Grand Opening of Strano

Grand Opening of Strano

Grand opening of strano

through the eyes of Chef Josh’s mother

By Nancy Otis Steiner

This article is brought to you by The Wendy Thompson Lending Team. More Than A Mortgage!

Have you ever felt so much pride for your child that it actually brings tears to your eyes? This is how I felt watching my son at his Grand Opening of Strano by Chef Josh on Friday. I looked around to see if anyone would notice the tears welling in my eyes and I was overcome by all of the faces in the crowd. Some I recognized like the headmaster of his preschool at the MJCC, Adriane Weissman, and the mother that used to carpool with us every day in grade school.

Josh was a charming little boy that was easy to love, and he has grown into a charismatic adult that is also easy to love. You have children and it’s a scary thing. You want to be a good mom in all the ways that matter. Sometimes you fail, sometimes you succeed.

You just want your children to grow up to be a positive influence in the world (and call you every day). It’s the proudest moment for a mom to be able to see their child’s successes and that are really making a difference in the world. I thank Josh for giving me that opportunity. Standing there watching him cut the ribbon to his new restaurant and seeing all of the glowing and smiling faces of the crowds pouring into my son’s restaurant does a mother’s heart good.

 

welcome to strano by chef josh

I appreciate the city commissioner, Heidi Shafer, and all of the media for coming to participate in and cover Josh’s opening and to share their support by helping to get the word out.

The entire bar was standing room only full of people there that want to show support for my son’s restaurant. I noticed people from all walks of life coming together to enjoy drinks and good food and celebrate.

In our family, cooking for someone is an expression of love and I know how it touches Josh every time someone chooses to spend their hard-earned money and their precious time in his restaurant. Memphis is so good about supporting local, small business owners. The team that works with Josh are part of our extended family as are the friends and neighbors that come to dine with us.

 

I also see clear evidence of Josh’s commitment to use the best organic, local and sustainable products in his kitchen. Gardens are behind the bar for fresh herbs in the hand-crafted cocktails. There is a “living garden wall” with special lighting in the hallway. Then, behind the restaurant, wrapped around a parking garage and an alley, is another huge garden growing everything this season can provide. I like to think that his love of gardening initiated on the farm he grew up on as a child. The farm also supplements the restaurant with the groves of fruit trees and blueberry bushes and rows of everything from fresh tomatoes to unearthed potatoes. Quite literally, Josh’s hard work and love are on every plate.

 

He insists on fresh sustainable seafood, so he pays the purveyors to have it flown in daily via FedEx as Memphis is landlocked. The meat is free range and cruelty-free. I like to think this comes from his upbringing as respect for all living things.

I have to share credit with this village in Memphis that helped us raise him, the exceptional and committed staff at the Memphis JCC, Bornblum Solomon Schecter Day School, and Lausanne Collegiate School. All of the teachers and coaches and administrators have been gracious enough to dine in his restaurant and to wish him well. Do staff and coaches at other schools in other cities keep up with and support their students like they do in Memphis? How could Josh fail in his endeavors with this circle of support and encouragement?

The life lessons of being honest, working hard, always doing your best, being persistent, being confident, being humble, being grateful, being open to criticism, to keep growing as a person, to respect rules, to lead but also to be part of a team, to be able to learn from your mistakes, to be generous with your heart and you time, to give back. These are the lessons that have made Josh who he is.

 

grand opening

We always set the bar very high for our kids. We appreciate each child’s unique gifts and talents and hope that they will discover their passion. Josh found the kitchen and that is where his unique gifts, talents, and passions dwell. He thinks outside of the box and he is blessed with a very sensitive palate. Most of our family recipes lack any precise instructions for seasoning and herbs. It’s all done old country style, to taste. It is a wonder to watch Josh taste a recipe and dissect and distinguish every flavor in that bite. That is the palate of a Chef that can’t be taught. You either have it or you don’t. It skipped my generation. I don’t have a palate like his, but my mother did, and I recognize the skill set. I know my parents, grandparents and great-grandparents would be so proud to see Josh using the basics from these old-world family recipes and elevating them with his own contemporary twist.

When I eat at Strano, food memories from my mother’s and grandmother’s tables come flooding back into my mind. It’s the comfort food that soothes me and brings me to a place of unconditional love. It’s funny how food and breaking bread can hold so much meaning. I look around my table opening night surround by all of my children, my husband and special friends and I am so grateful for this moment and this feeling. I look at the rest of the dining room and every table reveals smiling, happy groups of diners enjoying the food that my little boy created using the recipes from the culture of my ancestors and I am in utter bliss.

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Sunrise Memphis – A Newly Opened Hidden Gem

Sunrise Memphis – A Newly Opened Hidden Gem

Sunrise Memphis:
a newly opened hidden gem
By Alden Zuck

Hoodz. Professional Clean. Every Time. Click to get an appointment!

Sunrise just opened on November 27th and is a hidden gem right here in Memphis that must be found!

You walk in and immediately get the feel of your mama’s cooking with a home-like atmosphere with all the details such as the unique mugs and the fresh drip coffee.

