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Jim's Towing Service
November 21, 2014     Cape Gazette
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November 21, 2014

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Cape Gazette FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 21- MONDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 2014 37 Former Finbar's owners revisit site of their Blue Plate restaurant By Nick Roth kets or even their own garden behind the restaurant. "It's a great opportunity to "Who saysyou can't go home?" work with the farmers hand- - ]on Bon ]ovi. in-hand," Paslawski said. "We That's what Mark Grabowski have fresh fruit and produce and Jim Paslawski are doing all summer long here, which is as they take a second swing at phenomenal, but yet a lot of the Lewes with their new restaurant places you go still have the hot- Honey's Farm Fresh. The restau- house tomatoes in the middle of rateurs previously owned and August." operated the Blue Plate in the Paslawski said he doesn't un- same Savannah Road location, derstand why restaurants do that "It was like coming home when folks are growing great again," Paslawski said. "We know tomatoes just down the block. all the neighbors. They all know It's easier to buy from the big us by name. It's the kind of place provision companies, Grabowski where you can borrow a cup of said, but by doing so the quality sugar if you need to, It's nice. It's suffers. very homey." "It just works for them," he The duo sold the Blue Plate said. "For us, we can run out on in summer 200-9 to the own- our days offor go up to Philly to ers of Dos Locos in Rehoboth get something." Beach, who eventually changed The search for good ingredi- the name to ]D's Filling Station. ents is energizing, Paslawski said. At the time, they said, it gave "Sort of the fun part for me is them an opportunity to focus on shopping at the farmers market their other restaurant - Finbar's and bringing it back," he said. Pub and Grill in downtown Re- "I enjoy doing that, and I enjoy hoboth Beach. meeting these people. Otherwise, "Before we sold to the guys it's sort of factory; you're order- from Dos Locos, we had a lot of ing the product, cooking it and plans for this place,' Paslawski sending it out. This way it's a said. "We're kind of picking up little more personal." where we left off, but adding a lot During a recent trip to Phil- of new ideas." adelphia, Paslawski bought They will focus on staying kielbasa from a local smoke- local with ingredients procured house. He brought it back to from local farmers, farmers mar- Lewes and used it to make a NICK ROTH PHOTO RESTAURATEURS JIM PASLAWSKI, left, and Mark Grabowski have returned to Lewes to open Honey's Farm Fresh on Savannah Road.The duo previously owned the Blue Plate at the same location before selling to the owners of its suc- cessor JD's Filling Station. kielbasa reuben and a kielbasa the interior and hung artwork omelet. Both items sold out fast. to soften the industrial feel of "It was something different the formerly garage-themed res- for everyone in here, so they taurant. Interior changes will snapped it up," Paslawksi said. continue over time, they said, as Other changes will eventually booths will be removed to make include a grab-and-go bar with way for more traditional table- fresh juices, smoothies and quick and-chair seating. to-go salads. The main menu will "We kept the place open for change with the season, he said. the customers," Grabowski said. With only about a week to"We kept a lot of the good staff prepare for reopening in mid- they had here before instead of September, Paslawski and just closing down and waiting for Grabowski quickly repaimed Cmttimu u page 45 PHOTO COURTESY OF HONEY'S FARM FRESH Baby kale salad. everal weeks ago I wrote about the live auction that took place in September at the annual Harry Derrickson Memorial Golf Tournament at Rehoboth Beach Country Club. The event is in its 37th year and benefits our local Meals on Wheels Lewes-Rehoboth, where all the funds benefit homebound seniors right here in Sussex County. One of the many generous auction items was a dinner for 10, cooked and served in the winner's home by none other than Touch of Italy owner Bob Cjprietti and the Rehoboth Foodie of During the auction, there was such fierce competition be- tween two bidders that Cipri- etti and the Foodie stood up in the middle of the auction and doubled the prize. Both bidders won a dinner, and about $8,000 was raised on just those two auction items. I was honored to be part of last Friday's dinner served at the beautiful Salt Pond home of Bethany Beach Realtor Leslie Kopp. Touch of Italy provided the bulk of the meal, including the wine and dessert. As the appetizer, Rehoboth Foodie provided his three-day butter- milk fried chicken wings: brined on Tuesday, spiced on Wednes- day, marinated in buttermilk on Thursday and cooked in a cast-iron camp stove in Leslie's kitchen on Friday. Bethany Beach personal trainer and fitness expert Lisa Velasco summed it up nicely: "I can't believe I ate the skin! I couldn't help myself. Please don't tell my clientsl" So of course I prom- ised to keep it a secret. The crispy wings were pre- sented alongside an expertly crafted antipasto featuring artisanal cheeses selected by longtime Rehoboth turophile Bill Wilson. With the muscle of five Touch of Italy installations behind him, Ciprietti's primi piatti (first course) was served in several rounds. Eggplant/ ricotta rollatini sported a simple dollop of marinara and a dust- ing of freshly grated parmesan. The eggplant was sliced thin as air so it crisped up slightly in the oven. Primi piatti part two consisted of Touch of Italy's famous Mama's Meatballs resting on a bed ofal dente cavatelli pasta imported from Italy. Alongside was a wedge of handmade mozzarella, warmed in lightly salted water, drizzled with sauce and speckled with cracked black pepper. U u! Ciprietti is a big fan of Peter Luger's Steak House in Brook- lyn, N.Y., and as a special BOB YESBEK PHOTOS CHEESE EXPERT B~LL WILSON, left, and Touch of italy's Bob Ciprietti worked hard to make Leslie Kopp's prize dinner a success. The Rehoboth Foodie was unavailable for this photo, surprise, the Touch of Italy boss unveiled the over-100-year-old restaurant's signature appetizer: Thick-cut bacon (I'm talkin' 3/8 of an inch!), broiled to a crispy finish, and topped with Luger's proprietary steak sauce. This pretty much sent Lisa Velasco over the edge. She admitted to loving the bacon, but I suspect that by now she's furiously pedaling her bike somewhere between Miami and Key West Continued on page 57