FYI-Food: Cook-off, cookouts, cooking lessons and more

National ice cream month

July is National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday, July 17 this year, is National Ice Cream Day. Here are some facts about ice cream: Sunday is the day most ice cream is sold; July and Au­gust are the months when most ice cream is eaten; it takes about 50 licks to finish an average ice cream cone; the Northern Central states have the highest per capita con­sumption of ice cream; the most ice cream is eaten by children 2 through 12 and adults 45 and older; vanilla is the most popular flavor, followed by chocolate; and Dolley Madison served ice cream in the White House in 1812 at a banquet for the second inauguration of her husband, President James Madison.

Chili cook-off

The American Culinary Federation’s Southwest Flor­ida Chef’s Association chap­ter will hold its chili cook-off with tastings by the public starting at 5 p.m. Sunday at the Pink Shell Beach and Resort Spa, 275 Estero Blvd., Fort Myers Beach. Judging starts at 6 p.m. with the winner being announced at 7 p.m. Bring nonperish­able food donations to be given to the Harry Chapin Food Bank. Information: (239) 463-8613

New owner

Chef Doug Lester has ac­quired Gourmet Catering & Take-out. The store is closed for remodeling and will re-open in late July. The catering office is open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays at the Plaza Walk Building, 2500 U.S. 41 N., Naples. Information: 263-5816

Summer cookouts

Whole Foods Market is grilling burgers, veggie burgers, veggie kabobs and fish sandwiches from noon to 2 p.m. every Saturday in July. The store also offers wine tastings from noon to 2:30 p.m. Saturdays. The store is located at 9101 Strada Place, Naples. Information: 552-5100

Couple’s menu

AZN at the Mercato has a summer couple’s menu from 4 to 10 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays through September. Choices include two entrees and a bottle of Coastal Vines Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir or Cabernet Sauvignon wine for $30. The restaurant is at 9118 Strada Place, Naples. Reservations: 593-8818

Cooking lessons

Whole Foods Market, 9101 Strada Place, Naples, will offer the following cooking lessons with registration at 552-5100 or going to

■ 6-8 p.m. today learn how to make a gourmet meal using the store’s 365 everyday value items. $10.

■ 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, Alaskan salmon by Brent Courson of the Real Seafood Co. $10.

■ 2-3 p.m. July 13, healthy wraps. $5.

The Good Life of Naples, 2355 Vanderbilt Beach Road, Naples, is offering the following classes by Shelly Connors:

■ 6-8 p.m. July 14, recipes from the south of Spain. $50.

■ 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. July 23, homemade pasta. $25.

Call 514-4663 to register.

Grillin’ and chillin’

National Grilling Month is July and Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar is doing the cooking for you with a three-course prime rib dinner on Sundays during July and August for $29.95. The restaurant also introduced Skinny Sexy Sailor, a 99-calorie cocktail, this month and will introduce a new skinny cocktail every month during the summer. The restaurant is open from 5-10 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 5-11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 5-9 p.m. Sundays and is at 8985 U.S. 41 N., Naples. Reservations: 598-2424

Summer tasting menu

Shula’s has 10 signature menu selections presented in four courses with Champagne on the first and third Mondays in July and August. The next one will be available July 18 at 5111 U.S. 41 N., Naples. $65. Reservations are required at www.shulasnaplesevents. The restaurant also features a quick pass lunch special from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. for $11.95. Information: 430-4999

New wrap

Pollo Tropical has introduced the chicken avocado club wrap. The wrap features marinated and grilled chicken, a creamy cilantro garlic sauce, melted Swiss cheese, chopped romaine lettuce, tomato, crumbled bacon and avocado wrapped in flatbread. The price of $4.99 includes a 20-ounce fountain drink and a choice of Caribbean chicken soup, Caesar salad, curly fires, fried yucca or sweet plantains for $4.99.

Gluten-free cereal

Rice Krispies now has a gluten-free option made with whole grain brown rice.

Vacation giveaway

Bravo! Cucina Italiana at the Mercato, Naples, and Brio Tuscan Grille at the Waterside Shops, Naples, are hosting a trip giveaway sweepstakes on their Facebook fan page through July 31. Visit the pages and click “Like” and enter for a chance to win a vacation.

Top retailer

Norman Love, owner of Norman Love Confections, is one of the recipients of the Retailer of the Year Award for 2011 by the Florida Retail Federation. Visit Norman Love Confections at 3747 U.S. 41 N., Naples and 11380 Lindbergh Blvd., Fort Myers.

For your information

Did you know that the smaller the berry the sweeter it is?

Deadline for FYI is 10 a.m. Thursday. Email to or mail to Sheila Mesulam, Naples Daily News, 1100 Immokalee Road, Naples, FL 34110. All briefs are printed on a space-available basis. Connect with Sheila Mesulam at sheila_mesulam

© 2011 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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