your order, put it right into the Palm using the stylus, and off it went, wirelessly to the kitchen.  What a great idea, and I am surprised that this never took off.  Although, I can see how this could be more time consuming that just writing an order down, but the whole technological factor is just plain cool.
So at this restaurant in Sydney, your server seats you, gives you the iPad, and your order your food straight from there.  You can also see pictures of the dish, and read user reviews.  Another great feature of this custom app is that you can even see what the recommended wine pairings are for the individual dishes.  What a great idea.
But my question is, will this ever catch on?  Is this just a short term fad before the iPad get’s “played out?”  Will there eventually be a better plan?  Do they have to worry about customers trying to steal the iPad, breaking the iPad, etc?  Regardless, what a creative use of technology!  Is this cutting edge?  Not really, but it is pretty darn cool!  Food for thought here in the states!  Cheers!  -F. Scott

Bordentown City Farmer's Market - every Wednesday thru October 27th

Last week kicked off the Bordentown Farmers Market, and even though there was some rain, it didn’t scare off the local farmers and other vendors from bringing out their goods, and it also didn’t scare off the local patrons.  When I stopped by not even an hour into the market, they had already had over 100 visitors, so kudos to the locals for supporting a local resource, even during the not so pleasant weather.  Thanks also to the vendors for wandering out in the rain to bring their local goods to a great little community.

The Bordentown Farmers Market started last summer, and will run this summer from June 9th – October 27th, every Wednesday, rain or shine, from 4PM to Dusk.  The Farmers Market is located in the Bordentown City Parking lot next to and behind The Farnsworth House Restaurant, located at 135 Farnsworth Avenue in charming Bordentown City, NJ.

Local farmers will be there selling their locally grown fresh fruit and vegetables, but there will also be other vendors as well, selling anything from organic meat, grass fed beef, pork, lamb, artisan cheeses, fresh free range eggs, local honey, pies, breads, jams, alpaca clothing items, etc.  Last year, I made it a point to pick up Stromboli’s and other stuffed breads from a bakery that was there, and he had other great items as well.  This year, also look for fresh ice cream, and Oliver – A Bistro has even talked about selling their burrito’s, freshly made right there on the grill. It doesn’t get any better than that.

With that being said, check it out on Wednesday’s when you get a chance, as I know that we will.  I look forward to stopping by today, even though it might be a few minutes out of my way.  Maybe we’ll see some of you there!  Cheers!  -F. Scott

Below is an e-mail I just received from the Deputy Mayor of Bordentown City:

We are heading into the second week of the farmers market and yes they are predicting a bit of rain, but the show will go on!

Please spread the word that the farmers market will happen today. The market starts at 4pm and will go til dusk, but feel free to stop by a bit before 4 if need be because the farmers are always willing to sell.

Last week we had a steady rain and cold chill to welcome the market but we still had over 250 people stop by, so please help us beat that number and join us today. The market is located in the city parking lot next to the Farnsworth House.

In addition to the several farmers who will sell produce, eggs, meats and bread we will have Jim Downey showcasing his arts and Beanwood with their famous empandas and Mango icetea.

Come on out, what is a little rain(and maybe a little thunder:)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Adam's Rib - New Hanover Township, NJ (outside McGuire Air Force Base)

I know exactly what you are thinking, and no, this isn’t a typo.  But yes, I did eat at the same restaurant for lunch two days in a row!  Is that so wrong?  Not in the least, and as good as my brisket sandwich was yesterday, I had to go back today and try the pulled pork sandwich.
Needless to say, I walked in, placed my order, and barely had time to respond to a Facebook comment before my to go order was ready!  Wow, that was fast.  Opted for the pulled pork and hand cut fries, with a sweet tea, and took it back to the office.  Upon sitting down at my desk, the fries were still hot and crispy, and the pork was still plenty warm.  Nice crusty roll today, and a perfect lunch sized portion of pork piled on, with a side of BBQ sauce.

Like yesterday, I was pleasantly surprised at the tenderness and flavor of the pork.  There were some really nice tender pieces, as well as a few crusty charred pieces that I really enjoyed.  The pork was good on its own, but even better with the side of BBQ sauce, that was just enough to give the sandwich a ton of flavor, while letting the taste of the pork shine through.  Again, really nice smokey flavors here, and this is just darn good BBQ at an affordable price.
The sweet tea was good, although not overly inspiring.  I have most definitely had better, but for NJ, this is decent stuff.  I am not sure if they brew it themselves, or if it is a premade concentrate that they brew.  Regardless, it is OK.  So again, another great lunch from Adam’s Rib, and I look forward to going back time after time in the future.  For any of you near stationed on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, I can’t recommend it enough.  It’s nice to have a new restaurant in town with good grub!
More information can be found at
Adam’s Rib
19 Wrightstown Cookstown Road
New Hanover Township, NJ  08511
Phone:  (609)286-2065

Where Have You Been?

I just wanted to take a minute to thank everyone for the comments, e-mails, and concern when they you saw that I haven't been posting much as of late. I wish that I had a valid excuse as to why I haven't posted in quite sometime, but the only excuse I have is a full plate right now.

This is always a busy time of year for me at the house, as Zelda and I are constantly doing our Spring house work, getting the garden planted, and just getting the ho,use ready for Summer. This year, I took on the task of constructing a large pergola over our deck thanks to the help of My neighbor Dan, but it is almost done. It is rather large, and really completes our "backyard bistro." Just a few minor things left until it's done, such as the top stringers, electricity, lighting, a ceiling fan, curtains, decor, and planting some wisteria to grow up it, and it will be complete. It is already gorgeous, and I can't wait until all that stuff is done to get the final coat of stain on it.

