As far as I’m concerned, there are two types of people in Utah. Those that embrace ski/snowboard season… and those that don’t. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), I fall into the latter category. There are days when I find myself gazing at our snow-capped mountains wishing I had an excuse to escape the inversion’s unbreathable smog and retreat to the ski resorts. And now I do :: the Shallow Shaft has a series of wine and beer pairing dinners this winter that are the perfect excuse for a trip up the canyon.
The Shallow Shaft is a cute lodge-like restaurant near Alta Ski Resort with a great view of Alta’s mountain. It’s the only independently-run restaurant in the area since all the surrounding places are owned by either Alta or Snowbird. For those of you that do embrace ski season, it’s in perfect proximity to the resorts for post-ski-day dinner. They use locally-sourced ingredients for their American-focused cuisine and have a 23-page wine list to help you forget all the times you fell off your skis on the slopes.
Each upcoming wine pairing dinner features a different winery and a special menu. Last week I was invited to the Honig Wine pairing dinner and got to meet Jonathan Honig (who falls into the “loves ski season” category of people, FYI). The four-course dinner was paired with five Honig wines, starting with their famous Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, an exquisite pairing for the Oysters with Yuzu-Ginger Mignonette and Wasabi Gelee.
The oysters were followed by a Kabocha Squash Bisque Soup with bacon pepita brittle, spiced creme fraiche and apple cider, paired with the Rutherford Reserve Sauvignon Blanc. I loved that the squash soup was a perfect balance of savory and spicy (and not too sweet).
The main course was the Herb-rubbed Lamb Loin, delicious lamb in a Honig Cab reduction sauce served with parsnip mash and minted carrots, paired with both a 2011 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and 2010 Bartolucci St. Helena Cabernet Sauvignon. We finished the evening with a cheese plate.
The schedule for the upcoming wine dinners is below:
Wednesday, January 15th 2014 :: Arpad Molnar of Obsidian/Tricycle Wine Company.
Wednesday, January 29th 2014 :: Kevin Crompton of Epic Brewing Company.
Wednesday, February 12th 2014 :: Neil Michaelis with Delayed in Glass Wines.
Wednesday, March 5th 2014 :: Fisher/Zacherle Vineyards.
All dinners are multiple course dinners featuring multiple beverage pairings starting at 6 p.m. The price varies between $40-60 for food plus an additional $40-60 for wine. The wine pairing is optional and each wine can also be ordered by the glass. (Call Shallow Shaft for the price of each dinner.) To sign up, call 801-742-2177 or email [email protected]. Also follow Shallow Shaft on twitter or friend them on facebook to stay updated with upcoming events.