Tag Archives: Varanese

Summer in December: South American Wine Dinner

Join the Varanese  crew —  executive chef / proprietor John Varanese, chef de cuisine Erik Abraham, sous chef Callie Critchelow — and guest speaker James Kaiser from Excelsior Wines on Tuesday, December 19 for  “Summer in December,” a South American wine experience.

This wine dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. and will be $65 per person (plus tax and gratuity.) There is also a $40 per person “food only” option. Reservations must be made in advance with a credit card and can be made in person at 2106 Frankfort Ave, by emailing letsdine@varanese.com  or by calling 502-899-9904.

First Course

Amado Sur, Torrontes

Grilled avocado tostada with chipotle aioli,

tomatillo salsa and queso fresco

Second Course

Marques de Casa Concha, Chardonnay

Crispy fried shrimp over a green cabbage, lime and jalapeno slaw

topped with a habanero jam

Third Course

Casillero del Diablo, Pinot Noir

Smoked chorizo and potato hash topped with a soft cooked egg

finished with a cilantro hollandaise

Forth Course

Trivento Golden Reserve, Malbec

Slow braised pork ropa vieja

served with long grain rice and a black bean puree

Fifth Course

Don Melchor, Cabernet Sauvignon

Roasted leg of lamb served over white sweet potato puree

topped with salsa verde and charred tomatoes

Sixth Course

Frontera Moonlight, Late Harvest Blend

Mango flan with dried mango and macadamia nut crumble

and dulce leche


Celebrate  Repeal Day at Varanese tonight

Marking the anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition has become an annual event around town, with many bars offering specials to commemorate the United States returning to its senses after a disastrous experiment of social engineering. Tonight, Dec. 5 at 6:30 p.m., Varanese, 2106 Frankfort Ave., goes all-out with a grand Repeal Day dinner, partnering with Old Forester and  featuring guest speaker Todd Vice of Kentucky Spirits to talk about the history of the national experiment in dry living, and his choices for Bourbon pairings with the 4-course dinner.

The Reception Cocktail will be a Smoked Pineapple Bourbon Cocktail, followed by the first course of lump crab cake with lettuce salad served with a mustard dijonnaise, The first course will be accompanied by tastings of Old Forester 86, Woodford Reserve, Old Forester Statesman and Old Forester 1920 Prohibition Style Bourbons.

The second course will be a frisée salad with confit butternut squash, toasted pumpkin seeds and goat cheese, with a maple-bourbon vinaigrette.

The third course, fried quail served over buttermilk waffles with a sunnyside-up egg and braised greens, will be paired with a Bourbon Rouge cocktail.

The dessert cocktail with be Old Forester Pear Cocktail, and the dessert will be spiced apple crumb cake with Bourbon caramel frosting and cinnamon marshmallow ice cream.

The dinner and Bourbon pairings will be $60. Calling (502) 899-9904 or email letsdine@varanese.com.

Fall Harvest Feast At Varanese

Thursday, Nov. 16 at 6:30 p.m., Varanese, 2106 Frankfort Ave., will host a Fall Harvest Feast, a special dinner with seasonal wine pairings chosen by sommelier John Johnson of The Wine Rack who has chosen different varietals to match Chef de Cuisine Erik Abraham’s 6-course menu, and who will be at the dinner to talk about his selections. Continue reading Fall Harvest Feast At Varanese

Tour France at Varanese Wine Dinner

Tomorrow, Tuesday, Aug. 29, at 6:30 p.m.Varanese, 2106 Frankfort Ave., is hosting a Tour de France Wine Dinner featuring six wines from different regions of France paired with a 6-course dinner. The special guest for the evening will be Jason Wyatt, Certified Sommelier and Fine Wine Portfolio Manager at Southern Glazers Wine & Spirits, who will be on hand to talk about the qualities and attributes of his selected wine pairings.

