Although the restaurant opened quite some time ago, Tuscany hasn’t really managed to leave a mark when it comes to serving Italian food. Sadly, my visit there recently did little to change that.
The interior of the place was very confusing with some areas receiving natural light and some completely dark. To add to that, the restaurant was empty at lunch time. The chef himself came to receive our order. The gentleman told us about his journey to becoming a chef in Italy and finally coming back to cook here.
They start you off with some buns. The butter had to be asked for which is very weird as the buns were just plain ones. We ordered Gamberetti All Aglio-E-Olio, Funghi Pizza, and Farfalle Con Pollo-E-Funghi i.e a seafood dish, a pizza, and pasta.
With prawns sauteed in garlic chili peppers and cooked in lemon & butter sauce, Gamberetti All Aglio-E-Oliowas a delight! The prawns stood out with their redish pink tails. But what really stole the show was the spinach in lemon and butter sauce with its richness. Soak some toasted bread with the sauce and you'll be swoon away with the velvety texture.
If an Italian restaurant can’t get a classic Margherita or Funghi Pizza right, then I am sorry but I am not going back there. Tuscany messed up terribly in delivering a decent thin crust Funghi pizza. The crust was thin and didn't fall apart, however the tomato sauce base tasted like the ones you'd have at random snack shops. I couldn't smell the oregano or any herbs and the quantity of cheese was also very poor. The only good aspect would be the use of Chanterelle and Button Mushrooms because of their meatiness and it’s quite rare to use them in pizzas found at Dhaka.
The Farfalle Con Pollo-e-Funghi contained strips of chicken breasts, mixed mushroom cooked in a creamy white sauce. A dash of nutmeg is what set the pasta apart from the ones I've tasted in Dhaka. The creamy sauce tasted quite similar to the one of gamberetti (minus the spinach). Now moving on to the negative of this dish, the chicken tasted undercooked. The presentation of the dish wasn't proper at all and at one point the pastas started getting clumpy.
The sad thing with Dhaka is that nowadays, too many restaurants claim to be authentic whereas their dishes are hardly close to it. Tuscany is such a place where every dish screams fusion. They are created in such a way that it’d cater to Bengali taste buds and still I don’t know whether I’d go back to that place when places like Bella Italia exist.
Louisville, Aug 27 (AP/UNB) — It's finger lickin' fake chicken.
Kentucky Fried Chicken plans to test plant-based chicken nuggets and boneless wings Tuesday at one of its restaurants in Atlanta. Depending on customer feedback, the chain could expand the test to other markets.
California-based startup Beyond Meat said it developed the new product specifically for KFC. It's made with wheat protein coated in a proprietary breading.
Beyond Meat also sells plant-based burgers, sausages and meat crumbles at grocery stores and some fast food chains like Carl's Jr. and Del Taco. Frozen plant-based chicken strips were the first product Beyond Meat sold, starting in 2012. But the company pulled them off the market earlier this year because it wanted to improve the recipe.
Restaurants are responding to a surge in consumer demand for plant-based meats as people seek healthier, more sustainable food. U.S. sales of meat substitutes are expected to jump 78% to $2.5 billion between 2018 and 2023, according to Euromonitor.
Beyond Meat already has some serious competition in the plant-based chicken market. Tyson Foods, one of the world's largest meat producers, recently announced plans to sell nuggets made from pea protein. Chicken producer Perdue Farms is also making nuggets, tenders and patties from a blend of chicken and vegetables.
Silver Spring, Aug 27 (AP/UNB) — Pet stores are suing to block a Maryland law that will bar them from selling commercially bred dogs and cats, a measure billed as a check against unlicensed and substandard "puppy mills."
The stores' federal lawsuit, filed Friday, challenges a ban set to take effect on Jan. 1, 2020. Maryland is the second state, after California, to pass such restrictions on the sale of dogs and cats.
The pet stores fear the ban will put them out of business. Their suit says animal welfare organizations have made unfounded claims that pet stores are fueling the growth of puppy mills.