If Sunrise had to be famous for one thing, it would be their fluffy buttermilk biscuits. My first order was the Rooster, and after the first bite I knew that Sunrise was different than any other breakfast place. They take pride in the mastery of not only their biscuits, but getting everything made perfectly, such as the crispy outside of the chicken strips while maintaining the juicy and tender inside. 

    An inside look

After finishing up, we headed on back to the kitchen to see where the magic happens. The staff welcomed us in with true southern hospitality as we got ready to make some biscuits ourselves.

We mixed all the ingredients to get the dough (If only we could have gotten the secret recipe too), pressed the dough down to the specific measurements, and began cutting the dough into the famous square biscuits that they produce. Sky and I may have been covered in gobs of flour, but we had a great time assisting in the process of these delicious biscuits.

If you live in Memphis or if you are here to visit, you can check them out between 6am and 3pm for all day breakfast, or come for lunch at 11!

Hours, Locations, and Events

All Day Breakfast: 6am – 3pm

Lunch: 11am

Brunch: Saturday, Sunday, and Monday

Bloody Mary Bar: Saturday, Sunday, and Monday

Website: sunrise901.com

Location: 670 Jefferson Ave Memphis, Tennessee 38105

Professional Clean.

Every Time.

Cleaning, Maintenance,
Code Compliance, and Fire
Prevention Solutions

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I was in search of the perfect brunch spot

I was in search of the perfect brunch spot

I was in search of the perfect brunch spot

by Tom Hilton | Oct 29, 2017

When I first arrived in the states …. I was in search of the perfect brunch spot ….
being a chef who travels constantly, I’ve eaten all over the world, from fine dining restaurants to hole in the wall type fare, my first week away from the UK took me to San Francisco where I ate at some nice fancy places, but rather overpriced for what you truly get but then again… this is California, home to many a swanky establishments, with an opinion of you before you’ve entered the door.

So why brunch? Well firstly, it’s my favorite concept of eating … and everyone the world over knows America does it the best, so what brought me to Memphis? Besides the rich history and a certain special lady … the food of course!

For some time now, my friend has mentioned a certain local eatery called Brother Junipers on 3519 Walker Avenue … well, I was impressed by the philosophy of the place … a relaxed friendly and wholesome atmosphere as if you were there at home with your family around the table.

A real community hangout place that has held national acclaim for being one of the best breakfasts in America, and boy did they deliver!

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My friend and I were greeted at the door with warm and friendly smiles all around, We sat down and I ordered a double espresso. My friend a filter coffee … being the typical Brit that I am, we have a love for good deep and intense coffee in the morning, Brother Junipers definitely delivered well on this … the beans were perfectly roasted, giving off that rich aroma of high quality coffee that we all know and love, so a very good start to the brunch …

My friend had one of their omelets from their extensive selection of homemade sumptuous sounding omelets, along with a side of loaded cheese grits and a biscuit …. firstly wow the portion sizes we’re exceptional and the flavour very well balanced all around

Being British this was a first for me trying these new foods that we don’t have in the UK … for example, I had yet to try the infamous biscuit …. the warm soft buttery aroma wafting off the biscuit took me back to my days in the bakery which is a good sign of a good biscuit … the flavour really was sumptuous in the sense that it was flaky and buttery perfect with a side of honey or your favourite preserve, overall it ate really Well.

Now onto the loaded cheese grits … this item has a whole paragraph unto itself, it was that much of a revelation to my foreign palate … the onslaught of flavours hitting my mouth as I took each bite was something I’ve never experienced before and it was sensationally good, very well seasoned and balanced. The consistency of the grits were perfect, not too wet not too dry. It was so good I had ordered myself a pot and finished my friend’s portion too! Definitely two items I will be trying to recreate on my travels back home.

I ordered a Monte Cristo sandwich with a side of cheese grits and a biscuit …. well yes carb on carb on carb …. but who cares ?!?!? I’m on holiday and I’m a chef … no diets here … just good food.

I’ve learned about this famous sandwich when training as a chef and always been keen to try this beast of a eat…. it consisted of two slices of cinnamon French toast with the finest cuts of ham and melted Swiss cheese then toasted like a grilled cheese sandwich …. can life get any better ?!?!? That’s exactly how it made me feel, it took me back to my childhood of a famous classic my family used to make for breakfast. Served with butter and a side of maple syrup the best of both worlds salty and sweet!

All I have left to say is try it! You won’t be disappointed!

So to my curiosity, I had to order the cinnamon roll pancakes ???

Why? Well one, I have a big appetite and two I’m a sucker for anything sweet with cinnamon ….

These pancakes, hands down, were the best pancakes I’ve eaten in America … no forget that … the world !!! And I’ve eaten many many pancakes, all over, in search of the best ones and here I can safely say are the best!  They were so fluffy and light and not overly sweet they were the last thing I ate and I thought I was full but the moment I had my first bite of these delicious morsels I just couldn’t stop! They were light and fluffy with cinnamon sugar sprinkles all over and a generous drizzle of cream cheese icing …. they weren’t as sweet as you’d think but my oh my they were so insanely good! That I devoured the lot! My friend didn’t even get a look in, they were that good.

