Beau Loses its Bar and Bartender

 Montpelier may have lost its best cocktail mixer, as Kate Wise has ended her tenure at Beau, and the bar will not continue. However, her prodigious skills and experience will still be on tap for Vermonters near and far through her new venture, Wise Consulting, LLC. Wise will be working with Vermont bars and restaurants to train their staff in service and product knowledge, as well as providing cocktail, wine, and beer menu services to help make their programs both delicious and profitable. She will also offer cocktail and spirit classes and seminars to anyone who wants to learn about spirits and how to use them. As always, Wise is available for private parties and events. Reach her at betterthanbacchus@gmail.com

Urgent call for blood and platelet donations during National Blood Donor Month

This January, National Blood Donor Month, the American Red Cross has an urgent need for blood and platelet donors of all blood types to make an appointment to give now and help address a winter blood donation shortage. Severe winter weather has had a tremendous impact on blood donations already this year, with more than 150 blood drives forced to cancel causing over 5,500 blood and platelet donations to go uncollected. This is in addition to seasonal illnesses, such as the flu, and hectic holiday schedules collectively contributing to more than 28,000 fewer donations than what was needed in November and December. “Even temporary disruptions to blood and platelet donations can diminish the availability for hospital patients,” said Mary Brant, external communications manager of the Northern New England Red Cross Blood Services Region. “It’s the blood on the shelves that helps save lives in an emergency, and that’s why we’re asking eligible individuals to make an appointment to give blood or platelets today.”  While all blood types are urgently needed, there is a more critical need for the following blood and donation types right now:

  • Platelets: The clotting portion of blood primarily given to cancer patients during treatment and is always in great demand.•
  • Type O negative: The blood type that can be transfused to almost everyone and is what doctors reach for in trauma situations. •
  • Type B negative: The blood type that can be transfused to type B Rh-positive and negative patients.
  • Type AB: The plasma type that can be transfused to almost everyone and can be donated through a platelet or plasma donation, where available, or during a regular blood donation.

How to help: Eligible donors can find a blood or platelet donation opportunity and schedule an appointment to donate by using the free Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass are encouraged to help speed up the donation process. RapidPass lets donors complete the pre-donation reading and answer the health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, by visiting redcrossblood.org/rapidpass from the convenience of a mobile device or computer, or through the Blood Donor App.

City Seeks Planning Commission Candidates

Two long-time members of the Planning Commission, Jon Anderson and Tina Ruth, have resigned. The commission recently wrapped up its work on re-adopting the existing master plan and adopting new zoning regulations. Both were approved by the city council in early January, with some changes. The commission will now turn to a number of other tasks before it, including working on a new master plan.

The city council is seeking individuals interested in filling the remainder of the two two-year terms. The terms expire in October 2019. Interested candidates should submit a letter of interest and a brief resume by noon on February 5 to the City Manager’s office or by e-mail to jgranfield@montpelier-vt.org. Appointments will be made at the Council’s February 14 meeting; applicants are encouraged to attend. If you have questions, call the planning office at 223-9506.

Tulsi Tea Room Launches Take-Home Meal Service

Those missing the sit-down service at Tulsi Tea room can still enjoy the culinary talents of its owner Solenne Thompson, who, as of two weeks ago, is now fully dedicating her time and energy to the take-home meal service. It’s just part of her overall mission to help people achieve greater health through nutrition, further exemplified by her work as an LPN at Central Vermont Home Health and Hospice.

“Part of the reason I went into nursing,” she explains, “is that I am very interested in preventative health, and I think that food and nutrition contribute a lot to that to a great extent. In that way they overlap.

”In this case, they are also delicious, drawing on Thompson’s largely self-taught culinary skills that lean heavily on Indian cuisine, noted for being both healthy and vegetarian. The health content is further supported with local sourcing when possible, particularly from Black River Produce, based in North Springfield, Vermont.

Each week, a menu is sent out to subscribers of the service (sign up tulsitearoom.com), who then select the meal and amount, from a pint to a half-gallon each. Examples of dishes include delicata squash and black bean curry, red quinoa with sautéed shiitake mushrooms, and black dal seasoned with smoky lapsang souchong tea.

Customers then pick up the food, which comes in glass jars, on Saturdays.

Because dishes are often customizable, they are all the more appealing for those with dietary restrictions and medical ailments, from thyroid and gluten issues to cancer. Thompson is particularly interested in developing a larger component down the road for postpartum. However, too much success at the take-home service may pose problems. “The model is not for growth; it’s for maintenance,” she explains.

No doubt her many happy subscribers (including this managing editor) hope she can maintain for some time to come.i


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