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CONTENTS 2014 • VOLUME 11 • NO. 7



48 Old Capitol Celebrates 175th Turning the pages of history, together. By Andrea Brown Ross

18 Living Well Understanding the elusive Lyme Disease. By Chere Coen

44 Greater Goods Picnic, Pool and Outdoor Parties

52 Ambling along Coastal Georgia

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68 Table Talk Food + Truck = Food Trucks. By Devin Greaney

22 Exploring Arts

64 Homegrown New hot pepper sauce by D’Evereux. By Chere Coen

26 Exploring Books Senator David Jordan’s Mississippi memoir. By Andrea Brown Ross

66 In Good Spirits The Mojito By Ashley Buescher

Small town charms where land meets sea. By Lazelle Jones

56 Summer Entertaining Bringing Mediterranean cuisine to the table. By Karen Ott Mayer 61 Introducing Art Fabric New fabric collections by Mississippi artist. By Karen Ott Mayer

All tied up in knots. By Corey Latta

The portraiture of painter Sue Foell. By Chelle Ellis

30 Exploring Cuisine

Smoking summer meats with Scott. By Corey Latta

34 Exploring Destinations Girls only Orange Beach & Gulf Shores escape. By Paula Mitchell

70 Exploring Events 72 Reflections The Great Tomato Chase By Jeanne Tew

38 A Day Away… in Water Valley, Mississippi

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editor’s note }


Fire It Up When the DeSoto team sat down this year and started talking about editorial ideas, July presented an ironic challenge. It’s summer, it’s a holiday month, fresh food abounds and Mandy kindly reminded us of all the music happenings. It was overwhelming trying to pick and choose. So, we didn’t. Instead, we decided to just throw in the towel and celebrate all the good things happening around us! Beginning on page 48, Andrea gives us a glimpse of Mississippi’s Old Capitol, celebrating its 175th year. This important landmark has seen more than its fair share of celebrations and struggles, and continues life as a museum. Ironically, Andrea also tracked down Senator David L. Jordan to talk with him about his memoir, “From the Mississippi Cotton Fields to the State Senate” on page 26. With 2014 marking the 50th anniversary of the 1964 summer civil rights marches in Mississippi, our July 4th this year carries even greater weight when considering the words freedom and independence. And, food. Where do I begin? I could head south to Natchez on page 64 with D’Evereaux Foods and their new hot sauce company or I could drive north to Memphis and discover the food truck revolution. Maybe I’ll just stay on the farm and take my own advice on page 56 for entertaining, Mediterranean style. Sound too fancy? Read how Sonoma County, California chefs bring this style of food closer to home. And with our

JULY 2014 • Vol. 11 No. 7 PUBLISHER & CREATIVE DIRECTOR Adam Mitchell



EDITOR Karen Ott Mayer


gardens full of herbs--and of course, tomatoes---this is the perfect time to chop up some basil or open a bottle of Rosé. Chere’s story on page 18 regarding Lyme Disease hits a personal chord as I know people who have been diagnosed, or misdiagnosed, due to vague symptoms. If you’re like me and love the outdoors, be sure to read about how to protect you and your family. If you’re sitting on the beach or just working in the garden this month, we hope you find plenty of time to read--and plenty of reasons to celebrate. Happy 4th!


on the cover A Tuscan pergola makes a beautiful outdoor entertaining and dining area. Nothing brings families and friends together like an party under the stars!

Scott Miller Paula Mitchell Karen Ott Mayer Lazelle Jones Devin Greaney

EDITORIAL CONTRIBUTORS Ashley Beuscher Cheré Coen Chelle Ellis Devin Greaney Bobby Hickman Lazelle Jones Corey Latta Karen Ott Mayer Paula Mitchell Andrea Brown Ross Jeanne Tew

Published By Desoto Media Co. 2375 Memphis St. Ste 205 Hernando, MS 38632 662.429.4617 Fax 662.449.5813 © 2014 DeSoto Media Co. DeSoto Magazine must give permission for any material contained herein to be reproduced in any manner. Any advertisements published in DeSoto Magazine do not constitute an endorsement of the advertiser’s services or products. DeSoto Magazine is published monthly by DeSoto Media Co. Parties interested in advertising should email or call 662.429.4617. Visit us online at

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dear desoto } summer vacations Dear Readers: We love hearing from you. Drop us a line if you have comments, questions or suggestions related to our editorial features and/or departments. Email our editor, Karen, at or write to: 2375 Memphis St., Ste 205, Hernando, MS 38632. We’ve had great submissions for our “Summer Vacations” Facebook photo contest! It’s not too late to submit your photo. Email your picture to, and you could win a $50 gift card to Target . Contest ends July 14th. Here’s a few staff favorites.

Kayaking around Alaskan Glaciers. -Steven Pittman, Hernando, Ms.

Our girls in the surf! Orange Beach, Al. - Camille Pittman, Hernando, Ms 12 DeSoto

Ole Miss game College World Series. Omaha, Nebraska. Left to right. Jack Berr y, Dion Kevin III, Jeff Berr y. Oxford MS

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living well }

lyme disease

‘The Great Imitator’:

Lyme Disease By Cheré Coen Photography courtesy of and Andrea Caesar

Summer is in full swing and an opportune time to enjoy the great outdoors. With summer, however, comes increased exposure to ticks, those annoying pests that latch onto skin, bite, and carry diseases. One of the most harmful diseases — and one sometimes difficult to diagnose — is Lyme Borreliosis, otherwise known as Lyme Disease. Symptoms may appear as the flu, such as headaches, fatigue, joint swelling, muscle pain and gastrointestinal distress. But what many people don’t realize is that symptoms of Lyme Disease also include depression and mimic other diseases such as Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, MS, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, to name only a few, according to Andrea Caesar, author of “A Twist of Lyme: Battling a Disease That ‘Doesn’t Exist.’” Caesar’s symptoms began when she was 11 years old. An athletic child who was constantly active, she began having intense body pains and migraine headaches. “I missed a lot of school,” she said, adding that she required weekly massages for her “rock hard” muscles.

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In her 20s, the symptoms became psychological — depression, some paranoia — in addition to the neurological problems. By the time she was 36 and doctors had considered other diseases to be the possible causes of her health problems, she sat down with her family and thought back to when her life had changed. That’s when they remembered she had been bitten by a tick in 1986. Today, Caesar is in “long-term remission” of “chronic Lyme,” never to be fully rid of the disease. She has written a book in the hopes of informing others that Lyme Disease may be the cause of problems when it appears to be another disease. “Lyme is a complex set of infections,” she explained. “It’s not just one. It’s a brilliant organism, really.” Symptoms depend on a person’s genetic makeup and their immune system, Caesar said. While some people will have minor symptoms such as headaches, joint pain and the trademark skin rash called erythema migrans that are easily treated with antibiotics, some will have neurological issues for life.

“Lyme doesn’t look the same in everyone,” she said. Immuno Technologies Inc., a Memphis-based medical research and development company, was recently awarded $1 million in federal funding to further develop technology that can help doctors rapidly diagnose Lyme disease. Only the black-legged tick, or deer tick, carries Lyme Disease but when enjoying the outdoors this summer, it’s best to use prevention. Caesar encourages the following tips:

• Wear light-colored clothing so ticks are easier to spot. “Deer ticks are like little pieces of dirt—they’re very hard to see,” Caesar said. • Use bug spray before going outside. If a product includes DEET, the most common active ingredient in bug repellants but a chemical, do not apply to skin; apply on clothes. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends products used on children’s clothing not have more than 30 percent DEET. • For a natural alternative to bug sprays, apply catnip oil to skin. • Tie hair back tightly and wear a baseball cap. • Wear long pants or leggings and tuck the bottoms into socks or secure with a rubber band. • “And every night do a tick check,” Caesar said. Ticks prefer the lower back, armpits and abdomen and groin areas. • If a tick is found, remove it with tweezers or a tick removal kit, pulling the tick out from the head, not the body. Place the tick in a plastic bag for testing. Call the doctor for an appointment and have the tick tested. “It’s much easier to test a tick than it is to test a person,” Caesar said. If it’s positive, find a Lyme disease specialist at

“A Twist of Lyme” is available at For more information, visit

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living real } tying knots

Square knot

Tying Knots By Corey Latta Photo Courtesy of


ar from the couch, beyond the threshold of your front door, even on past the world of smart phones, lies adventure. This is the season for it. It’s summer. The best of what might be is often found outdoors. The warm weather and long summer days mean that you want to get outside. It’s time to take the boat out. Time to fish. There is camping to be done. And with that recreation comes the practical, like ropes and knots. Learning basic knots can better equip you for summer fun and safety. To tie down new memories, “the best of what might be,” you have to know how to connect those ropes of your adventures. 22 DeSoto

