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More than 30 of Sacramento's top restaurants will participate in this year's culinary week, showcasing three- to four-course dinners with wine pairings for a fraction of the normal price. Work up your appetite for the fourth annual Sacramento Wine and Dine Week, which runs from now until June 10.
Mulvaney’s B&L and Ella Dining Room & Bar are three of the 35 participating restaurants this year, which are located in Midtown, downtown and the greater Sacramento area, and range in price from $35 to $50 per person. Pricing is based on the quality of the foods and wines served. A full list is on the event website.
Educating locals on the restaurant scene while encouraging them to support local businesses is the main purpose of the event, Sacramento Convention and Visitors Bureau spokesman Mike Testa said.
"We want to remind locals of the culinary scene in Sacramento because it's vibrant, diverse and really, really good," Testa said. "A city’s residents are often their best cheerleaders and ambassadors. We want to make sure that the locals know what treasures we have here."
Unlike common wine and dine weeks, which can be found in most major cities, the wine served during Sacramento Wine and Dine Week stands out as a defining factor.
"Most restaurant weeks don’t have a specific wine component. Ours does because we have a great wine region right here in Sacramento," Testa said. "Our wine region generates a ton of attention based on the quality it produces. If you’re going to celebrate your culinary scene, it makes sense to celebrate the entire scene. For this region, that means food and wine."
Downtown's Michelangelo's Italian Art Restaurant, immerses its diners in the culinary scene with art, wine and traditional Italian dishes.
“We chose locally grown Italian varietals from Amador Foothills Winery and created dishes using local Feeding Crane Farms, organic lettuce and Mary's organic chicken in our traditional family recipes," Managing Partner Jacqueline Barton said.
Michelangelo's will offer a three-course dinner for $36 per person, including the wine pairing. For the first course, diners can expect crostini three ways with pepper, tomato and vegetable tapenades, with goat cheese salad with citrus dressing for the second course; and a choice of chicken cacciatore or house-made raviolis for the third.
"If you ordered each of the three courses individually, it would cost around $38. With the wine, you could spend another $28. The three-course wine pairing menu allow us to specifically create these dishes and provide samples of the wine to accompany them," Barton said.
The Thai Basil restaurant in Midtown will offer a four-course dinner menu and dessert for $27 per person or $39 per person with a four-ounce wine pairing.
Diners can expect a treat as the menu will showcase popular dishes such as the tom yum (Thai hot and sour soup) with new non-menu items such as the Thai crepe pastry with honey and mango.
"We made this menu specifically for this event. We wanted to add something new for people to try, along with some of the classic options," Thai Basil owner Suleka Sun-Lindley said.
The first course includes a vegetable samosa: golden fried curried puffs filled with potatoes, peas and carrots in a mild yellow curry. Diners can choose between tom yum or the tom kha (Thai coconut soup) for the second course.
Grilled Atlantic salmon fillet and crispy breaded organic tofu and whole Asian eggplants are offered as third-course choices, while the fourth course offers a mild yellow curry with chicken or Thai famous rice noodles. For dessert, diners top off with a Thai crepe, a sweet and warm pastry with fresh mango and honey.
Some other participating restaurants are the Firehouse Restaurant, Frank Fat's, Scott's Seafood Grill and Bar, Rudy's Hideaway, Tazzina Bistro and Star Ginger Asian Grill.
The event pricing will be in effect at each participating restaurant every day during dinner hours.
There are no requirements or rules for dining participation.
For a complete list of participating restaurants and menus, visit the website of Sacramento Wine and Dine Week.