by Brian Clarey

Life here in the North Carolina Piedmont Triad is attuned to ancient rhythms that harken to our agrarian roots. The ground, after offering its final autumn bounty, lays dormant now, awaiting the first flush of spring to surge again with life.

That’s a fancy way of saying that there’s not all that much going on in the Triad culinary scene this week besides peanuts, apples and sweet potatoes, which are always in season.

Also in season: wine, which is why the Grove Winery holds its annual clearance sale this weekend at the winery, with fantastic deals designed to clear out storage space for the new vintages of their award winning wines. For more information, visit the website at

On Friday, Undercurrent Restaurant in Greensboro pays homage to the woman who re-introduced classical French cooking to the world through the magic of TV.

Julia Child herself — and Undercurrent wine steward Julia Schiavone — provides inspiration for this four-course masterpiece, for which tickets can be had for $50. Call the restaurant at 336.370.1266 for a reservation.

On Saturday, Greensboro’s Fresh Market holds a cooking demonstration from 1-4 p.m. featuring smoky shrimp and sweet-potato chowder and lemonblueberry shakes.

On Tuesday, Whole Foods Market in Winston-Salem reminds us of the historic date — 1-11-11 — by donating 5 percent of sales to the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, which fosters the growth of organic foods in the region.

Also on Tuesday, Winston-Salem brings back the Big Eat, a Tuesday night chow hound’s delight wherein popular restaurants and other businesses offer half-price specials on some favorite dishes. This week we’re looking at the Screaming Rooster, on 300 Brookstown Ave., which grants us the Meadows Family Farm all beef mushroom-Swiss burger with fried and slaw for a mere $5.

Also of note: I gave my parents their first coffee grinder for Christmas this year, something they’ve been resisting for many years. I pitched it as a quality-of-life issue — they both love their coffee — and paired it with a bag of Community Coffee’s whole bean French roast. They haven’t looked back.