Wine on table, woman eating in the background, selective focus, canon 1Ds mark III

June wine dinners at Brasserie Provence and Varanese

It is time again for excellent dining values, introduction to new wines and enjoyment of chefs’ off-the-usual-menu dishes designed to pair with the wines. There are lots of people who know the value and enjoyment these special dinners offer, for they usually sell out quickly. This post is far enough ahead so that those who haven’t tried them yet can reserve a seat.

  • Varanese, 2106 Frankfort Ave., has been staging monthly wine dinners for a number of years now; the latest one will be Tuesday, June 7 at 6:30 p.m. The theme is A Taste of Italy, with selections from Palm Bay International wine importers, who will send Regional Director Ryan Oliver to the dinner to talk about the wines from several Italian producers that he chose to pair with the dinner.

The wines will range from prosecco to pinot grigio to chianti classico to Italian pinot noir. The menu will include grilled clams and artichokes, house-made bucatini with basil pesto and oyster mushroom sauce, crispy porchetta, oxtail bolognese over gnocchi and vanilla panna cotta.

The dinner and wine pairings will be $65. Call (502) 899-9904 or email letsdine@varanese.com. A $25 per seat fee will be charged for reservations not canceled within 24 hours of the event.

  • On Thursday, June 9 at 6:30 p.m.,Brasserie Provence, 150 N. Hurstbourne Pkwy., will host a rosé wine dinner, with wine expert David DuBou of Vintner Select on hand to share his knowledge of the wines he chose for pairing with Chef Laurent Geroli’s menu.

The menu will feature dishes from the cuisine of the south of France: sweet potato and leek soup with lavender crème fraiche, red snapper, tuna caponata and poached peach and goat cheese gelato. The rosé wines likewise will be from the south of France, from the Pays d’Oc and the Côte de Provence, the heart of French rosé production.

The price for the dinner and wine pairings will be $65. Wines presented at the dinner can be ordered with a 15% discount through Westport Whiskey & Wine. Call (502) 883-3153.