Tag Archives: wine

Dining Trends: Wine Dinners

23 Dec

Last Friday I wrote a story about wine dinners in Omaha. I went to one at the Boiler Room and had a great experience.

The short form: Wine dinners are expensive but worth the money. You’ll get to try wines you wouldn’t be able to access otherwise and eat some great food while you do it.

At right: winemaker Mario Bollag, center, smells wine next to Boiler Room chef Paul Kulik. Photo by Corey Perrine/OWH



My crazy week, in review.

1 Dec

So Chick-Fil-A and it’s soft opening and opening took over my life earlier this week. I can’t say I’ve ever seen so much frenzy over a fried chicken sandwich (or so much controversy over the politics of restaurant owners, for that matter.) I also had to finish writing my story that ran Wednesday about creative hostess gifts (seriously, check out the cheese board that’s featured with the story — it’s amazing) and write my review for tomorrow’s paper and of course compile dining notes. Tomorrow’s review is a good one. I can’t wait to share it here.

Oh yeah, and I have a little column called art notes that always seems to get lost in the fray.

On Monday, I escaped my desk for a photo shoot for the gift story. Yes, that’s my back at left (and my own hand wrapped gift and front door, I’ll add.)

So those are all the reasons that Omavore has been quiet this week. But I’ll be back on track next week, beginning with a recap of this weekend, which I’m spending in Kansas City with my husband. His favorite band is playing a show Saturday night — can’t wait. Next week I’ll tell you about all the good food we eat and the good things we drink over the weekend.

Until then.

Thanksgiving week: Wine with Jesse Becker, MS

22 Nov

I met Master Sommelier Jesse Becker when he was working at Omaha’s Boiler Room restaurant. Not only does he know his stuff — he’s got the rare and prestigious professional certification awarded by The Court of Master Sommeliers — he’s a super nice guy. Now he’s living in San Francisco, where he runs Périphérique Wine Merchants with his wife, Beth. Jesse will be back on the floor at the Boiler Room on the evening of New Year’s Eve.

I asked Jesse via Twitter to share his Thanksgiving wine recommendations with Omavore readers, and he went above and beyond.

Jesse’s main tip: “Keep it fresh, keep it light and not too boozy.”

He chose two routes: American wine, which makes sense for a truly American holiday, and what he calls “perfect pairings.”

His pick for an American white wine is the 2010 Matthiasson white, a blend of Sauvignon blanc, Ribolla gialla, Semillon, and Friulano. ($35, pictured at left.) Matthaisson is a small family winery just outside of Yountville, in Northern California. The wine, he says, is “just delicious.”

For an American red, Jesse chose Doug Nalle’s low-alcohol Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley in Sonoma, California. “Doug’s 2009 Nalle Zinfandel ($36) is just 13.6% alcohol and has refreshing acidity and lots of nice strawberry fruit,” Jesse said.

Jesse’s “perfect pairing” wines for Thanksgiving are matched with the traditional menu. He chose two with a little more fruit, he said, because they can handle lots of different foods.

His perfect pairing white is a German Reisling that’s low in alcohol and has just a bit of sweetness.  The 2009 Karthauserhof Eitelsbacher Karthäuserhofberg Kabinett ($23.99) is a crowd pleaser. “You can drink it all afternoon or evening,” he said. “It’s perfect for a long family meal, and its sweetness works with all the sweet dishes of a traditional Thansgiving meal including sweet potatoes and grandma’s Jell-O salad.”

For a perfect pairing red, Jesse likes Beaujolais. The 2010 Jean-Paul Brun Domaine des Terres Dorees Fleurie Beaujolais ($22.99, pictured at right) is another low alcohol wine with lots of crowd-pleasing fruit, he said. It’s what he’ll be drinking at his own Thanksgiving feast.

Images courtesy Matthiasson and PWMwine.com

Weekend adventure

25 Oct

Matthew and I took a mini adventure last weekend. We spent the afternoon at Too Far North tasting room, in Fort Calhoun. We were hoping for a drive filled with fall color, but I think we may have been a week too early for it. Anyhow, we had a great time hanging out with Sandy Kucera, who owns Too Far North, and trying some Nebraska wines we’d never had before. The tasting room used to be a saloon in the early 1900s.  For those not into wine, Too Far North also serves a variety of Nebraska beer on tap. I always forget how close Fort Calhoun really is to Omaha — it was fun to drive just over 25 minutes and get that small town Nebraska vibe but not have a long drive ahead at the end of the night.

A friend who grew up in Blair recommended we check out the Driftwood Inn for dinner. It’s right on the banks of the Missouri and just re-opened after the floods this summer. We sat on the patio for a bit, made a new feline friend and then went inside for dinner. The view, according to one employee, has been vastly changed by the flooding, and it was rather incredible to imagine what it looked like before compared to how it looks now. The menu at Driftwood is full of simple American steakhouse food. I had a salmon steak; Matthew had shrimp and steak. The place was almost full by the time 7 p.m. rolled around.

Every once in a while, it’s good to get out of town for a night.