Shaken and Stirred
by sara beitia
It's that time again, 'tini lovers: From May 1 through May 31, Boise's third-annual Martini Mix-Off is in the offing, with stiff competition and stiffer drinks.
Look for participating bartenders to whip out their A-games as 12 local bars compete for the title of Best Martini in categories like Original, Classic, Sponsor (this year, that'd be Absolut, which has about a billion varieties) and People's Choice. Pace yourself, because on June 4, the Boise Art Museum hosts the Grand Finale where Boise's best will be crowned.
Sixty bucks gets you 13 free martinis (thankfully, not all at once) and a chance to sample some creative mixology and write martini fortunes. Hey-it's tough work, but somebody has to do it. Plus, all proceeds benefit the Boise Art Museum. That's what we like-drinking for a cause.
Tickets are available at participating bars: The Bar at the Grove Hotel, Bardenay, The Gamekeeper, Ha' Penny, Happy Fish, Lock Stock & Barrel, Mai Thai, The Milkyway, Mosaic, The Melting Pot, Pair and The Piper Pub.
For more information about the Martini Mix-Off, call 440-8455.
Last of the Winter Wine at Mosaic
On Saturday, April 30, Mosaic Gallery Bar will be having their last wine tasting of the winter season. Each month, Mosaic hosts a different themed wine tasting with Keith Nyquist of Wild West Wines (this month on the 30th instead of the 23rd, so as to not get trampled under the Beaux Arts Wine Festival). April's theme is a blind tasting, where participants will try several wines and pick their favorite.
Next month will herald the start of summer wine tastings (which will go through October) at Mosaic, and as the weather gets warmer, upcoming themes will feature Chardonnays and other white wines.
Saturday's tasting begins promptly at 3 p.m.-Nyquist will talk about each wine-and ends at 4 p.m. Attendance is by reservation only. The charge is $15, which, as always, includes a cheese plate and special pricing on featured bottles during the tasting.
Mosaic Gallery Bar, 500 W. Main St., 338-5006.
The Pyramid is Dead, Long Live the Pyramid
When talking about food, sooner or later somebody brings up nutrition and spoils all the fun. The latest news along those lines is the demise of the old food pyramid. For over a decade, we've lived with this paradigm of nutrition (though suspected its veracity), but now the USDA has given it its gold watch. The new food pyramid-fresher and, they hope, slimmer-has its own Web site, www.choosemyplate.gov. That's "my plate"-signaling a change in the old one-size-fits-all way of looking at nutrition.
Another major shift, besides being personalized, is that the new pyramid incorporates exercise into its model-not strictly a dietary issue, but diet and exercise do go hand in hand when it comes to overall health. (See the little stick figure scaling the food pyramid? That means that sometimes you have to move around a bit if you want to stay healthy.)
The new pyramid has its critics-those who would like to see not only what to eat, but what not to eat represented. ("Tell me again-my Big Mac goes into which food group?") Only time will tell whether people will pay any more attention to the new pyramid than they did to the old.
If you go to www.choosemyplate.gov for a personalized food pyramid, it asks for your age, sex and level of activity. Not your height. Not your weight. Could the caloric needs of 30-year-old men possibly vary between a 5-foot, 8-inch 140-pounder and a 5-foot, 3-inch 220-pound fellow? Look for an updated pyramid in another 13 years.
To choose your plate, check out www.choosemyplate.gov.
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