The Jealous Crumpet

A sweet little blog


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Blog Tour Hildegard’s Biergarten #dineHSV

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Our second stop of the Food Tour for Restaurant Week brought me and my fellow bloggers to Hildegard’s Biergarten.  This was the one restaurant I hadn’t yet visited so I was especially excited to dine here.

Hildegard’s was voted the Best International Restaurant in the Valley, the Best German Restaurant in The Valley AND the Best German Restaurant in Alabama, so I went into the restaurant with high expectations and I’m happy to report that I wasn’t disappointed.

Hildegard’s has two locations: one on Whitesburg Drive and the other on Heathland Drive, which is across the street from the Madison Square Mall. We visited Hildegard’s on Heathland and it was a little bit difficult to find, so I used my GPS to get there. Once you know where it is, it is easy. feature1

The restaurant is large, which makes it ideal for big parties, but I saw plenty of couples there as well.  The decor is cute with, appropriately enough, lots of garden (or should I say “garten”) paraphilia. As you walk into the restaurant, you are greeted by bundles of flowers, gardening accessories and even a bird bath. feature8They have very comfortable patio and picnic tables, and booths decorated with floral themes.
feature6Though the decor is lovely, the star of the restaurant is definitely the food. We met the owners Sabina and her husband Jeff, and they were happy to talk to us about the restaurant’s history and cuisine.feature9Then Sabina brought out dish after dish for us to try. In fact, there were so many different things that I started to lose track and didn’t even photograph the pork schnitzel, which was to die for! Everything we ate was perfectly cooked, amazingly seasoned, and most importantly delicious (even the stuffed cabbage, which I was never a fan of before now). feature3 copyBeing a biergarten, they also had an extensive selection of beer (my kind of place!) and I had an Amber Ale with my meal.feature2When we were so full we doubted we would be able to walk out of the restaurant without assistance, Sabina brought the desserts.  I actually lost count of how many I tasted, but my favorites were the Black Forest Cake and the Blueberry Cheesecake. Her mother makes all the desserts in-house and she is a culinary artist. Everything was wonderful.feature7As an added bonus, I made my first TasteMade Video about Hildegard’s Biergarten. Check it out at the link below. Note: Be kind, this is my first video! Also, I don’t know why it is so hard to say “Hildegard’s Biergarten”. 

Hildegard’s Biergarten

We also had a new blogger with us on this leg of the journey, Bo Williams, who blogs for Rocket City Mom.

Make sure you check out all of the bloggers’ wonderful posts.

Clint Cantwell with Grillocracy

Phillip Fryman with Southern FATTY

Bo Williams with Rocket City Mom

Constance Smith with Cosmopolitan Cornbread

Katie Wright with Katie Actually

Website:

http://www.hildegardsgermancuisine.com

Location:

1010 Heathland Dr Huntsville, AL 35816

Phone:

256 – 513 – 8260

Hours:

11: 00 am to 9:00 pm Mon-Sat

Closed Sunday

 


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Blog Tour: LawLer’s Barbecue #DineHSV

Lawlers BBQOne of the main perks of being a food blogger, if not the main perk, is getting invited to restaurants to sample the fare and write about it. Sweet! Last weekend I was in food blogger heaven when I got to participate in the 2015 Food Blogger Tour with the Huntsville Visitor’s Bureau in preparation for Huntsville’s 5th Annual Restaurant Week.

This year’s restaurant week is bigger than ever, with over 60 restaurants participating.  Foodies can sample some of Huntsville’s best dishes at special prices. It will take place from August 14th to the 23rd, so make sure you mark your calendars.

Since the Alabama Tourism Department dubbed 2015 the Year of Alabama Barbecue, we appropriately started the blog tour at LawLers Barbecue in Madison.   feature7I’ve actually been to LawLers numerous times and always enjoy it, so I was very happy to see that it was part of the blog tour. feature6Upon arrival, I got to meet my fellow bloggers: half of whom I knew and half of who were new. (see what I did with the word play, knew vs new. ha ha! I’m Shakespeare reincarnated!)

Anyways, I got to meet:

Clint Cantwell with Grillocracy

Phillip Fryman with Southern FATTY

Christy Jordan with Southern Plate

Stephenie Walker with Rocket City Mom

Constance Smith with Cosmopolitan Cornbread

Katie Wright with Katie Actually

All of them are incredibly talented, so I was quite honored to be a part of the group.feature3LawLers is a decently sized restaurant that is always buzzing with customers.  It has a drive through window for the customer on-the-go, but I recommend eating inside as the restaurant is filled with fun, rustic decor and has a friendly, neighborly atmosphere. feature8feature4The staff is super friendly and quick. In fact, I ordered my food and it was brought to me so quickly I thought that it was someone else’s order, so I kept trying to give it to people standing nearby thinking it was theirs.feature10 I ordered one of LawLers Restaurant Week Specials, which was tender pulled pork, two sides (I went with green beans and mac & cheese), a roll, a large sweet tea (or unsweet for heathens) and a piece of Sara Lee pecan pie, all for only $10! It was a ton of food and it was all delicious! As a former Yankee, I am prohibited from commenting on the authenticity of the sweet tea, but several born and raised Southerner’s assured me that it was authentic and delicious.

