Archive for the ‘Deals’ Category

Domino’s BFD

Domino’s BFD

Ever since I was a kid, when I ordered a pizza from Domino’s it was always the same…thin crust with beef (meatball) and pineapple. Thanks to Domino’s new BFD (big fantastic deal) I can now cement my pizza creation online, and if people like the look of it, they can order it as well.

Springwise breaks down Domino’s new social pizza making strategy…

Domino’s revamped its online presence last month as part of its “You Got 30 Minutes” brand re-launch campaign, including adding the new BFD Builder for custom online orders. Short for Big Fantastic Deal, the BFD Builder lets consumers create the pizza of their dreams—specifying the type of crust, the amount of sauce and cheese, and unlimited toppings—for a flat rate of USD 10.99.

What’s really interesting, though, is that consumers can name and register the pizzas they design in Domino’s BFD database, where they can be viewed and ordered by other consumers. Nearly 12,000 pizzas have been registered so far, including the “Happy Birthday Aaron” and “Rhonda Half Doug Half,” for example. The site even tracks how many people have ordered each registered pizza so far, and consumers can view the database with the most popular pizzas first, as well as by newest, oldest or alphabetically. Top of the “most popular” list, incidentally, is the “Ciao Bella!” which has been ordered over 83,000 times.

So head to the new BFD Builder now and share your creations in the comments.

And if you want to order my creation, the Hawaiitaly, click here.

Advertisements

REWARD: Beer For Life

Croucher Hef

The owners of a New Zealand brewery Croucher Brewery Co. just had their laptop stolen. They want their laptop back so bad that the reward for finding it and safely returning it is free beer. For life.

That’s about $18,000 in beerilicious fun. We asked Nigel, one of the owners, how many bottles was that as well as many other things about the laptop and their divine nectar.

Our production is a touch over 100,000 bottles per year. We are pretty small, but growing quickly. Our beer market has many similarities to the american beer market: near/virtual prohibition followed by dominance by a couple of massive brewers, followed by the growth and interest in the flavours of craft brewers. The american market is probably 15 years ahead of us, but our craft market is just starting to gain a toe hold.

We make fine handcrafted beer, and our signature is beer full of flavor, which puts us apart from the mainstream in this country. We produce a pale ale based on a new-world best bitter, a czech-styled pilsner, and ‘the hef’ a hefeweizen, a cloudy german wheatbeer. The hef has gained a bit of cult following helped by its catchy name [gotta love the bunnies], and the growing awareness and interest in wheatbeers here. (from Gizmodo)

If you happen to stumble upon a stolen laptop in New Zealand and want to take them up on their offer, contact them through their site.

Tasty Table

Tasty Table

Threadless is always a great place to buy cheap t-shirts, but it’s an even better place when those shirts are food-themed.

Designed by Kenny Wheeler, these “Tasty Table” shirts are a must for the foodie in your life. It might be hard to see but here are some of the elements featured: Ws for Wasabi, Av for Avocado, Mn for Moonshine, Pt for Port, and J for Jello. It’s actually very geared towards drinks and libations, although I can’t remember ever having a drink with avocado in it.

Pretty self explanatory, but this shirt is a periodic table of food. Guys shirts will cost ya $15 while girls shirts go for $17. Also available as a hoodie for $40.

Sizes run out quick so get yours today! Click here to buy yours.

Two Buck Chuck & $10 Wines

2 Buck

I don’t consider myself a wine connoisseur, but my palette is improving. That said, when buying a wine, I usually spend $8-$15 for what I consider to be a decent bottle just to keep around. But apparently I’ve been overspending.

Trader Joe’s famous “Two Buck Chuck” recently took the award for the top chardonnay at the California State Fair Commercial Wine Competition.

The connoisseurs may cringe, the snobs may even sob, but the judges have spoken: California’s best chardonnay costs less than $3.