After all, this is knot the time of year to stay dormant. Experienced outdoorsman John King, district commissioner for the Northwest Mississippi District of The Boy Scouts of America, begins explaining the basics of knot tying by first pointing out the different purposes for each knot. While every knot shares the same purpose of securely binding objects together, not every knot fits every occasion. For example, the Square Knot, also known as the reef knot, is “probably one of the strongest knots you will find,” King claims. It works well when joining two pieces of rope. “There are several modifications of the square knot. They

are good to use for camping, typically a tent or tarp.” To begin to form the square knot a left-handed overhand knot is tied to a right-handed overhand knot. There is a quaint rhyme to help bring to mind how to tie a square: “Right over left, left over right, makes a knot both tidy and tight.” Alex Hunt, an experienced rock climber who works at Outdoors Inc. in Memphis, attests to its strength. “The most common knot I use is a square knot. It’s a great knot for tying two ropes together or two ends of the same rope to make a loop. It’s simple, and it is strong when there is opposition on both sides.” Another couple of knots that prove helpful for braving the great outdoors are the Two Half-Hitches and the Taut-line Hitch. The two half-hitches consists of an overhand knot tied around a post, followed by a half-hitch, which is a simple overhand where the working end of the rope is pulled over and under the standing part of the rope. The taut-line hitch, King explains, “adds one more loop that causes slippage on the mainline, allowing you to tighten and maintain tension between a tent peg and tent, if you’re camping, for example.” The Bowline is a well-known knot and one of the four basic maritime knots (the others being the figure-eight, the reef knot, and the clove hitch). The bowline is known for its static strength, and like the square knot, comes with a sing-song mnemonic: “Up through the rabbit hole, round the big tree; down through the rabbit hole, and off goes he.” As King says, “because of its strength, the bowline knot is intended as anchor.” The bowline is great for boating, attaching two objects together, and general camping needs. Another simple knot is the Timber Hitch. The timber is very easy to tie. Often used by arborists and campers for dragging limbs back to camp, the timber hitch works great to move debris or branches to and from a campsite.     The Clove Hitch is considered an important standard knot and a good one for summer adventurers to know. Consisting of two successive half-hitches around an object, the clove is a functional binding knot, most fixing two lashings together. A last knot to mention, though there are dozens more types of knots than listed here, is the Sheet Bend which is used to fix two ropes of different sizes and diameters together.  Let’s say you are in the woods on a camping excursion and have a tarp without a hole in the corner. The tarp needs securing. The sheet bend knot allows you to weave the corner of the tarp with the working end of the rope. Discussing the sheet bend’s versatility in just such an outdoor situation, King says, “a sheet bend will secure the corner of a tarp or tent to the rope better than any other knot. It’s a handy knot to know.” Mastering knot tying is a life skill which reaches far beyond summer. For beginners, however, summer offers the ideal season to get started. Let the adventures begin.

Clove Hitch knot

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exploring art } sue foell

Comfortable by Sue Foell

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Stroke of Mother’s Love By Chelle Ellis Photogrphy courtesy of Sue Foell



“There is a lot to be gained from painted portraits. A true portrait is fuller and richer than simply an image on a flat surface.”


Sam Adoquei

Portrait painter Sue Foell found her muse 16 years ago when she began painting. In 2001, Foell became a stay-at-home-mom after a 14-year career as a graphic artist. At the time, she was living in Houston, Texas, where the art community was strong and provided a creative outlet. “I happened to luck into lessons taught by an amazing portrait artist there named William J. Kalwick, Jr.”, Foell recalls. For the next four years, Foell studied with Kalwick and through his tutelage found a lasting love for portrait and figurative painting. Ironically, her muse and model of most of Foell’s paintings, her own daughter Kayla, was found on her own doorstep. She started painting the child when she was five years old; now she’s 16 and Foell is prepared to watch her go off to college considering new subjects. “It’s nice to see the changes in my style and in Kayla when looking through the years of paintings I’ve done of her. She’s going off to college, so now is the time when I’ll start to use other models,” Foell predicts. “I’m in a transitional period right

now, moving away from her and finding some new subjects. Probably the same theme, a pretty person with good lighting in a setting that isn’t dated.” Over the years, Foell has garnered national attention and awards for her work. Recently, Foell opened her show on Mother’s Day, bearing the same title, at Lotton Gallery in Chicago, Illinois, with eight of her pieces on display until the show closed May 22nd. Also, the May 2014 issue of American Art Collector covered “A Mother’s Love” in a two-page spread. “The title was quite appropriate since most of the paintings were of my daughter!” Foell explains. “Mother”s Day” was the first showing of Foell”s work in Chicago but her paintings can be found in galleries in Germantown, Tennessee, Charleston, South Carolina and Atlantic Beach, North Carolina. She was previously in a gallery in Scottsdale, Arizona until it closed and she is seeking another Western venue to sell her paintings. Foell’s goal is to work with as many galleries as possible across the country to increase exposure of her work. But what she really likes to paint are commissioned portraits. “My dream DeSoto 25

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is to paint people so they have the painting, instead of painting people and having other people who don’t even know the model buy the painting.” Foell prefers to paint from life but isn’t against painting from photos. She may resort to such methods, while her daughter is away at college. “I learned how to paint from life, which is the best way to learn. But once you know the techniques and how to do that, you can paint from a photo. To me, it’s not as good, but a benefit is that the model stays really still when you paint from a photo,” Foell jokes. Like most artists, Foell strives to perfect her technique and hopes to become looser and more painterly. Her subject matter and theme examines the way the light hits her subject and those possibilities are so vast she could explore this technique forever. “Experimenting with the different ways the light hits the subject.. it’s just fun,” Foell says. Foell enters a national and international oil painting show every year and will soon learn if she is accepted into the Oil Painters of America Eastern show, where she has entered two paintings of her daughter, “Comfortable” and “Peaceful”. Last year, she received an Honorable Mention for Artistic Excellence and a Jury’s Top 60 in the Salon International 2013 Show, Greenhouse Gallery of Fine Art, San Antonio, Texas. “This was kind of a big deal because people enter that from all over the world. I’ve also gotten into two of the Oil Painters of  America’s national juried exhibitions which is distinctive because they get thousands of entries,” Foell explains. The list of Foell’s awards is lengthy. Foell has taught portrait painting in Memphis and Germantown and currently teaches oil painting to adults at the DeSoto Arts Council, in Hernando, Mississippi and in Collierville, Tennessee, at The Morton Museum of Collierville History.

More information on Foell and her paintings can be found at

Left: Peaceful by Sue Foell

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exploring books } jordan’s memoir

JORDAN’S JOURNEY Senator David L. Jordan’s memoir chronicles his journey from humble beginnings in the Mississippi Delta to the State Capitol

By Andrea Brown Ross Photo Courtesy of University Press of Mississippi


his summer marks the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer, or the Mississippi Summer Project, as it is also known. In 1964, civil rights workers and volunteers gathered in Mississippi to register as many African American voters as possible. While many of those who participated in Freedom Mississippi hailed from various locations across America, native Mississippians also worked to improve equality for all citizens. In 1965, the Greenwood Voters’ League was established in Greenwood, Mississippi. Elected president was a local African American man, David L. Jordan. This position would play an integral part in preparing Jordan as a human rights champion. Born to sharecroppers in LeFlore County, Miss., Jordan comments, “I was weaned in the cotton fields. At the age of two, I began picking cotton with a pillowcase alongside my family.” As a family of seven, his family not only lived together, but they worked together. Jordan credits his family with teaching him the importance of teamwork. “I followed the patterns of my parents.” Jordan began school when he was seven. Because formal education did not exist for African American children on plantations, he attended school in a church. As was common during that time, he only attended school a few months out of 28 DeSoto

the year, as the cotton crop dictated. Eventually, Jordan was able to attend the public school for children of color, although he had fallen two years behind. Undaunted, he completed high school. As a college student at Mississippi Valley State, a particular assignment would profoundly affect him. Indeed, it would be something he never forgot. The assignment was to read the newspaper and stay abreast of the murder trial of Emmett Till. Instead of just reading about the trial, however, Jordan and a few classmates decided to pool together gas money and attend the trial. “We didn’t think twice about going. We were not afraid. We were angry. We had no fear. As a boy, I could never understand what evils we had done to be segregated and treated like this. I had wondered why is the world like this.” While attending the trial, they observed Emmett Till’s mother accompanied by African American Congressman, Charles Diggs from Detroit, Michigan. Jordan says,” I had never seen a black, African American congressman. We had only heard of Adam Clayton Powell [Junior], the first African American man elected to Congress in New York.” Seeing an African American man in an elected government position, gave Jordan a glimpse of what possibilities might be in his future.

