Here's what writer John Mariani has to say: "The once-staid dining room of the Cincinnatian Hotel has been infused with vitality by the arrival of French chef Guy Hulin, who brings wonderful ideas like a torchon of creamy foie gras with the addition of fresh foie gras quickly pan-fried and a fuyu persimmon salad drizzled with a caramel-citrus sauce. Roast Chilean sea bass on porcini mushrooms with a Parmesan crust is superb. And Hulin's wife, Noreen Nagao, is one of the best pastry chefs in the country." Nice to see good news about Cincinnati in a national publication. ... Don't know whether this is good news or not (or news we should share with the rest of America), but for some reason during the Reds' final season at Cinergy Field, fans increased their consumption of CHEESE CONEYS by over 75 percent. In 2001 (when Gold Star was the supplier) 86,735 were sold. For 2002, with a switch to Skyline, the number zoomed to 151, 981. Guess people really can tell the difference. ... You might think of chili when it comes to firehouses, but here's proof that there's more varied fare: To show their appreciation to the community and to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House, Cincinnati fire fighters will be making their favorite soups to be served at THE APPLE ON ELM each Tuesday in November. On Nov. 5 it was Cream of Cheesy Asparagus, prepared by Lt. Bill "Gumby" Donovan. Call the Apple for upcoming choices: 513-621-6512 ... If you're looking for sandwiches, fresh fruits, veggies, flowers and more in Mount Adams, there's a new choice: LIBBY'S DELI at 1045 St. Gregory St. They're featuring local products like Boar's Head meats and breads from Shadeau Bakery. They're continuing to add items, including ice cream, beer, wine and more. Hours: Monday-Saturday 10 a.m.-7 p.m. ... We'll never be the Napa Valley, but Ohio's wine industry has some products that many find worthy additions to their cellars. Wine enthusiasts can explore 22 Ohio wineries -- including Cincinnati's MEIER'S WINE CELLARS -- through a new Web site, www.myohiowine.com. It's a virtual storefront where you can purchase wines (prices range from $5.99 to just over $30), in addition to reading features about vineyards, wine-tasting, events and information on matching food and wine.
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