A look at what's happening around the bay area.
By PEGGY ANDERS
Published April 6, 2005
GRANDE DAME 0F SPANISH WINE: 7 p.m. today, Columbia Restaurant, 2117 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. Winemaker Maria Martinez-Sierra, considered the "grande dame" of Spanish wines, presents Bodegas Montecillo varieties, paired with five-course dinner; $50. Call (813) 248-4961.
BERN'S WINEFEST: Bern's Fine Wines & Spirits, 1002 S Howard Ave. corner of Howard and Morrison avenues, Tampa. Eighth annual Winefest kicks off with five-course dinner with Australian wines paired with the global cuisine of chef Jeannie Pierola and her team, 6:30 p.m. April 22, $175 inclusive; or learn new kitchen skills at Chef Jeannie's Cooking Class, includes three-course lunch paired with Sinskey Vineyards' wines from Napa Valley, 12:15-3:15 p.m. April 23, $100 inclusive; Grand Tasting offers 150 wines paired with creative bites from Bern's and SideBern's, plus caviar, vodka and champagne stations, wine seminars on domestic syrahs and cheese and wine pairings, silent auction, crystal keepsake wine glass, 12:30-4 p.m. April 24, $75 advance, $85 at door. Proceeds benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation. Call (813) 250-9463 for more information, or visit www.bernswinefest.com for tickets.
FLORIDA WINEFEST: Fifteenth annual Florida Winefest & Auction, April 21-24 at Ritz-Carlton, 1111 Ritz-Carlton Drive, Sarasota, St. Armands Circle and other Sarasota venues; includes winemaker dinners, brunch and lunch tastings, alfresco wine tasting, food and wine seminars; wines from Chateau Falfas, Iron Horse, Peachy Canyon, Castello Banfi, ZD and more. Benefits 24 area charities for disadvantaged children. Call 941 952-1109 or toll-free 1-800-216-6199 or visit www.floridawinefest.com for tickets and event prices.
TAMPA BAY CULINARY CLUB: 1:30 p.m. April 16, Opium, 14445 N Dale Mabry, in Carrollwood. This month's meeting features culinary demonstration by Opium's chef, Caroline Thaxton; $10. RSVP required by April 13. Call (727) 789-2605 to attend.Tastings/classes
ABC SAMPLING: 5:30-7:30 p.m. today, ABC Fine Wine & Spirits, 3110 W Gandy Blvd., Tampa. More than 70 wines to try, along with gourmet foods and cheeses, spirits and cordials; test your palate at the "mystery wine table" blind tasting competition; $7, includes wine glass and coupon for wine purchase. Call (813) 839-7167.
UNCORKING SHAKESPEARE: 7-10 p.m. Fri., Demens Landing, First Avenue S and Bayshore Boulevard, downtown St. Petersburg. Sip on wines from Robert Mondavi Private Selection and Alice White, paired with roast beef and blue cheese wraps, antipasto and more while enjoying Bomb-Itty of Errors, American Stage's production of Shakespeare in the Park at Tampa Bay Uncorked event; $36 in advance only. Visit www.tampabayuncorked.org for tickets or more information.
"CHILI, CHILLY AND CHILE': 7:30 p.m. Fri., Charlie's Wine Bar, 533 S Howard Ave., Tampa, presents tasting of malbec, merlot, chardonnay, sauvignon blanc and other Chilean wines, paired with regional cuisine; $12 advance, $15 at door. Call 813 250-1967 or visit www.charlieswine.com
NEW YORK STATE OF WINE: 6:30 p.m. Fri., Uncorked Fine Wines and Accessories, 2706 Fourth St. N, St. Petersburg. Sampling of wines from Long Island and Finger Lakes area; $10, includes souvenir wine glass. Proceeds benefit Campbell Park Marine Science Center. Call (727) 892-9463.
CALIFORNIA VS. CHILE: 6:30-8:30 p.m. Fri., Got Wine, 662 Main St., Dunedin. Compare California wines that include Alexander Valley syrah, Avalon Napa Valley cabernet and Buena Vista sauvignon blanc with Chilean varieties, among them Casillero del Diabolo cabernet, merlot and carmenere, at free tasting. Call (727) 736-4077.
LEFT BANK LINEUP: 5-7 p.m. Sat., Tampa Wine Institute, 2009 N 22nd St. (corner of 22nd Street and Palm Avenue), Ybor City. Class focuses on Pomerol and St. Emilion wines from the left bank of Bordeaux, 6-8 wines served, plus foods to accompany; $30. To RSVP, call (813) 241-8587.
