Food & Drink

Taste This

Wasn't that Cuban pork feast last Sunday night at Enoteca Vin a blast? Can you believe it was only $19? I mean, we're talking big hunks of slow-roasted Kurobuta pork shoulder served family-style with guacamole, slaw, house-made tortillas and --

What's that? You didn't know anything about a Cuban pork feast at Vin? That's a shame, a double shame, actually, because that means you probably also didn't know that Vin has begun offering its superb by-the-glass wine selection for half price on Sunday nights.

I might not have known about either of these great deals myself if I didn't subscribe to Vin's e-mail newsletter. In fact, I get lots of information about special dinners and other bargains offered by area restaurants through newsletters and press releases. It's how I learned that Bogart's recently introduced Hard Luck Lunch Specials, a daily changing selection ranging from Monday's entree salads to Friday's specialty pasta dishes, for $6. And it's how I know each year when Bill Smith is going to be offering his ephemeral, one-of-a-kind honeysuckle sorbet at Crook's Corner. (Sorry, that one has already passed for this year, but the Crook's newsletter did recently announce that chef Smith is now offering a Southern picnic plate featuring cold fried chicken, potato salad, deviled eggs, cucumbers and onions, and slices of ripe watermelon.)

Of course, it's my job to keep abreast of the local dining scene, so I subscribe to just about every Triangle area restaurant's e-mail newsletter I find out about. I get far more information than I can squeeze into this column, so I've decided to make my blog (http://blogs.newsobserver.com/epicurean/home) a sort of clearinghouse for this information. I'll post the best of these -- let's call them "Bargain Bytes" -- on my blog when I get them. If you know about any great deals or special meals you'd like to let people know about, feel free to add them. And while I'm at it, I invite restaurant owners and managers to let me know if they have a newsletter I haven't yet subscribed to.

This way, you don't have to load up your inbox with dozens of newsletters. Just subscribe to your favorites (which you may already be doing), secure in the knowledge that you don't have to miss out on all the other great deals and special meals that are out there. Clever idea, huh?

Yeah, I know. You wish I had thought of it before the Cuban pork feast at Enoteca Vin.

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