Proper diet can combat the winter blues

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 11 February 2016 10:20

Another gloomy, snow-slippery winter’s day with the sun barely penetrating the cold, overcast skies. Time to settle in and chase away those winter blues with a heaping plate of comfort food and another glass of wine, right?

Before you self-medicate on an overabundance of all the wrong calories, check your diet. Unless you’re suffering from Seasonal Affective Depressive Disorder (SADD) or some other clinical diagnosis, your winter blues may be more a function of what you’re eating and drinking than where you’re living.

For Chef Lidia, good Italian cuisine is simple

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 14 January 2016 12:31

Chef Lidia Bastianich.
— Photo: Pabst Theater

New York chef and restaurateur Lidia Bastianich thinks the question of what constitutes great Italian cuisine has a “simple” answer.

Supper club-themed concession stand opens at Kohl Center

Written by The AP Tuesday, 15 December 2015 08:06

Cheese curds, fish fry and open-faced prime rib sandwiches are now available at a stand at the Kohl Center modeled after a vintage Wisconsin supper club.

With holiday cookies, go big or go home — go bourbon cherry bars!

Written by Alison Ladman,
Associated Press writer
Friday, 20 November 2015 18:24

There is something immensely satisfying about bar cookies. They just have so much more heft than a typical cookie. And in our world, cookie heft translates into serious satisfaction.

Old and New World wine techniques blend at J. Lohr

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Friday, 29 January 2016 09:34

In the realm of wine, debate continues between so-called Old World and New World winemakers and their different approaches to the grape. At California’s J. Lohr Vineyards, success is found in the blend of grape varietals, and also in the mashup of the two winemaking traditions.

10 foods you must try in San Francisco during the Super Bowl

AP writer
Thursday, 14 January 2016 10:44

You can pick up a traditional crab cocktail at one of the many vendors lining Fisherman’s Wharf.
—PHOTO: Pixabay

San Francisco is a city with serious food game, whether playing as multi-starred cuisine served in a white tablecloth hush or a simple crab cocktail eaten amid the boisterous clamor of Fisherman’s Wharf.

Need a stocking stuffer? Try a bottle of wine

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Friday, 04 December 2015 12:34

Few gifts are more perfectly crafted to be holiday stocking-stuffers than bottles of wine. Whether red or white, a good wine that’s a well-considered match for its recipient makes the perfect gift. Here are few wines that will bring a smile to the face of your favorite oenophile.

Coppola’s new winery honors legacy of Virginia Dare

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 19 November 2015 11:23

Here is a quick, one-question U.S. history quiz designed to challenge even the most astute history buff: Who or what was Virginia Dare?

If you said she was the first female American aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean: Good guess, but that was Amelia Earhart. You failed the quiz.

Cooking restorative veggie soups against winter’s chill

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 28 January 2016 09:30

For the conscientious cook, January is often a month full of surprises. Not all of those surprises are happy ones.

Pleasing persnickety partiers? There’s an app for that

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 17 December 2015 11:02

With all of today’s food allergies, dietary restrictions and persnickety palates, how do you successfully plan a New Year’s Eve menu that will satisfy all your guests? Don’t worry — there are apps for that.

Brewing up a spirited holiday season

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 03 December 2015 11:06

I am waiting for the year Santa Claus — or anyone — leaves a bottle of Samuel Adams Utopias under my Christmas tree.

Utopias is legendary for its flavors, high alcohol content, price and even packaging. Think of it as the beer version of a fine cognac, presented in a bottle resembling a copper brewing kettle. 

You won’t miss the meat or bread in this veggie oven hash

Written by Melissa D’Arabian
Associated Press writer
Monday, 09 November 2015 13:18

Heading into crisp weather, I crave the holiday classics that beg to be made this time of year. One of my favorites is stuffing. Seasoned cubes of dried bread sautéed with celery, onion, herbs and butter, then baked up to crispy-outside-soft-inside perfection?