Let’s face it, some of the best food blogs are all about the pictures. Whether you’re cooking at home, trying out new recipes or eating out, without a great photo, the food sort of falls flat. When I saw the opportunity to take an Edible Food Photography class, I jumped at the chance. The class, held at Roxy’s Grilled Cheese in Allston, was taught by Zac Wolf, a Boston-based photographer who may have coined the phrase iphoneography. Zac showed us the in’s and outs of using our iPhones to take great food photographs…aka, food porn!
Now you can’t really have a food photography class without food, so Zac and James DiSabatino (one of Roxy’s founders) set up a #InstaBrunchBOS with some of the newest small businesses in the area. The food certainly did not disappoint, and I hope that my newly edited photos do it justice.
Brunch began with some bagels from Exodus bagels in Jamaica Plain and Black Magic Coffee. Let me start by saying that I’m from New Jersey and I lived in New York for over 5 years, so I’m a bit of a bagel snob. I can honestly say that since moving to Boston, I haven’t found a bagel that even compares…until today. Adam Hirsh has definitely mastered the art of the New York Style Bagel. He bakes his bagels one batch at a time in a shared use kitchen in Dorchester and sells them pop-up style at local shops and eateries. With only 79 batches under his belt, I think he has a great future for changing the breakfast scene in Boston.
Next up was Roxy’s Grilled Cheese. If you know me, you know that I’m not a person who generally eats food from a truck…like ever. However, back in 2011 my husband and I stumbled across a gourmet grilled cheese truck at the SoWa market and it was love at first bite. Little did I know at the time but Roxy’s was about to hit it big. Later that fall they appeared on The Great Food Truck Race on the Food Network and now the line for grilled cheese snakes around the whole market. And Yes, it really is that good! Last spring Roxy’s opened up their first brick and mortar store in Allston (485 Cambridge Street) and today it served as our #InstaBrunchBOS classroom. James and his crew gave us a taste of his signature poutine. For those of you not well versed in Canadian fast-food delicacies, poutine is french fries, topped with brown gravy and cheese curds (and in this case a fried egg). I’m not a huge fan of poutine, but it’s a huge seller! I recommend pairing it with their delicious Green Muenster.
Now I’m not a huge doughnut eater, but a few months ago I walked past a new store steps from my apartment, with a sign in the window that read “the only artisanal doughnut shop in Boston”. My first thought was, “what is an artisanal doughnut?” and my second was “this might be dangerous”. Blackbird Doughnuts, located on 492 Tremont Street, is a very small gourmet doughnut shop that makes all its doughnuts from scratch using natural and locally sourced ingredients. Now, if you weren’t aware, Boston had a record-breaking winter, so even though this place is a stone’s throw from where I live, I never exactly made it back to try out the doughnuts. Lucky for me, they were on today’s menu! Today they supplied us with a range of flavors to choose from, and I decided to go bold with the chocolate, peanut butter doughnut. As you can see from the picture below it was sprinkled with pieces of peanut butter cup, which to me is a win win! These doughnuts were light and fluffy and not overly greasy like doughnuts can sometimes be. It may have been a little sweet for my taste, but I’m excited to go and try some of their other flavors.
To say I was a little skeptical of our final menu item is an understatement. I know I’m in the minority here, but ice cream really isn’t my thing. Even as a child I would choose a soft pretzel or a water ice over ice cream. This, however wasn’t just any ice cream, but vegan ice cream. Even though I am currently a 90/10 Vegan, I was still not sold. Earlier in the year I went on a quest to find a good alternative to dairy yogurt and came up incredibly short. When I saw that this ice cream was made from coconut cream as its alternative “dairy” source, I was, as they say, not buying it! FoMu instantly made me eat my words (and thoughts). This premium alternative ice cream shop with locations in Allston and Jamaica Plain is just plain delicious! The ice cream is handmade in small batches using a coconut cream base that is vegan, dairy free, egg free, gluten free, allergy friendly and kosher. Now maybe all those “free’s” aren’t selling you, but trust me, this shit was G.O.O.D good!
A huge THANK YOU to all the local businesses that participated in today’s #InstaBrunchBOS. If you’re a local Bostonian or just passing through, I highly recommend any and all of these local businesses!