The menu, created by the Varanese team led by Chef Erik Abraham, will consist of chilled oysters on the half shell with smoked bacon and jalapeno mignonette, paired with Whispering Angel Rosé, from Provence;  white peach gazpacho paired with Simmonet & Febvre , a Burgundy Chablis; cold smoked duck breast with roasted sweet potatoes, served with Gerard Bertrand Pinot Noir, Languedoc; braised pork belly and house-made sausage cassoulet, served with a Rhone wine, Ogier Lirac; braised lamb neck ragout topped with sliced Spinella ribeye steak with crispy bone marrow, paired with Chateau les Trois Croix Fronsac, Bordeaux; and dessert of fried beignet with caramelized apples served with honey comb and lavender ice cream, and with Trimbach Late Harvest Gewurztraminer, Alsace

The cost of dinner and wine pairings is $65. Call (502) 99-9904 or email letsdine@varanese.com.

Two wine dinners next week

The rhythms of special dinners continue next week with two wine-focused meals, one on Tuesday, July 18 at Varanese, and the other Thursday, July 20 at Proof on Main. The dinner at Varanese, 2106 Frankfort Ave., will feature the wines of BOS vineyards in Napa Valley, while Proof will build its Fork + Bottle series dinner around the wines of Stoller Family Estates in the Willamette Valley of Oregon.

The Varanese dinner begins with a reception at 6:30 p.m., with the dinner at 7. The featured guest speaker will be David Bos the vineyard manager who has been working for a decade with biodynamic and organic farming practices to heal and restore played out farmland. For the menu created by the Varanese team led by Chef Erik Abraham, go to http://varanese.com/events/event/bos-wine-dinner/.

The cost of the dinner and wine pairings will be $65. Calling (502) 899-9904 or email letsdine@varanese.com.

At Proof on Main, 702 W. Main St., the 4-course dinner crafted by executive chef Mike Wajda will feature special guest Melissa Burr, Director of Winemaking at Stoller Family Estate, who will lead tastings of each pairing.

The menu will feature an oyster shooter with tomato water, lemongrass and Calabrian chiles; head-on tiger prawns with lardo and garlic scapes; and Amish-raised rabbit cannelloni with ramp butter. The entree will be a whole roasted wild boar served table side with pickled corn, foraged mushroom jam and house sausage.

Featured wines will include 2016 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir Rose, 2016 Dundee Hills Reserve Chardonnay, 2015 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir, 2015 Reserve Pinot Noir and 2015 Single Acre Syrah.

The Stoller Family Estate Vineyard dinner will be $115. Call (502) 217-6360.

Varanese hosts Russell’s Reserve dinner

Thursday, May 11 at 6:30 p.m., Varanese, 2106 Frankfort Ave. will host a 4-course dinner created to complement pairings of tastings of and cocktails made with various bottlings of spirits from Russell’s Reserve. Jimmy Russell, Master Distiller of Wild Turkey Distillery, will be the special guest speaking on the specific qualities diners can discover in the drink pairings.

The tastings will include a flight consisting of Russell’s Reserve 10 yr., Russell’s Reserve Single Barrel and Russell’s Reserve Rye. The reception cocktail will be a  “Kicking Chicken.”

The menu will start with a seared scallop with Bourbon creamed corn, followed by a salad of tomatoes, cucumbers, burrata cheese and basil pesto. The entrée, served with a “Russell’s Ward” cocktail, will be Bourbon barrel-smoked beef brisket. Dessert will be 10 Year Tiramisu, served with a “Nutty Bird” cocktail

The dinner and drink pairings will be $60. Call (502) 899-9904 or email letsdine@varanese.com.

Wine, beer focus of dinners at Brasserie Provence, Varanese

If you like to explore different wines with dinner, Brasserie Provence has a deal for you this Thursday, April 20. And if you are a beer aficionado, that same night you can enjoy a dinner crafted to pair with beers from Lexington’s West Sixth brewery. Continue reading Wine, beer focus of dinners at Brasserie Provence, Varanese

Varanese offers Lenten specials

Feeling the need of his Catholic patrons to keep to Lenten dietary restrictions, and yet to have a nice meal out, John Varanese again is offering a menu special at his namesake restaurant, Varanese, 2106 Frankfort Ave. Two diners can enjoy a meatless 3-course dinner for $50 every Friday until Easter (which is April 16 this year). Continue reading Varanese offers Lenten specials