Hello humans, Bear here. It's been quite the February with some of our most entertaining and raucous dinners to date. We'll be rolling out a Mardi Gras menu next week to close out the month and I'm really looking forward to serving up a NOLA-inspired menu.
Speaking of next week, I'm happy to announce our first Wine by Bear night, hosted by Sommelier Kaitlin Brooks. We're planning on holding these 'wine tasting experience experiments' every Tuesday evening at 6:30pm. This experience will be similar to our dinner and brunch services with 14 guests coming together at one table. Tickets are $50/person and includes 6 great wines (all of which I've curated from my travels around the world) paired with fine cheeses and other goodies. Kaitlin is the smartest wino I know. We met years ago while touring the Mendoza, Argentina wine country by horseback and she has been my go-to wine person ever since. She's put together a one-of-a-kind wine experience that will be as educational as it is fun. You can purchase tickets by clicking here. I wish I could be there to taste the wines alongside of you but I'll be hard at work prepping for the weekend dinners. I'll be there in spirit, of course, and sometimes that's all the bear you really need.
We just opened up seats for Memorial Day weekend. These dates were previously blocked off for a larger event, but we're now back to hosting our regular dinners on Thursday-Saturday (May 25-27) that week. Get your tickets now before they're gone!
This cocktail made it's debut at our Valentine's Day dinner last week and is quite tasty. Try it this weekend and let me know what you think!
Jon Bear Jovi (Shot Through the Heart)
1 1/2 oz. Gin
1 1/2 tsp. Creme De Casis
2 1/2 oz. Moscato
lemon juice (1 lemon wedge)
Combine the ingredients and stir. Add ice, a lemon twist and enjoy!
This chilly weather calls for a big soup to warm you up and this is one of my favorites. It was first introduced to me by a street performer in Palermo, way back when I still walked on four legs. Enjoy it with a gooey grilled cheese sandwich if you really want to do it right.
Tomato & Fennel Drunken Soup
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 medium fennel bulbs (cleaned, thinly sliced, fronds reserved)
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 tsp. coarse kosher salt
4 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp. chile powder
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
3 tbsp. Pernod (Anise-flavored liquor)
5 lbs. fresh vine tomatoes (peeled)
1 cup chicken stock
1 tsp. black pepper
crumbled ricotta salata
lemon-infused olive oil (optional)
Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add fennel, onion and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Toss to combine. Reduce heat to medium-low. Partly cover and cook, stirring occasionally until vegetables are very tender, about 20 minutes. Stir in garlic, paprika and chile powder. Cook 1 minute.
Add tomatoes, 1 1/2 cups water and the stock. Bring to a simmer and cook (gently), uncovered, for 30 minutes. Season with salt, the black pepper and Pernod, and simmer 5 minutes longer.
Purée soup in batches using a blender or immersion blender until smooth. Garnish with some crumbled ricotta salata, a few dashes of lemon-infused olive oil, and the reserved fennel fronds. Enjoy!
I'd love to see how you use these newsletter recipes. Please make sure to tag me at @cowbybear on Instagram with a picture and you'll be entered in to win some fun prizes!