An exciting opportunity for local residents to taste the fabulous food from local area restaurants is coming up next week at the 9th annual Taste of Coastal Carolina. The event, on Tuesday, March 13th from 6:00 – 8:30 p.m., will be held at the Riverfront Convention Center in New Bern, to benefit the Neuse RIVERKEEPER Foundation. Included in the ticket price is food from 29 of the best area restaurants, including ten new New Bern establishments. Each establishment brings a unique approach to dining in this town. These restaurants join returning New Bern favorites The Flame, TaTa’s, Carolina Bagel, Flounders, The Hurricane, Annabelle’s, Friday 1890 Seafood, MJ’s Raw Bar, Say It With Cake, Kitchen on Trent, Christoph’s on the Water, Tina’s Sweetshop, Trent River Coffee, Persimmons, Ribeyes, El Cerro Grande, Sea Glass Café, the Harvey Mansion and 247 Craven.
The new restaurants include: Taylor’s Texas Style BBQ, a father and son partnership, who bring a combination of their North Carolina and Texas roots to barbecue. Rebecca’s Gourmet Café and Bakery, on Metcalf Street, owned by award-winning candy and sweet maker, Rebecca Clayton. Le Bistro opened last September in the space of a Catered Affair on Trent Road by Executive Chef Christopher Maravelas who combines good food with local artists’ work. Chef Valerie Morse studied Culinary Arts at Johnson & Wales University and owns Antonio’s Restaurant, on Highway 70 East in James City, with her Sous Chef, Joshua Dunn. Becky Bengel, daughter of Alderman Sabrina Bengel, manages the Baker’s Kitchen, formerly Baker’s Square, on Middle Street. Bella Cucina, located on Trent Road in the former Pia’s features authentic Italian food. Chef Sami, who hails from Milan, Italy. The Bethlehem Shop and Deli is owned by Basma Hjouj. Since coming to the U.S. in 2004 from her native Palestine, she has introduced New Bern friends to Middle Eastern cuisine, especially food from Lebanon. The BreakAway Bistro, housed in the former location of Nikola’s on Glenburnie Road, is the creation of owners Amy Hayden and Ken Curtin. Savage’s Pizzeria, one of the newest restaurants to open on Trent Road offers a taste of wood-fired New York pizza. Doug and Pam Savage are the new owners. The Wild Cupcake owned and operated by Nicole Costa is a home-based cupcakery with cupcakes in unique flavor combinations.
Tickets for the Taste can be purchased online at www.neuseriver.org or by calling Diane Baldwin at 252-637-7972. Other ticket outlets include Harris Teeter, Mitchell Hardware and Cravin’ Wine. Tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the door. A limited number of $100 Patron tickets remain. Patrons are invited to come for an early “Taste” at a champagne reception at 5:15, have a reserved seat at a table and enjoy unlimited wine and beer at a private bar.
Proceeds from the Taste benefit the Neuse RIVERKEEPER Foundation whose mission is to protect, restore and preserve the Neuse River basin through education, advocacy and enforcement, in order to provide clean water for drinking, recreation and enjoyment to the communities that it serves. The Neuse RIVERKEEPER Foundation recently celebrated 30years of river research and protection. Please come to the Taste to meet our brand new Lower Neuse Riverkeeper Mitch Blake!
Submitted by: Sherrie Starr, Taste Co-Chair