Spring Cleaning

February 1, 2010 by  
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Spring is here.  It’s time to be out with the old and in with the new.  It’s amazing how quickly the junk piles up, isn’t it?  Enter the punctual staff from Junk Goes Green.  They show up and take your stuff away.  Look around.  They’ll fill their trailer.  The best part is, nothing is taken to a landfill.  Voted five stars by Houston Magazine. Call Junk Goes Green today at 713-BE-GREEN.

Frenchy’s Chicken

February 1, 2010 by  
Filed under Dining

Forty years of Frenchy’s

Frenchy’s Celebrates 40 Years of Bringing Creole Cuisine and Community Care to Houston

The distinctive taste of Creole-seasoned cuisine first grabbed Houstonians by the taste buds in 1969 with the opening the original Frenchy’s Po-Boy on Scott Street. Still wildly popular, this hometown favorite celebrates a milestone 40 years.

Founded in 1969 by the Creuzot family, Frenchy’s uses the original Creuzot recipes and is one of the most popular Creole cuisine restaurants in Houston and surrounding areas. The famous, juicy, Creole seasoned chicken accompanied by several Creole sides have Houstonians saying, “Gotta have my Frenchy’s!” For more information, visit www.frenchyschicken.com.

Junk Removal Houston

February 1, 2010 by  
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Get Your Space Back

Recycle your junk without effort

Houston Closet Cleaning Goes Green Cleaning out your closet? Re-modeling your home? Your junk shouldn’t end up in a landfill. Junk Goes Green will recycle unwanted junk without effort. Their uniformed staff will remove virtually anything you don’t need, from appliances and electronics to old furniture and yard debris. For more information call 713 Be Green or log on to junkgoesgreen.com

Motivation

February 1, 2010 by  
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THE UN-COMFORT ZONE with Robert Wilson

Compelled by an Idea

I was leaving my last class for the day when I saw my friend, Ken Frankel, working out in the hallway with one of those pistol-grip label makers. I stopped and asked what he was doing.

“The Dean asked me to put the room numbers up in Braille so the blind students can find their classrooms.”

As I watched Ken work, I thought of some of the blind students I knew there at Georgia State University. Suddenly the devil got into me and I asked, “Does that thing do the alphabet as well?”
“Yes.” Ken replied.

“Excellent! Let’s take it over to the men’s restroom in the Student Center and put up some graffiti in Braille!”

So we did. The next day we made a point of running into our blind friends, and asking them if they had been keeping up with the graffiti that people were putting up in the stalls.

The typical answer was, “Come on man, why are you asking me that when you know I can’t see it?”

So we replied, “Next time you’re in there, feel above the toilet paper dispenser.”

They did, and within 48 hours every blind student on campus had heard about it. Then they were after us to put up some more! They told us, “This stuff is great!”

Feeling obligated to get some new material, we hit the bars for inspiration. One night we found the mother lode: the men’s room at Moe’s & Joe’s, a 50 year old pub where they never painted over the witticisms scrawled on the walls.

Several mugs of beer and several trips to the restroom later, we filled several sheets of paper with funny bathroom graffiti to take back with us. As we looked at our collection, we came to two conclusions: first that we’d had way too much beer, and second that we should keep collecting graffiti until we had enough for a book.

Little did we know how long that would take! After a few days of active searching we had little to show for our efforts. Somewhat frustrated, we made a decision to just collect new material whenever we happened upon it.

A decade passed, but it was an idea I couldn’t forget. It still made me laugh every time I thought of it. I kept the idea alive, and we kept collecting. Finally, 15 years later, our collection was big enough and we found a publisher who agreed with us that it was a very funny idea.

Sometimes an idea is so exciting that we can’t leave it alone. We have to see it to fruition. I’ve been compelled by ideas to start new businesses, erect buildings, write novels, and even create new recipes.

My friend Jordan Graye, a radio personality in Atlanta, became energized by an idea when she learned that the actual inventor of radio, Nikola Tesla, never got credit for it in his lifetime. Like many people in radio, she believed that Gugliomo Marconi was the man who discovered it.

As she read more about Tesla, she learned that he was also the inventor of alternating current electricity – the type of electricity that powers our homes and offices. She became incensed that history had forgotten this real-life Prometheus; and made it her mission to remind the world of his gifts.

She thought the best way to restore Tesla’s fame would be in a film. That she had never made a movie before (and knew next to nothing about making one), did not deter her one bit.

Jordan did her research and composed a story. She then hired writers, actors, camera operators, and lighting people. She committed her time, energy and a sizable portion of her life savings to realizing her dream. Three years later, MegaHertz was complete and Nikola Tesla’s life revived.

What idea is motivating you? Are you working on it?

Robert Evans Wilson, Jr. is a motivational speaker and humorist. He works with companies that want to be more competitive and with people who want to think like innovators. For more information on Robert’s programs please visit www.jumpstartyourmeeting.com.

———– Publishing Information ———-

This article is offered free of charge on a nonexclusive basis. The copyright is retained by Robert Evans Wilson, Jr. You may reprint or post this material, as long as my name (Robert Evans Wilson, Jr.) and contact information (www.jumpstartyourmeeting.com) are included. If you publish it, please send a copy to Jumpstart Your Meeting! PO Box 190146, Atlanta, GA 31119. If you post it, please send the URL to robert@jumpstartyourmeeting.com.

