Congratulations to the folks at Morgan Street Brewery. The local craft-beer maker took home multiple medals at the recent Los Angeles International Beer Competition, including a Gold for When Helles Freezes Over; a Silver for its Honey Wheat; and Bronze medals for its Winter, Golden Pilsner and Black Bear brews. In other beer news, the William K. Busch Brewing Company won a passel of awards at the U.S. Open Beer Championships, held earlier this month in Atlanta. Kraftig Light was awarded its third consecutive Gold Medal in the American Light category, while the company's Kraftig Lager also took home Gold in the American Premium Lager category. More than 3,000 beers and ciders competed in 81 categories at the competition. Well done!
Congrats are also due Balaban's, which has garnered its third consecutive Best of Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator for its wine list. Also on the 'Best of' list: Annie Gunn's, 801 Chophouse, Gerard's, and Truffles. Only 883 restaurants worldwide received the recognition, which will be published in the magazine's August issue.
Looking for something to keep the kids occupied this summer? Try the new Honey Kids Kitchen, which recently opened in Chesterfield Mall on the second floor between Macy's and Williams-Sonoma. The Kitchen offers cooking classes and also serves as a venue for private events like birthday parties. Get the details at honeykidskitchen.com.
It's summertime, which means its time for Operation Food Search's (OFS) popular Tomato Explosion fundraiser. More than 70 participating eateries are featuring a special tomato-inspired dish on their menus, and OFS gets a portion of each dish sold. To further help the cause, on Tuesday, July 22, Katie's Pizza & Pasta in Rock Hill is donating 100 percent of the proceeds from everything on its menu to OFS. There's also a 'Tomato Selfie' contest this year, where diners can post a photo of themselves enjoying their meal on Twitter, Instagram and/or Facebook using the hashtag #TomatoExplosion. Those who post will be entered in a contest to win a $100 gift certificate to their favorite participating Tomato Explosion restaurant. For more info, visit OperationFoodSearch.org.