Continuing his secondary education, Jordan ultimately graduated with a Master’s degree in Chemistry from the University of Wyoming. Jordan’s involvement with civil rights was sometimes deemed too controversial. In his professional career as an educator, he once lost a job because of his involvement. Regardless, he continued to pursue equal opportunities for all Mississippians. Jordan says the highlight of his political career has been the casting of votes for Barack Obama. “On August 27, 2008, I was able to cast votes for Mississippi at the Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado. The majority of the votes went to Barack Obama. After casting the votes, I thought of my father. I could picture him leaning on a hoe at the end of a cotton row. Like a lot of parents, he had hoped that someday his children would get to meet the president of the United States. Now, we were voting for an African American to be president.” DeSoto 29

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From picking cotton as a child to meeting President Barack Obama, Jordan has witnessed significant social change in his lifetime. Although he has represented the 24th Senatorial District since 1993, Jordan’s catalyst for change in the Mississippi Delta can be traced back much further. Reflecting back on his life, Jordan states, “I will not allow ignorance, prejudice, and hatred to write my epitaph.” Jordan felt his story should be told in order for younger people to appreciate the sacrifice and obstacles that have been overcome for the sake of civil rights. Robert L. Jenkins, professor emeritus at Mississippi State University, worked with Jordan on his memoir. Jenkins felt it important that Jordan’s story be told with the authenticity that comes when someone shares their experiences in their own words. “Everyone has a story; but his story should be told in his voice,” says Jenkins. Regarding Jordan’s legacy, Jenkins comments. “He will be recognized as a champion of human rights; it’s possible for someone from a humble background to make a worthy contribution.” Jordan credits his family as being a key motivation in wanting to create equal opportunities. “If I had to do it all over again I would, not for David Jordan, but for other people”. So while Jordan celebrates family milestones this summer, such as a granddaughter’s high school graduation and his 60th wedding anniversary, he also celebrates the strides made with civil rights. Although he is now 81 years old, Jordan says he will continue to champion human rights, as he made up his mind to do so years ago. “Nothing beats a made-up mind.”

David L. Jordan serves as Senator of the 24th District, Greenwood City Councilman and as President of the Greenwood Voters’ League

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exploring cuisine } smoking meats

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Smoked Glazed Bacon Wrapped Scallops

Cooking Up Summer Fun Story by Corey Latta

Photography by Scott Miller of Scotty’s Smokehouse

It’s summertime in the South. Family get-togethers. Fishing. Vacations. And naturally, good food. If the South does one thing well, it is food. Serving up savory, sought-after-cuisines, the South has been writing the book on food for a long time. Nowhere is the South’s signature more clearly written than on barbecue, as evidenced by Hernando, Mississippi’s own Scotty’s Smokehouse.   With a passion for cooking great food and putting smiles on his customer’s faces, Scotty Miller’s award-winning smokehouse barbecue has become a local southern staple.   Founded in 2008, Scotty’s Smokehouse has built an impressive reputation as one of the Mid-South’s best barbecue

joints. Excellence doesn’t happen by accident, and part of Miller’s popular success comes from his careful attention to the fundamentals of cooking. When preparing to smoke, Miller reminds barbecue lovers to choose quality, grade A meat. “The better the meat’s quality, the better it turns out,” says Miller. Baby back ribs don’t know how to cook themselves, though, so Miller emphasizes the importance of being patient during the smoking process. “Always have the time and patience when preparing, cooking, and allowing your cooked meats to rest before serving.” This kind of patient preparation is a marker of Scotty’s Smokehouse. Each piece of meat is carefully cooked to perfection, as frequent patrons attest. Selecting a cooker with which to master the art of smoking can be a tricky decision because of the sheer volume of cookers DeSoto 33

on the market. Miller affirms the wide range of selections ambitious grill masters have at their disposal, “You can use a smaller grill such as a Weber grill or the old faithful Brinkmann Smoker.” He continues. “Or you can go with a larger offset smoker or indirect cooker. There are a lot of good smokers on the market, so the decision about what to cook on is one of personal preference.” Choosing wood is equally important to the smoking process. At Scotty’s Smokehouse, hickory is the wood of choice. “I personally use hickory on all my pork, I think it goes really well, but you have to be careful not to over smoke it,” says Miller.  What kind of wood you use will partly determine the flavor, as Miller attests. “Pecan and all fruit woods are also great to smoke with; they’re a little milder and sweeter. They give their own flavor profile to the cuts of meat.”  As in choosing the right meat and the right cooker, putting some thought into the wood choice will affect the quality of your cook.   Of course, what really matters is having the right recipe. Scotty’s Smokehouse offers some of the most flavorful and innovative recipes in the Mid-South, two of which Miller has been kind enough to share. “Have fun and enjoy what you’re cooking. Try different recipes, rubs, injections, glazes, and different smoking woods. They all will produce different flavor profiles. Just have fun.”   Fun and barbecue are always on the menu at Scotty’s Smokehouse.

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Scotty Miller’s Smoked Glazed Bacon Wrapped Scallops recipe Wrap scallops in precooked bacon, then place in aluminum pan. Baste in melted butter and barbecue sauce. Add a little sea salt and black pepper. Sprinkle with a barbecue rub of your choice. Smoke for 35-45 min. at 250 degrees. About the last 10 minutes of cook time, glaze the scallops one last time. Miller’s choice of glaze is a shot of bourbon. “My preferred brand is Knob Creek smoked maple. It adds the perfect profile. Crown maple is also a good choice.”   Smokers could also use Scotty’s own butter bourbon BBQ glaze. Remove the pan from the cooker when done, cover, let rest for 15 minutes, and enjoy!

“Always have the time

and patience when preparing, cooking, and allowing your cooked meats to rest Before serving.” Scott Miller Grilled Vegetable Recipe:

Get fresh vegetables such as zucchini, squash, & mushrooms from local market. Wash and slice as desired.  Lightly season vegetables with salt, pepper, garlic, and Scotty’s Smokehouse BBQ rub. Coat with melted butter and half a can of beer.  Toss and let marinate for 45 min to an hour.  Grill to perfection and enjoy.

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exploring destinations } alabama’s coast

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Girl’s Time at the

Alabama Shore Story and Photography by Paula Mitchell



“ Anybody can be an explorer if they want to be. You can be an astronaut if you want. Figure out what you want to do, and then go do it. – Helen Thayer, the first woman to walk across the Sahara


omen particularly understand the frenzied daily routine of work, home, kids and chores. With busy lives, sometimes the only option is to just get away, and for weary moms and professionals, nothing can better refresh a mind and soul than a long weekend with girlfriends. Laughing, shopping, eating and talking into the night, girlfriends can regain connections and simply relax. And there is no better place to get away and relax than to the beautiful beaches of Orange Beach and Gulf Shores, Alabama. Joanie Flynn, Vice President of Marketing for Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism says it best. “All those cares melt away. No stress, so spouses, no kids and no worries.” So grab your beach towel and sunscreen and come along with me as we visit my favorite vacation destination.

Where to Stay The Island House Hotel is the place I return to year after year. Located on the white sand beaches in Orange Beach, it’s close to shops and restaurants. All the rooms have private balconies overlooking the Gulf.

When I am away from home the last thing I want to do is make my own meals. The Island Grill serves breakfast and lunch. You can eat there, in your room or poolside. Besides the beautiful outdoor pool facing the ocean, other amenities include the Sand Bar Lounge, private beach, fitness center and brand new meeting facilities. The meeting facility is perfect for corporate retreats and special events And the best part of all is the friendly and attentive staff, who make you feel right at home. If you prefer to rent a condo, there are many options. See sidebar for companies in the area that specialize in finding the vacation rental to fit your needs.

