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Posts tagged ‘Twitter’

Zingaro 515

If you haven’t heard about Zingaro 515 yet, you need to! After hearing much buzz on Twitter and in the Des Moines Register about Zingaro opening in Sherman Hills, I decided that I needed to investigate, and inform my readers about this new dining experience.

Zingaro 515 opened on Dec. 2, and is located in the Scheuerman House in Sherman Hills, at 1605 Woodland Ave. Zingaro is self-described as, “A chef-driven restaurant in the heart of Sherman Hill. With an approach unseen with in the Des Moines culinary world.”

The sight of the house brought back an immediate childhood memory for me. I lived in the Sherman Hills district during most of my childhood. My family would go on walks, sometimes “downtown”  and we always walked right past the Scheuerman House, which is directly across the street to the west of Hoyt Sherman Place. Rumor has it that I was a stubborn child, and disliked walking anything but SLOW. About the point at which I would get tired and start to lag just happened to be right in the vicinity of the Scheuerman house! I can still remember it.

Anyway, after further research I discovered that Zingaro 515 is a “pop-up” restaurant. Local chef/blogger Sam Auen gives a superb explanation in his blog, Locally Grown.

“Pop-ups are popping up in larger cities (shocker) and play on a chef’s creativity.  It’s a way for those chefs without big money backing to expose the world to the product of their obsessive culinary nature.  The goal of these places is not to become a fixture, but to burn brightly then move on to something new.  Sometimes these ventures are a testing ground for the viability of a concept or to showcase an intended static restaurant concept to the public and especially to people who may want to invest in the particular chef’s future.  Did you catch that one?  This is awesome semi-guerilla dining at its rawest.”

I contacted York Taenzer, owner of the Schuerman House, to ask about featuring the house and Zingaro 515 on my blog. I was lucky enough to be invited to view the house and chat with both Taenzer and Chef Hal Jasa. Chef Jasa is well known in the Des Moines area. He was also a chef at 25th St. Cafe and Phat Chefs, and more recently did underground dinners with the Des Moines Social Club. Jasa also had the honor of being featured as “100 Tastes to Try in 2007” in Food & Wine magazine. He’s number 51 – “Clandestine Dinners” if you want to go take a look.

Chef Jasa chatted with me about his passion for food. His specialties are charcuterie, and sauces.  According to Wikipedia, charcuterie is “the branch of cooking devoted to prepared meat products such as bacon, ham, sausage, terrines, galantines, pâtés, and confit, primarily from pork.[1] Charcuterie is part of the garde manger chef‘s repertoire. Originally intended as a way to preserve meats before the advent of refrigeration, they are prepared today for their flavors derived from the preservation processes.[2]

Jasa also experiments with scents that he says opens up the palate. He recently featured orange creme brulee on the menu, which included “pine.” Jasa showed me how he used one dish to place a bed of rock salt, and an actual sprig of pine, then placed the creme brulee in a dish nestled in the rock salt. He is also using liquid nitrogen to make ice cream at the tables – something that excited one of my readers greatly when I shared that fact with her.

The Scheuerman House itself is a grand old Victorian home with ornate Golden oak woodwork, a fitting showcase for Chef Jasa’s culinary genius.

Authentic Victorian furnishings

A grand piano

and an elegant dining room

Zingaro will be open Thursday and Friday evenings from 5:30 to close. Diners can enjoy three courses for $30 in the dining room, or dine on five courses at the six-person chef’s table for $60. Zingaro is a BYOB restaurant, with a $5 stemware charge per table. For more information go to http://www.zingarocuisine.com. Reservations are recommended.

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Thanksgiving Give-Away!

Who wants to win a $20 gift Trader Joe’s gift card? In honor of Thanksgiving (and turkey!) I’m having my first-ever give-away!  Just do one (or all) of the following. Each counts as one entry, so feel free to do all!

Mandatory – Sign up to receive Chef Herman’s updates via email. Come back and comment, letting me know that you signed up.

Optional (but it gives you more chances to win!)

Follow ChefHermansFood on Twitter then come back here and post a comment saying you’ve done so.

If you’re on Twitter, re-tweet the following: Win a $20 gift card to Trader Joe’s @chefhermansfood  http://wp.me/pWZKa-99  – then come back and comment, letting me know you’ve done so.

Post a comment telling me about your favorite Thanksgiving memory. It can be a nostalgic memory… it can be an embarrassing memory. Just don’t be gross.  🙂 I do moderate my comments!

Find Chef Herman’s Food Adventures on Facebook and join the group. Then come back and leave a comment saying that you’ve done so. If you are already a member of the group, that counts… just come back here and leave a comment.

Remember! Your comment is your entry! Don’t forget to comment! I will be announcing the winner here on the blog on Sunday, Nov. 28. I’ll also email the winner. Good luck, and be careful out there on Thanksgiving and also Black Friday!

Guest Post – Lisa Orgler!

I am VERY excited to have Lisa Orgler as a guest blogger today! Lisa and I  first became acquainted through Foodbuzz, a website of and for food bloggers. I saw her work and contacted her about designing a banner for my Chef Herman blog. To say that I was pleased with the results is really an understatement. It’s awesome to watch an idea come to life.

My marketing director (my daughter, @njobst on Twitter) told me that it would be a good idea to have occasional guest bloggers. Nicole was the first with her Food Detox post. And since I truly love Lisa’s work (go vote for her at Foodbuzz’ Project Food Blog!) I decided that she should be the first official (non-nepotism) guest blogger! Enjoy her post, her beautiful illustrations and visit her website. It’s a visual treat!

Lisa Orgler
The Lunch Box Project
http://www.lunchboxproject.com

Top Ten things I like about food
In 2009 I set a goal to draw one food image a day for one year.  I accomplished that feat and today still enjoy whipping up a meal with pen and paintbrush in hand. I’m surprised that boredom hasn’t seeped into my food art world…since I typically want to move onto new subjects after several months. So I asked myself why I love food.

1. It’s fun to draw
Talk about having a source of inspiration daily!  Hmmm, have I ever gone a whole day without eating?  If I’m going to paint every day, why not pick a topic that requires no search?

2. Every food has a story
Every food has its own history and folklore, plus we have our own personal history with certain foods.

3. It’s challenging (at least for me)
I can’t cook (there I said it), at least not very well.  Because I don’t know very much about cooking and baking, I’m quite intrigued with it…and continually want to learn more and more.

4. It’s also simple
Food can be challenging, but thank goodness for me, it’s also simple.  I can enjoy a simple apple, a bowl of chocolate ice cream or just corn-on-the-cob.

5. Everyone has a favorite
Foods are up there with colors…everyone has a favorite.

6. It can be accompanied by pretty things
Food is neat in itself, but it’s even better when paired with your favorite dishes, tablecloth, and napkins.

7. Everyone puts a different spin on it
Whether you are traveling regionally, nationally, or internationally everyone combines and prepares foods differently.  Think of all the different ways you can enjoy a simple tomato.

8. Special events and food go hand in hand
Have you ever heard of a birthday party without a cake or Thanksgiving without a turkey?

9. The same flavor can come in multiple forms
If you love blueberries you can also enjoy blueberry pie, blueberry ice cream, blueberry yogurt, and blueberry pancakes.

10. It makes me happy (most of the time)
I love food and am especially happy after a good meal. If I overeat I want to curse it, but that doesn’t overshadow the mostly happy times.  Quite honestly, it’s my love of food that drove me to overeat in the first place.

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