The Juice is Loose

Two upcoming dinners where the wine will be front-and-center (and flowing)

No, not that juice -- OJ will be locked up for a good long time (thankfully). We're talking about grape juice, or even more deliciously, wine. There are two upcoming wine dinners worth your time, and we're here to tell you about them.

At the acclaimed (and soon to be revamped) Osteria di Tramonto, take part (while you can) in the Wheeling restaurant's monthly wine dinners. On Sunday, Jan. 18, the menu will showcase the cuisine of the Valle d'Aosta region of Italy (an Alpine valley in the northwestern corner of the country). The multi-course meal will feature hearty dishes from this mountainous area (think: frisee salad with warm bacon dressing, fontina fritters with wilted spinach, and beef brisket braised with onions and red wine) paired with regional wines. The communal-style dinner begins at 6PM and is $75 per person. Call 847-777-5637 to make your reservation.

On Tuesday, Jan. 20, visit Wildfire in River North for a special dinner featuring selections from Ravenswood Winery in Sonoma, California. The evening will start at 6:30PM with a reception and continue with a four-course dinner offering Wildfire's refined American dishes (such as pan-seared swordfish medallions and wood-roasted prime New York strip) accompanied by various Ravenswood varietals, including chardonnay, petite syrah and the signature zinfandels. The dinner is $80 per person; contact Wildfire wine and spirits director Brad Wermager at 773-398-6960 to make a reservation.

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