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Music, dancing, and loukaniko: Greek Independence Day in Boston Common

By Cathy Huyghe   |   Thursday, August 12, 2010
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In honor of the Greek War of Independence from the Ottoman Empire (and Greek pride in general), the Greek Independence Day festival took over Boston Common on Sunday. The festival gave a hint of the wonderful culture — and food — one might experience on a visit, as with WGBH’s upcoming LearningTour.

Wine dinner this Friday at BOKX 109; special discount for WGBH members

By Cathy Huyghe   |   Thursday, August 12, 2010
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Unfiltered wines are all the rage — we’re living in a pared-back, honest era, people — but few wineries get unfiltered wines right.

Newton Vineyard, which wine critic Robert Parker calls one of the world’s greatest wine estates, is one of those few.

This Friday night offers a chance to taste Newton Vineyard’s work for yourself, when BOKX 109 American Prime restaurant hosts a wine dinner that includes three of their unfiltered wines — a chardonnay, a merlot, and a cabernet sauvignon. Better yet, WGBH members can get $10 off the price of the dinner (keep reading to find out how).

Here’s the plan:

Walk into the Newton Vineyard wine dinner and they’ll hand you a glass of the 2008 Red Label Chardonnay.

Retail price: $20/bottle.

While you’re getting settled, catch a server (or two, or three, it won’t be hard) and indulge in the passed apps of poached oyster shooters, lobster and ricotta cavatelli, and wing confit.

Once you’re seated, they’ll place your first unfiltered wine of the night in front of you — the 2007 chardonnay — to pair with the seared petrale sole with spring peas and morel cream.

Retail price for the wine: $45/bottle.

Then comes the second course with another unfiltered wine — the 2005 merlot — along with barbecued pork belly with Boston baked beans and sweet corn nage.

Retail price for the wine: $45/bottle.

Next up is Newton Vineyard’s iconic Bordeaux blend, called The Puzzle (2005) at $78/bottle retail. It’s matched up with Long Island duck served two ways — smoked breast and confit thigh — with melted leeks and lentil fondue in a red wine and shallot jus.

For dessert you’ll drift back to the unfiltered wines with the 2006 cab and a dark chocolate tart with drunken berries and toasted meringue.

Retail price for the wine: $40/bottle.

Is a $95-five course wine dinner worth the price? Well, here’s what you’d pay course by course (and this doesn’t even include the food):

$20

$45

$45

$78

$40

You do the math — then email your reservation to me at WGBH: cathy_huyghe@wgbh.org, and your WGBH membership gets you a $10 discount. See you there!

Details: Newton Vineyard Wine Dinner, hosted by Dr. Su Hua Newton. BOKX 109 American Prime restaurant, inside the Hotel Indigo, 399 Grove Street, Newton. Friday, April 30, at 6:30 p.m. Cost is $95 plus tax and gratuity; WGBH members get $10 off when you email Cathy Huyghe with your reservation.

Cathy Huyghe writes the WGBH Foodie blog. Read new WGBH Foodie posts every weekday, in which Cathy expl

High-low mix strikes edgy balance at Deep Ellum

By Cathy Huyghe   |   Thursday, August 12, 2010
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I went for the french fries.

“They’re legendary,” a friend of mine said, referring to the malt vinegar and fleur de sel version at Deep Ellum in Allston. I’d agree — referring not just to the taste but also to that high-low mix that characterizes so many of the dishes on the menu.

Deep Ellum manages to balance high and low — whether you’re talking about the items on the menu or the interior decor or the drinks list — and that balancing act conveys a sense of edginess that appeals to a wide swath of customers.

Deep Ellum is a brunch joint and a late-night bar. (Kitchen hours are 11am to midnight, plus Sunday brunch starting at 10am.)

In the morning, you can go with a breakfast burrito or duck confit hash.

Late at night, stop in for a cocktail — or go with Veuve Clicquot or a sparkling white wine from a single-serve can.

Deep Ellum’s menu is well-edited and carefully designed. (The only thing that’s really huge about it is their beer selection: 28 on draft, 80 bottled.) It’s not an all-things-to-all-people menu, but with dishes flavored intensely and variously, they leave the customer happily skirting Deep Ellum’s edge.

Cathy Huyghe writes the WGBH Foodie blog. Read new WGBH Foodie posts every weekday, in which Cathy explores myriad ways and places to experience good food and wine.

Finding Champagne in unexpected places

By Cathy Huyghe   |   Thursday, August 12, 2010
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There’s a shop on Newbury Street called Fresh that sells skincare products, soaps, and perfumes. It is not a place you’d expect to find the chicest wine tasting in town, but that is exactly what’s happening there tomorrow night from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

The link between skincare and wine?

At Fresh, it’s called Citron de Vigne. It’s a line of soaps, lotions, and perfumes that were inspired by the Champagne region of France. “Inspired by” means that the soaps and lotions are infused with a citrusy scent. “Inspired by” also means that the perfumes are formulated with a sparkling, effervescent aroma similar to what you’d find from a bottle of Champagne.

That’s where the wine tasting comes in. With a focus on the component grapes of Champagne, that is, specifically pinot noir. Jo-Ann Ross, certified specialist of wine and founder of J Ross Wine, will lead a casual, intimate tasting of wines from Champagne and Burgundy, where the pinot noir grape thrives.

See for yourself how inspiring that grape, those wines, and Citron de Vigne can be. Just check with Fresh for times and other event details.

Cathy Huyghe writes the WGBH Foodie blog. Read new WGBH Foodie posts every weekday, in which Cathy explores myriad ways and places to experience good food and wine.
 

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