Charm City Puppies manager Becky Schmidt, whose Columbia store is one of the plaintiffs, said it only uses breeders that are "quality-inspected" and federally regulated.
"If anything, if our doors close, it's going to force consumers to have to go to the unregulated, uninspected sources," Schmidt said Monday.
The lawsuit claims the ban effectively will do just that, shifting the sale of puppies from regulated retailers to unregulated sources, such as sellers placing ads on the internet or in newspapers.
"Internet pet sales have a notoriously high incidence of fraud and scams which will only increase against Maryland residents once the ban takes effect," the suit says.
Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, signed the legislation into law in April 2018.
The first law of this kind took effect in January in California. It prohibits pet stores from selling a dog, cat, or rabbit unless it came from an animal shelter or rescue group. Some local governments, including in Maryland, already have enacted similar measures. Maine's Legislature passed a bill limiting sales of dogs and cats by pet shops, but Gov. Janet Mills is holding it until January.
Maryland's law encourages animal welfare organizations to collaborate with retail pet stores to showcase cats and dogs for adoption or purchase from "local breeders," according to a summary of the legislation prepared by state analysts.
The pet stores' lawsuit claims the ban is unconstitutional, violating the Commerce Clause. The legislation's intent to facilitate sales from local breeders discriminates against out-of-state breeders and brokers, the suit says.
"The Maryland Pet Store Ban's purpose is to remove Maryland from the nationwide market of pet sales in stores in hopes of eradicating the so-called puppy mill industry. However, a State may not achieve a local economic goal by isolating itself from the national economy," the suit says.
State Sen. Ben Kramer, a Democrat who sponsored the legislation when he served in the state House of Delegates, said retail sales of dogs are keeping puppy mills in business.
"The puppy mills are just absolutely disgusting and barbaric," Kramer said. "The puppy mills don't exist without the retail stores that sell them."
Plaintiffs' attorney Jonathan Kagan said the sale of dogs and cats is the primary source of revenue for pet stores that are suing.
"These are smaller pet stores that have been around for a while," he said. "They are not going to be able to compete with PetSmart or Petco if they're just selling (pet) accessories."
John Goodwin, senior director of the Stop Puppy Mills campaign for the Humane Society of the U.S., said dog and cat sales account for a small fraction of the multibillion-dollar pet industry. "There are thousands of small independent pet stores that thrive on selling products and services," he added.
Kagan said Maryland already had strict laws "with high standards for stores" before the passage of the 2018 legislation. Kramer, however, said the pet stores "basically thumbed their noses at the new requirements that were in place."
The plaintiffs also include pet store operators Just Puppies Inc. and Today's Pet Inc. Also named as plaintiffs are a Missouri-based commercial dog breeder and a commercial dog broker that supply the Maryland pet stores with dogs.
The defendants include the state Senate's finance committee and Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh, whose office will be responsible for enforcing the ban.
Schmidt, the Columbia store's manager, said 20 employees will lose their jobs and customers will lose access to purebred puppies if the store has to close.
"There's a whole trickle-down effect," she said.
Dhaka, 26th August (UNB) - Dhaka DocLab, an international documentary co-production project market in Bangladesh which also serves workshops for South Asian filmmakers, inaugurated its 3rd edition on Monday, August 26 at the Liberation War Museum, Agargaon in the capital.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam inaugurated the six-day event as the chief guest. Dhaka DocLab’s director Tareq Ahmed, trustee of Liberation War Museum Mofidul Haque and Founder/President of Documentary Resource Initiative, Kolkata and Indian director, editor and cinematographer Nilotpal Majumdar attended the event as special guests and expressed their opinion on this initiative through their speeches.
Dhaka DocLab’s Chairman and prominent cultural activist Nasir Uddin Yousuf chaired the event.
