Wintery Food Festivities


I don’t know about you, but I didn’t dare make any draconian food-related New Year’s resolutions – they’re simply too easy to break. And, besides, there are oodles of fun, food-centric events being offered throughout the winter. Here’s just three to consider:

On Saturday, January 16th, Berryessa Gap Vineyards and Slow Food Yolo are hosting their second annual Big Pots, Big Reds extravaganza. Chef Pru Mendez of Tucos Wine Market & Café in Davis will prepare a meal (paired, of course, with Berryessa Gap wines) featuring “slow cooked, elegant comfort foods” that will be served up in the winery’s barrel room. Menu items include braised oxtails with Berryessa Gap Syrah; and braised rabbit with Armagnac, Tulare giant prunes and Nantes carrots (a vegetarian entrée is also available). Guests are asked to bring their own place settings, including plates, bowls, wine glasses, flatware and linens.
The event, which runs from 6pm to 8:30pm, is priced at $45 for Berryessa Gap wine club members and Slow Food members; and $55 for the general public.
For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

‘Tis the season to braise, and Hawks restaurant is gearing up to teach this important culinary craft. On Saturday February 20th, the restaurant will offer a class called Winter Braises and Warm Winter Soups – lucky participants will learn how to whip up a number of items, including Moroccan spiced chicken tagine; braised veal osso bucco; and roasted butternut squash soup with sage brown butter.  Everyone will then have an opportunity to sit down and devour the dishes they have created.
The class costs $100 (all inclusive) and runs from 11am to 2pm.
For more information, call (916) 791-6221.

On Saturday, March 6th, The Robert Mondavi Institute at UC Davis will host an event called Cheese Loves Beer : Mastering the Marriage. This fascinating program, back by popular demand, includes presentations entitled “Beer is Best for Brie and Beyond,” and “Cheese – From Serendipity to Art.” And, yes, an hour-long beer and wine pairing is an integral component of the event.
The program runs from 1pm to 5:30pm and will be held in the Robert Mondavi Institute’s Silverado Vineyards Sensory Theater. The cost is $55 for the general public; and $45 for UC Davis affiliates ($65 the day of the event).
For more information, visit or contact Kim Bannister,