Are you hungry yet? Click to see the Menu!

And finally the bill came in … and to my surprise, it was half the price I thought it would be, very very good value for the money especially for the portion sizes but more importantly the flavours that danced all over my palate.
I knew the tipping culture is a whole new world compared to across the pond for us but this place honestly deserved the tip I gave them … they were so welcoming and attentive. They made me feel right at home.

To conclude my review

All I have left to say is
Memphis you are one lucky place to have an establishment this good!!
Keep it forever and never let go!
I hope this place will keep running eternally!!
No matter where you’re from, what your budget is
You gotta eat here !!!

Brother Juniper: The Story

Food, Family and Community are the key ingredients to Brother Juniper’s award-winning, nationally acclaimed restaurant. Click to read more!

Brother Juniper: Bring Something Home!

The Jams, the BBQ Suace, the Mugs, and more! Read More

More from JustMyMemphis

with tears in his eyes my father said “We can’t afford . . .

with tears in his eyes my father said “We can’t afford . . .

with tears in his eyes my father said “We can’t afford . . .

Chef Michael Patrick | Contributor

This article is being brought to you by Jasco Realtors, Click to see this week's Spotlight Home!

24

JANUARY, 2017

My Thoughts | EAT DINE CHOW

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When JustMyMemphis asked me to write a piece about my life, I was both honored and humbled.

“How did I get here?” Whether because of disappointments in love, crises in health, family or finances, professional dissatisfaction, or events beyond my control. Sometimes life doesn’t look like it expected or intended it to. That life is a vicious cycle. Well in my experience I am here hoping to uplift others. Here is one of my stories.

Chef Michael Patrick is a very active member of the Memphis Community. You will see him and his team at many local fund raising events. Meat Me in Memphis by Monongram Loves Kids Foundations welcomes Chef Michael back year after year!

Growing up I thought we all pretty much had a similar story. But with a lifelong introspective, and having met so many others through the years, I have concluded we are all unique, and that this uniqueness can be used to help uplift others if used properly. Here is a brief story I hope that can help anyone in their time of need.

I was born into a family of 6, Both parents and 4 siblings. We grew up in a very small town Grand River outside of Cleveland, Ohio. We were the average church-going, middle-class, father working, mom attending to children, fun loving family. Then tragedy struck in 1977. My father was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. We moved to the inner city of Painesville, and immediately my mother had to find work. My father was in and out of the VA Hospital trying to rehabilitee in hopes of gaining control, but those hopes diminished quickly as we all realized there was no coming back from this debilitating disease.

I remember how my mother had to juggle 2 jobs sometimes, help raise 4 kids, and attend to my father. (I still don’t know how she could do it)

I remember how my mother had to juggle 2 jobs sometimes, help raise 4 kids, and attend to my father. (I still don’t know how she could do it). We had to watch out for each other. Luckily my brother was 6 years older than me, and my sisters so, he was a stand-in babysitter.

A conversation that sticks out to me in memory was asking my father about this “allowance” thing I had heard of, see my friends in the neighborhood was receiving a dollar or two for doing chores around the house. Something I thought was just what you did as a family nucleus, but I thought it was worth a try especially to an opportunistic child like myself. So, with tears in his eyes my father said “We can’t afford to give you one” But with that Patrick smirky smile that I inherited, He also said, “You can start shoveling snow, cutting grass, and raking leaves to make more money than those allowances”.

I started working a paper route that next summer at the age of 8. I had 19 customers that first year, which also meant with the seasons, I had 19 lawns, to mow, rake, and 19 driveways to shovel. I realized the value of a dollar at a very early age. There were many times that paper route money helped buy groceries or kept the lights on for my family. When I quit that paper route at the age of 15, I had 329 customers. I learned values that would last me a lifetime on the route. I learned what salesmanship meant, learned that your word is your bond, and if you worked hard enough you could see a return on that hard work. I believe and use those same building blocks today in conducting business with others.

Chef Michael Patrick

Chef Michael Patrick

Chef & Owner | Rizzos Diner

I see myself in the near future pursuing my Bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems at a prestigious
university and being a New York Times best-selling author of my own novel series.

Some photos in this feature were taken by Michael Butler Jr

So I got here through learning you have to work to get ahead. That life is also something you have to work at. I keep being told by others, you work so you can play. Maybe you do. But that is another story for another time.

Rizzo’s by Michael Patrick is located in the Historic South Main Arts District.

Rizzo’s opened its doors to much acclaim in October 2011, beginning with a quaint 8-table, 32-seat dining room. Under Chef Michael’s leadership, Rizzo’s has grown into the larger location you sit in now.

Award-winning designer Ann Parker collaborated with us to design a space that celebrated the rustic brick and mortar look of the Historic South Main Arts District with splashes of green to highlight our personality. The artwork you see hanging throughout the restaurant is for sale. We proudly showcase Local Artists(inquire within for details).

rizzosmemphis.com

 

 

 

 
 

 

 

 
 

 

 

 

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