British documentary filmmaker Emma Davie, managing director of Ventana-Film GmbH Hans Robert Eisenhauer, delegate of Taskovski Films Eva Perez, Chinese producer Pei Tianyi and other international guests were honored in the event by the guests. Representing the Master Class instructors, Emma Davie shared her opinion and welcomed everyone to the workshop which is going to be conducted from Tuesday.
Minister Shahriar appreciated the initiative and invited filmmakers to make more films on the historically significant events of Bangladesh, such as the 15th August assassination and murder of Bangabandhu along with his family.
DocLab’s Chairman Nasir Uddin Yousuf briefed about DocLab’s initiative to organize workshops on documentary filmmaking all over Bangladesh and informed that it has already covered few divisional cities.
The six-day event has been categorized in promising segments, such as mentoring of the participants' projects, film screenings, one-on-one meetings, pitching of the projects and more. Various renowned names from the local and international documentary film circuit are scheduled to attend during the occasion, including twenty renowned documentary makers, producers, television broadcasters, film distributors, and representatives of film financing companies.
The eight instructors who will take different seminars and Master Classes during these six days are: Audrius Stonys, filmmaker, Lithuania; Ryota Kotani, executive producer, NHK, Japan; Karolina Lidin, consultant, Sheffield Doc/Fest, Denmark; Nilotpal Majumdar, chairman, Docedge Kolkata, India; Jean Paul F Pauwels, managing director, CONGOO bvba, Belgium; Emil Joseph, Editor, UK; Emma Davie, filmmaker, Edinburgh College of Art, UK; and Boris Mitic, filmmaker, Dribbling Pictures Ltd, Serbia.
‘A Mandolin in Exile’ by Rafiqul Anowar (Bangladesh), ‘Back to Home’ - Upali Gamlath (Sri Lanka), ‘Discount Workers‘- Ammar Aziz (Pakistan), ‘Fishfinger Seductions’ - Sarvnik Kaur (India), ‘The Secret Ancestral Village’ - Torsha Banerjee (India), ’Basu's Ecosystem’ - Ekramul Kabir (Bangladesh), ‘Punch Me Hard’ - Biswajit Das (India), ‘Beyond All The Colours’ - Saiful Wadud Helal (Bangladesh/Canada), ‘Murshida’ - Moupia Mukherjee (India), ‘Songs of Sunflower’ - Abid Sarker Shohag (Bangladesh), ‘Outsider’ - Kanishka Sonthalia (India), ‘Wishes of Thimphu’ - Arun Bhattarai (Bhutan), ‘Dolls Don’t Die’ - Ranajit Ray (India), ‘Waiting For Winter’ - Farid Ahmad (Bangladesh), ‘NOC’ - Qazi Krishnakali Islam (Bangladesh), ‘Settled to Displace’ - Ripan Kumar Das (Bangladesh), and ‘Two Daughters and the memory of their Father’ - Shopno Samudra (Bangladesh)- have been the final selected participants. From all these projects, ‘Back to Home’ - Upali Gamlath (Sri Lanka), ‘Discount Workers’ - Ammar Aziz (Pakistan), ‘Punch Me Hard’ - Biswajit Das (India), ‘Wishes of Thimphu’ - Arun Bhattarai (Bhutan), and NOC - Qazi Krishnakali Islam (Bangladesh) are awarded with scholarship support to attend Dhaka DocLab. This scholarship includes round trip air travel, waiver of fees, and accommodation during their stay in Bangladesh as part of the lab. Unfortunately, Ammar Aziz from Pakistan will not be able to attend the event due to visa related issues, according to the organizers.
The inaugural session ended with screening of the documentary film ‘Bridges of Time’, directed by Lithuanian maker Audrius Stonys. He also briefed about the film to the audiences, prior to the screening.
Dhaka Independent Film Network (DIFN) is organizing the 3rd edition of DocLab in this year, which has been organizing the event since 2017. The event will comprise a 4-day mentoring along with a 2-day documentary project pitching sessions. The budget of this six-day-long international workshop is set at Tk 35 lakh. Government and non-governmental organizations, including the Cosmos Foundation, the Bengal Foundation and the Access to Information Project (a2i), along with the Government of Bangladesh are cooperating with this initiative.
