Amuse Bouche

by Brian Clarey

There’s much afootin the Triad culinary community, so if you don’t mind, I’ll dispatchwith the cheap one-liner opening and get right down to business. Believeit or not, even though hailstones and tornadoes have been pelting theregion like snowballs thrown at the school bus, it is actually full-onspring. This means that the patios of all our beloved area restaurantsare open for business. Bert’s Seafood Grille in Greensboro andFinnegan’s Wake in Winston-Salem are but two of the many, many fineTriad restaurants with outdoor eating space – and they’re the only twothat bothered to mention to me that their patios were up and runningfor the season. A new restaurant, Ombu Woodfire Fusion, hassigned on as the first tenant at St. George Square on Hanes MallBoulevard in Winston-Salem. Think wood-fired pizza fused with Asian,Southwest and California cuisine, served tapas style. Look for a grandopening in June. Things are quiet at Greensboro’s EarthFare thisweek, but stop by in Monday at 6:30 p.m. for a lecture entitled, “The25 Healthiest Foods on Earth” given by Melba Lemley, a certifiednutritional consultant, certified master herbalist and professionaleducator. The event is free and open to the public. It alsodovetails nicely with a promotion by Triad-area CVS pharmacies, whichoffer free cholesterol screenings during store hours now through June 7. ThePiedmont Triad Farmers Market, fresh off a trouncing from the tornadothat touched down there last week, will try to pull it together to holdStrawberry Day on Friday beginning at 10 a.m. and celebrate theabsolute peak of the season. Dewey’s Bakery, out ofWinston-Salem, has begun marketing office and party platters consistingof cakes, pastries, muffins, brownies and other assorted baked sweets.Call any Triad Dewey’s Bakery or visit for more info. JeremyWestmoreland, an employee of Greensboro’s Olive Garden, was selected bythe company to attend a weeklong training session at its culinaryinstitute in Tuscany, Italy. According to a press release, Westmorelandvisited wineries and restaurants to soak up the kind of culture thatthe Olive Garden pursues as its corporate brand. “The passionthat Italians have for their food and their wine is unbelievable,” hesaid. “We spent time learning how food and wine complement each other,tasted amazing food and really got to experience the all the passion,warmth and generosity that the Italian people bring to every meal.” Andfinally, festival heads who are planning to asttend this summer’sBonnaroo Festival, June 12-15 in Manchester, Tenn. – begun, I shouldsay, by a group of Tulane students during Mardi Gras and Jazz Fest somany years ago – will note the event’s newest addition to the lineup:Moopheus. Moopheus is not some new jam and out of panhandleFlorida. He’s a cow, and star of the Meatrix series of short films -loose parodies of The Matrix that highlight food-supply problems thatwill be screened at the festival.