Jan 07, 2011 Russ Tarby Uncategorized
No matter how much fun you had on Saturday night, there’s plenty more to be had on Sunday morning. If you harbor any doubts, and especially if your head’s pounding after Saturday’s nocturnal revels, check out the bayou-inspired brunches at the Empire Brewing Co., 120 Walton St., in Armory Square, downtown. Admission is free.
Not only are the spicy Tex-Mex vittles super-satisfying, the roots tunes by Los Blancos will have you kicking up your heels as you cure that hangover.
The Blancos boys – bassist Steve Winston, guitarist Colin Aberdeen, accordionist Mark Nanni and drummer Mark Tiffault – play for brunch audiences on Sunday afternoons, Jan. 9, 16 and 23.
On the final Sunday of each month, the Super Delinquents, now fronted by Pete McMahon, will fill in for Los Blancos.
Meanwhile, the four dudes perform a cornucopia of American roots music – blues, zydeco, funk, jazz, soul and outlaw country. They cover tunes by artists such as Professor Longhair and The Band as well as offering up well-crafted originals like Aberdeen’s “Get Along,” Winston’s “Backbeat Rhythm” and Nanni’s “Changes.”
While the Empire serves Sunday brunch starting at 11:30 a.m., the quartet plays from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Los Blancos’ faithful fans dig the brunch scene because the versatile Mark Nanni switches from keyboard to accordion, lending a touch of Cajun ambiance to the early-afternoon affair.
“This is a super-cool event,” exclaimed Tiffault.
The drummer, who’s the beating heart of the band, says the brunches are a perfect opportunity for folks of all ages to bask in the Los Blancos sound.
“It’s great fun for the entire family,” Tiffault said. “Bring your kids, bring your parents, bring your appetite!”
For Los Blancos info, log on to casablancos.com.
Po’ boys and burritos
Perusing the Empire Brewing Co.’s brunch menu makes me salivate.
You can eat simply or substantially.
For a mere pittance you can munch on a roasted po’ boy with scrambled eggs, cheddar-jack cheese and chipotle mayo ($8), or order a Mexican breakfast pizza ($8) or a burrito del sol with red beans and rice ($7.50).
You might spring for heartier fare such as sweet fire fajitas featuring Creole andouille sausage ($12). Kids can nibble “Little Einstein,” French toast sticks with Critz Farms maple syrup, bacon and eggs ($5)
They’re not listed on the official brunch menu, but the Empire kitchen often serves Big Easy gumbo, lobster bisque, jambalaya and crawfish NoLa.
For adults, no blues brunch would be complete without a little hair of the dog, and the Empire offers several original options as well as the traditional bloody mary or mimosa (each $6).
Jump-start your intake slowly with a low-alcohol Red Eye, a blend of the Empire’s own Skinny Atlas beer with tomato juice. Or kick it up right off with an apple ginger pie martini.
The Empire rocks its nights away, too. Just Joe performs his high-energy solo rock show at 10:30 p.m. every Thursday this month, while another Joe – Joe Driscoll – performs his fusion of hip-hop and roots rock at 11 p.m. Friday Jan. 7.
Jason and Peg (from The Reissues) play at 11 p.m. Jan. 14, and former SU lacrosse star-turned-tunesmith Mike Powell takes the stage at 11 p.m. Jan. 28.
For Empire info, call 475-BEER, or visit empirebrew.com.
Had he not overdosed on Dilaudid and dozen other dangerous drugs on Aug. 16, 1977, at age 42, Elvis Presley would’ve turned 76 years old on Jan. 8.
Albany’s red hot rockabilly trio, the Lustre Kings, will celebrate Presley’s nativity at 10 p.m. Friday Jan. 7 at the Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, 246 W. Willow St., downtown. Admission is free. Gretsch-toting guitarist Mark Gamsjager fronts the Lustre Kings, who regularly back such rockabilly icons as Bill Kirchen, Wanda Jackson and Robert Gordon.
On Elvis’ actual birth date, Saturday Jan. 8 The Reissues will hold forth at the Dino. That rockin’ band features Jason Vaughn, Peg Newell, Matt Hampson and Matt Houghtaling.
Young subs at Pasta’s
Guitarist Tom Bronzetti and keyboardist Andrew Carroll will replace bandleader-saxophonist John Rohde and keyboardist Rick Montalbano Sr. from 7 to 10 p.m. Wednesday Jan. 12 at Pastabilities, 311 S. Franklin St., in Armory Square. The third member of the Rohde trio – vibraphonist Jimmy Johns – will welcome the two young lions to the stage.
Meanwhile, Bronzetti will be picking in the pit band when Syracuse Stage presents “Rent” Jan. 18 through Feb. 13; syracusestage.org.