Charles Shaw Chardonnay, better known as “Two Buck Chuck,” beat hundreds of other wines and was named the top prize in a prestigious tasting competition in California.

The affordable wine beat out 350 other California chardonnays to win the double gold. Second place went to an $18 bottle, and the most expensive wines at the event, at the price of $55, didn’t even medal. (from ABC News)

And in case you haven’t heard of Trader Joe’s or Two Buck Chuck, here’s some background from Wikipedia.

Charles Shaw is an American brand of “extreme value” wine produced in California.

These wines are currently Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and most recently Shiraz varietals and Valdigue in the style of Beaujolais nouveau,and Pinot Grigio in limited quanities all from California vineyards. They are distributed exclusively by Trader Joe’s grocery stores, and in California sell for $1.99. Because of this, the Charles Shaw wines are affectionately known as Two Buck Chuck.

Due to the three-tier system, in other states the price can go up to around $4. As such, the wine is often referred to as “Three Buck Chuck” or “Four Buck Chuck” relative to the price.

Charles Shaw is an example of the recent trend of economy-minded wine drinkers seeking the greatest value. In particular the brand stands out not only for the low cost, but also for the respectable packaging and semi-frequent high ratings at wine tasting events. For example, at the 28th Annual International Eastern Wine Competition, Shaw’s 2002 Shiraz received the double gold medal, besting the roughly 2,300 other wines in the competition. More recently, Shaw’s 2005 California chardonnay was judged Best Chardonnay from California at the 2007 California State Fair Commercial Wine Competition. The chardonnay received 98 points, a double gold, with accolades of Best of California and Best of Class.If you don’t happen to live close to a TJ’s, don’t worry. Here’s a list of wines under $10 compiled from the NY Times, PJ Wine, and Fine Living that will help you find a great bottle of vino without breaking the bank.

Steenberg South Africa Sauvignon Blanc 2004, $8
Crisp, fresh, zesty and balanced, with unexpected depth. (Importer: Monsieur Touton Selections, New York)

J. Vidal-Fleury Côtes-du-Rhône 2001, $8
Earthy and balanced, with lingering fruit flavors and a great sense of place. (W. J. Deutsch & Sons, White Plains, N.Y.)

’05 Arzuaga Ribera del Duero “La Planta,” $8.99
A PJ’s Wine of the Week: The nose carries lovely notes of black cherry, dusted cocoa, warm vanilla bean and a suggestion of oak. The palate boasts exquisite black cherry and plum flavors with hints of smoky minerality and a dark, milk chocolate-inflected finish. Serve this rich, fruity wine with roast pork tenderloin, pasta Bolognese, lamb chops or steak.

’05 Odfjell “Armador” Chile Cabernet Sauvignon, $7.97
This wine received a 90 point rating by The Wine Advocate, although no tasting note was given. It is another outstanding Cabernet Sauvignon value from this impressive Chilean producer. Bright red and black berries are followed by a touch of roasted red pepper and a hint of fresh jalape–o. The brightness of the nose carries through on the palate, which is smooth and loaded with cassis and blackberry flavors and chalk tones. This wine finishes with vibrant fruit and a touch of pleasingly dusty, ripe tannins. An expressive and distinctive Cabernet buy.

’01 Marqués de Riscal Rioja Reserva, $9.97
2001 is a breakout vintage for the consistently first-rate Marqués de Riscal Reserva. It offers beautifully plush, ripe black fruit flavors, smoky oak and mineral nuances coupled with outstanding balance and finish. It is without a doubt one of the greatest values in the store and a miracle at this price. Drink now or over the next 30 years!

Red Flyer 2003 California Red Table Wine, $ 9, California.
The label depicts a flying saucer zipping through a bleak postmodern landscape, but this award-winning combo of Syrah, Mouvedre, Grenache, Carignan, and “Clone X” contains very pleasant hints of toasty oak.

