Nibbles: Wine & Dine in the Park to light up Robin Hill for 6th time

Ready for a mid-summer soiree in a bucolic setting? Head to Robin Hill Park tomorrow for the 6th Annual Wine & Dine in the Park. Located at 949 Thorn Run Road, Moon, the event begins at 5 p.m. and highlights eight wineries, seven restaurants, live music and a VIP reception.

Served casually outdoors under tents will be cuisine from Bravo, Crowne Plaza Hotel, Jackson's Restaurant, Kaleido Kone Creamery, North Park Clubhouse, Panera Bread and The Olive Press.

Sip wines from vintners Christian W. Klay, Eagle Rock, The Vineyard by Mellon, The Winery at Wilcox, Volant Mill, Windshaker Ridge, Wilhelm and Oak Spring while enjoying music by Pittsburgh's singing chef, Olga Watkins, and her quartet.

Cost is $25 for dinner and drinks, $45 to include the 4:30 p.m. VIP reception with champagne and hors d'oeuvres. Call 412-264-6270.

The event is sponsored by the Pittsburgh Airport Area Chamber of Commerce.

Donations buy the blues

You can attend the Pittsburgh Blues Festival at Hartwood Acres free tomorrow night only, by bringing a bag of nonperishable goods for the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. Children under 12 are free all three days of the fest. For details: 412-460-BLUE or

Coffee class

Blue Horse Coffee in Mt. Lebanon will hold a coffee tasting at 1:30 p.m. Saturday. Learn the differences between coffees from Mexico and Ethiopia, for example.

Cost is $15 (you get a pound of coffee to take home, too) and class size is limited. Register today by calling 412-341-6114 or sign up in person at the store, 1535 Washington Road.

Bayless at Eagle

Rick Bayless, celebrity chef, cookbook author and restaurateur (Frontera Grill and Topolobampo, both in Chicago) is the guest chef today at Giant Eagle's two Market District stores. He'll be at the Bethel Park store from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and at Shadyside from 3 to 5 p.m.

You'd never know to look at it that Eat'n Park's Smiley Cookie is 20 years old. It is marking its birthday via local appearances in the Cookie Cruiser.
Click photo for larger image.

Happy birthday, Smiley!

Eat'n Park's Smiley Cookie is celebrating its 20th birthday with appearances at Marion Manor Children's Festival, Winchester Drive, off Greentree Road, Green Tree, at noon Saturday, North Park Pool at 1 p.m. July 27 and the Pirates game July 30.

Help for hungry kids

Corporate chef Bill Fuller and other big Burrito Group chefs raised $41,705 at Eleven on Sunday night to help stop childhood hunger locally.

The Taste of the Nation/Share our Strength charity event included a cocktail hour, tasting menu with dishes prepared by all the chefs and a $225 price tag.

Charities receiving the largesse were the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank, Just Harvest Education Fund, and Urban League of Pittsburgh. Last year's event raised $26,900.

Berry freeze

How do you save strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and sour cherries for the future after a picking spree?

Just freeze a few bags to perk up a winter bowl of cereal or to bake a fresh pie when the thermometer says 20 degrees. It's so simple.

Strawberries can be frozen whole or cut in half. Wash, dry and put in freezer bags. Ditto for blueberries (don't cut in half).

Raspberries are more delicate. Wash, dry, spread on a baking sheet and freeze for a few hours before packing into freezer bags.

Pit sour cherries (a cherry pitter is a big time saver), place in bags and freeze.

All of these fruits are nutritional powerhouses, loaded with vitamins A, C, E and folic acid, iron, potassium and fiber.

Sugar test

Diabetics who would like to find good foods and share the info with others can go to

The site was created by a diabetic who wanted to find tasty dishes that he could eat. The foods reviewed at the site are rated using the same pin-prick guide diabetics use to test their sugar levels. A food with a 100 rating is good, while a food with a 500 is out.

The last word

"As the fable goes, raspberries were once all white. One day, when a nymph was picking raspberries to soothe the crying baby Zeus, she pricked her finger on one of the bush's many thorns. The sweet nymph's blood stained the berries a brilliant red, and they've been that way ever since." Sharon Tyler Herbst in "Never Eat More Than You Can Lift."

Nancy Anderson can be reached at or 412-263-1661.


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