amuse bouche

by Brian Clarey

Somber news kicks off this week’s Amuse Bouche column. Ginnie Tate, known hereabouts as the Goat Lady, passed last week after suffering ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease, for three years. I met Ginnie at my mother-in-law’s health food store shortly after moving to Greensboro in 2000. In 2003, I interviewed her and her brother Steve out at the Goat Lady Farm and Dairy out in Climax, where they had already been crafting award-winning cheese for 10 years. I loved the jalapeño chevre and the Gray’s Chapel, which was a bit like a port salut, but mostly I admired her work ethic and dedication to local, sustainable agriculture. The Goat Lady was one of the originals around here, and she will be missed. More news: Starbucks is phasing out highfructose corn syrup; Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar is adding a burger bar to its coterie of aged beef and fresh seafood; Chipotle Mexican Grill is having a contest that awards $10,000 to the maker of the best user-submitted ad at the website www.; and Total Wine & More is having a huge sale on French wine. If you’re over that whole Freedom Fries thing, pick up a bottle of Pigmentum Malbec Rosé, chill it and then drink it on your patio or deck. Moving on…. Wednesday sees Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis take their feminist turns as Thelma and Louise at 6th & Vine’s weekly Dinner and a Movie event, which begins at 9 p.m. On Thursday, Winston-Salem’s Whole Foods Market holds a cooking class entitled This is What Summer Tastes Like. Chef Kevin from the Prepared Foods Department gets things going at 6 p.m. demonstrating some “practical, delicious summer items.” Register and pay the $15 fee in-store at the customer service desk. And while you’re there, pick u your free copy of Edible Piedmont. On Friday, the Grove Winery holds its Sangiovese and Spaghetti Dinner to celebrate the 2007 estate grown Italian-style red. Register at the website, www. Also on Friday evening, EarthFare in Greensboro gives a sneak preview of its Tomato Fest with tastings and recipes. Saturday sees the Tomato Fest, a celebration of the love apple at EarthFare, which will include many kinds of tomatoes and music by Sherri Lynn & Mountain Friends as the 13th stop on their Misty Mountain EarthFare 2009 Tour. More Saturday! More Tomatoes! Also on Saturday, the Greensboro Farmers Curb Market hosts its own Tomato Fest, which will feature many local varieties of tomatoes for the tasting. Be sure to pick up some of those ugly German Johnsons, because they make the best tomato sandwich I have ever tasted. Room for one more? Chili’s has debuted a new three-course prix fixe meal for two that runs about $20, or $10 a head. I know Chili’s is not the most romantic place in the world, but you can’t argue with the price.