As for the bodega side, the thought was to aid those that work downtown and may need to stop into a store to grab one or two items.
If you have lived in Savannah for any time at all, it is likely you have noticed the unique black rabbit art painted on the metal door of a building that sits on Barnard Street.
Time and time again I have driven by that very spot and wondered, “What could be behind those rolling doors and who is responsible for the artwork?”
Well, my questions were answered in September. As a food lover, I could not have been more excited with the news that The Black Rabbit bar and restaurant opened its doors—big metal garage doors—to the public.
The surrounding district has gained another unique and approachable joint whose aim is to cater to locals. The responsible parties are partners David Hutchison and Patrick Zimmerman.
The story began about fifteen years ago when a friend of Hutchison spotted the building that now holds The Black Rabbit, which was originally a two-stall store front.
“The building literally had been a salon, a cobbler, a hotdog stand, a record store, and there was a vintage picker,” Hutchison explained as I waited for several sandwiches to come out of the kitchen.
Hutchison’s family purchased the building, and he quickly opened a gallery and intended on filling the second side of the building with a coffee shop. After several years of sitting unused, Hutchison began looking for a business partner to start building their local spot, and that’s where Patrick Zimmerman came into the mix.
The building received its name as The Black Rabbit over ten years ago, when Hutchison commissioned Miguel, a traveling artist from Texas, to paint the black rabbit on the door of the building.
As for business partner Patrick Zimmerman, he is no stranger to the local food scene. He has worked behind the scenes at both Betty Bombers and Butterhead Greens Cafe. So as you can imagine, the sandwiches he is currently putting out are nothing short of delectable.
“We wanted to keep [the menu] pretty straightforward,” Zimmerman said in explaining his thoughts behind creating the new menu. “I was going for kinda comfort food but also stuff people would like, even vegetarians.”
Let’s start at the very top of the list—the Smoked Turkey sandwich. Perfectly toasted sourdough bread that is perfectly buttery but not greasy encases paper thin slices of salty smoked turkey, melted havarti cheese, and Zimmerman’s Asian inspired pepper jelly.
This sandwich is destined to be a local favorite, simply because I know just how much Savannahians love pepper jelly. The twist on this sandwich is Zimmerman’s recipe for pepper jelly. Taking inspiration from Asian cuisine, his sauce is more balanced than classic pepper jelly.
Each type of pork on the Three Piggies contributes its own flavor profile to the sandwich, while working in harmony, creating one of the juiciest deli sandwiches I have ever tasted.
“We have a little fun, like the Three Piggies with Spam, pit ham, and sliced pork shoulder, which you do not see very often,” Zimmerman told me.
I understand that using juicy as an descriptor to explain a cold cut sandwich is odd, but the juices of the pork actually ran down my hand as I chomped down. Although included, this cold stack does not need mayonnaise to lubricate any dryness that usually comes from fresh bread.
To balance the sandwich, fresh thinly sliced onions are layered with a thick cut of tomato and crisp lettuce. The cherry on top is the extremely soft bolero bread that encases the entire thing. Gottlieb’s Bakery is responsible for all of the bread used at the The Black Rabbit.
For a side with your sandwich, I would opt for the in-house pickled vegetables, which come as spicy or regular.
“Radishes, green beans, turnips, carrots, onions, and garlic,” are cooked “real straight forward with sugar, salt, vinegar, peppercorns, water, and bay leaf. I add jalapeños for the spicy one,” Zimmerman explained when I asked how he makes his pickled vegetables.
More on the Southern side is the cucumber, tomato, and onion salad. It is just like the bowl of garden fresh onions and tomatoes you will find included on the dinner table during many Southern meals. The idea behind this side was to offer something lighter to complement the hearty sandwiches.
Finally, the German Potato Salad is available as a side. For his version, Zimmerman cooks the onions tossed with the tender potatoes in bacon fat, which results in an additional layer of flavor.
The Black Rabbit also offers dessert—King of Pops popsicles or a big slice of cheesecake from Fork & Dagger.
As for what readers, especially locals, are probably wondering the most about, the specialty cocktail menu is concise and to the point. You will find one cocktail for each type of liquor and nothing more.
No matter what your preference you will surely be satisfied with the preparation for that type of liquor. Even more so, you will be especially satisfied after reading the price of all of the house created and made cocktails.
