Never Dine Alone

March 26, 2011

“I think this is the most extraordinary collection of talent, of human knowledge, that has ever been gathered at the White House – with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone.”

John F. Kennedy, before a dinner honoring 49 Nobel Prize winners

Jefferson may have dined alone, but Jefferson Vineyards prefers to dine in numbers!


Matt and I were invited to the Jefferson Vineyards Winemaker’s Barrel Selection Dinner!


In preparation, I got my nails done (which were long overdue anyways!) [I never look at the colors of polish – I’d call these “teal” and “lavender” :mrgreen: )


Then we dressed up


And were on our way to the vineyard



The evening began with passed canapes and the ‘09 Pinot Gris in the tasting room where we all socialized and munched on hors d’oeuvres


Followed by a gorgeous dinner in the new barrel tasting room



Le Menu:


First Course



Impeccable pairing. It’s not everyday that I remember what lobster tastes like! This Viognier helped jog my memory. I absolutely love this Viognier!


Second Course


The duck was savory and gamey and paired with such a light ricotta gnocchi that one temporarily forgot what the dish was


Paired with a duo of Merlot – the ‘07 and the ‘10. The ‘07 reminded me of Christmas in the best way possible – there was a touch of balsam in the nose! And the ‘10 was sweeter (in fruit, not sugar) and supple. I was really split 50/50 on which I liked


Third Course

This bison with garlic chips and mashed potatoes – scented with lemon and herbs – was by far my favorite dish of the three. LOVED the bright flavors paired with the lighter herbs. It reminded me of the steak I had in Montana!


The ‘07 Cabernet Franc and the ‘10 Cab Frac paired beautifully with the bison. I also couldn’t choose which was the best pairing, but ultimately I think the aged wine won the battle. The contrast in tannins verses sweetish potato and buttery garlic were divine.


Winemaker Andy Reagan spoke a few words on each wine.



Before we all settled into a good book: the 2002 Merlot from the “library".” Let’s all pause to remember the year 2002. I think I was a sophomore in college drinking wine from a box!


This dessert wines wins “dessert of the year” for 2011 thus far. It was a pillow of peanut butter fluff overtop a bittersweet chocolate tart. Love at first bite!




Last but not least, we cleansed our palates with cheese. <3 cheese!



Matt and I pretty much cleared the board!


We ended the night with a cup of hot tea back in the tasting room.

In Celebration of Jefferson

And I’ll conclude with this fun fact:

Did you know that today in 1804 Jefferson was presented with a "mammoth loaf" of bread?


“At noon, a Navy baker wheeled in the mammoth loaf along with the remnants of the Baptist women’s mammoth cheese, an equally enormous side of roast beef and copious amounts of alcohol. President Jefferson stepped up, pulled out his pocketknife and cut the first slice of bread. According to written observations, the party quickly degenerated into a noisy, drunken affair.”

How appropriate for this KERF day…

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{ 49 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Emily @ Savory and Savage March 26, 2011 at 10:58 pm

What a wonderful, elegant dinner!

I loved your descriptions of the wines – I could almost taste them :-)


2 Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife March 26, 2011 at 11:02 pm

I love cheese plates too :) And that is a fun fact you ended with—oh how very appropriate 😉 glad you had a fun night out!


3 Allie (Live Laugh Eat) March 26, 2011 at 11:03 pm

What a treat! I can only imagine HOW excited you were sitting down at the table :). Love the wine pour shots!


4 larbs March 26, 2011 at 11:07 pm

Omg a peanut nougat!


5 kate@ahealthypassion March 26, 2011 at 11:08 pm

what a fun night the lobster looks amazing and the cheese yum! I love your nail polish especially the lavendar, so springy!


6 Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) March 26, 2011 at 11:08 pm

Omg. What an epic event and amazing food!!!!!!

I want to eat lobster, brie, drink viognier, get my nails done…oh, Kath. What an amazing day you had!

I just lived a little bit vicariously through this post. Amazing.

