Redeye April 22 2004

Flavor to savor: Restaurants, especially those that appreciate seasonal ingredients, are slowly coming around to the value of treating distilled delights as supplementary spices in a fully realized night's dining. Take the Atlanta street-monikered "culinary cocktails" by Luxe chef Patty Roth: They are bracing for the season of reinvigoration.

"In" ingredients such as fresh fruit puree, sugar rock and lemongrass syrup make for interesting twists on classics. That doesn't mean all menu items are immediately accessible. Say, for instance, you are curious about the "Auburn Ave." I will caution you as the waiter cautioned me: Do you like licorice? Combining apple juice and sour apple liqueur with fennel essence and French anise-based aperitif Pernod, the crisp and crunchy fluorescent-green cocktail has hints that few drinkers outside of Francophiles or Scandinavians may find recognizable. But for the adventurous, there is much more to rate as intoxicating than the proof percentage.

Boy's will be girls: For those who got caught "reading" the April Playboy magazine (with Rachel Hunter on the cover), you might have noticed a pictorial titled "Beauty and the Beat." Among the female DJs showcased, the airbrushed assets of one particular beat matcher may seem oddly familiar. Say hello to Atlanta's own DJ Keri, a regular at venues such as the Velvet Room.

But wait, our city's connection with Hugh Hefner's lil' industry goes deeper: Playboy is currently celebrating its 50th anniversary with a club tour, and the DJ chosen to bounce 'round the country with the bunnies is Atlanta-based DJ Shortee, laying down her quick cuts and deep grooves April 22 at eleven50. But don't request anything lewd or her husband/road manager DJ Faust will make something other than records spin!

A prince among men: Gaze again into my crystal balls and glimpse the future as I did near the end of March, when Regal Hollywood 24 hosted a live simulcast of Prince kicking off his Musicology tour at L.A.'s Staples Center. Vividly rendered in hi-fidelity on the big screen, Prince and the New Power Generation band teased and pleased through a run of new tracks and medleys of old. Lyrics laid out at Prince's feet were on tablet-shaped pages resembling the Ten Commandments, and, indeed, the power of funk commanded Prince; and the word of Prince held the crowd enraptured. Experience the fervor as the Artist hits Atlanta April 30 at Philips Arena__.

Keep one RedEye open. And send all comments, questions, observations and invitations to redeye@creativeloafing.com.__