A few Friday links


A quick post this afternoon to share some of the food-related articles I’ve written for my newspaper lately. Happy Friday, everyone!

The Free Lance-Star’s first Instagram challenge is going on now, and the theme is cookies! Entries are open through Tuesday, Dec. 17. Just tag your cookie photos with #fxbgcookies. So pull out your phone and get baking!

My roommate and I hosted our annual cookie swap this week, and I detailed the party on the Front Burner blog. Can you share any tips for hosting a successful cookie exchange? Snacks and drinks make for a nice beginning to a party, before the cookie-tasting begins. Stay tuned for a story I’m working on now about a group of women that’s celebrated the holidays with a cooke swap for 26 years.

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Review: Here & Abroad Bistro + an Avocado Panini


Tucked behind a row of restaurants on William Street is a tiny cafe that you might miss. I did for the first two years I lived here, but it immediately bumped its way to the top of my favorites list. Enter its door and you’re greeted with the delightful aroma of freshly baked croissants and cookies, a mouthwatering display case of desserts, a surprisingly large menu of sandwiches and salads considering the size, and one of the friendliest cafe owners you may meet.

Here & Abroad Bistro – Bakery is a “hidden gem” by all accounts in downtown Fredericksburg, perfect for a quick lunch date, a mid-morning snack, or a takeout lunch for the office or nearby park. Always behind the counter, chef/owner Purna Shrestha is eager to please, and will remember your name, where you work, and any other tidbits you’ve chatted about. Ask for suggestions and he’s quick to answer.

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Review: Foode + my favorite cheesy black bean burger

The cheesy black bean burger at Foode might just be the best burger you’ll ever have–meat or not.

Such was the sentiment of my parents during a visit to Fredericksburg last year, and one I share that hasn’t wavered for the two years that I’ve been enjoying the downtown farm-to-table restaurant. That $10 veggie burger remains the top item I order at Foode, and one of the most popular every day.


You’ll find salads, sandwiches, “pizettes” and bowls all around $10 during lunch, while dinner features more complete dishes like roast chicken, shrimp and grits, and risotto (in the range of $15-$24), along with smaller salads ($5.50) for starters. Vegetarians will find more options at lunchtime, such as my favorite burger and a few other vegetable sandwiches. Dinner choices are more limited to a harvest plate, occasional risotto and a variety of small plates. Menus change slightly each week and are posted at foodeonline.com.

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