Foodgazi offers a diverse range of culinary classes devoted to unleashing the delicious power of farm-fresh, unprocessed meals incorporating as many organic and locally produced ingredients as possible. Foodgazi's savory, unforgettable vegetarian and vegan dishes run the gamut from convenient, casual fare to more involved culinary preparations. The Healthy School Lunches class (Thursday, August 19, 7 p.m.–9 p.m.) teaches the preparation of healthy, gourmet brown-bag fare for young scholars, and may include such offerings as sweet fruit kebabs, tempeh tuna salad with kale, and sweet potato chips. Two upcoming classes, Hearty Home-Style Italian and Pizza with Pizzazz, will dispense the ancient wisdom of whole grains and tomato viscosity, as well as how to toss pizza dough high enough to thoroughly frighten A.P. Astronomy students. On the other hand, the Foods for Entertaining, Holiday Eats, and Holiday Cookies classes are perfect for harnessing the sweetness of the holiday season without the nutritional guilt.
Boston's Bistro and Pub takes beer seriously—17 taps pour a rotating selection of global craft brews, and the beer list teems with more than 100 bottles. A beer garden gives its brews a place to roam outdoors, and an onsite brew school teaches beer enthusiasts the finer points of brewing while instilling etiquette and charm into rowdy porters and stouts. Owner David Boston balances this passion for beer with his family's Hungarian heritage, serving a bistro menu of traditional magyar kolbasz sausage, pork kraut, kosher soft pretzels from Rinaldo's Italian bakery, and Zwack slaw and incorporating European meats and cheeses into paninis, pizzas, and spinach salads.
David Boston and his pub trace their history back through the coal mines of West Virginia and the factories of Ohio, en route to West Dayton, where in 1927 David's ancestors set up their own business, the Ole Time Bar, on Fifth Street. Boston's Bistro and Pub is the family's latest culinary enterprise, now carrying the torch for fine, frothy brews and Magyar delicacies for more than 30 years.
Nestled in a quaint turn-of-the-century abode, South Market Bistro specializes in serving an eclectic menu of American cuisine prepared with an appetizing amalgamation of organic and locally grown ingredients. To exemplify his commitment to locally based cuisine, owner and chef Mike Mariola changes his menu each season to symbiotically reflect the harvest of local farmers. Give clever and environmentally friendly tips on how to properly recycle Kleenex and Tae-Bo tapes in between bites of the Ohio City gnocchi, a spinach-stuffed pasta soused in bolognese sauce and topped with parmesan cheese ($18.50). Alternately, the pan-seared red snapper, served with sunchoke risotto and toasted pine nuts ($30), will satiate tongues with a taste for savory seafood.
Craig and Laura Decker seem to have a difficult time making up their minds. They also seem to have a knack for turning this indecisiveness into an advantage at every turn. When it came to opening their new business, for example, they briefly wondered whether it should feature a wine shop, a wine bar, or a gourmet bistro. Their solution? All three.
This spirit of inclusivity pervades The Wine Guy Bistro, where the Deckers pair seasonal wine varietals with globally inspired cuisine. Rather than choose between European elegance and New-American pizzazz, they settled on a compromise they describe as “Old World chic.” This label suits a menu that features small plates of housemade meatballs and bruschetta alongside assorted cheeses from around the world. The focus on small plates is in keeping with the Deckers’ have-it-all mentality and gives diners the option to sample several dishes without having to barter with adjacent tables.
A number of housemade sauces add depth to Through the Garden’s dishes. Sweet, smoky barbecue sauce glistens across each rack of ribs, basil-garlic butter softens the deep flavors of char-grilled chicken breast, and garlic-dill sauce pools around the edges of crab cakes, proving that gravity may in fact exist. Bright-yellow walls and wooden floors surround tables scattered with American meals, including Cajun scallops nestled in angel-hair pasta and homemade barbarosa burgers baptized with splashes of beer. Outside, a white fence cordons off the stone-paved patio with oversized umbrellas.