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Cider is having a moment. No longer a frumpy American Colonial beverage, it is becoming the surprise ingénue on the beverage scene.Until recently, though, the only cider that ever caught my fancy was Eric Bordelet’s profound and delicate cider made from heirloom varieties of apples or pears, especially his Poire Granit from 300-year-old trees. The French ciders from this f…

Food and Drink

Sorrentino’s Spaghetti House is a popular, no-frills local spot with a comfortable atmosphere and a wide range of classic red sauce-based Italian-American favorites. The front door opens into a short corridor, with a bar to the right and the entrance of the dining room to the left. There are a few tables in the bar, which on weekends and evenings is often packed with fans…

Food and Drink

Sorrentino’s Spaghetti House is a popular, no-frills local spot with a comfortable atmosphere and a wide range of classic red sauce-based Italian-American favorites. The front door opens into a short corridor, with a bar to the right and the entrance of the dining room to the left. There are a few tables in the bar, which on weekends and evenings is often packed with fans…

Food and Drink

American Grille, which opened in June 2012 in a remodeled building on the outskirts of East Aurora, is a family restaurant that practically invites you to move in. There’s a fire pit, a roomy patio and a competition volleyball court out back, where league teams play refereed matches. ¶ Inside, there’s a large sports bar lined with big television screens, a banquet room a…

Lots of church dinners stick to one time-honored entree, but not the annual feast hosted by St. John’s-Grace Episcopal Church (51 Colonial Circle). The church will host its International Food Fair from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.It costs $1 to enter, but that gets you into the 10 theme basket raffles. Besides, you’ll probably get your money’s worth when you graze through t…

Lots of church dinners stick to one time-honored entree, but not the annual feast hosted by St. John’s-Grace Episcopal Church (51 Colonial Circle). The church will host its International Food Fair from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.It costs $1 to enter, but that gets you into the 10 theme basket raffles. Besides, you’ll probably get your money’s worth when you graze through t…

Food and Drink

American Grille, which opened in June 2012 in a remodeled building on the outskirts of East Aurora, is a family restaurant that practically invites you to move in. There’s a fire pit, a roomy patio and a competition volleyball court out back, where league teams play refereed matches. ¶ Inside, there’s a large sports bar lined with big television screens, a banquet room a…

Apples aren’t just for eating.With a bumper crop this year, many folks are awash in apples. And there’s more ways to use them than you might think.Of course, eating them out of hand is delicious and nutritious. One apple equals about 1 cup of fruit, which is half the recommended daily serving. They’re also a good source of fiber and vitamin C.Before you crunch away, consid…

Food and Drink

Mussels steamed in a garlic, tomato and white wine broth are easy and inexpensive to make. Figure about 2 pounds of mussels per person.The commercially raised mussels available today are cleaner than they used to be. Just wash them in cold water before using. Scrape off the beard or thin hairs along the shell. This is how the mussel attaches itself to rocks. If any mussels…

Food and Drink

By Russ Parsons / Los Angeles Times

and S. Irene Virbila, Betty Hallock, Rene Lynch & Russ ParsonsWed, Oct 2, 2013

It’s every gardener’s secret September shame: Those zucchini plants you’ve been nursing along all summer suddenly have gone ballistic. Maybe you went away on vacation for a week. Maybe you merely turned your head for a moment. But what once was a promising little squash fingerling suddenly seems as big as your arm.The conventional wisdom is that the only use for zucchini t…

Food and Drink

Mary Randolph was an American aristocrat, a descendant of Pocahontas, who despite links by blood and marriage to the first families of Virginia fell on hard times, opened a boardinghouse in Richmond, and later wrote a cookbook called “The Virginia House-Wife.”Published in 1824, it was one of the earliest cookbooks written by an American for an American audience. It was pop…

More than 70 Western New York restaurants already have signed up for Local Restaurant Week’s fall edition, which runs Oct. 21-27.Now’s the time to get your reservations in for a chance to try $20.13 specials in new places, old favorites worth a revisit, and restaurants that have changed their tune recently.Oliver’s reservation book fills up fast. The Lodge, which aims to r…

Grocery consumers who wonder whether there is a difference between a product’s “sell-by” date and “use-by” date, here’s your answer:Yes.Emphatically.The “sell-by” date is aimed at the retailer, signaling to a grocery store when the product should be off the shelf. Once that product gets home, its “use by” or “best before” date provides a guide to when it is best eaten.Conf…

Food and Drink

Think Greek pastry is all just nuts and honey? Think again. There’s a lot more to the Greek pastry plate than meets the eye. In fact, there’s really very little honey in it.Most of the pastry is drenched in a traditional Greek syrup made of water and sugar, flavored with lemon juice, cinnamon, cloves and just a spoon or two of honey.While the iconic baklava is layers of fl…

Q: I asked my grandson what kind of cookies I should send him in college, and he asked for snickerdoodles. Can you give me a good recipe?A: These are a great choice for mailing since they don’t crumble. I’ve tried many recipes, and came up with this version after a great deal of tinkering.Favorite Snickerdoodles ½ cup butter (1 stick), softened ½ cup granulated …