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Rose Wine Dinner at Stanza 

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Rose Wine Dinner at Stanza
If one food-and-drink pairing event isn't enough for you, Chef Jonathan LeBlanc of Stanza Italian Bistro & Wine Bar (454 E. 300 South, 801-746-4441, is teaming up with the wine nerds at Vine Lore ( to showcase the fresh, summery nuances of rosé. Both Chef LeBlanc's tasting menu and the different varieties of rosé promise to be an excellent entry point into the warmer months, and each dish and wine pairing has been painstakingly approved by Vine Lore, who are among the most passionate wine curators in all of Utah. The Thursday, April 26, event also will take advantage of Stanza's patio seating so diners can enjoy themselves in the spring twilight. Tickets are $85 for the food-and-wine pairing; $55 sans alcohol, and dinner starts at 6:30 p.m.

Nihon Matsuri Japan Festival
With winter behind us, we can all start looking forward to the slew of food and culture festivals that downtown Salt Lake City hosts every year. Nihon Matsuri is among the first fests of the season, and it's shaping up to be a spectacular celebration of Japanese and Japanese-American culture. I tend to follow the ideology that culture is best experienced through food, which will be plentiful here. According to its website, the festival's food offerings will cover everything from traditional recipes to more contemporary fare. While attendees sample authentic Japanese cuisine, they can also treat themselves to two stages of live entertainment, tea ceremonies and even a cosplay contest. The festival is on Saturday, April 28, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Japantown Street (100 South, between 200 and 300 West). See p. 16

Avenues Proper 5th Anniversary
As Avenues Proper (376 8th Avenue, 385-227-8628, has become nothing less than a neighborhood institution, it's hard to believe that it's only been around for five years. Regardless, that's half a decade of providing Salt Lake with its inventive takes on American comfort food, so a celebration is in order. To commemorate the milestone, Avenues Proper hosts an anniversary dinner on Sunday, April 29. It's a six-course meal and beer pairing, and the menu sounds absolutely delightful: King crab with white sesame caviar, grilled octopus with burnt onion broth and pork tenderloin with soy-glazed shiitake mushrooms are only half of the great dishes planned for the evening. The event runs from 5-11 p.m. Seats are $75 each, plus $20 for beer pairings. It's reservation only, so make sure to give them a call for availability.

Quote of the Week: "Even if a samurai hasn't eaten, he holds his toothpick high."
–Traditional Japanese Proverb

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