Firestone Vineyard 2005 Sauvignon Blanc, $10, California.
Aged in stainless steel tanks, this one’s clean, bright and versatile — it would serve well as your house white. It’s 100 percent Sauvignon Blanc, not a blend.

Folie à Deux 2004 Ménage à Trois California Red, $9, California.
Purify your thoughts, people. We’re talking about a blend of three grapes: Cabernet, Zinfandel and Merlot. This mouthful of a wine starts off vibrant and fruity and finishes with a fresh-ground, spicy bite. There’s nothing it can’t stand up to — throw your best summer barbecue at it. It won’t flinch.

14 Hands Cabernet Sauvignon 2004, $10, Washington.
Grown in the wine-making region of Washington state known as Horse Heaven Hills, the name of this super-smooth wine refers to the height of the mustangs that once ran wild there. Its lingering finish is reminiscent of the cherries for which the area is also known.

Alianca Vinho Verde, $7, Portugal.
Perhaps the classic summer white wine, this crisp Portuguese import is the crushed-grape equivalent of linens drying in the sunshine. The term “vinho verde,” or “green wine,” refers not to the color but means the wine is best drunk young.

Henry’s Drive Pillar Box Red 2004, $10, Australia.
Don’t be hoodwinked by the screw cap. This smoky, intense wine from Australia’s Padthaway winemaking region received a buzz-worthy rating of 90 out of 100 from The Wine Advocate reviewer Robert Parker. A rich, complex and lingering blend (primarily Cabernet), this is a treat you won’t soon forget.

Hacienda Pinot Noir 2002, $7, California.
This is a nice, light, fruity red for those who prefer less drama per sip than, say, rambunctious Pillar Box fans. On average one of the most inexpensive wines on this list, this Pinot Noir is better suited to a juicy pork tenderloin than a T-bone steak.

Viña Sila Las Brisas 2004, $10, Spain
Got some spicy shrimp cooking up on a skewer? Maybe enjoying a creamy chilled soup made with avocado and cucumber? This fresh, faintly citrusy white from Spain’s Rueda winemaking region will set off these summer dishes perfectly.

Doña Paula Los Cardos Malbec 2004, $9, Argentina.
A robust red with an intriguing chocolate-coffee taste on the finish, this winning selection is made from the increasingly popular Malbec grape. Malbecs, which were grown heavily in France but are now the prize variety of Argentina, tend to make deep, dark violet wines.

Smoking Loon Viognier 2004, $10, California.
This flavorful white from Don Sebastiani & Sons is on the sweet side of Chardonnay, very fruity and full. The winemaker recommends it as an aperitif, a palate cleanser, or a counterbalance to spicy foods like a searing Thai curry.

Photo from Flickr.

The New Dunkin’ Donuts – in LA?

DD

Not sure if this is a good or bad thing, but the Dunkin’ Donuts you know and love may soon be changing. According to a Time Magazine article a couple months ago…

If it weren’t for the pink door handle shaped like the letter D at the new Dunkin’ Donuts shop in Sarasota, Fla., you might think you had stumbled into a Starbucks. Bags of beans and oversize coffee mugs near the door? Check. A waiting area for lattes and cappuccinos? Check. Heck, there’s even free wi-fi and a rack of gift cards by the register.

This is the Dunkin’ Donuts of the future, a chic space with soaring ceilings and earth-toned walls that will be the prototype for every new store the 57-year-old chain opens. “We’re not a sleepy little New England company anymore,” says Dunkin’ Brands CEO Jon Luther, 63. Sure, they’ll still have time to make the doughnuts for your morning commute, but Luther thinks the slightly musty chain is ready to take on the industry giants–Starbucks and McDonald’s–on their turf. He started small, rolling out espresso drinks in 2003; they now account for 5% of sales. Next he plans to triple the number of U.S. stores, to 15,000, by 2020; expand the menu with pizza and flatbread sandwiches; and give the stores a much-needed makeover.

I just hope they expand out to the west coast. Everytime I visit the east coast I always grab a cup of DD coffee and a couple of bags to take back to LA.

