August 3, 2012By Liz Biro
New Wrightsville Beach food fest in works
Autumn’s inaugural Taste of Wrightsville Beach food and drink festival is being planned for Oct. 27 at the Robert’s Grocery parking lot in downtown Wrightsville Beach. Ticket-holders roving the festival’s tasting stations will cast votes for a People’s Choice Award, Taste of Wrightsville Beach planner Lisa Weeks said. Professional judges will rate dishes, too, with honors going to the best. Particulars and per-person costs remain under consideration, but two prices levels are possible: one for a specific number of tastings, and the other for tastings combined with a chance dine on steamed oysters.
Olive Tree Co. chef now at Fortunate Glass
When The Olive Tree Co. delicatessen closed its downtown store in 2010, fans bemoaned chef Paula Pacini shuttering the stove. Pacini disappeared from the area’s dining landscape after Wayfarer Deli moved into The Olive Tree Co. space, 110 S. Front St. Recently, she popped up in The Fortunate Glass wine bar kitchen, 29 S. Front St. The Fortunate Glass is an easy shift for Pacini. The spot already had empanadas on the menu. Pacini will shape them and the menu’s standard small plates, including its popular truffle mushroom pizza, but she’ll add a few of her own signatures as well.
Bakery with emphasis on gluten-free, organic opens
Wilmington’s newest bakery is touting gluten-free, organic and vegan selections. Special-occasion cakes, including wedding tiers, are available along with individual treats such as cupcakes, cookies and scones are available at Uprising, 1701 Wrightsville Ave. Customers may nibble their sweets with a cup of Raleigh-based Larry’s Beans organic, fair-trade coffee and eventually beer and wine at outdoor tables or inside the curious store.
Ex-Buffalo Wild Wings gets new tenant
The former Buffalo Wild Wings near Wal-Mart, off Market Street, is back in action as a sports bar/nightclub that will be serving pub food this fall. Antonio Burgess opened Genee’s at 29 Van Campen Blvd. Inside looks much the same as the Buffalo Wild Wings that traded the Van Campen address for a new store at 206 Old Eastwood Road. Burgess’ original Genee’s was at 4903-A Market St., at the former America’s Best Value Hotel. Burgess said he left Market Street in April.
Local establishment’s wine lists recognized in Wine Spectator
Two downtown Wilmington restaurants and a wine bar have garnered Wine Spectator magazine’s Awards of Excellence. The honor goes to wine lists that “offer a well-chosen selection of quality producers along with a thematic match to the menu in both price and style,” Wine Spectator reports. Nearly 3-year-old Aubriana’s, 115 S. Front St., garnered its first award. Deluxe, 114 Market St., earned another Award of Excellence in its string of wins. The restaurant has received the recognition every year since 2001. The Fortunate Glass, 29 S. Front St., took its second Award of Excellence since the wine bar opened in fall 2010. Find all the N.C. winners on pages 116-117 in Wine Spectator’s August issue.