Robert Ayres of Servatii Pastry Shop in Fairfax placed second overall in a national cake decorating contest sponsored by the Retail Bakers Association. The two-day, eight-hour competition was in Anaheim, Calif., earlier this month. Ayres, a self-taught decorator who has worked at Servatti for two years, won a gold medal in the free-hand flower category, a silver in the custom cake category and $2,600 in prizes. This was the first time Ayres competed in a cake decorating contest.
Virginia Bakery (286 Ludlow Ave.) in Clifton will reopen 8 a.m.-noon Friday and Saturday for the holiday to sell its famous schnecken, coffee cakes and dinner rolls. No advance orders.
Denise and Dennis Dailey will open their Walton Creek Farms near Madison, Ind., to the public Friday to show off and sell their tiny exotic microgreens, mushrooms, ramps, antique rose plants and heirloom vegetables in season. The Daileys are among the first in the region to grow the microgreens and sell them to restaurant chefs around the country. Beginning next week, Walton Creek Farms will be open 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday. For more information and directions: (888) 259-6623 or www.waltoncreek.com
There are many varieties of cress, a sharp, peppery member of the mustard family. Most common is watercress, which can be used fresh in salads, sandwiches and as a bed for fish, chicken, pork and other meats. Watercress can also be simmered in soups. Select cress with dark green leaves and no signs of yellowing. Refrigerate in a plastic bag or stems-down in water, covered with a plastic bag. Use within five days.
Allan Scott Riesling 2002 ($11): This dry crisp white is one more reason for the critical acclaim afforded to New Zealand's Marlborough region. Lots of citrus flavors with a hint of peach makes this wine perfect for warm spring days or as a partner to tuna or sea bass.
Rita Heikenfeld leads a class in the Greek classics - taziki, salata, koulourakia and other dishes from the Mediterranean 6-8:30 p.m. Monday at the Great Indoors in Springdale (11925 Commons Drive). $35. Reservations: 346-1506.
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