Friday, May 22, 2009

See & Be Scene Friday - May 22

Usually, no matter what I put in my mouth, my taste buds are longing for more.


I really try to savor the flavor. The textures and seasonings dance on my palate as I analyze the complications (and sometimes lack there of) of the dish - tasting fats and starches, reductions and purees. I assess textures, temperatures and consistencies.

With each bite, imagination whisks me away to colorful dreams - bucolic scenes that include French farmers gently harvesting milk for emmental or a rancher lovingly stroking his wagyu months before it's offered up as a gift to the gourmands.

When a vision in blackberry confection is served before me, I recall dozens of times I battled thorns while picking my own tart berries, then grow grateful for the hands that gingerly toiled in the thicket for the sweet finish to my repast.

During each flavor, each delectable dimension of dining, time stops and I briefly enjoy the moment before snapping forward and desiring more.

Thankfully, Taste of Cincinnati is upon us, and I am allowed to indulge my impatience.

Almost anyone who has ever spent some time in the Queen City has made a point of taking in this tasty trip through the city. You are practically expected to eat your way along the congested path of food stall after food stall, offering up aromas of roasted nuts and enough fried food to seize Dick Cheney's bionic pacemaker.

This year will be especially sweet - the music lineup includes a variety of great bands. I'm hoping to check out The Chocolate Horse Sunday evening at the Katie Reider Stage.

Hope to see you there, too!


May Festival Opening Night
Music Hall - 8 to 11 pm
Tickets starting at $22
Broadway legend Patti Lupone kicks off this annual tradition. Opening night also features Mozart's Requiem, a demanding piece in which I performed a solo many, many moons ago. Check out this challenging work and then sweep across the dance floor at the gala afterwards.

Final Friday
Pendleton Art Center - 6 to 10 pm
Cincinnati's special topography of rolling hills offer local artists an unusual collection of vistas, landscapes and urban scenes to put down on paper and canvas. Final Friday is a great way to peruse a variety of artistic mediums while you enjoy complimentary wine and nibbles. Bring your walking shoes - the eight floors of art can make for a bit of a hike in this old factory building. My favorite local artist, Joanne Honschopp, keeps a studio studio on the 8th floor - be sure to check out her Cincinnati-style play on Van Gogh's Starry Night.

Taste of Cincinnati
Downtown Cincinnati - noon to midnight (also Sunday and Monday)
Menu items $1 - $5
Whether you fancy tawook, Thai or tempura, you're sure to find something to tempt your taste buds. I recommend La Petite France's veggie crepe and Bella Luna's bread pudding (ask for extra rum butter drizzle on top - you'll be doing a good bit of walking, after all). Mythos also makes some great baklava (eat at your own risk - the FDA is winding down its investigation in connection with the pistachio recall).

Rocky Horror Picture Show
Esquire Theatre, Clifton - 11:45 PM to 2 AM
Tickets - $9.50
I know, I know. RHPS already got a mention on last week's See & Be Scene, but last week's version involved a convention at Drawbridge Inn. This mention involves a showing at the Esquire, one of Greater Cincinnati's most delightful movie theatres. I'm guessing you'll still want to bring your squirt guns, newspapers and playing cards to this showing. Before you head to the cinema, stop by Sitwell's for a Stella and a Brie Plate - I could eat that app dish morning, noon, and night.

Newport Gangster Tour
723 Monmouth St., Newport - 1, 3, 5 and 7 PM
Tickets - $15
Forget Vegas. In it's sinful heyday, Newport was the place where real shit went down. Strippers, casinos, brothels and gangsters - this town south of the Ohio was the mecca for everything naughty. Discover why the Rat Pack (yes, THE Rat Pack) made this little town a major tour destination and how local gangsters inspired the Sin City of today - Las Vegas.

Bluegrass All-Stars
The Comet, Northside - 7:30 PM
Free (though you should be nice and buy a drink and/or a bite)
Drive up Hamilton Avenue early and pick a perch in the dining room well before this band begins (you might actually want to get there around 6:30 or so to make sure you have a seat), because the Bluegrass All-Stars consistently pack the house. Banjos, mandolins and harmony - this band will have you toe tappin' and head noddin' before long. Order a cold Barrel House and make sure you try the special Salsa of the Month on your burrito - you won't regret it.

Burlesque 101
The Aura Studio, Bellevue - 7 - 8 PM
$12 per session
I saw this and had to include it in this week's list because it's something I'd want to see (rather than be seen doing). The class (through August 24) teaches students "New Burlesque" by using steps from old school burlesque as well as bellydance and hip hop. I took a bellydance class a few years ago and really enjoyed it - I'm guessing this class would be just as much fun. Note: make sure you get a hip scarf that jingles... it's so much more fun that way.

As always, if you know of something that you think belongs in See & Be Scene - shoot me an email -

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Kate's Random Musings by Kate the Great is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

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