Taylor's Kitchen

Dining News: Two Chefs to Open Butcher Shop in East Sac


Chefs Eric Veldman Miller and Matt Azevedo are partnering to open a whole animal butcher shop in East Sac, reports the Sac Bee's Blair Anthony Robertson.

The shop, now under construction on the corner of Folsom Boulevard and 48th Street (across the street from OneSpeed Pizza and East Sacramento Hardware) is scheduled to open in May.

Called V. Miller Meats, it will be owned by Eric Veldman Miller and Matt Azevedo, both experienced chefs. Miller was once the chef de cuisine at Mulvaney’s and went on to work for a time as an instructor at Le Cordon Bleu, the culinary school in Natomas.

Read the entire story in the Sac Bee.

This story created an unusual amount of social media chatter. The original version of the article, according to Taylor's Market, implied that no other markets in Sacramento did whole animal butchering. (It's unclear what the exact text of the original article said since the only sign that the article was updated was a time stamp on the Web site and a tweet by @BlaRob.) Taylor's Market took to Twitter to respond forcefully.

I think the hashtags were a little harsh in the initial tweet, but it seems like a good way for a restaurant to use social media to correct what they thought was an error/oversight.

Eventually, the article was clarified, and now reads:

The shop will try to distinguish itself from other highly regarded full-service meat counters like Corti Brothers and Taylor’s Market by doing 100 percent whole-animal butchering. Corti and Taylor’s butcher whole animals but supplement their inventory with boxed cuts of meat.

More News:

VIDEO: Sac Food Film Festival - Sacramento's Food Film Festival is back for its fourth year and proceeds from the festival will benefit the Food Literacy Center.  Cambi Brown pays a visit to Chocolate Fish Coffee to learn about their event. On Good Day Sac.

VIDEO: Sac Food Film Festival - Sacramento's Food Film Festival is back and they're teaming with Sacramento Food Literacy Center for a great cause.  Featuring Frank Fat's chef Mike Lim. On Good Day Sac.

Food Pairings by Guest Chefs at Sac Food Film Festival - The fourth annual Sacramento Food Film Festival is back with a smorgasbord of events planned from March 19 to 29 featuring guest chefs, food pairings and of course, food-related films, all the while benefiting the wonderful Food Literacy Center. You’ll want to check out Foodliteracycenter.org for a full run-down of events, but here are just a few hightlights. In Submerge Mag.

VIDEO: Sacramento Food Film Festival promotes urban farming - The Food Literacy Center is holding a Sacramento Food Film Festival to help promote eating right. Kathy Park on KCRA.

Continue reading "Dining News: Two Chefs to Open Butcher Shop in East Sac" »

Dining News: Brock MacDonald of Block Butcher Bar Wins Sac Bacon Fest Chefs Competition


When Michael Tuohy left Block Butcher Bar and LowBrau for the new Kings Arena, he left a void in who would be the public culinary face for the restaurants at 20th & K streets.

With his win at Sunday's Sac Bacon Fest Chefs Competition, Chef Brock Macdonald has stepped in to fill those shoes.

Here's Chef Brock's appearance on KCRA on Sunday morning, previewing the chef's competition.

In case you don't know much about Brock, Chef Tuohy described him as "a young chef from Sacramento who is extremely passionate about all things Pig, Salted & Cured" in a Feb. 2014 blog post announcing his team at Block Butcher Bar.

Here's what Sactown Mag reported about Brock in Feb. 2014:

The team also brought aboard head butcher Brock MacDonald, formerly of Restaurant Thir13en, to manage the butcher-block work. “He has a pig tattooed on the side of his head, for God’s sake,” Hargis says. “We couldn’t ask for a better guy. Before we opened, he got ‘salt’ and ‘time’ tattooed on his hands because he will be doing our in-house charcuterie. He’s in it for the long haul, so that’s cool.”

If you want to check out his tattoo, here's a video from his Instagram.


A video posted by Brock Macdonald (@eatbrocksmeat) on Jan 25, 2015 at 11:21am PST

Congrats to Brock and all those who participated in the Sac Bacon Fest Chef's competition. For more pictures of the event, check out Sac Bacon Fest's Facebook Page.

** Update: Brock reacted on Twitter early Monday morning.

More News:

VIDEO: Bacon Competition -  Bacon Fest has hit Sacramento and Morgan Ragan is getting a preview of what to expect from today's competition. On Good Day Sac Part 1 | Part 2.

Dickey's Barbecue Pit opening Rocklin restaurant - Dickey's Barbecue Pit opened a location in the Rocklin Crossings shopping center at 11 a.m. Thursday...Other highlights included $2 pulled pork barbecue sandwiches, available from noon until 2 p.m. Saturday. Sonya Sorich in Sac Biz Journal.

