Around the Rock: The Beast is Rolling

My views from this week…
I will never follow a strict Paleo diet. But Paleo or not, there’s no denying the good food coming out of the Little Rock’s newest truck, The Beast. It’s a tiny mobile eatery producing some big flavors, while specializing in this ever-popular eating lifestyle. Last Saturday, I found myself sitting on some steps at the Hillcrest Farmer’s Market, chowing down on their Paleo Greenery. This out-of-the-ordinary breakfast included scrambled eggs over a bed of organic greens with salsa verde and two sizable pieces of bacon. Believe me, the dish worked. And while all the elements melded quite nicely, the bacon (which was from Freckle Face Farm and then cured in-house), really stood out. The thin pieces were neither crispy nor undercooked, and had a perfect balance of sweet and salty flavors.
Lovers of shrimp egg foo young, and you know you’re out there, will enjoy Chi’s (Shackleford location) version. Although it was lacking fresh sprouts, the shrimp were plentiful and the egg pancake had excellent taste and texture.
Oh, The Fold! I really want to like you, but it’s difficult to overlook the small portions, high prices and erratic service. A recent 2-hour lunch brought the ire of our group. I thoroughly enjoyed my Mrs. Green taco plate (refried black beans, queso fresco, spicy tomato sauce, avocado and pico), but the aforementioned issues really need to get hammered out before I consider a return visit. That said, if you’re not in a hurry and are looking to enjoy a nice cocktail in a relaxed environment, the patio is one of the better settings in town.
Surprisingly, Vino’s is one of my favorite places to get a good fresh salad, and now you can get them with grilled chicken. Granted, 90% of the time, you’re there for the pizza. But it’s nice to have a few lighter menu options and Vino’s certainly has this covered.
And the news…
Chef Donnie Ferneau has a new venture. While folks wait for his restaurant, The Still, to come to fruition, they can check out Good Food By Ferneau, a “catering/takeout business that focuses on healthy (gluten free and sugar free meals) for people with active lifestyles and athletes.” Lunch, dinner and snacks will be available for pick-up Monday-Friday (11 a.m.-2 p.m.) at Pulaski Presbyterian Church. For orders, call 501-804-8604 or email:
Riverfest 2014 is just around the corner! On Thursday, May 22 (5:30-7:30 p.m.), kick things off with Flowing on the River, a wine, craft beer and food tasting extravaganza at the River Market Pavilions, presented by Insalaco Tenenbaum Enterprises. Tickets are $35 per person in advance or $40 at the door.
Forty Two is getting into March Madness. Check out their Facebook page for a chance to win a free lunch. But do so by Friday!
Just another quick heads up … on Friday, April 4th at 6:00 p.m., join chefs Marie and Butterfly for Solfood Catering for Vegetarians 101, a cooking class offered at Eggshells Kitchen Co.
You know the ladies over at Loblolly Creamery and The Green Corner Store & Soda Fountain always have tons of cool things going on. Their food truck will be at this week’s Hillcrest Farmer’s Market on Saturday. Also, on Saturday from 11 a.m.-3 p.m., be sure to check out the Recycle Bikes for Kids Fix-It and Donation Station, held at the store. “Give a bike or get a bike! Recycle Bikes for Kids takes donated kids bikes, fixes them up, and gives them to kids who need them. Bring your used kid bikes to donate, or bring your kid and get them a bike of their own.” Very cool!

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