BREAKING NEWS!: Just a couple days ago I spotted Dunkin’ Donuts bags of beans in a Los Angeles area Walgreens. To my knowledge this had previously been unavailable ANYWHERE on the west coast. Correct me if I’m wrong…

But don’t worry about DD turning into a Starbucks or McDonalds.

Instead of trying to compete head on at lunch and dinner, Dunkin’ is betting on snacks like smoothies and miniature pizzas. Drive-through customers account for 60% of its business, so Dunkin’ is focusing on food you can eat with one hand on the steering wheel. Since people stop in for coffee all day long, the hope is that they will be more inclined to grab a quick snack too. The prototype store uses high-speed ovens that can heat sandwiches in less than a minute while giving the bread those toasted brown edges no microwave can imitate.

But you won’t find a dollar doughnut menu at Dunkin’. Rather than engage in a price war with the fast-food giants, Dunkin’ is trying to close the gap between itself and Starbucks. Although it makes more money on breakfast sales overall than the Seattle-based chain, the average Dunkin’ check is just $1.85, vs. $3.75 at Starbucks, notes food analyst Tom Miner of research firm Technomic. Dunkin’ has positioned its breakfast sandwiches as quick quality, at the same price as Starbucks, $2.99. “I think they’re in a good position against their competitors,” says Miner. “Their biggest challenge is to focus on a couple of very popular items and do them really well.”

Oh, and just in case you want a Dunkin’ Donuts fix every morning, pick up one of these Retro Dunkin’ Donut Diner Mug featuring “Dunkie” the original mascot for $3.99.

Photo from Flickr.

All out of…

All Out Of

I always forget what I need to get at the grocery store. I keep Post-Its on hand or I’ll scribble notes down on paper, but I always seem to forget something.

That’ll change soon, though. Here’s a couple of items that’ll help you keep track of your groceries, one high-tech and the other old school.

First, the old school. Head over to Perpetual Kid and pick up one of these “All Out Of” note pads.

The miracle of checking off depleted items as you go! Magnets on the back allow for easy refrigerator mounting!

6 x 9 inches, 60 pages, 80-pound uncoated text stock with chipboard backing and adhesive binding.

It’ll only cost ya $6.49 per pad. Good deal if you ask me.

And if you’re living in the digital age and you have an iPhone, check out One Trip.

What’s the one thing you’re sure to have on you when you go to the store – other than your wallet, that is? Your phone. Here’s a simple way to use your iPhone for a little more than passing time by talking to friends while strolling down the aisle. Just browse on over to OneTrip.org and check off items as you add them to your cart. Add new ones from a list of common items with just a tap, or type in that one herb we forgot to put on the list – OneTrip will remember it for next time you shop for the same thing.

Oh, and this one will cost ya nothing. It’s totally free. Head over to the site to give it a try.

Tofu’s Perfect Match

Tofu Fest

This is probably one of those “only in LA” festivals but it’s a yearly thing here on the west coast.

I’ve seen posters all over town and it’s finally embedded in my head. Their posters and the whole Tofu Fest campaign is pretty clever. Head over to tofufest.org to help find tofu’s perfect match.

As for the festival itself, here’s what you need to know.

The 12th Annual Los Angeles Tofu Festival will take place on August 18, 12pm – 8 pm and August 19, 12 pm – 6 pm. General admission is $5, kids and seniors are free, and there’s a $2 off coupon here. Proceeds go to charity.

Festival Grounds are located at 237 S. San Pedro Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013 on San Pedro and 2nd.

Attractions include:

Beer, Wine & Sake Garden: A selection of sake and beer is served in a sectioned off portion of Tofu Fest, supplementing Little Tokyo’s own beer gardens and Nisei Week’s attractions. The sale of alcohol was under debate by the festival’s committee in 1994 in regards to making the festival more family friendly.

