“Steppin’ Out” Column for September 7, 2012

“I do love Italian food. Any kind of pasta or pizza. My new pig out food is Indian food. I eat Indian food like three times a week. It’s so good.”

Jennifer Love Hewitt

Chicago Burgers and Pizza (and Indian Food)

This is one of favorite restaurants, since they are one of the very few places around that has authentic Indian food, prepared by Chef Bobby and served by his lovely wife, Rani. It is located in the Gold Rush town of El Dorado at 6244 Highway 49 (AKA Pleasant Valley Road and Main Street).

I keep hearing rumors that they might be closing and I really don’t want that to happen. This is a great restaurant and we should do our best to keep it open.

They make great burgers and serve wonderful pizza cooked in their wood-fired pizza oven, but their Indian food is their shining star. It is as good as any I have tried anywhere. In fact, anyone to whom I mention the restaurants says, “Oh, I love their Indian food.”

I really like most Indian spices and my favorite dish is their Chicken Tikka Masala. However, every time I go in there they give me something else to try.

At one lunch I had so many different dishes on the table to try, that as people walked in and asked what I was eating, I was sharing.

They serve local and Indian beer and wine, soft drinks and more.

I can’t do them justice here, so give them a call at 530-621-3900 or check out the menu on their webpage at www.chicagopizzaburgers.com.

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Patriarche Lunch at Holly’s Hill Vineyard

This Saturday and Sunday, September 8 and 9, from 11 a.m. and 4 p.m., you can enjoy a unique four course lunch at Holly’s Hill Vineyard in Pleasant Valley.

The menu includes: Pizza bread topped with arugula and sweet peppers, paired with the 2010 Patriarche Blanc;

Lomo Embuchado and melon skewers, paired with the 2010 Grenache Noir;

Salmon fish and chips, paired with the 2010 Mourvedre Classique;

Josh’s Paella “cooked over oak,” paired with the 2010 Patriarche.

Picnic tables and lawn seating available

$25 per person in advance online or $35 per person at the door. Four free tickets for futures buyers. Bring friends, pick up your Patriarche Futures and enjoy the lunch. Reservations required.

Get tickets at http://www.hollyshill.com/events/patriracherelease/patriracherelease.html or by calling 530-344-0227.

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Amador City’s Downhill Extravaganza

One of the most entertaining, Family friendly events of the year comes to Amador City this Saturday, September 8 – their Annual Big Wheel Race.
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Kids of all ages have enjoyed riding and watching as they navigate our downhill course.

BYOBW: Bring your own big wheel or borrow someone else’s. The entry fee is just $10.00. All racers must have closed toe shoes and a helmet.

There will be plenty of food and refreshments available including beer, wine, water and soda. Hotdogs and other snacks are also available.

The fun begins at 4 p.m. and lasts past 7 p.m. but get there early as Old Highway 49 will be closed off just before the races begin.

Bring the whole family and have fun racing this challenging downhill course on Main Street in Historic Amador City, which is 27 miles south of Placerville on Highway 49.

For more information, call the Amador County Recreation Agency at 209-223-6349. Online registration available at Active.com

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Barrel Tasting and Harvest Picnic at Sierra Vista Winery

This Saturday September 8, from noon until 4 p.m., Sierra Vista Winery will be offering barrel samples of their 2010 Syrah Ancient Vine Reserve, 2010 Old Clone Zinfandel, and 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Ancient Vine Reserve. Unlike some barrel samples, these wines are finished blends ready for bottling.

Also, enjoy an afternoon of wine and a delicious picnic of barbecue chicken with pasta salad of tomato, kalamata olive and mozzarella cheese, along with a black bean, red pepper and corn salad all paired deliciously with the Fall new releases.

The cost is $6 to non-club members. Space is limited and the RSVP date has passed, but give them a call anyway at 530-622-7221.

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Miraflores Parings and French Picnic

This Saturday, September 8, the chef for Miraflores Winery’s Pairings will be Christian Masse, Chef and co-owner of ALLEZ! Good Food on the Go, which is located in the town of El Dorado.

The cost is $30 for club members and $40 for non-club members.

You can make a reservation for anytime between 11 and 3 both days. They start your delicious meal when you get there.

For more information and reservations call 530-647-8505.

Instead of a second day of Pairings, at 1 p.m. on Sunday, September 9, Chef Christian will be again teaching his very special cooking class, the French Picnic.

At it he will teach you how to prepare delicious French picnic recipes and afterwards there will be a wonderful French-style picnic on the vineyard patio.

Enjoy a day with music, great food, delicious wines and new friends for only $35 per person.

For more information and reservations call 530- 647-8505.

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South Fair Play Harvest Festival

Six of South Fair Play’s premium wineries will be holding a Harvest Festival on Saturday, September 15.

The wineries will be featuring local harvested dishes, each paired with one of their wines.

Chateau Routon will pair their 2009 Syrah and vintage Port with Tri tip with fresh mushrooms, port reduction sauce and fresh asparagus;

Bechard Vineyard and Winery will pair their 2007 Petite Sirah with Eggplant Rollatini;

Golden Leaves Vineyard and Winery will pair their 2009 Puree Rouge with Orzo Primavera;

Mount Aukum Winery with pair their 2007 Syrah with Ratatouille and Fall Vegetables;
Mellowood Vineyard is pairing their 2009 Syrah with Roasted Vegetables and 4H Lamb Meat Balls;

Sierra oaks Estates is pairing their 2006 Reserve Merlot with Chicken and Vegetable Lasagne.

The event will begin with a “shotgun start” at the wineries at 10:45 a.m.

Tickets are $80 per person and include a wine glass, tour guide, Red Packet Game, wonderful prizes and one bottle of wine from each winery.

Tickets are available at any of the participating wineries or online at mountaukum.com or call 800-591-9463.

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Celebrate the Day

Birthdays you can celebrate today: American popular music performer, composer and bandleader, Charles Harden “Buddy” Holly (1936); African-American painter, Jacob Lawrence (1917); Queen Elizabeth I of England (1533); actors Corbin Bernsen (1954), Susan Blakely (1950), Julie Kavner (1951), John Philip Law (1937), Richard Roundtree (1939) and Devon Sawa (1978); distinguished heart surgeon Michael DeBakey (1908); pianist Arthur Ferrante (1921); singer and pianist Michael Feinstein (1956) and filmmaker Elia Kazan (born Elia Kazanjoglou in 1909). It is also the anniversary of the John L. Sullivan-James J. Corbett fight in 1892.
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