Sacramento train depot again pushed as top location for public market - The group that has been trying to find a high-profile location for a public market in downtown Sacramento is urging for the use of the historic train depot. In a letter to the mayor and city manager, the group Sacramento Public Market says the iconic building has the location, size, and amenities to be a world class public market. The depot would also build in the city's "America's farm-to-fork capital" marketing efforts, and is within blocks of the new downtown arena. Mark Anderson in Sac Biz Journal.

Sactown Union Brewery nears its debut in East Sacramento - A new craft brewery and tasting room is about to debut in East Sacramento, adding another beer maker to the capital’s growing menu of specialty brews. Located in an industrial/commercial complex near California State University, Sacramento, Sactown Union Brewery’s owners hope to open their taps by Sacramento Beer Week, Feb. 27 to March 9. Debbie Arrington in the Sac Bee.

Three Standout Local Dishes - I am often reminded of how lucky Sacramento residents are to have such a glorious bounty of good food available to them. I recently relished three menu items that represent some of the most delectable fare we can hope to find in our region. Featuring OneSpeed, Taylor's Kitchen & Saffron Grill. Kira O'Donnell in Sac Mag.

Continue reading "Dining News: Brock MacDonald of Block Butcher Bar Wins Sac Bacon Fest Chefs Competition" »

Dining News: Where You Can Get Foie Gras in Sacramento Right Now


Shaved, frozen foie gras on a sacallop nigiri at Kru in June 2012.

In case you missed the great news, foie gras is legal again after a judge overturned California's prohibition against selling the fattened duck liver.

(BTW: This isn't the place to discuss the ethics of foie gras. If you're against it, I understand why you feel that way, I respect your opinion, but my taste buds and the rest of me disagree.)

So I called around on late Wednesday night looking for restaurants that are already have it. If you have the $20 or so burning a hole in your pocket and you need a fix, hit up these restaurants:

Taylor's Kitchen

Mulvaney's B & L

Taylor's Market


Waterboy - Not in stock yet, but hopefully by the weekend.

Kru - Not yet, but Chef loves it and will try to get it on the menu soon.

Mighty Tavern - "We will. But there is no rush. It will be apart of our charcuterie program, it will have to fit into our menu. It won't just be on the menu," said chef Jason Azevedo via Twitter DM. "Soon, I personally love it. But I want to use the best way. Maybe as a mousse filling for herb profiteroles with aged balsamico. By Valentines at the earliest."

See Also: Three Places to Get Cheap(er) Foie Gras (written right before the now overturned law banning foie gras took effect in June 2012).

More News:

Local chefs react to lifting of foie gras ban - U.S. District Court Judge Stephen Wilson ruled Wednesday morning that California ordinances that outlawed the force feeding of birds were superseded by provisions of the federal Poultry Products Inspections Act. In short, state ordinances were overreaching and foie gras is for now good to go in California. “It’s a great day in liver land,” said a jubilant sounding Patrick Mulvaney, chef and proprietor of Mulvaney’s B&L. “I almost want to make it like a big birthday cake with a candle in it.” Chris Macias in the Sac Bee.

Boulevard Bistro, Carpe Vino named to best restaurants list - Two Sacramento-area restaurants are on this year's OpenTable list of the 100 best restaurants in America. The local eateries include Boulevard Bistro in Elk Grove and Carpe Vino in Auburn. The rankings are based on restaurant reviews that OpenTable diners submitted for more than 20,000 restaurants nationwide. Sonya Sorich in Sac Biz Journal.

Jack's Urban Eats coming to Elk Grove - Jack's Urban Eats is opening an Elk Grove restaurant, the city of Elk Grove announced on Facebook on Friday. The restaurant will cover 3,339 square feet at the Laguna Crossroads shopping center at 7701 Laguna Blvd. Sonya Sorich in Sac Biz Journal.

SusieCakes opening first local store in January - A Southern California company is opening its first Sacramento region bakery Jan. 24. SusieCakes, which this summer announced a plan to enter the area, will make its debut at the Pavilions shopping center. The bakery at 564 Pavilions Lane will sell cupcakes, frosted layer cakes, cookies and seasonal fruit pies. Sonya Sorich in Sac Biz Journal.

Counter Culture: Past continues at Folsom’s retro Hop Sing Palace - We ordered classic-retro, starting with pot stickers. The six dumplings were dense, but the filling was quite tasty. A nice touch was our waiter’s demonstration of how to make an excellent pot-sticker sauce from the condiments caddy: Two parts hoisin sauce, one part plum sauce, one part hot chili sauce, a splash of white vinegar, mixed until blended and smooth. It was so good we put it on every dish that followed. Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.

