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A tale of two dinners

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Experiencing fine versus fine dining By Paula Johnson Photo: To become a Most Favored Patron at fine dining establishments, pay in cash when possible and be empathetic with the staff Recently, I had an experience dining at a highly regarded New York restaurant, a place the Zagat describes as serving “flawless French fare that’s impeccably […]

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Last Suppers

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By Paula Johnson Photo: Nibbles’ Maria Walusis would serve her Grammy’s holiday turkey dinner In keeping with this issue’s theme, I thought I would ask a few chefs and notable personages to imagine what their last meal would be like. I asked them to think about what they would eat, whether it would be in a […]

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The state of the State Fair: 

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Fare is fair By Paula Johnson Photo: (l-r) Connie Little, Sandra Carpenter, Paula Johnson, and Cindy Kirkland judge the Deviled Egg Challenge at the Ohio State Fair I learned a lot at the Ohio State Fair in Columbus this past August. An awful lot. First and foremost, I learned that it’s not a good idea to […]

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‘Tis the Seasons

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Much more than jolly at Springfield’s Seasons Bistro and Grille By Paula Johnson Photo: Brisket Tacos at Seasons Bistro and Grille; photo: Paula Johnson Invited by friends Barrister Greg and Cyber Security Sleuth Elizabeth, PIP (Palate In Progress) and I ventured to Springfield to try Seasons Bistro and Grille. Open since 2008, the focus is on […]

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Naughty noshing

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Ill watch what shes watching By Paula Johnson Photo: Kôji Yakusho as Man in White Suit and Nobuko Miyamoto as Tampopo in “Tampopo” “When Harry Met Sally’s” famous scene of orgasmic ecstasy has gone down as one of the most iconic cinematic moments of all time. Taking place in a diner, Meg Ryan simulates sexual […]

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Rum and revolution

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New York’s Stonewall Inn becomes a national monument By Paula Johnson Throughout history, many a social movement began with someone slamming a tankard of ale on a tavern table with one fist, the other raised high, shouting, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not gonna take it anymore!” or words to that effect. Think the […]

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It’s your party, we can’t cry if we want to

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Fresco’s Jenn DiSanto shares a day in the life of catering By Paula Johnson What does it take to make it in the catering business, and how is that world different than that of a restaurant chef? Jenn DiSanto, owner of Kettering’s Fresco Catering, sums it up with a story from a huge party she […]

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Femme de la cuisine

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The progress of women in the kitchen By Paula Johnson Recently, British chef Tom Kerridge stirred up a firestorm by remarking that although he liked “girls in the kitchen,” he felt women lack “a lot of that fire in a chef’s belly you need. That’s probably why there [are] not so many female chefs.” And, […]

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Everyone’s a critic

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Restaurant reviewing in the age of yelp By Paula Johnson In a 2010 interview, chef, TV personality and author Anthony Bourdain pronounced the restaurant critic dead, replaced by the democracy of the website Yelp. He referred to professional critics as dinosaurs, irrelevant relics. Seeing as it’s my job, and the job of many others, I […]

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The adulterated virgin

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The truth behind your olive oil By Paula Johnson Olive oil—the food and medicine of the gods. Even the tree that produces the olives contributes to its mythic nature: it recovers from fire by sending up new shoots from the root ball to regrow the tree. The ancients were obsessed with olive oil. Texts record […]

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The Docket: 7/11

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Steal anything At a local auto-parts store, a car radio was shoplifted. The thief suspiciously perused through the aisles and […]

The Docket: 7/4

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By Michelle Strauss Pissed off Just a few weeks ago, someone broke into a local residence. The trespasser-turned-burglar began his raid, […]

Law & Disorder: The Docket 6/27

A game of telephone Last week, on a particularly scorching hot afternoon, a man was driving his ex-girlfriend home. The […]

Law & Disorder: The Docket 6/20

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By Michelle Strauss  Music man In a local apartment complex, alarms went off and alerted the police that a robbery […]

Law & Disorder: The Docket 6/13

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  What a mouthful Believe it or not, in a local residence, a boyfriend kept his girlfriend’s dentures hostage. Earlier […]