Food & Wine: Warm Up Your Winter

by Claire Handscombe

Hone your skills for hosting the perfect dinner party with these opportunities to learn more about food and wine.

By Claire Handscombe

Ramen Ingredients. Photo: Ray Lopez

Ramen Ingredients. Photo: Ray Lopez

Spend an evening in Piemonte without the inconvenience of air travel at Fiola on 02/04. You’ll get to savor the many rich and fragrant flavors of GD Vajra Wine, guided by the granddaughter of founders Aldo and Milean Vajra. The wines, from Langhe Bianco to Barolo to Mascato, will be served alongside a five-course menu developed by Chef Fabio Trabocchi, including such dishes as risotto al Castelmagno and black truffle, and agnolotti of chestnut, short ribs and foie gras.

La Tasca’s sangria making dinners take place in both Arlington and downtown DC, every weekend throughout February. Complete your entertaining skill set by learning to make chocolate on 02/04 in NoMa, sushi at Nooshi Sushi in Barracks Row on 02/06, and, on 06/06, For something completely different, try making edible cherry blossom cake decorations on 02/20.

On 06/06, learn how to choose and use authentic Chilean ingredients as part of your everyday life. The class will be led by Chef Victor Albisu, who is an award-winning chef the master of meat at Del Campo. You’ll learn how to prepare and cook Chilean ingredients and you’ll get to sample the results over a leisurely lunch with your classmates – paired, of course, with hand-picked Chilean wines.

Engage all of your senses on 02/06 or 02/20 at Daikaya Ramen as Executive Chef Katsuya Fukushima and Daisuke Utagawa demonstrate how to make and enjoy the signature noddle soup and teach you about its history. Though it’s not a traditional cooking class, you’ll walk away with new knowledge, a full stomach, and a mini goody bag filled with Japanese treats and Daikaya Ramen branded goodies. Call (202) 589-1600 to reserve a ticket.

Photo: Greg Powers

Fiola Mare. Photo: Greg Powers

Travel back in time to the 1920s at Fiola Mare on 02/11 when you enter through the side door and enter Bar Piccolo for a Speakeasy vibe. Time travel will be complete with Prohibition Era-inpsired cocktails and decadent bites from Executive Chef Brinn Sinnott.

On 12/2, let Milbrandt Vineyards’ expert and Chef Dan West teach you about the pairings of four delicious dishes with four equally delicious wines. You’ll get to experience a menu which includes dates stuffed with gorgonzola and applewood smoked bacon as well as artisanal hand-rolled chooclates, and you’ll learn through experience and through discussion what it is about each of the curated wines that so perfectly enhances the flavors in the dishes.

Other opportunities to learn more about wines and their food pairings include a central Euroean wine class at Vinoteca on 02/09, a wine and chocolate pairing night in McLean on 02/11, and a Malbec-focused evening on 02/23. And whether the love of your life is cheese, chocolate, or sparkling wine, you’ll enjoy this alternative celebration of Valentine’s Day weekend on 02/13.

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