Where to Eat After a day at the pool, beach or shopping, it’s time to refuel over a leisurely dinner. Of course, seafood is abundant and fresh on the Gulf Coast. Bahama Bob’s Beach Side Café as casual as their tag line, “lower the latitude, better the attitude” imparts. Food runs the gamut, from fresh steamed, grilled or fried seafood to juicy burgers. Flip flops and shorts dictate the dress here. DeSoto 37

Pictured above: Tacky Jack’s, The Wharf’s ferris wheel and SanRoc Cay

If Italian is more your style, Franco’s Italian Restaurant with the signature red and white striped awning offers pizzas, seafood, traditional Italian dishes and live music. Located in a strip mall, it’s been a local dining favorite for years. For fine dining, Louisiana Lagniappe hits the mark. The only problem here is choosing among all the chef specialty dishes like the Grouper Pontchartrain served with fried jumbo soft shell crab and Hollandaise or the Twin Lobster Tails. While the menu may change, the beautiful view of the Cotton Bayou remains the same. Across Cotton Bayou is Tacky Jack’s Grill and Tavern, the place President Obama chose to visit on his trip to the Gulf. They have fresh seafood, Mexican Garbage (the biggest pile of beef and cheese nachos you have ever seen) and the best Bushwacker. In case you are not familiar with the Bushwacker, it’s a local drink that tastes like a milkshake. Only this milkshake is made with rum. 38 DeSoto

Where to Shop Besides relaxing, shopping is one of my favorite pasttimes, and the Gulf coast does not disappoint. There are several local boutiques scattered up and down Highway 59 and Perdido Beach Blvd. SanRoc Cay Marina offers shopping, dining and live music in season. Serenity by the Beach Salon and Spa is the perfect place to relax and get pampered before a big night out. Owner and manager, Doug Albertson says they get groups from all over the country. “They have a lot of fun here. Getting away and getting their own time.” Another local shopping and dining area is The Wharf, located at the base of the Foley Beach Express in Orange Beach. The Wharf also has a marina, amphitheater and vacation rentals. Be sure to check The Wharf events calendar before you go, because plenty of live entertainment and great acts play here.

Not to be missed is the Tanger Outlet in Foley. Dozens of stores including Michael Kors, Coach, J. Crew and Polo Ralph Lauren line the walks.

Places to Chill Out The Gulf, which opened in November 2012, has the best view of Perdido Bay which opens into the Gulf of Mexico. The buildings are repurposed shipping containers, but the coolest part is the open seating on comfortable couches or big lounge chairs--the perfect spot to catch up with the girls while soaking up the sun, sand and Bob Marley music. No visit to the area would be complete without a trip to the Flora-Bama. This local bar has been going strong since the 1960s. It sits on the Florida/Alabama line, thus the name, and makes for great people watching. For a fun night of dancing be sure to hit Live Bait Nightclub, located behind Live Bait restaurant. You can also hang out at the Live Bait Tiki Bar for drinks and karaoke. If the world is moving too fast these days, take time this summer with the girls at Orange Beach and Gulf Shores to build sandcastles--and new memories.

The Island House Hotel 800-264-2642 Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism 800-745-SAND Brett Robinson Vacation Rentals 800-211-7892 Gulf Shores Rentals 800-537-6903 The Wharf 251-224-1000 DeSoto 39

Water Val ley, MS

9am - Grabbed coffee and breakfast at Mai n Attraction. 10am - Sho pped along Mai n Street and stro lled through several art galleries. 11am- Wor ked up a thirst shopping. Popped into Turnage Drug Store to have a milk shake. They have been open since 1905! 1pm - Lunch at BTC Grocery. The homemade fried pie was amazing. P icked up some local produce to take home. 2pm - Spent the afternoon tour ing Yalobusha Brewing C ompany and Casey Jones Rai lroad Museum. 6pm - Enjoyed juicy crawfish, sweet corn and red potatoes at the Crawdad Hole. Can’t wait to come back and try the fresh Gul f oysters. 7pm - Drove a shor t distance to Enid Lake and watched the sunset.

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Water Valley is a small town with a progressive, diversif ied population of some 3,700 resi dents. Hist orically, the town deve loped as a lucrative stop for the Illin ois Central Rai lroad in the 1800s. Today, Water Valley depends largely on manufacturi ng and agr icult ure as its econ omic mainstays. The Waterme lon carnival, Water Valley’s crowning event, is the city’s homecomi ng fest ival. Named as one of the top 20 fest ivals in the Southeaster n United States by the Southeaster n Tour ism Society, the Waterme lon Car nival draw s thousands of people together for reunions, musical programs, cont inuous entertai nment, food, and arts and crafts. DeSoto 43

Water Valley Chamber of Commerce Yalobusha Brewing Company Free tours on Fridays starting at 4, 5 and 6pm Casey Jones Railroad Museum Thursday, Friday and Saturday 2pm- 4pm BTC Grocery Crawdad Hole Thurs - Fri: 3pm-9pm Sat: 12pm-9pm Sun: 2pm-8pm

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gift guide } picnic gifts

Picnicking Corkcicle Air- Perfect in-bottle cooler for your wine! Chills your wine to the right temperature! $25 The Pink Zinnia 134 West Commerce Street Hernando, MS 38632 662.449.5533

GoVino Pilsner glasses. set of 4. $15. A great on the go drinking glass. It is shatterproof! The Pink Zinnia 134 West Commerce Street Hernando, MS 38632 662.449.5533

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Picnics are more fun with these Southern inspired cups and napkins! Cups - $10, Napkins - $6 About the South 120 W. Main Street Tupelo, MS 38801 662-844-2689

Haul Coutoure Awesome Totes for Tailgating & Picnics. $90.00 Cynthia’s Boutique 2529 Caffey Street Hernando, MS 38632 662-429-9026

gift guide } pool gifts

Pool Fun Monogrammed Pool Chaise $275.00

3-Piece Charleston Aluminum Patio Bistro Set $182.00

Flowy Poncho Cover-Up/Dress $66.00 Janie Rose 5627 Getwell Rd. Suite A5 Southaven, MS 38672 662-510-5577

Vera Bradley Beach Towel in Fanfare. $35 The Pink Zinnia 134 West Commerce Street Hernando, MS 38632 662.449.5533

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gift guide } summer entertaining

Summer Entertaining Perfect for grillilng. Use on pork tenderloin, chicken, shrimp or as a burger or BBQ condiment! $10.95 Nelli e May’s 250 Delta Avenue Clarksdale, MS 38614

Komado Joe Ceramic Grill Quality Landscape and Garden. $950 - $1,800 5845 Goodman Rd, Olive Branch, MS 38654 (662) 342-2815

Melamine Dishes Great for outdoor entertaining. Dishwasher safe and scratch resistant. Prices range from $7.95-$11.95, Nelli e May’s 250 Delta Avenue Clarksdale, MS 38614 662-624-6061 48 DeSoto

Dr. Pete’s grilling sauces and glazes. $8 each. The Merry Magnolia 194 Military Rd Marion, Ar. 72364 (870) 739-5579

Cuisinart 10-Piece Grill Tool Set The durable leather case make storing and traveling with your set a breeze. $71.99

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Old Capitol Museum REMEMBERS 175 YEARS By Andrea Brown Ross Photos Courtesy of Mississippi Department of Archives & History

More than just a museum, the Old Capitol Museum offers a unique link to Mississippi’s past. Registered as a National Historic Landmark and located in downtown Jackson, Mississippi, the Old Capitol Museum boasts being the state’s most historic building. “If you come to Jackson, this is the one place you must visit!” says Old Capitol Museum Director, Clay Williams. “History happened here. You are walking into a building where our government leaders made important decisions that have, for better or worse, made Mississippi what it is today.”  If These Walls Could Talk

Administered by the Mississippi Department of History and Archives, this building has performed many functions since its opening in 1839. Originally serving as the state capitol from 1839 to 1903, the building cost $400,000 and several years to construct. Designed by William Nichols, the Greek Revival style can still be admired today. The Civil War and Reconstruction, as well as the adoption of two Constitutions, occurred while the building served as the State Capitol. With the completion and use of the New Capitol building, the Old Capitol was abandoned. In time, efforts to demolish

the building were thwarted by women preservation groups. Eventually, it was designated as a state office building in 1917. After serving for several years as a home for a variety of state agencies, in 1961 it began housing the State Historical Museum. Designated a National Historic Landmark in 1990, the Old Capitol by then had housed numerous exhibits and programs. Forced to close in 2005 because of Hurricane Katrina, the Old Capitol underwent a restoration process. In 2009, it was reopened to the public. Michael Stoll, Education Historian, comments on the significance of what occurred within the walls of this historic building. DeSoto 51

Heritage Irene

“The Old Capitol Museum is unique because it was the site of many national firsts. People from other parts of the country like to criticize Mississippi as backwards given its sordid past, particularly regarding race relations.” Stoll explains further how The Old Capitol Museum openly addresses this past with an accurate history of the many controversial decisions made, from the Black Codes that severely restricted the rights of AfricanAmericans after the Civil War, to the poll tax and literacy test laws written into the 1890 Constitution that virtually annihilated the African-American vote. The Old Capitol Museum also provides an insight into the history that changed the state and the country for the better. “Many do not realize when they enter the building, they are stepping into the very building where the nation’s first two African-American U.S. senators, Hiram Revels and Blanche K. Bruce, were elected. They are in the building where the nation’s first law that allowed married women the right to own property was passed. They are in the building where Alcorn State University, the nation’s oldest land grant school for African-American students, and the Mississippi University for Women, the nation’s first public college for women, were chartered,” he adds. Stoll knows the power of a place, especially one with such deep roots. “I’ve lost count of how many visitors have told me that what they learned at the museum, combined with the sheer majesty of the building, had changed their perspective of Mississippi. It’s a comforting feeling knowing that the work we do here educates people and shows them that Mississippi is more than just the negative history they read in books or see on television.”

