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David Lissner
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Drink up, Chicago! October wine events offer global flavors

Alpana Singh

Alpana Singh

The October harvest of wine events continues.

  • Osteria Via Stato Autumn Harvest Wine Tasting, River North, 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14, $20.

    Master sommelier and host of “Check Please!” Alpana Singh leads a tasting of 20 autumn harvest wines that pair well with fall ingredients, such as brussels sprouts, apples, pears, squash and pomegranate, exemplified in Chef David DiGregorio’s appetizers.

  • Carnivale Spanish Wine Class, River West, 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14, $25.

    Wine director Elizabeth Mendez shares the secrets of choosing the perfect fall weather wine from Spain during a tasting of wines from Rioja, Penedes, Somontano and Rueda, paired with autumn appetizers from Chef Mark Mendez.

  • The House of Glunz Oktoberfest Tasting, Old Town, 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 16, $35.

    The tasting of German, Alsatian and Austrian wines and beers comes with a spread including Gebhardt’s sausages, juniper flavored sauerkraut, cheese noodles and smoked fish pate.

  • Le Titi de Paris American Winery Dinner Series: Trefethen Winery, Arlington Heights, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 16, $85.

    Chef Michael Maddox’s menu pairs American wine and ingredients with French technique in such dishes as sauteed Maine lobster and peeky toe crab galette on wilted spinach with champagne caviar essence; oven-roasted baby pumpkin with braised rabbit, leek, chicken of the woods mushrooms and thyme essence; and seared fillet of beef with blue cheese, potatoes dauphinoise and pinot noir reduction.

  • Nacional 27 Rioja Wine Week, River North, Oct. 19–24, featuring a “Wine Down Dinner,” Wednesday, Oct. 21, $36.95.

    Sommelier and mixologist Adam Seger’s special sangria, paella pairings and wine flights celebrating Rioja, Spain, will be served all week. Wednesday’s four-course menu includes Rioja regional wines.

  • Naha Greek Wine Dinner, River North, 6:15 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20, $99.

    George Skouras of Domaine Skouras in Greece educates diners on modern Greek wines during a dinner by Chef Carrie Nahabedian. For reservations, call Mike or Amy of Wine Discount Center at (773) 489-3454.

  • Va Pensiero, Evanston, Ferrari Winery Dinner, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20, $59; Castelcosa Winery Friulian Dinner, 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 22, $59.

    Federico Zanuso from Ferrari Winery in Italy visits for a five-course dinner featuring gratin of blue point oysters drizzled with lemon-vermouth sauce with braised Swiss chard; chilled Hudson Valley foie gras with house-made pear-shallot jam, pinot nero-poached Anjou pears and baby red romaine; caramelized onion-roasted garlic timbale encased in zucchini with prosciutto di Parma and sage oil; trio of wild boar; and lemon-poppy seed cake drizzled with a blood orange-caramel sauce and oven-roasted pineapple.

    Later in the week, Marco Furlan of Castelcosa Winery and Beverly Malen of Chicago’s Imports Inc. present wines from the heart of Friuli, Italy, at a dinner showcasing Friulian cuisine, including potato tortellini with prosciutto San Daniele, iota Friulana, vegetable soup Friuli style; and duck with salsa piccante and soft caraway polenta.

  • Smith & Wollensky Great Wines of Italy Winemakers Dinner, River North, 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 21, $95 regular price, $75 with American Express.

    The four-course dinner centers on veal involtino and filet mignon, with Pighin Pinot Grigio, Michele Chiarlo Barbera d’Asti “Le Orme,” Nozzole Chianti Classico Riserva “La Forra” and Michele Chiarlo Moscato d’Asti “Nivole.” Click the price links above for reservations.

  • 312 Chicago Mad Hatter Shiraz Dinner, Loop, 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 28, $75.

    Winemaker Dean Hewitson of Hewitson Winery in South Australia presents his latest vintage, the 2006 Mad Hatter Shiraz, at a four-course wine dinner during the Chicago stop of his national tour. E-mail reservations.

  • Tapas Valencia Jorge Ordonez Wine Dinner, South Loop, 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 28, $59.

    Wine expert Robert Houde, general manager of Garnacha Ltd., a Spanish estate wines distributor, will talk about the vintages. Chef Filemon Ochoa’s menu highlights include mixto del mar, sauteed halibut and prawns with romesco sauce; morcilla de cordero, braised boneless lamb shank with spinach and Mediterranean couscous; and costilla de buey, beef short ribs braised with chestnuts in raspberry red wine sauce.

Reservations are required for all events; phone the venue unless otherwise noted.

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