And those pink tulips, beautiful. The whole thing. Wow.

I love wine, I love vineyards, I love tasting pairings, seriously, I wish I could make that my job :)


7 Diana @ frontyardfoodie March 26, 2011 at 11:11 pm

That is a friggin’ amazing quote. haha.

You look super adorable all dressed up. I never look at the names either, but your colors are cheerful and lovely.


8 Stephanie @cookinfanatic March 26, 2011 at 11:21 pm

Wow, what an amazing dinner! Love the wine cork candle centerpieces too, thinking I need to recreate these at home :)


9 J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) March 26, 2011 at 11:22 pm

Lovely evening! The food and dessert look phenomenal.

Jefferson was one of our greatest Presidents. Thank you for keeping his words alive. We need more Thomas Jeffersons. :)


10 Holly @ The Runny Egg March 26, 2011 at 11:26 pm

What a beautiful dinner!

And your post totally makes me want to paint my nails some fun colors :)


11 Hannah March 26, 2011 at 11:29 pm

That dessert wins my heart forever!! I’ve yet to see *any* dessert in Canberra that uses peanuts. FAIL!


12 Baking 'n' Books March 26, 2011 at 11:31 pm

Love the colors. I thought the steak was a chocolate dessert!


13 Kate (What Kate is Cooking) March 26, 2011 at 11:49 pm

Love the presidential mentions :) I love presidential trivia!


14 Morgan @ moments of mmm March 27, 2011 at 12:35 am

WOW! What an amazing dinner! I can only imagine how amazing peanut butter “fluff” is.


15 Laughter-Loving Stacy March 27, 2011 at 12:56 am

Oh that’s so fun!!


16 Katie @ Nourishing Flourishing March 27, 2011 at 12:56 am

That is hilarious. When I think of a mammoth loaf of bread, I envision an oliphant from Lord of the Rings, but…made of bread.

Awesome!!! Go Jefferson! Haha 😀


17 Mauimandy@The Grains of Paradise March 27, 2011 at 1:34 am

What a beautiful night! You both look stunning :)


18 Emma (Namaste Everyday) March 27, 2011 at 2:14 am

you have no idea how happy it makes me that you drank wine from a box in college, just as I do now. It gives me hope I will be like you some day! I dream of going to an event like this with my wonderful husband, too :)


19 Kaci March 27, 2011 at 5:19 am

I LOVE your nails!! That was definitely a well-deserved pampering! You look fabulous, and the food looks devine. I hope you have a great Sunday!


20 Simply Life March 27, 2011 at 5:45 am

wow! what a meal! I’ve never had anything like that with wine pairings!


21 lindsay March 27, 2011 at 6:07 am

I love Jefferson Vineyards!!! We did the wine tasting there last year and bought 3 bottles of the Vigonier!!! PS. there is a little gas station looking place right near the vineyard that has amazing sandwiches!!!


22 Errign March 27, 2011 at 6:16 am

What an amazing evening. :) Jealous of all the delicious food & wine!

In 2002, I was Freshmen in high school, oh geez!


23 Heather @ Health, Happiness, and Hope March 27, 2011 at 6:25 am

Haha love the Jefferson connection. :)

Fabulous evening! Everything looks so elegant and beautifully prepared. What a great way to get your mind off the busy workload you and Matt have had lately.

Knowing nail polish, it would probably be something like “Atlantis” and “Spring Fling.” I never understand how they come up with those names… 😉


24 Christie {Nourishing Eats} March 27, 2011 at 6:27 am

What a lovely meal!! Everything looks delicious and beautiful.

I also really like your nail polish 😀


25 Jess (Sweet Potato) March 27, 2011 at 6:41 am

Looks fantastic! How fun!


26 Kori March 27, 2011 at 6:48 am

Your mani and pedi look great! I also LOVE your outfit! The evening looked like a ton of fun and delicious. :)


27 Hilary March 27, 2011 at 6:50 am

Ummmm….YUMMY! I am so jealous….it all looks divine!