Remembering 175 years The Old Capitol Museum offers a variety of programs and exhibits to appeal to all its patrons. Having recently commemorated the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer where black Mississippians were encouraged to become registered voters, the museum was honored to have the director of the Freedom Summer Project, Dr. Robert Moses, open “Stand up!”, an exhibit in the William F. Winter Archives and History Building. “The Old Capitol Museum is always 52 DeSoto

honored to host special guests, and this June, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer, it was a pleasure to have Dr. Robert Moses speak in our historic House of Representatives Chamber and reminiscence about that momentous summer,” says Williams. There is a multitude of learning opportunities at the Old Capitol Museum. One such exhibit is the “Monuments to Democracy: The Fifty State Capitols”. A scavenger hunt is available to children as they learn about the state capitols. Williams says, “It is amazing how many of our visitors are in the process of visiting all 50 state capitols and so, we are happy to now provide an opportunity to view them all in one place. Come see it and tell us what capitol is your favorite—besides the Old Capitol of course.” In addition to the state capitol hunt, the museum is also providing a program geared for children. The program, “Mississippi Inspectors: Architectural Detectives Kids Camp”, is a week- long adventure scouring some of Jackson’s historical venues. Stacy Everett, Head of Museum Division Education, elaborates. “We have such a unique opportunity to tell the history of Jackson and Mississippi through the architecture of the MDAH historic sites in Jackson. From its beginning in 1830s to the 1920s we have sites of various architectural styles that tell stories unique to Jackson and Mississippi and its people. We encourage the kids who are at the camp to not just remember the dates and names from history, but put them in their homes and workplaces so they can better understand the growth of the city and the state.” Periodically, the museum hosts the “History is Lunch” series. Throughout the year, a variety of topics is presented by museum staff. In the fall, the “Present Meets Past Preview” is scheduled. “Every year in October as part of our living history program, we present what is called ‘Present Meets Past’ where our visitors can meet and interact with important characters from our building’s history,” says Williams.

Looking Forward to Seeing the Past “The Old Capitol Museum is so important and different from other museums because ‘History Happened Here!’ Visitors get to tour the building where these events took place and with interactive exhibits, and video and audio presentations, get to witness and experience these events almost first-hand. Other museums might offer exhibits or fascinating artifacts, but nothing compares to being in the place where those events actually happened. If you love history, if you love to walk around a beautiful building, then we are the place for you!” says Williams. For additional information, including exhibits and operating hours, please call 601-576-6920, or check out their website at

Upcoming Events Monuments to Democracy: The Fifty State Capitols, March – October 2014 Mississippi Inspectors: Architectural Detectives Kids Camp, July 2014 The Mummy Returns, October 2014 Present Meets Past, October 2014

To see a complete listing of events and exhibits, please visit DeSoto 53

Coastal Georgia

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A PLACE TO WANDER Coastal Georgia stretches the legs... and imagination Story and Photography by Lazelle Jones


t the bottom of the eastern seaboard is a strand of coast where the surf washes up against sandy beaches as it has done since the beginning of time. It mixes with brackish water, churns around the barrier islands that dot the seascape, and deposits its bounty of marine life that guarantees life will continue in the estuaries found wedged in between the fingershaped peninsulas. From St. Marys to the south and Savannah 150 miles to the north, Coastal Georgia is a magical place, lined with nooks and crannies that reveal a world layered with rich history, provincial culture, culinary wonders, rustic yet elegant bed & breakfasts, modern seaside island golf resorts, RV campgrounds, boutique shops, farmers markets and flea markets that simply cannot be ignored.

Fifty miles above the state line, Jekyll Island is a world unto itself with the centerpiece being the Jekyll Island Club Hotel. A splendid luxury retreat built in the 1800’s to accommodate the nuevo rich and famous of the industrial north, today it is fully restored to its original grandeur, including its massive covered porches that are lined with white rocking chairs. Elegant accommodations, 5-star dining, golf, fat-tire bike rentals, sports fishing, kayaking, botanical gardens, reflection pools, and shopping line the menu of leisure options. An excellent RV campground located in the midst of this island paradise accomodates big-rigs. Within step of the hotel is the Georgia Sea Turtle Rescue that rehabs the injured tarpons, releasing them back to the ocean when healed. Located next door to the Jekyll Island Club Hotel, DeSoto 55

Sea Jay’s Waterfront Café and Pub serves fusion-style seafood cuisine. Their specialty is the Low Country Boil Buffet--a medley of coastal shrimp, smoked sausage, corn on the cob and red potatoes mildly seasoned and prepared in a pot. Served with crisp coleslaw, cocktail sauce, rolls, and banana pudding, this one is hard to pass. The township of Darian, settled by a bunch of Scottish bad boys who built a fort to keep Spain from moving up the coast from Florida several hundred years ago, blesses their shrimp fleet to ensure the safe return of those who go out on the roiling ocean waters in search of a catch. Witnessing the ceremony can be a poignant and spiritual experience. For eating, visit the Darien River House Restaurant for Sunday brunch. Minutes north of Darien you can catch a passenger ferry over to Sapelo Island’s wildlife refuge with nature trails, a lighthouse and a small country store owned by the descendants of the slaves who were once tied to this land. For those who want an even more personal experience there are additional options. Minutes away in nearby Brunswick you can book a cruise on the shrimp boat Lady Jane and spend the afternoon on-board this huge craft watching shrimpers do their work.  As the Lady Jane motors back into port the crew steams a big kettle of fresh shrimp and serves it to their guests. 56 DeSoto

Minutes south of Jekyll Island are destinations that individually merit discovery. One is the town of Woodbine where the Woodbine Opry happens in a former high school. For about $5 you can enjoy a home-cooked buffet dinner in the old school cafeteria and then adjourn to the auditorium to enjoy a live music event called the Woodbine Opry. Here every Saturday night, re-live the Nashville sounds of the Grand Ole Opry as local artists play the music of country greats like George Jones, Willie Nelson, Ray Price, and Merle Haggard.   Also south of Jekyll Island is the town of St. Marys, a place that puts its own unique spin on Southern culture and history. Seashells dress the exterior walls of the waterfront building that are painted a soft pink. A short walk away is the old island cemetery with trees draped in Spanish Moss, old marble headstones with elaborate epitaphs, and of course lots of fun ghost stories. St. Marys Submarine Museum where the story is told about those who have lived beneath the ocean’s surface.  Check out Up the Creek by visiting the link below to St. Marys for kayak adventures (even for the total novice) that last from an hour to half a day where you paddle out to where dolphins come up alongside the kayaks and greet you.   Savannah, the city that even General Sherman refused to raze on his march to the sea, holds endless appeal and treasures.

Make your base camp at the Presidents’ Quarters Inn, a two-minute walk from the heart and soul of everything that makes Savannah so special. The visuals are unique and superb, the bistros endless, and the provincial culture will bathe you in a warm glow. Rich history abounds along the sidewalks folks have walked for the last 300 years.  This is a city where an old-South style grace prevails even today. Coastal Georgia meanders for miles, trailing through towns and landscapes. It’s here where sea meets land that those who choose to wander will find endless choices.

Jekyll Island Welcome Center 877-4-JEKYLL St. Marys, Georgia (866) 868-2199 Georgia Sea Turtle Center 912-635-4444 Jekyll Island Club Hotel 877-860-1398 Lady Jane Cruises 912-230-4014 Woodbine Opry 912-576-3027 Darien River House Restaurant 912-437-2510 Blue Heron Inn 912-437-4304 Presidents Quarters Inn 800-233-1776 Georgia Tourism Blessing of the Fleet DeSoto 57

An outdoor oasis, where visitors can wine and dine while visiting Kuleto Estate, Napa Valley.

