Tuscan treat Shiraz will be hosting a wine dinner featuring Tuscan wines from Moris Farms, where vinophiles can sample the fruit of coastal Tuscany's vines, with vinos from the Maremma and Morellino di Scansano districts. The evening will pair food with the entire range of Moris Farms' wines, including their Tuscan-style red "Avvoltore." It's also a chance to meet the estate's owners, the father-and-son team of Adolfo and Giulio Parentini, and to sample their olive oil. The menu includes pancetta-wrapped diver scallop, braised trumpet royale mushrooms, grilled axis venison tenderloin and roasted Colorado lamb rack. Finish it off with a warm tart or ice milk. Reception at 6:30 p.m., dinner at 7 p.m., on Friday, March 16, at 30100 Telegraph Rd., Bingham Farms; call 248-645-5289 for reservations; $85 per person, plus tax & gratuity.
More wine! Brett Crittendon, the winemaker at Mitolo Winery in McLaren Value, Australia, will be at Assaggi Mediterranean Bistro for a four-course wine dinner. Sample what wine critic Robert Parker called "one of the most brilliant Australian winemaking operations to emerge over the last five years." Reception at 6:30 p.m., dinner at 7 p.m., on Thursday, March 8, at 330 W. Nine Mile Rd., Ferndale; call 248-384-3499 for reservations; $80 per guest, plus tax and gratuity.
Eat the Page
Recipes for "numbing-and-hot chicken" and "Chairman Mao's favorite red-braised pork" are enough to entice us to grab a copy of Fuchsia Dunlop's latest book on regional Chinese cooking, Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook: Recipes from Hunan Province (W.W. Norton $20.95). Years ago we discovered Henry Chung's House of Hunan in San Francisco, and our palate was then scorched by what today seems a tolerable heat level when we can find it. If you know where Hunan dishes are served in metro Detroit, please let us know.
A Tasty Beverage
The producers of Grey Goose vodka claim theirs is the world's best-tasting vodka. Now they have introduced Le Poire, a pear-flavored vodka, with the phrase "Never has the pear been so perfectly captured." Much has been spent on beautiful print ads in upscale magazines, daring us to try this elegant and decadent essence of the Anjou pear. Their Web site (greygoose.com) includes a recipe for what else? a Peartini. After all of this encouragement, we are advised to "sip responsibly."
If you thought the pizza cutter that we hipped you to a couple of weeks ago was cool, wait until you start serving your pies on retro aluminum pizza pans. These babies look great on the table, and that's because they're the real deal. Some things never change, and these pans are classics, as timeless as they are indestructible. They're available from Gordon Food Service for about a fin. We cover them with foil and use them to cook and, occasionally, serve real food.
Know of any new restaurants, special dinners or food-related events? Let us know. Send materials two weeks in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org.