In other news, Zelda gave me an iPad for my birthday, so hopefully that will help me stay more in touch with our readers, and give me a chance to write more. I can say that I have never been an "Apple Guy," but after using it for the last ten days, I have no idea how we ever lived without it. She got me the 64 gig WiFi + 3G and it is and awesome resource to have. I am actually writing this post on it right now.

In other news, it's farm season at Fernbrook CSA, and we have had a great few weeks so far this year, with lots of fresh greens and pick your own strawberries. As always, we truly enjoy the CSA, and we look forward to our weekly pickups.

Also in local news, the Bordentown Farmers Market kicked off last Wednesday, and despite the rain, there was still a good showing by both the vendors as well as the customers. This is another awesome resource, and I love to stop on my way home, even if it is a few minutes out of the way. There you can find anything from great local produce, to lamb, beef, chicken, cheese, local honey, clothing items made of alpaca, fresh baked goods, etc. Stay tuned as I will have a great write up and pictures soon. The main thing however to take away from this is that it is every Wednesday from 4pm to dusk. Check it out!

On the restaurant front, I have a ton of reviews to write! From my birthday dinner at No. 9 in Lambertville, to the Mill Hill Saloon in Trenton, to Tortuga's in Lambertville, there are many reviews to finish when I get time. Other restaurants include Hamilton Grill Room in Lambertville, Yummy Sushi in Robbinsville, The Farnsworth House in Bordentown, and I am sure many more when I remember them.

On the wine front, things have been slow. Thankfully Spring mailer season has subsided, and I haven't bought much at all as of late, which is nice on the wallet! On the not so nice side however, we haven't had a lot of time for much wine consumption either, but we have had a few bottles in the last two monthS.

We've tasted through a large portion of the Stefania lineup as of late, which is always a great experience. In the last couple weeks, we've tasted quite a few of the '06's: Uvas Creek Cabernet as well as the Santa Cruz Mountain cabernet. From the '07 vintage, we've had the Eaglepoint Ranch syrah, as well as the Haut Tubee blend. Lastly, we opened our first bottle of the '08 Chardonnay Chain d'Or Vineyard. And as always, all have been fabulous!

Other wines we've enjoyed as of late include an '02 Clos Du Bois Marlstone which knocked my socks off, '05 Alma Rosa Pinot noir, and an '07 Tobin James Cabernet Sauvignon/syrah James Gang Reserve. I am sure there were many others as well, and I will write them up when I get some time ton spend on Grape Stories. Lastly, I will have a full report from Berserkerfest 2.5 at Peking Duck House Manhattan, where we enjoyed some nice pinot noir, and wines from Sassicaia, Ornellaia, Chateau D'Yquem, Chateau Beaucastel, Tattinger, Williams Selyem, etc. What a great night.

In short, bear with me a few more weeks for things to settle down, and we'll be back in full force, and I am looking forward to It. Until then, CHEERS! - F. Scott

Monday, June 14, 2010

Adam's Rib - New Hanover, NJ (outside McGuire AIr Force Base)

A new BBQ restaurant opened over the weekend just outside of the gates of McGuire Air Force Base called Adam's Rib (, and I had to give it a try today.  In NJ, it is hard to find good BBQ, so I was really hopeful that Adam's would be awesome.

We arrived a few minutes after high noon, and there were 3 or 4 other tables in the joint.  As soon as I walked through the door, the strong smoke and BBQ smell hit me, and I was in absolute heaven.  The décor is in true BBQ style, with the red and white checked table clothes, and southwestern décor around the restaurant.  If you are looking for ambiance, this isn't the place.

You order at the counter before taking your seat, and I opted for the brisket sandwich.  It was a tough choice between that and the pulled pork, but I figured I would give the brisket a go first, along with the hand cut fries on the side.  My co-worker Holly opted for the brisket sandwich as well, and her husband Austyn (the birthday boy today) opted for the beef brisket platter sandwich with fries and slaw.

After we ordered, we sat, and it couldn't be much more than 5 minutes before our number was called and we went to the counter to pick up the food.  The first thing I noticed was the size of Austyn's platter.  This was a lot of brisket, and it looked delicious.  The brisket sandwiches didn't have nearly as much meat, but I expected this.

The first bite I had was great.  The brisket was tender and flavorful, served on a nice soft bun.  The flavors from the smoke were very nice, and I added some of their what I assume is their homemade BBQ sauce, but I cannot confirm that it was homemade.  Regardless, it had nice flavors, and added a great element to the sandwich.  The hand cut fries were good, but nothing to write home about.  Austyn's platter had some nice large pieces of meat, with minimal fat, and it just looked delicious.  It was a lot of meat, and he didn't finish it all.

All in all, it is a pure joy to have this place right outside the gate, and nice to see a new restaurant open up.  I think it is just a matter of time before people figure out that Adam's has opened, and it is going to be hard to get into at lunch time because it is going to be packed as the place isn't that large.  Maybe tomorrow I'll try the pulled pork sandwich!  At $5.79 for either the brisket or pulled pork sandwiches, it is a great value!  A nice breath of fresh air in a stale foodie wasteland, and I hope that they have much success as this is a great resource for lunch!  Cheers!  -F. Scott.

Adam's Rib
19 Wrightstown Cookstown Road
New Hanover Township, NJ  08511
Phone:  (609)286-2065