The Dining Divas: Paul Martin’s American Bistro

Guests:

Jackie Grebitus, quality assurance auditor for Zurich North America Insurance; her guest, Laurel Hall, a fitness professional at Arden Hills Resort Club & Spa; Kit Dillon Givas, producer/owner of Hot Flash Productions; her son, Casey Dillon, a graphic designer; Arla Gibson, director of development and marketing for Capital Public Radio; and Bruce Mace, husband of Diva Gayla Mace and all-around good guy&emdash;he loves everybody, and it’s mutual.

Where: Paul Martin’s American Bistro, 1455 Eureka Road, Roseville; (916) 783-3600; paulmartinsamericanbistro.com

Benefiting organization: The Keaton Raphael Memorial for children with cancer and the Sacramento YMCA

1-second review:
Good prices, decent food, great for a bite after a movie.

Dishing on the food:
At the top of our list was the Fulton Valley brick chicken with herb au jus and mashed potatoes. The artichoke from Castroville (where else do they come from?) was mesquite-grilled and served with both lemon-tarragon aioli and pesto&emdash;a perfect starter to share. Another felicitous appetizer: Bloomsdale spinach dip with white cheddar sauce and toast slices. The trio of ice creams (pistachio, vanilla bean and chocolate) satisfied our need for something sweet, and the pear and huckleberry crisp was delicious. 

Wine time:
Before the lunch, Sacramento magazine’s wine guru, Elaine Smith, advised Diva Peg Tomlinson-Poswall on what to order: Pacific Rim Riesling from Washington, King Estate Pinot Gris from Oregon and Spellbound Petite Sirah from California. Casey Dillon commented that the wine list is good, with some lesser-known selections. There’s no need for all the big brands because there are too many interesting wines out there, he said.

Ambiance: Wide-open space with booths and tables, plus an inviting bar; outdoor seating on pillowed couches might be just the ticket this time of year.

The challenge:
Server Jayson Diamond made sure the food arrived in a timely fashion, and that staffers replaced and replenished cutlery and plates.

Quote of the day:
Dining Divas devour delicious delights during the day&emdash;created on the spot by Jackie Grebitus and Laurel Hall.

Chatter: Jackie Grebitus and Laurel Hall know how to travel. On a trip to New York City, they decided to focus on one favorite food group: french fries. Both agreed it was a great approach. And when it comes to voting, Kit Dillon Givas said: After talking about the glitches in the voting process, I am still a confident member of the Cocktail Party.

The Dining Divas&emdash;Gloria Glyer, Paulette Bruce, Bernice Hagen, Joan Leineke, Gayla Mace and Peg Tomlinson-Poswall&emdash;have been wining and dining together since 1993. Every month, they lunch at an area restaurant, taking as their guests people who placed winning bids at charity events. To date, they have raised more than $279,000 for local charities and nonprofits.

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