We have no shortage of food news throughout Arkansas, so each week, we’ll be providing you with a snapshot of the goings-on inside the culinary world, from events to specials to restaurant openings to awards. Do you have news to share? Please email our food editor, Kevin Shalin, at email@example.com.
We lead off this week with some sad news. The iconic Jones Barbecue Diner in Marianna experienced a fire over this past weekend, which burned 70 percent of the structure. Fortunately, no one was injured and a GoFundMe page is already up to help with the rebuild.
Have you heard about Good Eatin’ by Southern Inspirations? They specialize in delightful charcuterie creations and delectable Southern dishes, offering pick-up and delivery in Maumelle within a 10-mile radius (and pick-up in Little Rock from the Arkitchen located at 9813 W. Markham Street). Here’s a look at the current menu/order form.
You will not find a bigger supporter of our food truck scene than the folks over at Brandon Moving & Storage, opening up their parking lot each week to a host of food trucks with a prime spot at 10505 Maumelle Boulevard. Here’s a full schedule already for March.
Beginning March 1, Minute Man will be launching the “Buy One, Give One” initiative, in an effort to reduce hunger in Arkansas. For every meal that customers purchase from the mobile unit, the company will donate a meal to a community in need. As soon as the truck hits 500 burger meals sold, it will then donate 500 meals. Once Minute Man hits its goal, Officer Tommy Norman will be announcing the date, time, and location of the give portion of the campaign. Be sure to follow across all social media channels.
Exciting news from Cypress Social–$1 Oyster Tuesdays.
Speaking of exciting news, Crawfish Season is back at The Faded Rose.
The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra Guild has created “Symphony of Flavors,” a virtual fundraiser featuring Central Arkansas chefs and musicians. Dinner will be served on Thursday evenings throughout April. Ticket buyers are invited inside local chef kitchens to watch and learn how to prepare gourmet meals, as well as enjoy musical interludes by some of ASO’s various musicians and groups. Ticket prices include delivery of goodies, wine and recipes curated by each night’s featured chef. Participants can choose to purchase ingredients and cook along with the chef, as they will receive the recipe and menu the day before airing. Videos of the demonstrations will be available to ticket buyers online for two weeks following. Tickets go on sale on March 1st at ArkansasSymphony.org/flavoror call 501-258-6149. All four demonstrations cost $200 and a single demonstration is $75. Ticket buyers will be emailed a link to join the demonstration, which begins at 7 p.m.
Proof Bar + Lounge celebrates its Third Anniversary on March 14. Holly Smokes will be in attending, serving up dynamite barbecue.
Did you know that Boulevard Bread Company (Heights location) offers cocktails classes? “Learn the history of your favorite spirits, how to make the perfect cocktail, and enjoy an evening of food, drinks, and friends with Boulevard Bistro Bar Manager Ben Singleton.” Each class features three cocktails. All classes are on Saturday evenings from 6-8:30 p.m. and the bar will be open afterwards. Cost is $70 per person. Next classes: March 6 (A Saint Patrick’s Day Prelude), April 10 (Prohibition Era Inspired), May 15 (Agave Spirits), and June 12 (All Things Rum).
Here’s another cocktail making class. This one is at Rock Town Distillery.
Homebrewers, rejoice, and head to The Rail Yard on March 14.
Aaron Meals is a great, new charity to get behind. One hundred percent of every dollar given is used to provide food, clothing, blankets, shoes, and other necessary items to those in need. The organization’s mission is to identify food trucks and independent meal preparation entities, purchase meals from them and provide those meals to groups and organizations that provide them to those in need. They also purchase clothing and warm bed material from Goodwill or similar organizations. You can help by not only donating money directly to their site but also by participating in the “pay it forward” program. Here, customers buy a meal for someone else as they pay for their own meal at a food truck. Look for decals on participating trucks’ windows.
The first Arkansas Chef Competition will be held on April 20-22 in Wilson. This event will promote and encourage young Arkansas-based chefs who are looking to advance their culinary careers. Six contestants will be selected to compete based on their application and submitted essay/video. The contest will feature a signature dish competition and include a two-course signature dish tasting menu (appetizer or salad and entrée). Winners will receive a cash prize as well as an opportunity for an apprenticeship with the Wilson Culinary and Hospitality Program. For more information, visit eatatwilson.com/chefcompetition.
Folks who utilize Trio’s Facebook ordering now have a perfect opportunity to donate to Plating Change, an initiative that is teaming up with local restaurants (like Trio’s) to help feed the hungry. Just click on the link and purchase a specially prepared meal that will be delivered to one of many deserving groups in Little Rock (after the restaurant accumulates 200 orders). Recipients include Jericho Way Homeless Resource Center, Buffington Towers, Philander Smith College, and From His Throne Ministries, among others.
Here are all the details for the International Food Festival on April 17, as well as the Italian Food & Culture Festival Gravy Competition on April 24.