28 kaila @ healthyhelper blog! March 27, 2011 at 7:41 am

That looks like such a fun night! I have never been to a fancy multi course dinner like that, but I would love to go! The food always looks so creative and unique!


29 Toni March 27, 2011 at 7:45 am

What a great opportunity! Everything looked wonderful!

But, I have to admit, I’m not a huge wine fan. I’ve been to tastings and I just don’t appreciate it!


30 leah March 27, 2011 at 8:05 am

I love your nail polish color choices. I am however disappointed to see that you have a crooked pinky and a thicker index finger, I’ve always thought better of you.

Your food descriptions make me reminisce about wine tasting in california. I’m glad you and your love had a wonderful evening.


31 KathEats March 27, 2011 at 8:12 am

I don’t get it..


32 leah March 27, 2011 at 11:59 pm

The pinky is the finger of communication; hence “when in doubt pinky out”. A crooked pinky indicates a person who lies, fibs and or lives in their head too much. Wise women have always said “never trust a man who wears a pinky ring” as it speaks of sexual independence and a dishonest heart.

A thicker index finger points to an egocentric person whom generally thinks the world revolves around them and enjoys being in the center of attention.


33 KathEats March 28, 2011 at 8:02 am

Sounds like an old wives tale to me!


34 Kaci March 28, 2011 at 9:23 am

I hope all of this is a joke…


35 Allison K. March 28, 2011 at 9:59 am

If kath’s pinky is crooked, then mine is positively bent! Both of my pinkies are incredibly crooked.


36 M. Carter @ the Movies March 28, 2011 at 3:42 pm

I’m sure you meant that as a joke, but c’mon — you didn’t think that would come off as mean-spirited and more than a little insulting?


37 Meg March 27, 2011 at 8:30 am

What a wonderful evening! You and Matt look gorgeous as usual! Well, you look gorgeous, he looks handsome…not trying to offend anyone 😉 Love your dress and jacket – so classy!

Classy dinner as well…loving the cheeeese mm! Enjoy your day, Kath!


38 Stacie @ Imperfectly Healthy March 27, 2011 at 8:45 am

That dessert course looks great! Peanut nougat – yum!


39 staceyhealthylife March 27, 2011 at 9:04 am

What a fun and fancy event. What a great chance to try so many different wines. Dessert looks awesome.


40 Abby March 27, 2011 at 9:10 am

This looks like such a great night! The bison steak and dessert look like they would be my favorite!


41 Cindy March 27, 2011 at 9:21 am

How fun!
And how dare you have a crooked pinky! (I don’t get it either)


42 Denise March 27, 2011 at 9:35 am

This is one my my favorite posts of yours to date! Love the photos, the nails, the food (that dessert looks A-MAZING!), the references to TJ and your sophomore year of college/boxed wine :) . Looks like it was a super-classy event… and you and Matt are an adorable couple!


43 lynn @ the actor's diet March 27, 2011 at 10:14 am

wooooooo fancy! looks like a lot of fun.


44 Shannon @ My Place In The Race March 27, 2011 at 11:05 am

What a beautiful place!

Lovin the teal toes! Super cute!


45 Nancy~The Wife of a Dairyman March 27, 2011 at 11:08 am

LOVE that cheese platter!
Oh and for the record, my middle toe is the longest of the bunch in regards to toes;) What in the world?!


46 Lisa March 27, 2011 at 3:23 pm

That looks awesome. My mouth is watering at that food. MMmmm!


47 Missy March 27, 2011 at 7:24 pm

Everything looked so amazing! Wonderful event! You looked beautiful!


48 Alaina March 27, 2011 at 9:50 pm

That looks like such a fun evening!! I love wine tasting. I have a kit to do wine tasting at home. I think I might have to arrange that. :-)


49 Maria March 28, 2011 at 3:51 pm

looks like a really fun night! And that brie looks like heaven :-)


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