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Entertaining, Mediterranean Style


By Karen Ott Mayer Photography courtesy of Madeleine Oakes and Ciara Meaney

In some parts of the world, summer seems to encompass more than just one season, lending a casual languid pattern to dining al fresco--for hours on end. In Mediterranean climates like Southern France and Italy where arid days and cool nights rarely deviate, fresh foods and entertaining merge quietly because food is endemic to a lifestyle, not a meal. It’s not fancy or fussy. A wooden table with mismatched chairs under an open canopy of trees or on a patio may be the only requirement beyond the laughter of friends. Here in the U.S., bits of this lifestyle can be found in California and Texas, in the arid high country hills or in places like Sonoma County, not far from the Pacific. While these geographies seem a far cry from the humid southern climate, we do in fact share the common vein of longer growing seasons, the penchant for patios and pergolas, and garden-fresh foods. Mediterranean food and dining is all about simplicity. “Let the food items speak for themselves. The sauces are not complex, but simple and clean, not heavy. It’s preparing what’s fresh and in season,” says Bruce Riezenman. Riezenman, one of the California Wine Country’s most sought-after chefs, has taught, cooked and hosted in Italy, Hong Kong, Thailand and Canada. Riezenman is also the author of “Pair It!”, a food &

wine pairing app for the iphone and Droid, highlighting over 1,000 dishes and 20,000 pairings based on varietals and regions. Ciara Meaney of Bay Laurel Culinary, a boutique catering company servicing clients in northern California, agrees. “It’s ingredient driven,” says Meaney. “We do a lot of private work, especially with wineries. We love to work with Quivira Vineyards because they’re such a food-focused winery.” With chickens and endless raised beds, Quivira offers chefs the ability to forage for the fresh. Moving from late spring into early summer, Riezenman’s menus focus on wild salmon or lamb. “Duck confit is good in winter, but a rare duck breast fits during summer,” says Riezenman. Likewise, Meaney finds herself drawn from the early-season spring onions and pea shoots to summer squashes. “We do bruschetta bars, using artisanal baked olive bread. We brush with olive oil and grill until it has a lovely char on it. We use pâtés or a rabbit terrine as a base, then forage in the garden for toppers,” says Meaney. Olive tapenades and white bean purées with garlic and lemon juice offer another easy, flavorful option. Early summer brings on the berries. “We do a blackberry balsamic vinaigrette or a blueberry compote,” says Meaney. DeSoto 59

Dishes like Riezenman’s bruschetta, topped with a creamy blueberry cheese, makes a unique fresh appetizer. The ability to experiment and forage drives this style of cooking. Herbs create a simple base for many dishes. “I like to mix basil and mint or garlic with toasted almonds or make an arugula pesto with parsley and lemon zest,” says Meaney. If lard is to the South, then olive oil is to the Mediterranean culture. “There are different levels of olive oils. Finishing oils possess really intense, flowery flavors. When you heat a finishing oil, it destroys the freshness and the oil loses its flavor. Air makes it oxidize so use or buy small quantities. Drizzle the oil,” says Riezenman. Infusing flavors like fresh basil into oils is another technique which can surprise the palate. Inspired by Italy’s Perugia region, Dry Creek Olive Company in Healdsburg, Calif. imported an entire Italian mill from Gruppo Pieralisi who has manufactured olive mills in Italy since 1888. “All of our olives are used for olive oil and we only make extra virgin olive oil. Olives are picked typically when half of the olives on the tree have turned black and half are green. If you pick earlier than this, you get a more spicy, robust oil with lots of pungency. If you pick later, you get more buttery and soft characters in the olive oil,” says Tim Nordvedt, marketing director at Dry Creek Olive Company. Their olive oil blends are the result of combining different batches of oil into a complete final product. Master Miller, Mary Louise Bucher decides which process to use when milling the olives. “All things being equal, the stone mill gives more smooth and buttery characters and the hammer mill more pungency. Certain varieties, like the Tuscan Three (Frantoio, Pendolino and Leccino) are very spicy and robust, while others, like the Spanish Arbequina, are more delicate and smooth,” says Nordvedt. The Dry Creek Olive Company Mediterranean blend, one of the most popular, has garnered multiple awards including Best in Show/Gold Medal, 2014 Napa Valley Olive Oil Competition. “We recommend using it as a finishing oil for grilled vegetables or meats. Copiously brush it on the food just before serving. It is a pungent oil with nice grassiness so it highlights the inherent flavors of foods,” says Nordvedt. 60 DeSoto

Southerners love to talk pork and so does Riezenman. “We cook whole hogs, dressed weight about 40 to 60 pounds.” Riezenman has another clever suggestion for a slaw. “I make a golden beet and apple coleslaw.” Peppers are another option. Moving away from the standard varieties, Riezenman suggests a Japanese Shishito pepper or Padron that roasts or blisters well. “You can drizzle olive oil over these and salt, then roast or grill these peppers.” Dessert can be as simple as fruit. “We make a buttermilk panna cotte and change it through the year depending on the fruits. We soak lemon verbena in buttermilk or macerate fruit,” says Meaney. A light summer wine complements a Mediterranean table, almost instinctively. Cold white or Rosé works even on the warmest of evenings. “Rosé has a bad name, but in the summertime, it’s ideal,” says Riezenman. Nordvedt agrees. “Our Roussanne and Viognier go very well with cold salads. Our Grenache and Tractor Red are very fun wines that are extremely versatile. They have high tone red fruit, nice acidity and big flavor, so they can match up to a juicy ribeye steak or simple grilled vegetables.” A simple, refreshing way of entertaining, Mediterranean cuisine beckons during summer as Riezenman knows “It’s not about spending a lot of time in the kitchen. It’s about simple, fresh...and friends. Anybody can do this.”

Sonoma Wine Country Weekend August 30, 2014. 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. MacMurray Ranch, Healdsburg, California Sonoma Wine Country Weekend is Sonoma County’s signature, and largest, charity event, bringing together over 200 of Sonoma’s top winemakers and growers, along with a collection of the area’s best chefs. DeSoto 61


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When Art Meets Fabric Karen Ott Mayer Photos courtesy of Marilyn Storey

A color explosion hit the Mississippi Delta this year, specifically in the name of art fabric. It began in the mind of artist and painter, Kim Duease and has since been driven by several women, all natives of Clarksdale. Marilyn Storey, of Per Design Studio and Duease have been designers and friends for years, working together on client projects. Four years ago, Marilyn met Madge Marley Howell of Delta Bohemian Guest House in Clarksdale. Today, the trio talks enthusiastically about Duease’s new venture: A custom fabric line with dozens of collections called Kim Duease Art Fabric. Launched in April 2014, the collection has gained early attention from designers and clients across the country. While orders have come in from as far away as California, New York, and Ontario, it’s possible those who best understand the concept live right here in the South. “Many times, people know what they want, but they can’t find it,” says Duease. Wild or sedate, the fabrics all possess a bold palette that originates in Duease’s studio located in Madison, Miss. When talking to her, it’s easy to see the connection. Bright and vibrant herself, she lights up when she talks about the process. “They all are the product of a painting which is then scanned and digitized for printing on fabric,” says Duease. With over 100 fabric designs, Duease offers clients an endless array of patterns and colors. With her design background, she understands the essential need to connect a client’s vision

with a concrete pattern. “It’s about getting the pattern like it’s supposed to be,” she says. Duease has been painting since her early years. “I just paint. And I love to paint on anything.” She laughs when talking about her artistic education. “I’ve been in classes before and have learned all the principles like lighting and composition, but in the end, it didn’t fit me because that process just seemed too perfect for me. I couldn’t wait to get back in my studio and just paint!” If the fabric pattern isn’t captivating enough, the collection names guarantee to bring a smile. Reflective of the Delta, the initial offering includes five collections: Delta Festival, NOLA, LOLA, Ode to Lilly, and Artisal Ikats. The fabrics include silks, Belgian linens and premium cottons and fabric designs can be scaled to any size. Looking at samples, it’s uncanny how a big pattern can change suddenly when reduced to a different size. Currently, the fabrics are produced in North Carolina with approximately a three-week lead time from creation to finished product.

Meet Kim I have been working in the interior design/decoration field for over 20 years. There are fabulous resources for textiles available, but as an artist and a designer I have often visualized an ideal textile for a particular project and have not been able to find it. When you dream it and cannot find it, then DeSoto 63

Artist, Kim Duease of Clarksdale, MS.

