February for Foodies back with cooking classes, special menus

Walla Walla Community College/Courtesy photo

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Bust out the forks.

February for Foodies is back. The tourism tradition that started several years ago continues with a monthlong celebration of food, wine and chocolate in a series of cooking classes, special menus and more.

Cooking classes started the first day of the month and continue Saturdays through February. The focus on food shines the spotlight on the culinary scene during what is typically a slower time of year.

“February is a great time to experience everything Walla Walla has to offer, and to do so at a time when the winemakers and chefs have more time to spend interacting with guests,” said Tourism Walla Walla Executive Director Ron Peck in an announcement. “The culinary scene here is defined by words such as inspired, locally-sourced, fresh and creative, and not other town in the Northwest has done more than Walla Walla to deserve its reputation as a foodie haven.”

Classes are $30 each per person and include wine pairings, tasting and a light lunch. They are all at Titus Creek Café Kitchen at Walla Walla Community College and run 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Tickets are available at 26 E. Main St., Thursdays-Sundays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. or by calling 525-8799.

This Saturday’s class features Damon Burke from Salumiere Cesario on an overview of the Asian kitchen with wine pairings by Tim Donahue of College Cellars. On Feb. 15 Chef Jay Entrikin from the Wine Country Culinary Institute will focus on lobster thermidor, shrimp bisque, and shucked oysters on the half shell with wine pairings by Tim Donahue of College Cellars.

The following Saturday, Antonio Campolio of The Marc will demonstrate smoked salmon ravioli, smoking salmon methods, and curing, plus making fresh pasta dough filings. Wine pairings will come from Dan McCaffrey of the Marcus Whitman Hotel & Conference Center. Casey Mood, bar manager and mixologist for the Marcus Whitman will speak about cocktail pairings with food and tricks of the trade.

Also during February, the following restaurants will have special menus: Brasserie Four; Cugini Import Italian Foods; Maple Counter Cafe — offering three white chocolate raspberry pancakes drizzled with homemade lemon curd anglaise, and sided with choice of either two pieces of thick sliced bacon, two sausage links, or two veggie links, coffee and juice for $10; The Vineyard Lounge at the Marcus Whitman Hotel — offering a three-course menu for $25 and a Valentine’s tasting menu from Feb. 13th-17th; Olive Marketplace & Cafe — offering a special two-for-$16 menu; Public House 124; Saffron Mediterranean Kitchen; Salumiere Cesario — offering a Boeuf Bourgignon; South Fork Grill; T. Maccarone’s — offering a special February For Foodies menu, plus on Feb. 16 a special Sommelier’s Valentine Wine Dinner of five courses for $99 plus tax and gratuity; and A Wing & A Prayer BBQ + Catering, offering have pulled pork parfaits.

Local wineries are also offering purveyed artisan chocolates at participating tasting rooms. For the list, click here.

Vicki Hillhouse can be reached at vickihillhouse@wwub.com or 526-8321.

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