Thursday, November 8, 2012

Thursday Sips & Nibbles

I am back again with a new edition of Thursday Sips & Nibbles, my regular column where I briefly highlight some interesting wine and food items that I have encountered recently. This week, I am offering a number of Thanksgiving suggestions.
1) dbar hosts a four-course wine dinner featuring different regions of the world on the first Wednesday of each month, with November’s dinner bringing a taste of Spain to the normally French influenced restaurant. On November 7, at 7pm, there will be wine representatives on site to guide guests through the four-course menu, which will include:

First Course
Valencia Style Mussels: Albarinho, Saffron, Pancetta, Aromatic Vegetables, Herbs
Burgans~Albarinho~Rias Baixas~Spain
Second Course
Empanada of Braised Chicken and Potato
Bodegas Godelia~Mencia~”Viernes”~Bierzo~Spain
Main Course
”Paella de Cerdo” Braised Pork Paella, Rice, Cauliflower, Peppers
Bodegas Izadi~Rioja Reserva~Rioja~Spain
Apple Tart with Sherry Caramel
Lustau~Sherry~East India Cream~Jerez~Spain

Cost: Wine Wednesdays are $55 per person not including tax and gratuity.
Reservations are required. To make reservations please call 617-265-4490.

2) Whether you're looking for the perfect gift for the person who has everything, or you want to impress your boss, friends or the in-laws, nothing says "happy holidays" bigger, better and bolder than a bottle of large format wine. Large format wines are classified as anything more than 1.5 liters (the equivalent of two bottles of wine), and are now available in 1.5, 3, 5 and 6 liter bottles at The Wine ConneXtion, located in North Andover.

Every year, Sam and Tina Messina, siblings and co-owners of The Wine ConneXtion, set out in search for rare, large format wines produced by some of the most prestigious wineries-- and each year, their quest is unpredictable. Every large format wine is hand-bottled which makes production limited, and their availability rare. Bottles that do make it to the retail stores are found few and far between, and when they are available, are usually scooped up by wine enthusiasts who want to add them to their prized wine collections.

This year, The Wine ConneXtion searched far and wide to acquire the largest selection of large format wines in the state of Massachusetts. Nowhere else can you find such a vast assortment of large format wines under one roof. Offering everything from 1.5, 3, 5 and even 6 liter bottles, The Wine ConneXtion’s collection of large format wines is the Holy Grail for any vino lover. Quantities are extremely limited, so stop by The Wine ConneXtion while supplies last.

3) The culinary team at L’Espalier has been a trailblazer when it comes to their commitment to using local, fresh ingredients from New England. On November 14, at 7pm, they are presenting Mushroom Wednesday with their favorite mycologist, Ben Maleson. Together with L’Espalier’s talented culinary team, Maleson has designed a four-course dinner of all-things mushroom. Matsutales, cepes and many more varieties will take center stage as Maleson to showcases his expert knowledge of fungi. The meal also includes wine pairings for each course, although diners can also opt for juice pairings which are also a great accompaniment to the courses.

The four-course prix fixe menu is $115/person. To reserve, please call L’Espalier at 617-262-3023.

4) The Beehive will be hosting its annual Thanksgiving Day dinner, featuring a traditional a la carte Thanksgiving menu, on Thursday, November 22nd, 2012. What’s also become known as “Boston’s Liveliest Holiday Meal,” The Beehive will host exquisite live jazz performances all day long. Reservations are strongly recommended and can be made by calling 617-423-0069.

Thanksgiving Menu

Pumpkin Lobster Bisque $11
Tuscan Bean & Kale Soup $10
Jumbo shrimp cocktail $15
Candied Garlic Baby Back Ribs $13
Crispy Calamari with lemon & jalapenos $12
Mezze Platter, Hummus, Salads, Whipped Feta, Olives, Pickles $20
Steamed Mussels with Lager, Tomato & Old Bay* $15
Frisee Salad, Duck Bacon, Poached Egg, Pears & Blue Cheese Dressing $12
Market Salad, Lettuces, Artichokes, Tomatoes, Fennel, Sunflower Seeds, Green Beans $10
Roast Organic Turkey (Caramelized Leek Stuffing, Truffle Parsnip Mashed Potatoes, Broccoli Salad, Cranberry Compote, Sage Gravy)
Roast Prime Rib of Beef (Truffle Parsnip Mashed Potatoes, Brussels Sprouts, Mustard Jus) $34
Grilled Wild Alaskan Salmon (Wild Rice with Cranberries & Pecans, Spinach, Pumpkin Sauce) $31
Pan Roasted Halibut (Israeli Couscous, Roasted Carrots with Mint, Harissa Vinaigrette) $35
Grass Fed Rack of Lamb (Herbed Garlic Frites, Green Bean Amandine, Red Wine Reduction) $42
Vegetarian Thanksgiving (Zucchini Lasagne with Side of Broccoli Salad) $26

Dessert & Children's Menu Served. Menu Subject to change.

Hours of Operation on Thanksgiving Day, November 22, will be: 12pm-1am. Thanksgiving Day Menu: 12pm-10pm, Leftover menu: 10pm-12am

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