Continue reading "Dining News: Where You Can Get Foie Gras in Sacramento Right Now" »

Dining News: Jackrabbit Brewing to Open in West Sac in the Fall


Jackrabbit Brewing Company will open a tasting room in late Sept. or early Oct., reports Tori Masucci Cummins in Sactown Mag.

In the coming months, Jackrabbit will expand from 1,500 to 4,500 square feet with a public taproom that would be open on the weekends, a front patio and bar area. Launched in 2011, Jackrabbit is currently a production-only brewery that operates out of its location in a West Sacramento business park down the road from Yolo Brewing Company and Bike Dog Brewing Co.

Jackrabbit plans a pre-construction kickoff party scheduled for sometime in late July that will give patrons an opportunity to view the brewery space before demolition, sample free beer and sign up for an exclusive growler club.

Read the entire story in Sactown Mag.

The opening of Jackrabbit Brewing's Taphouse will be the third stop in what some are calling the Port Brewing District, with the first two being Bike Dog Brewing and the recently-opened Yolo Brewing Company.

Jackrabbit Brewing can be found at 1315 Terminal St. in West Sac, or online at http://www.jackrabbitbrewingcompany.com/.

More News:

2 Sacramento-area restaurants land spots on OpenTable’s list of 100 top neighborhood gems - Customer reviews lifted Taylor’s Kitchen in Sacramento and The Chef’s Table in Rocklin to spots on OpenTable’s list of the Top 100 Neighborhood Gem Restaurants in America. “Some of our great customers must have mentioned something nice about us,” said co-owner Kathy Johnson. “We’re in the middle of a lot of neighborhoods, and a lot of them like to claim us.” Cathie Anderson in the Sac Bee.

Thai Canteen makes it through critical year in midtown - Midtown can be a tough place to open a new restaurant, especially if there are several others nearby of the same genre. Many restaurants never even make it through their first year. I'm happy to report that Thai Canteen on 16th Street just celebrated its one-year anniversary on May 28. Tee Devahasdin is relieved to have made it. “It's been a challenge; I was nervous to open in midtown,” he confesses. Devahasdin, his sister Bua and her partner Deo Suwan own the Thai Canteen in Sacramento and another one in Davis which opened in November of 2010. Bua and Deo now run the Davis store, and Tee is in charge of the one in midtown. He even moved into the apartment building above it, eliminating any commute. Andrea Thompson in Sac Biz Journal.

Sacramento International Airport to get six new restaurants, with an emphasis on local fare - Under the 10-year, $80 million contract, SSP will bring Peet’s Coffee to Terminal A, along with three local spots: burger joint Squeeze Inn, Italian restaurant Paesanos and comfort food purveyor Cafeteria 15L, which already has a restaurant in Terminal B. Isabelle Taft in the Sac Bee.

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Dining News: Block Butcher Bar Preview


Last week, a friend was given a tour of Block Butcher Bar. This is the quick dispatch he sent over.

I got a tour of Touhy's new place next to Low Brau tonight and it looks awesome. Much smaller than Low Brau with booths and a much smaller bar with no beer taps. It'll connect to the other side since they share bathrooms. In between, they will be hanging charcuterie in enclosed cases, like the Chops fridge.

I was upset that they painted over the David Hasselhoff painting, but they assured me that a new version will return.

Becky Gruenwald of Sac Foodways also got a preview last week.

The menu got me little moist (I know I am being SO GROSS) because it’s pretty  much my dream menu. It was like Tuohy had said, “Becky, what type of place would you like to see in Sacramento?” My answer could have been “a good Jewish Deli with actual bagels instead of the bagel-like monstrosities we have here”, but right up there would be a charcuterie bar with local and European wines, cheese and charcuterie, delicious-sounding, creative salads, and where the chef is committed to pickle-y items as well. Boom! Wish granted.

Read the entire story in Sac Foodways.

Block Butcher Bar is located at 1050 20th Street. Its exact opening date is still TBA.

More News:

Paragary’s restaurant will close Feb. 17 for $600,000 makeover - Randy Paragary is undertaking an extensive $600,000 remodel of his namesake restaurant at 28th and N streets in Sacramento. Paragary’s Bar and Oven will close Feb. 17 and won’t reopen until August, at the earliest...The renovation will touch every floor, every ceiling, every wall and all the furniture, Paragary said. He and his partners – his wife, Stacy Paragary, and executive chef Kurt Spataro – plan to replace one wall with floor-to-ceiling windows, so diners can see into the restaurant courtyard. The menu will continue to stress fresh, local and seasonal dishes, but it will take on a French emphasis rather than Mediterranean. Employees will work in other Paragary Restaurant Group restaurants until the landmark eatery reopens. Cathie Anderson in the Sac Bee.

