We've all got to eat. And nobody really wants to eat poorly.
The search for a good meal is a driving force in my life. And the faithful readers of The Elkhart Truth have been gracious the last 14 years as we search together via Dining A La King.
But to quote Emeril Lagasse, it was time to kick it up a notch.
This is the 125th anniversary of The Elkhart Truth. We've been publishing a newspaper for a long time. But we're looking at ways to be more than a newspaper.
We love our community. We love food. And we think we can combine the two in a great new way in something called Flavor574.
Food nourishes our souls and brings us together, Publisher Brandon Erlacher stated in his letter on the site. "At Flavor574, we aim to celebrate the food and drink culture that makes our region truly special," he wrote.
Over the last number of months, we've been planning and building Flavor574, a new brand that's part of Truth Publishing Co. Facebook and Twitter fans have come to us by the hundreds. We have a Pinterest page too. And we're planning content around the themes of Eat, Drink and Make. It'll be about the food and drink in northern Indiana, but also feature some of the area's best cooks showing how they prepare foods.
Content is the food in a meal. It's what goes on the plate and in the belly. It's what people consume. Sometimes it's journalism. Sometimes it's information. Sometimes it's just entertainment. And in the digital realm, it's often accompanied by a bunch of cool photos.
Starting Monday, March 31, we hope to have flavor574.com live. When you go the site, you'll see some cool stories there already. Gwen Ragno is the project manager. She's done a lovely job gathering contributors and getting started.
Flavor574 will be a number of things. In addition to the vibrant social media feeds, it'll have a great website. We're working on a brochure that will highlight the best outdoor dining spots. More of those will follow.
There's a weekly email newsletter highlighting the content. You can sign up for it on the website.
You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
In a few months, we hope to have a digital magazine for you to read on your tablet.
The news and reviews you've come to expect in Dining A La King will continue to appear on elkharttruth.com and in the print edition of The Elkhart Truth. But this new brand will include Dining A La King, but also go a lot further both in terms of geography and the number of voices. You'll be able to read and consume the work of others. And I hope we all have a rich conversation. You can join it by commenting on stories, giving us your ideas and telling us what you'd like to see.
The other cool thing about Flavor574 is there will be events. A block party is being planned for August. And then there's this trip to Traverse City that will gather foodies for a weekend.
In case you missed the first announcement, Edgerton's Travel Service has put together a trip to northern Michigan Oct. 19-21. The trip includes round-trip motor coach trail, two nights hotel, five meals, baggage handling, all tours and tastings and a basic travel protection plan. Edgerton's will send along a tour manager and I'll be the host.
We plan to head to Right Brain Brewery, Chateau Chantal, Mission Table and other cool spots.
The cost is $649 to $899 per person depending on how many are in a room. Double occupancy is $729 per person and single occupancy is $899. Three or four people in a room is $679 and $649 per person, respectively.
A $100 deposit holds your space. Reservations can be made online or by calling 574-294-3651.
I'm really excited about Flavor574. It's a cool new thing. It'll help tell the stories of our region as we seek good meals. And gathering around food to share stories is one of my favorite things.
I'm hungry. Let's eat.
Marshall V. King is managing editor and food columnist for The Elkhart Truth. You can reach him at 574-296-5805, firstname.lastname@example.org, on Twitter