Celebrity Chefs: Famous chefs exhibit their craft on a cooking platform, with fair goers getting the chance to taste dishes from the demonstrations. Masaharu Morimoto of Iron Chef is a recurring guest, appearing in last year’s 2006 festival.

Children’s Pavilion: Children were previously given an additional area to enjoy the festival, as parts of the festival, like the alcohol garden, were unsuitable. However, as of 2006, Children’s Pavilion is no longer a featured event.

Entertainment Stage: Bands and artists appear live at the festival, ranging from instrumental groups, such as taiko and orchestra, to hip hop groups like Blackalicious.

Tofu Eating Contest: The tofu eating contest is a race to eat a 14-ounce block of tofu in the shortest amount of time. Several elimination rounds are held before the final battle and winner’s ceremony, where a prize is given to the winner on the entertainment stage.

And if you’re interested in the Tofu Eating Contest it will be held on Saturday, August 18th at 4pm. Here are the rules:

  • Contestants will be required to eat a 14 ounce block of House Foods Medium Firm Tofu.
  • Festival Judges will be judging the Tofu Eating contest. Contestants agree to abide by the Festival Judges’ decision. Festival Judges’ decisions are final.
  • Contestants will not be able to use their hands during the contest to eat the tofu.
  • There will be 10 contestants competing in each round with a total of 5 preliminary rounds. The first 2 contestants to eat the entire block of tofu will advance to the Final Round.
  • The first contestant to eat the entire block of tofu in the Final Round will win the Grand Prize
  • The second and third place winners of the Final Round will receive also receive prizes
  • In order for a contestant to completely finish the block of tofu, he/she must have swallowed the last mouth full of tofu as decided by the Festival Judges.
  • Contestants must be at least 18 years old.
  • Contest Rules are subject to change without notice.

Info seen here was collect from the Tofu Festival site as well as Wikipedia.

The Foundry

Foundry

The Foundry on Melrose in Los Angeles has been around for a month or so now, and I still haven’t been.

But I really want to go. The Foundry seems to be a little more lively than your average restaurant. When you visit the website, you’ll notice that although the menu sounds good, there’s more to this place than just the food. There’s nightly music by bands and DJs and surprise musical guests.

What’s livelier than that is the fact that they have a live webcam broadcasting their finished dishes. It’s like Hell’s Kitchen but less British and not fake. Head to their homepage and click on the live webcam link.

From what I hear, the food is pretty good, but a bit pricey. That’s ok though. Head to the bar area and order off the bar menu. Bar items range from $8-$15 and you can order chicken croquettes, crab & spinach dip, chopped salad, short rib grilled cheeses, bay scallop ragout, and a selection of artisan cheeses.

Reviews are mixed but the place is still fairly new. And if your meal isn’t all that great, at least they’re trying a bit harder than most other places…

After a downright bad meal at The Foundry on Melrose, I was speeding away to the nearest In-N-Out for a Double-Double, Animal Style fix when I noticed a little white box resting on the parking break. Inside was a note from The Foundry (pictured) as well as three chocolate truffles. It was a small touch that left a big impression for all the right reasons. (from the Bon Appétit Blog)

Decent prices at the bar, live music in an upscale atmosphere, and truffles in your car? Sounds like it’s worth trying out if you ask me.

7463 Melrose Ave.
West Hollywood, CA
323.651.0915

Pickles are evil!

Pickles

Agree? Disagree? Let the fights begin!

If you hate them, pick up this Threadless t-shirt ASAP as they go fast.

And if you love them check out I Love Pickles.

$12 for guys, $14 for gals. Get yours here.

Breadless Tees

Jelly

Yet another food related Threadless t-shirt.

This week it’s a reprint of one popular tee. It’s cannibalism at its finest as a piece of bread jellies himself up.

Get yours here. $15 for guys, $17 for gals, $17 for kids, and $20 for the onesie. A hoody is also available for $40.

But act fast…sizes fly out the door.