LawLers also offers the Stuffie Tater, which is a “huge baked potato stuffed with butter, a dollop of sour cream, a layer of shredded cheese…then a hefty portion of tender juicy pork barbecue, followed by a sprinkling of more shredded cheese and some chives!” It was listed as one of the top 100 Alabama dishes to try before you die.

feature11LawLers also caters and has freeze-packed barbecue for customers that want the deliciousness available to them 24/7.feature9After you eat at LawLers, go vote for them to win the Alabama Barbecue Battle. They are neck and neck for first place so let’s help push them over the edge.

Website: Check it out, just to see the dancing pig!

http://www.lawlersbarbecue.com

Location:

544 Hughes Road Madison, AL 35758

Phone:

256-772-0590

Hours:

10:30 am to 8:00 pm Mon-Sat

Closed Sunday


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Blog Tour Grille 29 #dineHSV

feature8The city of Huntsville has a rich culinary culture combining southern fare with German and other international cuisines.

Despite this, Huntsville used to lack a restaurant culture that other cities enjoy. Sure, we had lots of franchises but if you had a yen from something other than Olive Garden or fast-food, your choices were limited. Luckily, in the last decade or so, Huntsville started having amazing restaurants that showed off its culinary potential.

For the last leg of our Food Tour for Restaurant Week, we visited one of these restaurants, Grille 29, which specializes in fine dining in a causal atmosphere.feature10Grill 29 is a sophisticated steak and seafood restaurant that was started by the Restaurant Partners, Inc. (RPI). It is located in the lovely Village of Providence Main and has a picturesque outdoor eating area, as well as stylish indoor accommodations. feature9We all assembled with cameras/phones/notebooks in hand, ready to document every aspect of each dish. Food bloggers can be a pretty annoying bunch. If you think that a friend that has to Instagram every morsel that goes into their mouth is frustrating, then try going to lunch with 7 of these people who do it professionally! Make sure you check out the other bloggers’ posts though. Everyone did a great job showing how great each restaurant is.

Clint Cantwell with Grillocracy

Phillip Fryman with Southern FATTY

Stephanie Walker with Rocket City Mom

Constance Smith with Cosmopolitan Cornbread

Katie Wright with Katie Actually

feature7We started the way every meal should begin (in my opinion) with muffins and mimosas. This is part of their brunch special, which is available every Sunday from 10am to 2pm. As an extra treat, we got to sample the super popular Chicken and Waffles, which was the perfect balance of salty and sweet. Then we enjoyed a chilly lump crab gazpacho. I’m a bit of a veggiholic, so I absolutely LOVED this dish.

Next, we had the main course: cheesy grits topped with shrimp and andouille sausage served in a cast-iron skillet. It doesn’t get much more southern than that.feature1Using a great deal of restraint, I only ate half of my meal because I knew there would be lots of desserts.  I was very glad I did.

We started with warm sour cream fudge cake. Stunning and delicious!feature5Next was the strawberry cheesecake. Each day there is a different flavor of cheesecake so you’ll never get bored. Is your mouth watering yet?feature3And last, but certainly not least, was the chocolate peanut butter truffle. Yum!!feature4

I should also mention that we all shared the desserts! We did not each eat a full meal and then three desserts in a row…

feature6See? Here we are sharing.

 This concludes a wonderful Blog Tour. Thank-you to the Huntsville Visitor’s Center for inviting me to participate, thank-you Jessica Carlton for being awesome (as usual) and making sure that everything ran smoothly, and thank-you to my fellow bloggers for making it a fun, informative and enjoyable experience. thebloggers

Website:

http://www.grille29.com

Location:

445 Providence Main Street
Huntsville, Alabama 35806

Phone:

(256) 489-9470

Hours:

Sunday Brunch – 10am
Sunday – Thursday – 11am – 9:30pm
Friday & Saturday – 11am – 10:30pm


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Hot Dogin’

Hot DoginSeveral month’s ago I photographed hot dogs for the menu board of a new hot dog restaurant, Hot Dogin’.  This week I was invited to Hot Dogin’s grand opening.  I finally got to eat their fare and see my photographs on the menu board!  Yay!  It is always fun to see your work come to fruition. Now OpenThe restaurant is really cool and appropriately decorated in ketchup red and mustard yellow.  There are lots of fun details such as:  red and yellow marbled tables, cute hotdog festooned napkin dispensers, and brightly colored retro seating.  Even the employees match the red/yellow theme.  feature3I brought my husband with me to the opening and he was happy to be able to sample some of the food he’d seen my photographs off.  He rarely gets to sample what I photograph.  feature5

I’m a traditionalist, so I went with the Classic Dog, mustard, ketchup and relish.  Simple, yet delicious.  Olivier went with the Nasty Dog, mustard, chili, cheese and sauerkraut.  Both of us enjoyed our dogs throughly.

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Hot Dogin is located in Madison right next to Publix on 72.  Go check it out and be sure to notice my photos on the menu board!feature7

I know I’ve posted this before, but here is a gif from the shoot.  It is all the steps that go into styling just the Classic Dog.  Don’t even get me started on how many steps the Shonuff Dog had!forever_hotdog

Enjoy!

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How to Style a Hotdog: Illustrated with a gif

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I recently did a photo shoot for an upcoming hotdog restaurant. The hot dogs when through quite the process of transformations with lighting, positioning, and fixing condiments, which is illustrated in this gif.

Final Product!

Final Product!

After you get your shot, you have to edit. I always struggle with over editing. You want the food to look clean and professional, but still natural.

lightedit