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Available tickets running out for Islander Wine Dinner fundraiser

July 25, 2018
By TIFFANY REPECKI (trepecki@breezenewspapers.com) , Island Reporter, Captiva Current, Sanibel-Captiva Islander

Only a limited numbers of tickets are still available for a special six-course dinner with wine pairings, where the proceeds will benefit a beloved community venue on Sanibel.

Hosted by Sanibel Catering Company by Bailey's, the first-ever Islander Wine Dinner will take place on July 31 at 6 p.m. at The Community House. Featuring guest speaker Ben McClure, it will consist of six estate-grown wines by Talbott Vineyards, paired with Chef Karl Hamme's locally-sourced cuisine.

"The Community House is really Sanibel's favorite, and is the only event space that's open to the public," Calli Johnson, with the Sanibel Catering Company and Bailey's General Store, said. "They have this beautiful new facility and, obviously, it costs money to operate that."

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Ben McClure

As for Bailey's, community involvement and support is a big part of what makes it it.

"We wanted to do something that would raise funds for The Community House, while also being enjoyable and unique to the island," Johnson said. "We do a lot of events there, and there are so many organizations that do as well, so it's really helping each other."

Ticket proceeds from the dinner will go to the venue and the Sanibel Community Association.

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"I know that there are other events that are going on that are similar to this, but this is the only event that the ticket price is going 100 percent to support the organization that we're fundraising for," she said. "And we're hosting a really cool speaker."

A certified wine specialist and brand ambassador for Talbott in California, McClure is sitting for his certified sommelier exam in the fall. After falling in love with wine while studying abroad, he moved to California from his native state of Florida six years ago to pursue a passion for wine and hospitality.

Johnson explained that McClure will discuss the featured wines as they relate to the vineyard, winemaker and brand and will enlighten attendees on the rules for food and wine pairing.

Fact Box

If you go

What

Islander Wine Dinner

Who

Sanibel Catering Company by Bailey's and Talbott Vineyards

When

July 31 at 6 p.m.

Where

The Community House, 2173 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel

Details

Tickets are $100 or $550 for a table of six

.....

Full menu and wine pairings

- Frisee salad with seared sea scallops and orange supremes, paired with Kali Hart Chardonnay

- Grilled swordfish kabobs on Mediterranean couscous, paired with Logan Chardonnay

- Pan-roasted free-range organic chicken with a lemon garlic cream sauce and roasted asparagus spears, paired with Sleepy Hollow Chardonnay

- Grilled bone-in Berkshire Heritage pork tenderloin chop with sauted bread dumplings and a raspberry gastrique, paired with Kali Hart Pinot Noir

- Canard au vin (braised duck with wine), lardons and cremini mushrooms, paired with Logan Pinot Noir

- Roasted rare filet of beef bourguignon with caramelized cipollini onions and carrots served with whipped Yukon gold potatoes, paired with Sleepy Hollow Pinot Noir

Source: Sanibel Catering Company by Bailey's

"He is the person who knows the wines intimately. He is also a person who can speak eloquently to that," she said, adding that his sommelier training enables him to discuss how the wines stand up next to foods. "How each wine has something different to offer, and how each food pairs well with that."

McClure's first rule of pairing: "Any wine with food is better than no wine with food."

Hamme, the company's executive chef, utilizes his extensive industry experience to prepare unique and delectable dishes. From backyard barbecues to black-tie affairs, his menus are crafted to clients' needs.

For about three decades, Hamme has been perfecting his craft in some of the top kitchens throughout the Midwest and Florida. Starting at age 12 in a "surf-n-turf" restaurant located in upstate New York, he quickly worked his way up the culinary ladder, from a dishwasher to a first executive chef in Indiana.

"He really thrives when he gets the opportunity to do, pretty much, whatever he wants," Johnson said. "This is something that is really enjoyable for him, and it showed in the last wine dinner."

"He really thrives when he gets the opportunity to do, pretty much, whatever he wants," Johnson said. "This is something that is really enjoyable for him, and it showed in the last wine dinner."

The dishes have been intentionally paired to go well with the wines.

"The chef and wine company have worked together to come up with some really fascinating pairings," she said.

The full menu and wine pairings are as follows:

- Frisee salad with seared sea scallops and orange supremes, paired with Kali Hart Chardonnay

- Grilled swordfish kabobs on Mediterranean couscous, paired with Logan Chardonnay

- Pan-roasted free-range organic chicken with a lemon garlic cream sauce and roasted asparagus spears, paired with Sleepy Hollow Chardonnay

- Grilled bone-in Berkshire Heritage pork tenderloin chop with sauted bread dumplings and a raspberry gastrique, paired with Kali Hart Pinot Noir

- Canard au vin (braised duck with wine), lardons and cremini mushrooms, paired with Logan Pinot Noir

- Roasted rare filet of beef bourguignon with caramelized cipollini onions and carrots served with whipped Yukon gold potatoes, paired with Sleepy Hollow Pinot Noir

"I think Chef Karl has a special place in his heart for duck," Johnson said, noting that he created a duck dish at the last dinner and it was a hit. "I'm sure the canard au vin is going to blow everyone away."

She also pointed out the ingredients in the first course.

"The salad is going to be made with locally-grown lettuce," Johnson said.

The greens are being sourced from East Fork Creek Gardens in Fort Myers, an aquaponics lettuce farm tied to the owners of Sanibel's own Floral Artistry. The flower shop is also a sponsor for the dinner.

"The whole point is to bring local lettuce that is high-quality and fresh to everyone," she said.

As for the six pairing wines, they have been described as:

- Kali Hart Chardonnay - Talbott's most fruit-forward expression of the Sleepy Hollow Vineyard, with aromas of vanilla and brioche that lead to notes of mandarin, pineapple and melon

- Logan Chardonnay - 100-percent barrel fermented, using 20 percent new oak, in the most classic Burgundian style, resulting in bright and floral aromatics and rich fruit flavors accented with hints of vanilla and hard spices

- Sleepy Hollow Chardonnay - Rich and luxurious, finishing silky smooth with a comforting note of cinnamon

- Kali Hart Pinot Noir - Beautiful, deep ruby color with bright fruit aromas of cranberry, currant and?plum, as well as hints of vanilla

- Logan Pinot Noir - Enticing aromas of bright raspberry, cherry and spice, seamlessly blending with concentrated rich fruit flavors and subtle touches of vanilla and cinnamon spice

- Sleepy Hollow Pinot Noir - Notes of black cherry, vanilla and nutmeg combined with raspberry and plum flavors for a smooth mouth-filling texture

Tickets are $100 per person or $550 for a table of six and include a welcome glass of bubbly, assorted hors d'oeuvres, full glass tasting of the six wines and dinner pairings, as well as dessert selections.

The hors d'oeuvres and desserts will also be made by Hamme.

"They are a surprise," Johnson said of the sweets.

As of July 18, only about one-third of the tickets were still available.

"We anticipate selling out the event," she said. "Everybody should book their tickets if they're interested - sooner than later."

It will be an event not to be missed, even for those who attended the last dinner.

"This will be a totally different experience," Johnson said, pointing out that the last one featured an Italian vineyard. "This winery is more modern - it's got kind of a cool California vibe to it."

For example, motorcycles on display in Talbott's tasting room.

"They emphasize the farmer, but it's still California sheek, and still humble," she said.

To purchase tickets, call 239-472-2155 or visit sanibelcommunityhouse.net.

Tickets can also be picked up at The Community House, at 2173 Periwinkle Way.

 
 

 

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