FLORIDA ESTATES WINE FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat., Florida Estates Winery, 25241 State Road 52, 4 miles west of Interstate 75, near Land O'Lakes. Sample the winery's offerings while browsing in fresh market. Free admission. Call 813 996-2113 or visit www.floridaestateswines.com
CHILE FLIGHT: Any time between 6 and 8 p.m. Tue., A Taste for Wine, 241 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. Take a wine flight with Chilean carmere and cabernet sauvignon varieties; $12. Call (727) 895-1623.
BORDEAUX AT B-21: 3-6 p.m. April 17, B-21 Fine Wine & Spirits, 43380 U.S. 19 N, Tarpon Springs. Compare Bordeaux wines with California cabernets, including wines from Lynch-Bages, Pichon Lalande, Caymus, Silver Oak and newer value-priced varieties; $25 before April 15, then $30, if available. Call 727 937-5049 or visit www.b-21.com to reserve.Cooking classes
SIP AND SPEAK ITALIAN: Enjoy Italian wine and cuisine while learning beginner's conversational Italian, Italian culture and customs from Chef Roberto. Five-session series meets from 6-7 p.m. beginning today at Bellini Restaurant, 487 Main St., Dunedin, $185; or from 6-7 p.m. beginning Thur. at Bellagio Ristorante, 95 Central Ave., St. Petersburg, $185. Preregistration required; 727 866-6892 or www.learnitalian.us
CONVERSATIONAL CUISINE: Learn to speak beginner's conversational Spanish and enjoy Spanish cuisine dinner in five-week course that immerses students in the language, foods, culture and customs of Spain, 6-7 p.m. Thursdays beginning this week at Castellano & Pizzo Italian Gourmet Foods, 4200 S Henderson Blvd., Tampa. Cost: $185 for five-week course, includes meals and all materials. Preregistration required. Call 727 866-6892 or visit www.learnitalian.us
PIE, PLEASE: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun., Let Them Eat Cake, 3805 S West Shore Blvd., Tampa. "Pies, Pies, Pies" class includes lunch and supplies; $125. RSVP required; call (813) 837-6888.
FRENCH, MEXICAN, MAKE-AHEAD: La Maison Gourmet, 471 Main St., Dunedin: Couples Cook Hands-on class, with Provencal rack of lamb, chocolate mousse, 6:30-9 p.m. Fri., $95 a couple, or $49.50 a person; 30 Minute Mexican Meals makes red snapper tacos with orange chipotle drizzle, chicken and chimichurri sauce, 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Sat., $39.50; Make-Ahead Meals 6:30-9 p.m. April 14, $39.50. Call (727) 736-3070 to RSVP.
CARIBBEAN CUISINE: 6:30-8 p.m. Mon., Saffron's Caribbean Cuisine Restaurant, 1700 Park St. N, St. Petersburg. Chef Edyth James shows participants how to capture the flavors of the islands in monthly class; $25, includes dinner and drink, gratuity extra. Call 727 345-6400 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve.
HEALTHY SPRING CUISINE: 5:30 p.m. Mon., fourth floor of St. Anthony's Hospital, 1200 Seventh Ave. N, St. Petersburg. Chef Nathan Rich of the Renaissance Vinoy Resort and registered dietitians share heart-healthy spring-cuisine menu. Cost: $15. Tickets must be purchased by Fri.; call (727) 820-7910.
MARTIN YAN: Apron's Cooking School, Publix, Shoppes of Citrus Park, 7835 Gunn Highway, Tampa, presents celebrity chef Martin Yan, with practical Asian recipes combined with his signature wit and wisdom, 6:30 p.m. April 13, $45. Call (813) 926-4465.
SPRING IN PROVENCE: 5-7 p.m. Tue., Ritz-Carlton Sarasota, 1111 Ritz-Carlton Drive, Sarasota. Get a taste of spring in Provence in class led by chef Frederic Morineau; recipes, sampling included; $40. Call (941) 309-2008 to reserve.
NUTRITIONAL YEAST: 7-8 p.m. April 13, 10-11 a.m. April 14, Nature's Harvest Market, 1021 N MacDill Ave., Tampa. Vegetarian class led by Debby DeGraaff; free. Call (813) 873-7428.
LAST-MINUTE MEALS: Noon-1 p.m. April 14, Clearwater Main Library, 100 N Osceola Ave., downtown Clearwater. Chef Bill Mitchell makes easy dishes. Free, first 25 to arrive at class sit at sample table. Call (727) 562-4970, ext. 5284.
COUPLES COOKING: Apron's Cooking School, Publix, Shoppes of Citrus Park, 7835 Gunn Highway, Tampa, presents class for couples, with Indian cuisine dishes like spicy fish cakes, minced beef and pea curry, coconut jelly with lychees and blackberries, 6:30 p.m. April 15, $80 per couple. Call (813) 926-4465.
- Send news of coming events at least two weeks in advance of the publication date to Food File, the Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731.