Chef and GM at highly anticipated SF restaurant have strong local ties - Duncan Holmes, whose mother, Karen Holmes, owns the beloved Karen’s Bakery in Folsom, has made a name for himself as the chef at Sons & Daughters, a Michelin-starred restaurant in San Francisco. Now Holmes is teaming with Matt Walker, the former GM at Hawks in Granite Bay, to open a new restaurant in North Beach called Square. The two restaurants are owned by Teague Moriarty and Matt McNamara, and Holmes, at age 27, will preside over both as executive chef. Blair Anthony Robertson in the Sac Bee.

Continue reading "Dining News: Block Butcher Bar Preview" »

Dining News: Cielito Lindo's Drab Building Detracts from 'Deft Cooking'


Cielito Lindo, a new mexican restaurant in East Sac, got a thumbs up for its cooking, but a thumbs down for its decor in the Sac Bee from restaurant critic Blair Anthony Robertson.

The disparity for Cielito Lindo makes for an awkward juxtaposition — fine food served by waiters wearing vests and neckties in a space that lacks warmth or style and is a tad chintzy looking. Oh, and I might as well mention drafty, at least for now, especially since one of the female staffers made the rounds in the dining room wearing a puffed-up parka on a modestly frigid night recently...

Thus, the best we can say about this restaurant is that it makes an appealing addition to the east Sacramento culinary scene, a neighborhood eatery with food that will often satisfy, sometimes wow and, yes, occasionally let you down.

Read the entire review in the Sac Bee.

Robertson also mentions in his review that they had yet to get a liquor license. When I visited in October, they said they were about to get one. Three months later, I guess they don't have one yet.

Read my thoughts on Cielito Lindo from an October post just after they had opened.

More News:

Taylor's Kitchen Still Delights - As Sacramento’s food landscape continues to blossom and grow, it’s easy to forget well-established restaurants as we continually run to try new eateries. But I was reminded of how wonderful some of our enduring neighborhood restaurants are last night when I visited Taylor’s Kitchen, Land Park’s well-loved dining treasure. Kira O'Donnell in Sac Mag.

Hand signals help restaurant servers communicate - Be flattered if you catch the general manager of BLT Steak in downtown Washington flashing a quick, sideways peace sign as he seats your party. Adam Sanders isn’t revealing his politics; he’s simply making a “V” — and alerting his staff to the presence of a VIP. Tom Sietsema in the Washington Post.

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Dining News: South Restaurant to Open at Soutside Park


Originally announced as "The General Store" in Aug. 2012, a new restaurant called South, featuring southern cuisine, is scheduled to open in September, reports Sac Bee's Janelle Bitker.

The menu is split in two: "Old School" classics, such as fried catfish with red beans and rice or barbequed tiger shrimp over cheesy grits, and "New School" dishes with a California flair, such as crispy pork belly salad with a pepper jelly vinaigrette or seared halibut alongside okra succotash.

More traditional dishes are inspired by what co-owner N'Gina Kavookjian used to eat growing up - her family has roots in Louisiana and Mississippi - while the contemporary plates are the work of chef Michael Wright, who previously worked at Kavookjian's now closed Granite Bay restaurant, Eight American Bistro.

Read the entire post in the Sac Bee. Hat tip to Ally Gaffan, where I first saw the news posted.

Unfortunately, South was robbed over the last week. Per a Facebook Post on Monday:

After a much needed vacation, we came back to our beloved building to start more construction and found that we were broken into. Thieves broke locks and went into our building and stole tools and recyclable materials. To our Southside family, if you saw anything suspicious over the past days please hit us up with a private email. We appreciate all your help in this matter and we WON'T let this slow us down. Much love

I hope this doesn't set them back too far. I wish them good luck in their recovery.

You can find South online at http://www.weheartfriedchicken.com.

More News:

Try It: Huong Lan’s Banh Chuoi - I stopped in recently for one of Huong Lan’s delicious báhn mi sandwiches, and – while waiting for my order – worked my way enthusiastically through a pile of the establishment’s banh chuoi, or banana cake. Kira O'Donnell in Sac Mag.

Want to Revel in Farm-to-Fork Cuisine? Check Out Taylor’s Kitchen - Now is the time to savor fresh, ripe summer produce - and one of the most exciting restaurants in town in which to enjoy it is at Taylor’s Kitchen in Land Park. This popular neighborhood spot’s menu showcases a colorful array of locally-grown fruits and veggies. Kira O'Donnell in Sac Mag.

Continue reading "Dining News: South Restaurant to Open at Soutside Park" »