Saturday, March 21, 2015

Rye Bar & Southern Kitchen Hosts Official Grand Opening

Rye Bar & Southern Kitchen opened up all its rooms for its official grand opening.

By Jennifer Primrose | Mar 21, 2015
Twitter: @TriangleAT | Facebook: Triangle Around Town | Instagram: @trianglearoundtown

Thursday, March 19, Rye Bar & Southern Kitchen, located in the Marriott downtown City Center, hosted its official Grand Opening.   Triangle Around Town was fortunate to be able to attend this event and Rye Bar did a fantastic job showcasing its menu with items such as Caviar of the South “Deviled Eggs," Cheerwine spareribs, chicken & waffle BLT, pulled pork sandwiches, shrimp & grits ... the list goes on.

Craft breweries, Fullsteam, Crank Arm, Mystery Brewing and Honor Brewing were all on hand with samples of their beers as well as Rye with samples of their Southern Mary, a bloody mary made with moonshine, Rye Southern Mary mix, handcrafted BBQ bitters and garnished with candied bacon. Who can say no to candied bacon? Also available was Rye’s Smokey BBQ Cola. This one is made with pork belly infused rye, smoked Coca-Cola and handcrafted BBQ bitters.  I wasn’t sure if I would like this one or not – but surprisingly – it is tasty!

Executive Chef and General Manager, Michael Rigot, was on hand to greet and welcome guests. Chef Rigot most recently hails from Alabama. He describes his menu as a “refined touch to old southern comfort cuisine.”

Additionally, Rye Bar has also created a spice line to include a Dry rub, a Creole spice and a Buttermilk Ranch spice.  As we made our exit, we were treated to a “swag bag” of these spices along with a couple of recipes for the Cheerwine Spareribs and the Sweet Tea Chicken.  We look forward to trying these recipes at home.

All in all, it was a great night and a great grand opening for Rye Bar & Southern Kitchen. We look forward to having lunch or dinner here in the very near future.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Billy Joel cover band, The Stranger, rocks Raleigh

The Stranger performed at The Ritz in Raleigh on Friday, March 20, 2015

By Jennifer Primrose | Mar 20, 2015
Twitter: TriangleAT | Facebook: Triangle Around Town | Instagram: trianglearoundtown
Anyone that knows me knows that I am a huge Billy Joel fan!

I was elated when Joel's tour brought him to Raleigh last February, and excited to see him return to Charlotte later this year. So, when Dathan announced that he purchased tickets for us to see The Stranger, a Charlotte-based Billy Joel tribute band, I wasn't too sure what to think.

First off, no one will ever even come close to the greatness of Billy Joel in my mind – and then it dawned on me – does this mean we are not going to see the one and only Piano Man in December? Nonetheless, we made a night of it on Friday, March 20. After some pre-concert drinks at Kings in North Hills, we made our way to The Ritz concert venue in Raleigh.

The crowd was thin at first, but filled in nicely prior to the band taking center stage. As lead singer, Mike Santoro's ivory-pounding and crooning began, I forgot I wasn't listening to Mr. Long Island himself.

Santoro and his gang of entertainers kept the crowd singing along and dancing to some of Joel's greatest hits such as "Only the Good Die Young," "Movin' Out," "You May be Right," "It's Still Rock and Roll to Me" and of course, "Piano Man."

Santoro, a native Long Islander, who now resides in Charlotte isn't a stranger to Joel's powerhouse vocals and stage presence. Both behind the piano or front and center with the guitar, he rocked The Ritz. This is a band I'll definitely see again.

And an added bonus ... while leaving the venue, we received free tickets to see Liverpool: Carolina's Beatles Experience on April 11. Goo Goo Goo Joob!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Olde Hickory Brewery releases Omega Point

The line at Olde Hickory Brewery at 9:00 a.m. for the Omega Point bottle release.

By Dathan Kazsuk | Mar 8, 2015
Twitter: @TriangleAT | Facebook: Triangle Around Town | Instagram: @trianglearoundtown

So what's it like getting up at 4:30 a.m. to get ready to be out the door by 6 a.m. to go on a beer run at a brewery 3 hours away?

That was the question I asked myself on March 7 when we did just that. 

The answer is one heck of a long day! 

We left our house around 6:15 a.m. to make the long but relatively easy trip to Hickory, North Carolina, for Olde Hickory Brewery first ever bottle release. Omega Point is a rich tasting Barleywine, which has been aged in bourbon barrels for as long 7 years, blended together by OHB’s head brewer Steven Lyerly.

Jen and I have never been anywhere near Hickory, unless you count passing through en route to Asheville. We were surprised by the quaintness and historic feel of downtown Hickory. But not too thrilled with the numbered streets while attempting to find our destination.

2nd St. PL SE two streets in a row? 2nd St. NE.; 1st St. NE.; 1st Ave. NE.; 1st ST NW … all one after another, after another. Talk about confusing. Once we saw a parking lot  filled with cars and dozens of bearded guys walking in groups towards one brick building – we knew we we found our destination.

Mind you, I’ve never been to a bottle release – being that I’m not a fan of standing in line for anything. A line of 6 people to get a bagel is 5 people too many in my opinion. So when we arrived and saw close to 150 people already in line … I was a little shocked.

More shocking was how organized Olde Hickory Brewery was moving the line along. As soon as we got in line, two guys checked our IDs, put on our wristbands, explained what each one was for and told everyone that this was a cash only event. And in under 35 minutes we were inside and paying for our bottles. Kudos!

Once inside we purchased a pint of Omega Point, and drank up while thinking to ourselves that we’re indulging in a 10% ABV Barleywine at 10 in the morning! I usually only do that while on a cruise ship!

We purchased 17 bottles between the two of us, which we kept a couple for ourselves, and others went to friends who paid us in advance. Remember this the next time you hit up a bottle release … and keep us in mind.