Keeping it simple -- and nice


June 26, 1994|By KAROL V. MENZIE

Summer entertaining tends to be casual, but that doesn't mean it can't be elegant and tasty -- and easy. Cookbook author and entertainment specialist Melanie Barnard has teamed up with Kraft USA and Cracker Barrel Cheese to create a booklet of simple entertaining ideas with tips, recipes and a coupon. One suggestion is crackers topped with slices of sharp Cheddar cheese, a slice of cherry tomato and a leaf of basil -- remarkably tasty and simple. For a free copy of the booklet, print your name and address and send to: Get-Together Ideas From Cracker Barrel Cheese, P.O. Box 4022, Monticello, Minn. 55565-4022.

Changes in menu, owner at Enrico's

* Enrico's in Towson, which used to be Dici Naz Velleggia, is undergoing another change. It's been bought by Baltimore restaurateur Bill Sullivan, who also owns the Bowman in Carney, River Watch in Essex and Patrick's in Cockeysville. According to Mr. Sullivan's daughter, Traci, the biggest change is in the menu, which is now "definitely American" and gourmet. There will also be a new name, but that's still up in the air.

Good news: The piano player is likely to remain. The restaurant is located at 204 E. Joppa Road.

* Tragara in Bethesda has joined five other Maryland restaurants as recipients of the DiRoNA award, presented by the Distinguished Restaurants of North America, a nonprofit group of restaurateurs whose goal is to promote fine dining. Restaurants that have previously won the three-year DiRoNA designation are: Northwoods, Annapolis; the Brass Elephant, Hampton's and the Prime Rib, Baltimore; and Rudy's, Finksburg. Tragara, 4935 Cordell Road, serves Northern Italian food. The chef, Michel Laurier, should be familiar to Baltimoreans: He opened the Peabody Hotel and the Conservatory restaurant, now the Latham Hotel Baltimore and Citronelle.

Vacation coupons for the beach

Headin' down 'e ocean, hon? Don't forget to pick up a copy of "The Beach Book," which contains more than 360 coupons for food, sports, lodging and amusements at resorts in Delaware, FTC Maryland and Virginia. It's the second year for the book, from Taste Publications International of Baltimore. "There's everything from fast food to fine dining," says Jackie Diener, compilation manager at Taste. "It's meant to be a family product," she adds, with some items that appeal to adults, some for children and some for both.

The book is available at all Crown stations, as well as through various fund-raising groups. At Crown the books costs $8.95 with any purchase, $12.95 alone.

"The Beach Book" is also available from the publisher; call (800) 248-2783.

Tidbits welcomes food news -- new products, food-related news events, local cookbooks, mail-order finds, openings and closings restaurants and food shops. Send press releases to Tidbits, Attn.: Karol V. Menzie, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278.

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