One of the reasons Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa is the market leader in Atlantic City is because it never rests on its own success. Borgata’s annual Savor Borgata has become one of the city’s marquee culinary events. Now, Borgata will also tweak that, too.
Savor Borgata, which has now become a brand for a series of events that occur throughout the year, will present “Street Eats: Eat Drink, Hobnob,” a more casual concept to replace the more formal Savor Borgata in the Event Center 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9.
“Every year, Savor Borgata evolves,” says Borgata Senior Vice President of Operations Joe Lupo. “A couple of years ago it was Mediterranean and last year was an all-American theme. So we thought again how it should evolve. So we decided to make it a little more accessible, both with food and price point, and make it a more fun, interactive experience. So Street Eats will enable us to have many more food stations and allow more interaction as you’re walking through the venue.”
The event, which is priced at $79 instead of last year’s $125 price tag, will still feature Borgata’s amazing culinary team and celebrity chefs offering more casual, but certainly creative approaches on street cuisine. Iron Chef Bobby Flay will be joined by another guest Iron Chef, Michael Symon, plus Izakaya’s Michael Schulson, Fornelletto’s Stephen Kalt and the Sherry Brothers from Old Homestead Steakhouse will all be in attendance, and every Borgata restaurant will be represented. Wolfgang Puck and Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian cannot attend the main event this year.
“I think adding Michael is a tremendous addition to the event,” Lupo says. “Iron Chefs are so popular.”
Hosted by Sissy Biggers of The Food Network’s “Ready … Set … Cook!” Street Eats will feature tents and simulated food trucks to present an outdoor feel, plus street-oriented interaction will include performers and games.
Like the last two years, the event will be preceded by Borgata’s Restaurant Week that will feature specially priced prix-fixe menus in most of its restaurants from Sunday, Nov. 3, to Friday, Nov. 8.
There will also be an array of Savor Borgata-themed special events. The go-to event of the week will occur 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 8, at “A Taste of 5 Culinary Masters: Dinner by Bobby Flay, Michael Symon, Stephen Kalt, Michael Schulson and Thaddeus DuBois.”
The $149 event inside 28 West Bar & Bites will feature a five-course meal, each prepared by the chefs, with Flay offering the main course.
Other events, all held Saturday, Nov. 9, include “Confectioner’s Delight: The Art of Marzipan” ($39) with DuBois at 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.; “Lunch and Learn with Wolfgang Puck’s Executive Chef Aram Mardigian” ($55) at 11:30 a.m.; “Holy Ravioli with Chef Stephen Kalt” ($55) at 11:30 a.m.; “Sushi and Sake” with Schulson ($49) at 1 p.m.; “Wild Turkey Bourbon & BBQ” ($35) at 1 p.m.; “Eyes Wine Shut” ($44) at 1 p.m.; a culinary demonstration with Flay ($35) at 2 p.m.; “Bites are Better with Beer” ($39) featuring Goose Island Brewery at 2 p.m.; a wine seminar with Francis Ford Coppola Winery ($44) at 3 p.m.; “The Perfect Bloody Mary” ($35) at 3 p.m.; and Symon’s book signing” (books available for purchase) at 3:30 p.m..
Sunday’s events include brunch at Old Homestead from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. as diners will be able to order from a special menu; and “Absolut-ly Fabulous with Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian” ($59) at 6 p.m.
“So many customers come so often and have been at Savor for the past few years, and I think it’s important for the Atlantic City visitor to see things evolve and have another reason to come,” Lupo says. “The last thing you want them to say is, ‘I am not going because I went last year.’ So we will make some changes for the better and add twists to make it a more fun experience.”
For more information, go to TheBorgata.com.
Robert’s Steakhouse wine dinner
Robert’s Steakhouse, my favorite steakhouse in the city, is offering another spectacular wine dinner, and this one should be a lot of fun.
It’s called the Pigskin Classic dinner, and that’s because it features Dick Vermeil wines, on Thursday, Sept. 19.
You might not be aware, but the former Philadelphia Eagles coach makes some amazing wines, and Robert’s, located inside Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort, is showcasing them beginning at 6 p.m.
The football-themed dinner will not only feature Vermeil’s wines, but the NFL coach and broadcaster will be on hand to interact with fans as he gives guests the play-by-play on expert wine pairings, particularly during the 90-minute welcome reception.
Executive Chef Will Savarese’s playful menu will feature pork as the focus since it will be an ingredient in all five gourmet courses, plus there will be plenty of passed hors d’oeuvres to start the night.
Dinner will include a poached quail egg with pork sausage patty on top of a potato pancake and bacon Hollandaise for an amuse-bouche; spaghetti fritter with speck ham and Buffalo mozzarella; Udon noodles with Tazo ham and crispy pig’s ear; a main course featuring Jarret de Porc, a traditional French pork shank, with Swiss chard and roasted garlic pomme puree; and dessert of apple and cheddar cheese streusel pie topped with Vermont maple and bacon ice cream.
Caymus dinner at Trop
The Tropicana Casino and Resort is once again stepping things up in the culinary department by offering a spectacular wine dinner with one of my favorite wines, Caymus, on Tuesday, Sept. 24.
The evening, which will begin at 6 p.m., will feature Caymus and varietals from the Wagner family. The night begins with a reception followed by a five-course meal prepared by Chef Demetrios Haronis and his staff paired with wine. After dinner, guests can enjoy a hand-rolled cigar on the balcony overlooking the ocean.
The meal will include pan-seared Cape May dayboat scallops with pink peppercorn, pancetta and grilled asparagus risotto; beer-battered Absecon Bay softshell crab with blue crab and corn fritter, Jersey succotash and Cajun remoulade; smoked Magret duck breast with local greens, poached pears, toasted hazelnuts and mixed berry vinaigrette; prime filet of beef Rossini with potato pancake, roasted baby vegetables, foie gras and truffle butter; and it all concludes with strawberry Napoleon.
Tickets are $125, including tax and gratuity. Call 609-340-4202 or go to Ticketmaster.com.
Former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb will be in town this weekend as Caesars Entertainment hosts retirement parties for the former All-Pro athlete. On Friday, Sept. 20, Caesars Atlantic City will host a private event with food being prepared by Roble Ali of Bravo’s hit series “Chef Roble & Co.”
On Saturday, Sept. 21, the public will be able to see McNabb and his VIP guests inside The Pool at Harrah’s Resort from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. as DJs Banner and Eddie Edge will provide the music. Guests invited to attend and walk the green carpet include retired NFL greats Ray Lewis, Brian Dawkins, Jerome Bettis, Brian Westbrook, Eddie George, Michael Strahan, Warren Moon, Randall Cunningham and Ron Jaworski plus current Eagles quarterback Michael Vick. NBA superstars Rasheed Wallace, Allen Iverson, Dwayne Wade, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Charles Barkley and Juwan Howard are also invited.