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you must create it. Choices on the market started looking the same, albeit beautiful. They did not have the artful aesthetic I was truly seeking. Being an artist as well as a designer, I decided to dabble in textile with my art hand. Others liked my creations and wanted to buy them, and here was born Kim Duease fabrics and wallcoverings. A dear friend, also a designer and design marketer, saw my fabrics and suggested that taking this story back to my roots would be appropriate. For me, that is the Mississippi Delta. Fortunately, she is also from the Delta and could easily relate to the storied past of this region. As I begin to review my artwork and the patterns I had chosen to transform into textiles, the story did start to come together.  Each pattern did have its own voice … blues river, big muddy, coahoma… and on and on. My fabrics are bold, full of life and history, and of course color. I am printing on several grounds (weights) of all-natural fabric. My fabrics can be used in as many ways as one can dream. As far as home interior application, linen cotton blend is my bestseller and used for pillows, upholstery and drapery/window treatments, and bedding. I am using the fabrics in the garden area for cushion covers, and even a large garden umbrella that is truly fabulous. I am using other grounds for loungewear, apparel, scarves, and I even have a daring plan for athletic wear, as I’m married to a coach. My favorite things about Mississippi are family, friends, and lifelong memories that I will always cherish. Now these are all being documented, in a way, on my textiles, telling my story in a way that I hope others can use and enjoy, weaving color, pattern, and inspiration into to their daily lives. Kim Duease Art Fabric can be purchased through the trade/interior designers nationwide. Current showrooms include: Ammon Hickson and Associates, Dania, Florida Joan Hawkins Art and Interiors, Jackson, Mississippi Marilyn Trainor Storey/MS Design Maven, Clarksdale, Mississippi DeSoto 65

homegrown } hot sauce

Homemade Hot C

D’Evereux Hot Sauce Finds Following By Cheré Coen Photography provided by D’Evereux

Courtney Aldridge of Natchez is a canner. A retired oilman, he now spends time preserving summer vegetables such as peppers, okra and beans. So when he needed to entertain his seven-year-old grandson Lennon one rainy spring day, he pulled out some pequin and Chile de árbol peppers and showed him how to make magic in the kitchen. The result of that fateful humid day was a unique hot pepper sauce and the creation of D’Evereux Foods, named for the impressive circa-1840 Natchez plantation that Aldridge owns. At first, the smoky-flavored pepper sauce the duo created was named Pepper Sauce Rouge and given to friends and family. When requests came pouring in for the product, grandfather and grandson couldn’t keep up with the demand so they enlisted the help of Courtney Aldridge’s daughter, Ashleigh, and family friend, Mandy Brown, who has a background in marketing. “I said, ‘Alright, let’s do this’,” Brown said. 66 DeSoto

They moved the operation to the plantation’s carriage house and started making small-batch pepper sauce, filling every bottle with a hand pump and applying the newly designed labels by hand. They hired others for the nutritional analysis and to determine the correct Ph balance. Later, the company developed Pepper Sauce Fermenté, a “twangy” sauce made with fermented peppers. Both the Pepper Sauce Rouge and Pepper Sauce Fermenté are sold throughout town, a first for Natchez, Brown believes. “It’s been a learning experience for all of us,” Brown said, “but now we have a little Southern heat in Natchez, Miss.” The company has since outgrown the carriage house and is moving up once more. They are currently relocating into a Natchez building downtown that once housed the High Cotton restaurant and the Viking Cooking School. The 3,000 square feet at 312 Main St. will allow the company to not only manufacture their two hot sauces, but also a gourmet line of

products such as pepper jelly made with guava juice and not sugar. “We’re trying to be healthy,” Brown said of the pepper jelly idea and future ones to come. Other offerings in the plans for the new space include cooking classes, she said. “It (the company) has gotten too big and the kitchen in the Carriage House is too tiny,” Brown said. “So far sales have been word of mouth. People out of state, we ship to them. But now we’re trying to get it to the next level.” To enjoy the “little Southern heat” of Natchez, visitors can purchase the hot sauces at the D’Evereux Foods store at 312 Main St or at any of the following locations:

Pig Out Inn Barbecue 116 S. Canal St. Dunleith Historic Inn 84 Homochitto St. Uptown Grocery 531 S. Canal St. The Old South Trading Post 200 N. Broadway The Natchez Visitor’s Center 640 S. Canal St. Products may also be purchased from the company’s web site, www.devereuxfoods. com, and information on the company may be gleaned from their Facebook page,

Courtney Aldridge & Lennon

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in good spirts } the mojito


Mojito By Ashley Buescher Photography courtesy of

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“When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading.” Henny Youngman

The Drink: The Mojito


The Mojito, a Cuban highball, possesses an unclear history. Historians, however, consistently agree on two theories. One theory is that the cocktail closely mimics the drink “El Draque” dating to 1856 and named after Sir Frances Drake, an English military commander. Several of Drake’s soldiers suffered from an epidemic of dysentery and scurvy while at sea. Drake searched Cuba for medical help. He returned to the ship with a concoction made from a crude form of rum, lime, sugarcane juice and mint. So intolerable, other ingredients had to be added to mask the taste. Although, the concoction was not called a mojito, the mixture is considered the original combination of ingredients. Yes, all the sailors recovered. Another theory is that slaves had a part in the creation of the mojito as sugarcane juice was a popular drink amongst slaves. Ernest Hemingway was a big fan of the mojito and put a Havana tavern, La Bodeguita del Medio, on the mojito map when he wrote on the wall, “My mojito in La Bodeguita. My daiquiri in El Floridita.”. Patrons can still see the passage on the wall today. The cocktail had a popularity surge in 2002 when James Bond used the mojito to seduce Jinx (the beautiful Halle Berry).

The Mixology:

Traditionally, a mojito consists of five ingredients: white (light) rum, sugar (traditionally sugar cane juice), lime juice, sparkling water, and mint. Although light rums are the traditional base for the mojito, dark rums are also fun to use. Dark rums tend to add color and hints of spicy flavors. Granulated white sugar is the most commonly used sweetener in the drink as simple sugar dissolves nicely in the cocktail. Other options include sugar cane juice, brown, raw or powdered sugar. The handling of the mint can make or break this Cuban highball. The most common mistake made is over-muddling the mint leaves, causing a bitter taste. Also, remove the leaves from the stems which are bitter. Mint leaves should be bruised just enough to release the essential oils. A good bartender trick is to slap the mint leaves in your hands. This technique is quick and releases just the right amount of oils. Pay attention to the number of leaves left in the glass. If you choose to muddle your limes instead of squeeze them, make sure not to muddle the white pith as this will add an unwelcomed sourness. Refreshing variations can be created by adding favorite fruits and berries. Following is the oldest known recipe, published in 1929 in a Cuban cocktail book, “Libro de Cocktail”

8 mint leaves, plus 1 sprig for garnish Ice 2oz white rum 3/4oz fresh lime juice 1 oz simple sugar syrup 1/2oz chilled club soda In a cocktail shaker, muddle the mint leaves. Add ice, the rum, lime juice and simple sugar syrup. Shake well. Strain into an ice-filled collins glass. Stir in club soda and garnish with the mint leaf. DeSoto 69

table talk } food trucks

Food Trucks Drive Food Trend Story and Photography by Devin Greaney


emphis scenes vary. Weekend afternoons and evenings at Hillshire and Whitten, the traffic zips a constant stream, to and fro Bartlett and I-40. At the old Tennessee Brewery, beer flowed again 60 years after the last pouring during the event Tennessee Brewery Untapped. Over on Mud Island, the team from zip code 38104 (Midtown Memphis) played 38103 (Downtown) in a sandlot baseball game on Mud Island. At Accredo, Baptist corporate offices, Williams Sonoma and Snap on Tools, employees gather for lunch. All these scenes, however, have one thing in common: Food trucks. Though visitors from places such as California and Texas are used to these restaurants on wheels, locals are just now enjoying these mobile meals due to laws enacted within just the last few years that have permitted food trucks to hit the streets, parking lots and public events. The Memphis Food Truckers Alliance is only two years old. Derrick Clark is the current president and owner of Square 70 DeSoto

Meals on Wheels. “We have to be 300 feet from a restaurant and at a Grizzlies game 30 minutes before. We have also been given access to different parks,” he says. “The people convinced the City of Memphis that food trucks should be allowed in the city.” A food truck can open doors for entrepreneurs, including Clark. “If your food isn’t good they will let you know.” The culinary school graduate had a school project to design a restaurant and his food truck is what he decided on for his design.  “It is so hard to get a brick-and-mortar store but starting with a food truck you get to know the people and learn the business in general.” He has since opened Square Meal Café at 6745 Lennox (off Kirby just south of Highway 385). “We were doing a food truck rodeo last year and I found out the space was available from the previous owners. I had such an outpouring of support the rest is history.” Plenty of restaurants serve Mexican food, but Mexicans flock

to Taqueria La Parrillada on Kirby Whitten about a half mile north of I-40 for the real deal. Horchata- a rice milk drink with generous helpings of cinnamon- trumps Coke and Pepsi here, and their soft tacos will never be confused with the ones at Chili’s or On the Border. The red, white and green truck is available Thursday through Sunday nights, sharing the lot with a convenience store. Since the South Main Historic District started showing signs of life in the early 1980s, locals just knew something had to be done with the Tennessee Brewery. Since then SoMain has added dozens of bars, eating places, galleries and creative businesses, but the imposing stone edifice at 400 Tennessee has remained a pigeon roost. But this spring crowds flocked into the Tennessee Brewery which had been empty since a scrap metal company left in 1981. Games, music and recycled furniture provided such a simple solution as to what to do, visitors wondered why this was not done 25 years earlier. And there were, of course, food trucks. Chris Watson, manager of Fuel Truck Café emphasizes his locally-purchased tortillas from Las Delicias and organic food with no preservatives. About 20 feet away, Matt Strong and Miguel Mercado were not hurting for business as what seemed to be an equally busy crowd flocked to Truck Stop. The 1963 Airstream trailer was founded by owner Jeff Johnson, owner of Local Gastropub. “Pretty cool” he says. The silver reflective coating could probably be spotted from an airliner 38,000 feet above Memphis. Local Gastropub served up bratwurst, beer and barbecue-- “baseball food”--at the baseball game on Mud Island. Johnson says his food truck is event-driven and is introducing a locally-brewed ginger beer to the city and ballplayers. One thing surprised Clark the most about the food truck business. “The love you receive from the customers. I was kind of leery about people just purchasing off of a truck.”He understands as a new institution in the area, others may be leery as well. “As president one thing I stress is cleanliness. When in doubt throw it out.” MFTA members need a score of at least 95 from the health department. “If someone gets sick off someone else’s truck that affects my truck, your truck, and his truck.”

