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Upcoming Opportunties to Taste including Cotes du Coeur and a Big Texas Beer Fest

Dallas continues to set the standards high when it comes to events designed to wine and dine you.  Here are some that shouldn’t be missed over the next few weeks.

One of my favorite wineries in Napa Valley is Miner Family Vineyards.  From owner Dave Miner’s succulent Wild Yeast Chardonnay to his impressive use of the Merlot grape in his Stagecoach Vineyard Merlot and his big red blend The Oracle, a wine I would easily put up next to any other red blend from Napa in a blind taste test, his wines are simply delicious.  Thursday evening Miner’s Sales Director Rocio Gonzales will be at the Sigel’s-Elite on Fitzhugh from 5pm-7pm to taste all of these wines and more….best part, some nice discounts will be available for each wine tasted (including the 2007 Oracle, one of the best years in recent history for Napa Valley’s, which usually sells for $85, discounted to $72 a bottle.)  Reservations required – 214-635-3162

If something from Washington State is more your preference Jasper’s in Plano is hosting a wine dinner on Thursday night with winemaker John Bookwalter of Bookwalter Winery, a small production winery in the Columbia Valley, which has been making award winning Washington wines since 1983.  Cost is $75, reservations required - 972-673-0823.

Some consider the Cotes du Coeur International Fine Wine Auction and Celebrity Chef Dinner to be the event of the year, especially for wine and food lovers.  I have to agree that year in and year out the Dallas Chapter for the American Heart Association, with the help of some of Dallas’ favorite chefs like Chef Chair Richard Chamberlain, David Holben, Jim Severson, Dean Fearing and Kent Rathbun, put on a grand event, which over their 20 year history of holding the event in Dallas has raised over $16 million for the American Heart Association.  More information available through their website or by calling 214-748-1200.

If beer is more your style, head out to the first Big Texas Beer Fest on Saturday afternoon at Fair Park.  This is the first North Texas craft beer festival, devoted solely craft beer and featuring over 300 beers from all over the world, and the list is extensive, including Deep Ellum, Deschutes, Dogfish Head, Boulevard, Guinness, Maui Brewing, Krombacher and so many more.    Perfect timing as our local craft brewery scene continues to expand.   Tickets are $35 in advance/$60 VIP, available here.

Nestled in the hills just below Howell Mountain in Napa Valley is one of the most beautiful wineries I have ever visited, bonus, they also make incredible wine – mainly big, bold and luscious reds.  Viader Winery was started in in 1986 by the incredibly passionate and determined Delia Viader.  Today Viader is considered to be one of the top red wine producers from Napa, specifically for their single varietal Cabernet Franc and gorgeous Cabernet Sauvignon blends; and it is also a family affair with her son, Alan, managing their operations and working with his mom as their winemaker; her daughter, Janet, handling the sales and marketing for the winery; even Alan’s wife, Mariela, managing the culinary program for Viader creating lavish dinners or light lunches for guests from her organic garden on the Viader property.  Janet Viader will be in town on Tuesday, April 17, to host a wine dinner with Chef Scott Gottlich at his restaurant, Bijoux.  The dinner is $95, reservations required – 214-350-6100.

If you are a fan of Pinot Noir you must join Sommelier Barbara Werley at Pappa’s Bros. Steakhouse on Friday, April 20 for their world wide, impressive, Pinot Noir wine tasting.  Selections to be tasted include a 2006 Freestone Vineyards from Sonoma Coast; 2007 Sea Smoke Cellars “Southing” from Santa Rita Hills, CA; 2000 Leroy Bourgogne Rouge from Burgundy; 2005 Trimbach “Reserve Personelle” from Alsace, and many more.  $55 per person, includes a selection of Hors d’Oeuvres, reservations required – 214-366-2000.

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