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Nine wine times: A harvest of tastings and dinners across Chicagoland

Louie Alexakis, owner of Avli Estiatorio in Winnetka (Photo ©Leah A. Zeldes)

Louie Alexakis, owner of Avli Estiatorio in Winnetka (Photo by Leah A. Zeldes)

Quaff your way across Chicago and the suburbs in October with a variety of fall wine events.

  • Village Vintner Friday Night Wine Down, Carpentersville, 6–10 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9, no cover.

    The first of a series of twice monthly events for wine lovers, featuring live music, food and wines for sale by the glass or bottle. Local artist Cassandra Vohs-Demann performs original songs or rock, jazz, blues and country covers. No need for reservations.

  • Allgauer’s Restaurant Lynfred Winery Five-Course Wine Dinner, Lisle, 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14, $75.

    Showcasing the wines of Roselle’s Lynfred Winery, this dinner centers on stuffed turkey breast with sage dressing, natural gravy, glazed sweet potato and apple-cranberry relish; honey-ginger glazed salmon with julienned vegetables and jasmine rice and Duroc pork loin with corn, black beans, bacon and cumin demi-glace.

  • Avil Estiatorio Domaine Skouras Wine Dinner, Winnetka, 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18, $75.

    Louie Alexakis, owner of Avli Estiatorio, known for its extensive list of Greek wines, hosts a dinner with Greek Winery of the Year winner George Skouras of Domaine Skouras Winery and Greek chef and author Diane Kochilas. Kochilas’ menu includes Polloponnesian trahana soup with pumpkin, onions and extra-virgin olive oil; fava with mavrodaphne-braised octopus; quail wrapped in grape leaves; lamb shank kydonato (quince); and more.

  • Le Titi de Paris Local Cuisines Wine Dinner, Arlington Heights, 6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18, $48.

    Chef Michael Maddox highlights local produce and global wines in this dinner, with such dishes as oven-roasted baby pumpkin with Maine lobster, leeks, fennel and hen of the woods mushroom risotto in champagne tarragon sauce; seared wild mushroom and vegetable encased Iowa pork loin with orange rosemary essence, acorn squash and thyme flan and onion-and-garlic confit potato puree; and Michigan peach tart Normandy-style.

  • Meson Sabika Tour of Rioja Wine Dinner, Naperville, 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 21, $45.

    Highlights of Chef Ochoa Filemon’s five-course menu include grilled halibut with Muga Blanco white wine grapefruit butter sauce, charcoal-grilled lamb chops in rosemary Valpiedra red wine sauce and flourless chocolate cake with creme anglaise and raspberry sauce, paired with such wines as Conde de Valdemar “Reserva” and La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 904.

  • The Chew Chew Restaurant Autumn Wine Dinner, Riverside, Saturday, Oct. 24, $60.

    The Chew Chew offers a five-course menu paired with global wines in addition to its regular dinner service on Oct. 24. Dishes include acorn squash tart with gruyere, candied pecans, petite bull’s blood sprouts and Steen’s Cane Syrup; grilled duck and armagnac sausage, with garlic fritter, braised red chard and Montmorency cherry chutney; and beef short rib and wild mushroom ragout with pumpkin mashed potatoes, and wines include De Wetshof Estate Chardonnay, Montoya Pinot Noir and Pacific Rim “Vin de Glaciere” Riesling.

  • Petterino’s ’20 Wines to Fall For … For Under $20′ Autumn Wine and Hors d’Oeuvres Tasting, Loop, 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 22, $25.
  • Twenty low-cost wines chosen by Sommelier Alpana Singh accompany autumn hors d’oeuvres created by Chef Francis Brennan, including king crab, heirloom apple salad and parmesan crisp; wild mushroom and manchego toast; crispy oxtail ravioli and spiced orange marmalade; and duck confit risotto with bartlett pears, parmesan-reggiano and red wine essence.

  • Sixteen Greg Norman Wine and Wagyu Dinner, River North, 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20, $160; Carlei Wine Dinner, 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 27, $130.

    In two October dinners, Chef Frank Brunacci and Sommelier Steven Lee focus on the wines of Brunacci’s native Australia. Morgan-Leigh Norman, daughter of Greg Norman, the professional golfer and entrepreneur, visits for a meal highlighting Greg Norman’s Signature Wagyu, a 350-day, grain-fed line of Australian Kobe-style beef and Greg Norman Estates wines. A week later, winemaker Sergio Carlei arrives for five courses showcasing his Carlei Estate and Carlei Green Vineyards.

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Drink up, Chicago! October wine events offer global flavors