What everyone should know about wine

February 1, 2010 by  
Filed under Dining

I’ll Drink to That!
From confused to connoisseur: What everyone should know about wine
By Leah Faye Cooper

With an inception dating back to 600 BC, the history of wine is as rich as its distinct flavors. Archaeological evidence suggests the beverage first appeared in what is now Georgia and Iran. In medieval Europe, wine was lauded by the Roman Catholic Church for its use in Mass and favored over beer in Germany for its civilized appeal. Today, wine is synonymous with fine dining and to many enthusiasts, equally important as the food it accompanies. Wine bars are popping up in cities throughout the country and Houston is among rapidly growing markets. But popular as it may be, exploring the world of wine can be daunting. Red, white, dry or sparkling – the countless options are dizzying. You may feel alone in your cluelessness when friends start “label dropping,” but rest assured, you’re not. H TEXAS sat down with Tony Elsinga, Sommelier at The Tasting Room Uptown Park, for a briefing on the basics.

THE NAME GAME
While many people can name the wine most tempting to their pallet, how a wine is termed may not be as obvious. “Today, wines are generally named after the grapes they’re made from, but in the past, the beverage was classified by region,” Elsinga notes. For example, Pinot Noir and Merlot share their moniker with specific grapes while Chianti hails from the Italian region of its namesake.
Dryness and body also describe wines. A dry wine has little sugar in comparison to its acidity and is not sweet. Body accounts for the weight of the beverage in the mouth and is described as light, medium or full. Body is generally related to the amount of alcohol in a wine; the more alcohol, the heavier or fuller the body.

WINE AND CHEESE
This dynamic duo is a staple at cocktail parties and tastings. Because acid and fat play off of each other, wine and cheese are the ideal combination to fully enjoy both flavors. A dry, red wine perfectly complements hard cheese, while white wines are traditionally matched with softer ones.
Consider
Director’s Cut Cabernet with Parmesan
Caramel Road Chardonnay with Brie

WITH SEAFOOD
Light-bodied Chardonnays and Sauvignon Blancs compliment seafood dishes without overpowering their flavors. While white wines are often recommended for seafood, dense fish like salmon goes well with full-bodied reds.

Consider
Rombauer Chardonnay
Starborough Sauvignon Blancs

WITH STEAKS
A Texas-sized steak needs a bold wine to match. A rich Malbec or spicy Shiraz will take a steak dinner from simple to superb with a few sips.

Consider
Don Rodolfo Malbec
Boarding Pass Shiraz

WITH SPICY FOOD
If your meal already has a kick, it’s best to stick with a white wine or fruity red to counter the dish’s spice, as their sweetness sooths the palate without compromising flavor.

Consider
Highlands Zinfandel

WITH VEGETARIAN DISHES
Vegetarian food is paired best with white or light-bodied red wines. Because vegetables, fruits ad grains are less dense than meat, they go best with comparably light.

Consider
Zind Humbrecht Pinot d’Alsace (a blend of Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay)
Leitz Riesling

WITH LOVE
Executive Chef, Steve Super, is cooking up an alluring aphrodisiac-inspired meal for Valentine’s Day diners, complete with XXX and XXX. Couples may consider the following labels, ensuring every part of their meal includes a little bit of love.

Braccetto Rosa Regale
Infused with a hint of rose petals, this wine is like a bouquet in a bottle.
Shiraz Sincerely
A labor of love produces this fruity, medium-bodied bottle.
Wolftrap (a red blend)
For enticing the one you almost let get away.

SPLURGE
While the aforementioned moderately priced wines are perfect for everyday consumption, on special occasions, these pricier bottles are worth splurging on.

Champagne
Hernriot La Cuvee Des Enchanteleurs
Soldera
Soldera Brunello di Montalcino
Cabernet Sauvignon
BV Georges de Latour

ABOUT THE EXPERT
After living in Europe for 24 years, Tony Elsinga returned to the states a bonafide wine aficionado. He started writing wine lists for upscale restaurants and won the coveted Wine Spectator Award of Excellence in 2005. He’s procured wine for Denzel Washington, Francis Ford Coppola and Billy Joel, and worked with Wolfgang Puck. Elsinga joined The Tasting Room in 2006 won the Houston Iron Sommelier Competition and the Houston cellar Classic’s Sommelier Smackdown in 2007.

TONY’S TIPS
Described by Elsinga as “a luxury everyone can live without, but everyone wants,” good wine lies in the pallet of the beholder. When running in foodie circles, it’s easy to feel embarrassed by a lack of wine knowledge. But according to Elsinga, one should stop feeling troubled, and start tasting. When tasting wines, take note of what you like, even if it’s not what an expert suggests or happens to be moderately priced. “People often get talked into ‘liking’ a wine simply because a Sommelier suggested it,” Elsinga says. “And pricier doesn’t always mean better. I’ve tasted $500 bottles against $19 bottles and in once instance, six out of seven guests enjoyed the $19 bottle.”

For more information on the wines featured in this article and wine tastings at The Tasting Room, visit www.tastingroomines.com.

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