Jacksonville Dining, Nightlife & Shopping, Spring 2011 | Business

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Jacksonville Dining, Nightlife & Shopping, Spring 2011

The historic Casa Marina Hotel and Restaurant in Jacksonville Beach has opened their Penthouse Lounge with sweeping views of the Atlantic Ocean for lunch service.  Lunch is now available 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday.  Previously the lounge opened at 4 p.m. for cocktails and appetizers.


Chef Aaron Webb has designed a New Beach Cuisine menu for the penthouse luncheon that includes appetizers such as polenta sticks, salads including a goat cheese salad, sandwiches such as the chicken caesar wrap in herb tortilla and the mahi calypso. Sandwich prices start at $7.95 and entrees start at $11.95.


The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island is hosting a “Meet The Farmers” event, honoring Executive Chef Thomas Tolxdorf’s philosophy to serve the freshest ingredients and seafood at the resort.  The event on April 8 begins with a casual reception with passed hors d’oeuvres to meet and mingle with the farmers, seafood purveyors and chefs.  A seasonal menu, served family-style, follows and includes three servings of Columbia Valley organic wines paired for dinner.  Each course is introduced by a chef and a grower. The celebration concludes with a trio of citrus based delectable delights from the pastry chefs.


One Ocean Resort’s oceanfront restaurant Azurea is hosting the Friends of James Beard Foundation Dinner on April 9, 6-9 p.m.  The exclusive event brings together the best of the best in Florida’s First Coast cuisine with prominent area chefs.  The five-course benefit dinner menu is created by Chef Ted Peters and Pastry Chef Nancy Slatsky of Azurea, Chef Tom Gray of Bistro Aix, Chef Matthew Medure of Matthew’s and Chef Brian Siebenschuh of Orsay.  All wine pairings for the spring season courses are from the Foley Family Wineries.


The Renaissance Resort at World Golf Village has named Chef Alberto Avila as the new restaurant chef for its 500 South Restaurant & Lounge.  Noted for his creativity and flare, Avila comes to The Renaissance Resort at World Golf Village from its sister hotel, The Renaissance Oklahoma City Convention Center Hotel and Spa in downtown Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.  He also has prior experience in Northeast Florida manning chef positions at Santiono’s and Sawgrass Marriott in Ponte Vedra Beach.


Kara Bazma, a custom-made dress operation is now open in Jacksonville with a store front at The Jacksonville Landing.  The company allows customers to create custom-made dresses using a measurement kit first, and then entering the measurements into their website where finally a custom made dress is made to the customer’s body measurements.  There are no such things as "standard sizes" or "plus sizes” – just your custom size.

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