Guests at the Addison are SO lucky that Shannon creates the menu and that I don’t. There would be a lot more Spam on the menu if I was involved in that particular task. To get my Spam fix I have to go elsewhere.
I have a favorite local sports bar, Halftime, on 8th St, that makes a great Spam sandwich. It is always different and not offered on the menu. Today’s sandwich was grilled Spam, cheese, onions, tomato, lettuce and mayo on a toasted torta roll, fries on the side. Excellent!
Like I said, the Spam sandwich isn’t on the menu. You have to take your own can of Spam. Jon, the Halftime owner, gets half the can of Spam for himself and you get a hand crafted Spam sandwich.
Jon is also offering a tasty Buffalo Shrimp Dip all through Shrimp Festival. Shrimp, 3 cheeses, lump crab meat and Buffalo sauce served with warm pita slices. Very tasty and you don’t need to take your own shrimp!
I met up with my friend Jim tonight and he has been having the time of his life. Jim is a retired radio announcer who has got the acting bug. This is his first acting appearance and he is in the Amelia Community Theatre’s production of Inherit The Wind.
This is, according to insiders (Jim), a hard production because there is a cast of over 30 actors (including Jim). They have been rehearsing for months and have nailed the first few performances (April 9th through the 25th)…. If you ever get a chance to meet Jim you will know why this group of volunteers manages to execute brilliant stage performances.
Community theatres usually run productions with a smaller number of cast members but this group has been ambitious lately including a full production of Hair. Including the rather brief nude scene. Imagine that, people you know, your neighbors perhaps, nude in front of you. But not Jim. And for that Jim, the community thanks you.
Check out their whole season at www.AmeliaCommunityTheatre.org
They’re back! The Sounds on Centre Free Community Concert Series has posted the 2015 schedule and it looks really promising. These well attended free concerts offer great live music, dancing in the street and the Fernandina Beach Pirates Club. These free concerts take place on Centre Street between 6 and 8 PM with the band setting up right outside the Palace Saloon. This year’s schedule is:
3-April. The Decades Band, Amelia Island’s premier party band.
5-June. Beech Street Blues Band
3-July. Spice and the Po Boys playing R&B along with New Orleans style blues
7-August. Island Vibe with music through the ages.
4-September. Jimmy Beats with reggae and soulful Caribbean sounds
2-October. Crescendo Amelia featuring big band jazz and swing.
These concerts are a great time and are easy to fit in between the Addison’s Happy Hour and your dinner reservation!
We would like to welcome Fernandina Beach’s newest business venture, the Marlin and Barrel Distillery. We went to their soft opening last week and had a great time going through the distillery.
Roger is realizing the same kind of dream that Shannon and I had when we opened the Addison. Roger has a passion for craft distilling and ditched the corporate world for a business on Amelia Island, much like Shannon and I did.
The still isn’t much to look at right now. He has a… couple of operating stills with the maximum being 700 gallons if I can remember the tour correctly. There are a few barrels stacked up and a bunch of liquor bottles but plenty of room for more barrels. Aging the spirits in the right barrel for months or even years is apparently a pretty important part of distilling. An expansive tool kit for maintain the equipment isn’t as important. Theirs is attached to the wall.
They have some great craft rum and vodka currently available. It isn’t a bar so you can’t drink there but they do have some great cocktail ideas posted on the walls for cocktails that will really go with the unique spirits that they produce.
Besides the liquor, they have a nice sideline gift shop full of flasks, glasses, umbrellas and other trinkets that would make great souvenirs. Stop by, check out their wares and tell them where you are staying!
The Today Show did a lovely segment on southern getaways including a mention of the Addison on Amelia! Apparently there are a lot of people up north that are in desperate need of a winter break. The Today Show producers offered some excellent advice! Check it out….
This is a new tour that sounds like a fun time! Our friends at Hola Cuban Café have started a new series of downtown tours that focus on food and cocktails at local restaurants and bars. The Amelia Island Tasting Tours have two tours in place with more in the works.
On the 3-hour Downtown Tasting Tour you will stroll the beautiful Historic District while sampling wonderful food prepared by our favorite local chefs. The restaurant participation changes with each tour so every tour is different.
The Mixology Tour is an on-going cocktail party through the Historic District. On this 2-hour tour you will meet some of Fernandina Beach’s best bartenders while enjoying the unique character of our local bars.
Advance reservations are required! Check out their schedule at www.AmeliaIslandTastingTours.com or call 900-979-3370 for tickets. More tours are coming including a Chocolate Tour, Dessert Tour and Pub Crawl.
Here is a brilliant example of transitioning your Fall / Halloween decorations into a Christmas motif.
Just this morning all we had was three white pumpkins, all very harvesty and very Fallish. Add a carrot nose, two eyes made out of coal (BBQ briquettes) and a Frosty hat and voila! A Christmas decoration.
Christmas decorations come early to the Addison. Tomorrow, a week before Thanksgiving, we need to be fully decorated for Christmas as we will have 700 people coming through our house as part of the Amelia Island B&B Association Holiday Cookie Tour. The decorating is done, the lights are lit and all that is left is the baking of 700 cookies. I’ll fire up the oven at 5:30 tomorrow morning and we start baking!
Today at Happy Hour we served a duet of hummus. The hummus we usually serve was paired with a roasted red pepper hummus. The grilled nan bread makes an excellent delivery vehicle.
New and big things are coming, too! We have a new ice cream/gelato machine. My favorite dish from our cooking school in Italy was the home-made tomato soup, served with a crostini topped with a scoop of parmesan gelato. If I have my way, this dish is going to be the starter of the Addison’s Thanksgiving dinner!
The purple flowers in the front are from roots that I thought were dead but I buried them next to the sidewalk hoping that something would happen. They love it there! And I love the flowers as they blow off in the wind when they are done and I don’t have to deadhead them. Behind them are some yellow flowers in a pot with whom I had a hard time getting the watering right but now they seem happy. The blue flowers in the back were planted as a ground cover but are now covering so much more and are going to need cutting back before too long.
We just replanted the annual beds out front and I’ve got some weeding to do in the courtyard. I’ll have to get it done by Monday as there are 4 yards of mulch heading our way. The weather will be perfect for spreading mulch. Low humidity, temperatures in the low 80s. That also sounds like perfect beach weather!
The Amellia Island Blues Festival kicks off this Friday and will be followed by the Amelia Island Jazz Festival in October. Jazz trumpeter and composer Randy Brecker, a multiple Grammy Awards winner, and monster jazz organ player Tony Monaco, are set to headline the 2014 Amelia Island Jazz Festival. Credited with augmenting the sound of jazz, R&B and rock for more than four decades, Randy Brecker’s trumpet and flugelhorn performances have graced hundreds of albums by a wide range of recording artists from James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen and Parliament/Funkadelic to Frank Sinatra, Steely Dan, and Jaco Pastorius.
Tony Monaco, who will appear on Friday, October 17, is a leader in the revival of the Hammond B3 organ in jazz. As he has been with so many fledgling jazz organists, Jimmy Smith played a significant role in attracting Monaco to jazz and retaining his interest in the music. A critically acclaimed player, Monaco consistently ranks high among organists in DOWNBEAT Magazine’s Annual Critics Poll. He has released several well-reviewed albums including his latest, “Celebration: Life & Love & Music” on the Chicken Coup Label.
If you love great music, this island is the place to be!