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exploring events } july

Happy Fourth of July!

Celebrations Happening on the 4th 15th Annual Fireworks and Festival Olive Branch City Park 6pm 8267 Goodman Road Bring your blankets and lawn chairs to Olive Branch City Park for this free event. Enjoy Kids Zone, great food vendors and more. World class fireworks begin around 9pm. For more information, call 662-892-9200 or visit Independence day Fireworks Celebration Downtown Vicksburg Historic Washington Street Vicksburg, MS 39180. 7pm Southaven July 4th Celebration Snowden Grove Amphitheater 6285 Snowden Lane The City of Southaven will host its annual July 4th Celebration. Entertainment will begin at approximately 7:30 pm with the fireworks extravaganza at approximately 9:00 pm. It is free admission and picnics and coolers are welcome. For more information, contact Kristi Faulkner at 662-280-2489 or email kfaulkner@ 72 DeSoto

Greenville Celebrates America Downtown Lake Ferguson Waterfront Fireworks show at 9:30pm For more information: Betty Lynn Cameron 662-378-3121 Freedom Concert Shelby Farms Park 6:30 - 8:00 PM 500 N. Pine Lake Drive Memphis, TN Patriotism will fill the air as the Freedom Concert featuring the Navy Band of the Mid-South comes to Shelby Farms Park. Memphis Food Trucks will be serving up tasty local food. Admission:Â $5 per person | FREE for kids 12 and under. Please note that there will not be fireworks at this event. For more information contact Natalie Wilson, or 901-7677275 ext 317. Kix 106 Smokin Summer Showcase July 10, 17, 24 Snowden Grove Ampitheater Southaven, Ms. 38632 All shows are free to the public. For more information visit

The 27th Annual Slugburger Festival and 3rd Annual MLE World Slugburger Eating Competition: July 10-12, 2014: Our annual festival will take place in the CARE Garden on Fillmore Street in Historic Downtown Corinth next to the Crossroads Museum and Railroad Depot. Gates open nightly at 6 PM and Carnival will be open until 11 PM. The MML World Slugburger Eating Competition will be on Saturday 12th, at 4 PM. There will be a wide variety of events to take place over the weekend. Phone: 662-287-1550 or visit our website at Heritage Music Series Presented by  Vicksburg Blues Society Ameristar Casino-Hotel Vicksburg Bottleneck Blues Bar July 4-5 MR. SIPP “The Mississippi Blues Child” July 11-12 BIG AL and the HEAVYWEIGHTS July 18-19 DUWAYNE BURNSIDE July 25-26 KING EDWARD June 27-28  BRYAN LEE “The Blind Daddy of Blues” Taganai - Cirque Style Extravaganza June 27-July 13 Gold Strike Casino Tunica 1010 Casino Center Drive Tunica, MS 38664 888-245-7529 TAGANAI, a Russian word translated “moon holder” and the name of the Ural Mountain chain that divides Russia from Siberia, features a cast of thirty multi-talented Russian performers including acrobats, aerialists, clowns, jugglers and dancers. Les Miserables July 4 - 20 Landers Center 4560 Venture Drive Southaven, MS Admission is $22 adults and $15 youth and seniors. Discount admission is available for groups of 10 or more. For more information, call 662-470-2131 or visit

Goo Goo Dolls and Daughtry July 12, 7:15 pm Live at the Garden Memphis Botanic Gardens 750 Cherry Road Memphis, TN 38117

Eudora Welty Photo Exhibit Now – July 15 Crossroads Museum: Hours are 10 AM – 4PM Monday - Saturday and 1PM – 4PM Sundays. The Mississippi Archives has shared some of the wonderful works of Eudora Welty with the Historic Corinth Crossroads Museum in Corinth, MS. Come on by the Corinth Depot on Fillmore Street and see this traveling exhibit while it’s still in town. Also remember on Corinth Green Market Day, the museum admittance is free. For more info click on the website at www. or call 662.287.3120. Jennifer Nettles August 1, 8:30 pm Live at the Garden Memphis Botanic Gardens 750 Cherry Road Memphis, TN 38117 The Neshoba County Fair July 25 - Aug 1 The Neshoba County Fair has grown from a two-day meeting of local farmers and their families to an eight day Giant House Party in over 600 cabins and over 200 RV campers. The traditions of the Fair continue today. Families still gather for reunions and friends, old and new, visit every summer as they have since 1889. 601-656-8480 Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers August 2, 7:00 pm Snowden Grove Amphitheater 6285 Snowden Lane Southaven, MS 800.745.3000

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reflections } tomatoes

The Great Tomato Chase By Jeanne Tew

Like most true Southerners, I would barter my soul for a juicy vine-ripened tomato. In season, finding one is as simple as a trip to the farmers’ market. When local vines die, however, the chase is on. One year, I returned to my family home in Steens, Mississippi to celebrate my mother’s 90th birthday. As I unloaded the cooler holding goodies I’d prepared, I spied two luscious red orbs sitting on the window sill above her kitchen sink. “Those look good,” I said, with more than a hint of skepticism, given it was October. “The Mennonites grew them,” she said. “I saved them till you got here.” “We’ll see,” I sniffed. “October’s certainly not prime tomato-growing season.” At supper, I heaped my plate with peas, fried okra, and cornbread. The tomato slices looked delicious and even smelled right. If anyone could pull off real tomatoes after the leaves turn, it would be the Mennonites. One taste and I was swooning (another tip to my heritage). I sopped up the juice left on the serving plate with my last bite of cornbread and sighed in contentment. The next morning I called the Noxubee County Chamber of Commerce. A pleasant voice said, “Noxubee Chamber, how may I help you?” “Can you tell me where the Mennonites are selling tomatoes?” “They’re right off 45 South, on the left just past the new high school. Look for a big red and yellow sign that says ‘Tomatoes’.” No fancy advertising necessary. I made a list: two bags for Mama (to last through my visit), one each for my son and son-in-law, one for my ex-husband 74 DeSoto

(we obviously parted on reasonable terms), and one for emergencies. I hurried to the ATM and headed down Highway 45. A few miles down the road, a bell chimed. I hadn’t filled my tank after my trip, and the bell was telling me it would be empty in 10 miles. I had ignored the alert at 25 miles, but this one had to be reckoned with. Cursing under my breath, I sped back toward the gas station located at the turn-off for the highway. Tank full, I set off again. Glancing in the rearview mirror, I noticed the direction notation read “N.” The lady on the phone said go south on 45. Another oath, louder this time, and a quick U-turn. Twenty minutes later, a sign appeared at the top of a hill, pointing to a gravel driveway. An enclosed shed sat at the end of the drive with a mailbox nailed to a table and a sign that directed purchasers to leave their money in the box if no one was there. The tomatoes were lined up in plastic bags with $5.00 written in magic marker on the sides. As I was sticking my nose in each bagful, an older woman entered the back of the shed. “Good morning,” she said with a smile. “Pick whichever bags you want. And be careful loading them. You don’t want to bruise your tomatoes by stacking them.” I made my selections and carried them to the car, placing them in the back seat as carefully as any mother handling her newborn. With a final wave, I headed to Mama’s, stealing a glance now and then at the bags gracing the back seat. My mouth watered as I thought about my next meal—white bread, Duke’s mayonnaise, lettuce, crisp bacon, and hearty slices of the juiciest tomatoes in the bags with a liberal sprinkling of salt and pepper. More napkins, please.

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Desoto Magazine July 2014  

It’s summer, it’s a holiday month, fresh food abounds and all the summer music happenings. It was overwhelming trying to pick and choose. So...

Desoto Magazine July 2014  

It’s summer, it’s a holiday month, fresh food abounds and all the summer music happenings. It was overwhelming trying to pick and choose. So...