Local Flavors of Summer

The key to good taste begins with ingredients found close to home.


Summer ....

The pace slows in August as the temperature rises, and this somehow makes it easier to linger at each table at our local farmer's market. Maybe its too hot to be in a hurry. We are lucky in LaPlata that we have a thriving farming community. It means we get the best of summer -- watermelon, cantaloupe, cucumbers, corn, eggplant ...all my favorites. I shop at the Farmer's Market regularly to find ingredients for dinner specials all summer long.

I spent a little time escaping a recent sweltering afternoon at The National Gallery in the city. I was there to take in the Caillebotte exhibit before it makes it's exit at summer's end.  This lesser known Impressionist artist is best known as an art aficionado and collector who was largely responsible for preserving and presenting some of that movement's greatest artists: Monet, Degas, Renoir.  But Gustave Caillebotte was an incredible artist in his own right. As I made my way through the interlinking gallery rooms that held his collected works, what struck me was a familiarity of point of view in his art. When I reached his piece entitled,  "Fruit Displayed on a Stand" I understood why. This colorful display of fruit was significant as an art form because it portrayed fruit not in the traditional stoic "painterly" manner but rather was presented as beautiful fruit waiting to be purchased -- it marked fruits shift in the urban environment as a commodity. I tapped my iPhoto icon and there it was...my photo from the local farmer's market shown above. It was a significant moment that made me appreciate the actual physical beauty of produce grown close to home. Though we do not aspire to create pretentious food or curate a more formal dining experience, we do put real, fresh ingredients in everything we do....from chicken tenders and onion rings to ice creams & sorbets. We want you to know that when you eat at Casey's, you're eating real food.

“Every aspect of our lives is, in a sense, a vote for the kind of world we want to live in.”  -- Frances Moore Lappéauthor of Diet for a Small Planet


Our little garden makes its contribution to our craft cocktail as shown in the refreshing version of a classic that made its appearance as $5 Bartender's Choice in August. Watch Facebook or check our chalk board for a monthly listing of these tasty drinks. We use the Bartender's Choice as a savvy drinker's way to sample great seasonal flavors and creative mixtures & new small-batch spirits at a great price.


Rosemary Greyhound

A greyhound is a cocktail consisting of 6 fluid ounces (200 ml) of grapefruit juice and 1.5 fluid ounces (50 ml) of vodka or gin(with gin sometimes referred to as an Ollie dog in California), mixed and served over ice. Salt the rim of the glass to turn it into a Salty dog.


Have Dinner with a Frog

You may have kissed a lot of frogs but these wines are made by a a true prince of wine.


Evening of Wine, Food & Friends

My love affair with the wines of Frogs Leap is long-lived and not much of a secret. Those who love rosé have seen me break into my happy dance when the small-production, impossible to find "Pink" arrives at the back door. And while Chardonnay can never be described as my personal "go to" wine, I will never pass up a glass of this classic white as expressed by the amazing John Williams and his vineyards in the Rutherford Bench of Napa Valley. If I have a vintner/mentor it would be John. I cherish the volume of stories of Zen that John gave me during an afternoon chat at the winery. I had asked him how difficult it was to be the guy producing wines of balance and restraint during the years when über-ripeness and super-oaking was the absolute measure of quality. How did it feel to be criticized for following your principles? His answer? He handed me the book. 

Times and tastes have changed but John and his winemaking principles have not. He and his wines of purity, natural balance, restraint and flavor are all the rage--landing him the high scores that eluded him for decades. On a recent blind exam of mine, his cabernet sauvignon was used by the Wine & Spirits Education Trust in London as the "new" benchmark standard of the ideal balanced, well-made Napa Valley cabernet.

Join us on Tuesday, September 29, 2015 for an evening of Food & Wine, experiencing the full range of wines produced by Frogs Leap Winery. The evening will begin on the outdoor patio lounge with a craft cocktail at 7:00pm to toast the presentation of a special autographed bottle of Frogs Leap presented to the lucky auction winner of two tickets to the evening donated to the Charles Regional Medical Center Autumn Wine Tasting. We will then move to the Rail Room for a five-course meal paired with the wines of Frogs Leap. As a special added treat, we will sample the 1988 Cabernet Sauvignon sent to me directly from John's library of wines cellared in Napa. Tickets are $84.00 per person plus tax and gratuity. Contact Pam or Lisa at 301-392-5116 for tickets or let us know on your next visit. Seating is limited.

Tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable. Special dietary restrictions may be accommodated with seven days notice. Designated driver pricing is available for $60.00 per person plus tax and gratuity. Menu notes will be available, upon request, on September 14, 2015.  Final menu is subject to change.