In the late 90’s, I discovered pairing dinners in Napa Valley. A multi-course menu was presented along with a unique wine to go with each course. This wasn’t just thrown together but it was carefully thought out between the Executive Chef and sometimes a sommelier. Both then and now, I thought this was one of the most interesting dining experiences a true foodie can have.
While I never thought I would see this in Santa Clarita, leave it to Newhall Refinery to bring this experience to us. After opening to much fanfare in 2015, the restaurant continues to evolve, offering a constantly changing menu with seasonal and local ingredients. Since opening, they have added signature cocktails to their menu, expanded by opening a private room called The Cellar and recently began serving brunch on Sundays.
The first pairing dinner took place in September of 2016 and featured Rebel Coast Winery. It was a loose and crazy night that reflected the easy drinkability of the wine. There that night was one of the winemakers, dressed in a multi-colored suit telling the stories behind each wine. We found out that the owners cell phone number was on each cork. We called him at 11:30 that night and he said we made his night by calling.
In November, a more formal pairing dinner was held featuring the wines of J. Lohr. The offering was also expanded and included six courses. Again, winery employees were there to talk about their wine.
In their typical style, Refinery changed things up by offering a beer pairing dinner on January 25th . The meal included six courses with a different beer for each course from Latitude 33 Brewery. They are a small producer from Vista, California.
Changing things up again, last year Refinery announced that they will be offering a series of pairing dinners focusing on the cuisine and wine of a specific country. The first event featured the wine and cuisine of Italy complete with an Italian sommelier.
All tasting meals have been held in the private Cellar room. As each course was brought out Refinery Executive Chef Dustin Boole came out to talk about each dish and why he chose to pair it with the wine or beer. Representatives from the wine or brewery were always on hand to talk about their offering. Of course dessert is presented by Refinery Pastry Chef Iris.
At the end of the night, the team that put the events together comes out to introduce themselves and are always met with thundering applause from everyone there.
Next Pairing Happening This Week!
This Thursday, January 18th , Newhall Refinery will present the second installment of their Wine Around the World Dinner Series. This will be a 6 course Spanish inspired meal complete with Spanish wine pairings overseen by a Spanish wine specialist.
The event will sell out and there are only a handful of seats left. Price is $165 per person and includes dinner and wine pairings. It is an event you will not want to miss. You can purchase your seat by visiting www.newhallrefinery.com
Newhall Refinery is located in Old Town Newhall at 24258 Main Street. www.newhallrefinery.com