The 3rd Edition of Dhaka DocLab will end on 31st August, 2019.
Dhaka, Aug 26 (UNB) - Words will fall short if I try to wrap up my experience at Edith. Although this café cum restaurant had opened a while ago, their new menu was something I have been meaning to try out ever since I got wind of it. Today I will be suggesting my top picks and must-haves from their Banani 11 location.
At the entrance, you will be greeted by a doorman dressed like a coachman and all in all be entering a dreamland. Edith boasts a retro-themed interior. With pop art at a few corners and chandeliers above, you’ll find the place to be an influencer’s heaven. The servers were prompt and were able to address any queries we had before ordering. We asked for the following dishes to be served at first: the Fruit Salad, Ceviche, Caesar Salad, Truffle fries, Passion fruit Drink and Salted Caramel Milkshake. I cannot emphasize on how surprised I was when the food was served.
The presentation was really admirable and everything looked different than what you have at a regular restaurant. The fruit salad had 3 ingredients; tomatoes, watermelon, and feta cheese. As weird as the combination sounds, the taste was quite the opposite. Their imported feta cheese was creamy and moist in texture and went brilliantly with the spiced watermelon. The use of turmeric oil is something unknown to me but what I can vouch for is the freshness and the explosion of flavors you’d get at every bite. My next pick would be the Ceviche. A Peruvian dish made by curing raw fish in lemon dressing is something you don’t see on menus in Bangladesh. It had Barramundi, lychee, fermented chilis and Taro (Kochu) chips. Unless you risk to try it yourself, you are really missing out. The tangy and herby flavor really won me over. As for the Taro chips, they taste like tempura fried potatoes. We kept on binging on the truffle fries because of how light they were. The taste of the oil itself is very subtle but the dipping that comes along with it is another delicious little detail.
For the mains we had the Pappardelle and Cavatelli pasta and their Mutton Osso Bucco. Once again, we were awestruck at what were served. It felt like I was in a foreign country because you don’t see these dishes here other than on pictures. The Pappardelle is my most favorite dish. The leek cream has a taste quite similar to the leek soup by Knorr (if you have had it). It has slight hints of onion and the look of mushroom soup. The meatballs were perfectly seasoned and had a peppery warm taste. Perhaps, one of the best pasta in Dhaka according to me. The Cavatelli on the other hand had moist mutton meat and dehydrated grapes. If you aren’t convinced yet just know that all their pastas are made in-house so that’s as fresh as it gets. The Mutton Osso Bucco is a dish that could be share by 2 if not 3. It’s something I’d recommend for you to order if you are going with your family because it has a European and Desi undertone (due to its use of herbs).
Despite being full, for dessert we decided to take the highway and go for high tea. All their desserts are on display so you can pick while knowing what you will be served. We got a few flavors of Macarons, Caramel Éclair, Profiterole, Tiramisu, Crema Caffe and a Rose & Roselle Tea. They served the desserts in a way that it was way too picturesque to be eaten. The tiered dish had a beautiful faux flower attached at the top which is perfect for a brunch or a ‘girls’ get together’. The tea itself had floral undertones and was quite soothing. Amongst the desserts the Éclair, Crema Caffee, and Raspberry Macaron were our top picks. If anything, try their Crema Caffe. Unlike any coffee you will have in Dhaka, this dessert served in shot glasses was airy, chilled, and had the perfect hint of coffee.
Edith truly reinvented themselves. I cannot wait to go back for the Papardelle, Ceviche and the Crema Caffe. I have yet to understand why in spite of having such delicious dishes and beautiful interior this place is not talked about much. It’s a must-go place for people who miss going abroad or simply just want to have a taste of the foreign in Bangladesh.
By: Ifreet Taheea