Being a fan of bourbon, I opted for the Grandpa’s Kisses, a title that makes perfect sense after reading the ingredient list. Both bourbon and scotch are blended with apple brandy, honey, and bitters. Served in a crystal old fashioned glass, the profile of the dark liquors are prominent yet rounded out by the addition of sweet apple and aromatic bitters.
Zimmerman and Hutchison were kind enough to let me try the Room 225, a gin cocktail that is made silky by the use of sunflower seed orgeat, a nut milk.
The cocktail is shaken with lemon juice and a few dashes of bitters before being poured into a coupe and adorned with lemon rind. It is fragrant and subtly flavored, a cocktail that would tempt you into drinking it all night.
Next year, patrons will have the opportunity to grab lunch at The Black Rabbit when Hutchison and Zimmerman expand their hours to become reachable to the entire neighborhood.
Original article is here.
August is notoriously sweltering hot in the low country. For cooks, this means foregoing recipes that use an oven to avoid heating up the house and instead opting for recipes that cool you down. I can think of no better way to cool down in the summer heat than with ice cream.
Growing up in the south, my mom loved to make us homemade peach ice cream with one of those old fashioned ice-driven churners. The result was loosely churned ice cream with chunks of cold fresh peaches. A perfect treat after playing all day on a long, sticky summer day.
Even today, when my husband and I visit my mother for a summer holiday or gathering, she loves to make ice cream with the same machine–and many times it still includes peaches. So of course when I registered for my wedding, I wanted to include an ice cream maker. I thought it would be so lovely to be able to make my own ice cream at home
Tips to perfect your own ice cream:
• If you want a more pungent flavor, soak your flavoring in your milk starting the night before you make your ice cream base.
• The difference between this ice cream and others is the larger amount of cream and egg yolks used in the recipe.
• Always temper your eggs to avoid creating scrambled egg ice cream.
• Make sure you completely cool you base in the fridge before you add it to the ice cream maker.
Cherry Cheesecake Ice Cream Sandwiches
• 1 Stick of Butter, softened
• 1/2 Cup of Granulated Sugar
• 1 Large Egg
• 1/4 Teaspoon of Salt
• 1 Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
• 1/4 Cup of Cocoa Powder
• 1 1/2 Cups of All Propose Flour
- Beat together butter and sugar until thoroughly combined and continue to beat for another three to four minutes until fluffy.
- While beating, combine your remaining dry ingredients in a separate bowl and mix together.
- In a small bowl, beat together you extract and egg.
- Mix 1/2 of your dry mixture into your butter mixture.
- Follow by your adding in your egg mixture, beating until fully combined.
- Finish by mixing in your remaining dry mixture.
- Shape dough into a disc, cover in plastic wrap and let rest in the fridge for one hour.
- On a well floured surface, roll out your chilled dough to an 1/8 inch thickness.
- Use your desired cookie cutter to cut out your cookie rounds.
- Place all of your cookie rounds on a slip-mat lined cookie sheet.
- Let the cookies rest in the fridge for another ten minutes before baking. While the cookies chill, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Bake for 10 minutes or until just done. Let cool completely before using.
Cherry Cheesecake Ice Cream
• 1 Block of Creamed Cheese, softened
• 1/2 Cup of Granulated Sugar
• 4 Large Egg Yolks
• 1 Cup of Whole Milk
• 2 Cups of Heavy Cream
• 1/2 Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
• 1/2 Teaspoon of Salt
• 1 Cup of Fresh Cherries, pitted and coarsely chopped
- Pour your milk and cream into a large sauce pan and heat over medium heat. Do not let the milk heat over a simmer.
- While the milk heats, whisk together cream cheese, granulated sugar, vanilla, salt and egg yolks until thoroughly combined. Continue to beat for an additional one to two minutes until fluffy.
- Slowly temper the egg mixture with your warm milk. Start by adding about 1/2 a cup at the time, pouring slowly while you continually whisk by hand.
- Once all of the milk has been tempered in, pour the custard back into your saucepan.
- Heat over medium and cook the custard, stirring continually. Heat until the custard coats the back of a wooden spoon or is at least doubled in thickness.
- Remove from the heat and pour through a fine mesh strainer.
- Let the custard cool completely in the fridge before churning, about one hour.
- When ready, add the custard to your ice cream maker and churn according to the machines instructions.
- Once churned at soft, stir in your cherries.
- Place ice cream into a sealable container, and let harden for at least one hour before serving.