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Bastille Day Celebration

PLUS: Food Matters, Eat 101, The Mix and Sipping Out

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The Mandolin Café invite Francophiles to unite Monday to celebrate the most important historical events for the French: the liberation of the Bastille prison and the end of the French monarchy. The Tacoma café celebrates Bastille Day with an evening of kir aperitifs, three-course French dinner, French music and a wine tasting with Francois-Paul Briand July 14.

There's this nugget of dubious wisdom espoused by a certain breed of foodies that holds that if it weren't for the French (with Saint Julia as their envoy), the vast majority of Americans would still be eating canned corn, sliced ham steaks topped with pineapple rings and Dolly Madison fruit pies seven days a week.

I agree that the blood-stained, goose-strangling, wine-drunk French chefs of the old school who sent their commis, plongeurs and junior sauciers across the pond in the years following World War II was beneficial to all concerned.

But saved us? Whatever.

[The Mandolin Café, Monday, July 14, 7 p.m., $20, 3923 S. 12th St., Tacoma, advance RSVP required at 253.761.3482).

Food Matters

  • The Dockside Bistro offers half-off wine glass pours if you can Name That Grape every Thursday. Go for it at 501 Columbia N.W. in downtown Olympia.

  • Pour At Four features wines from Rioja during July. Check it out at 3814 N. 26th St. in Tacoma.

Eat 101

Primo Grill in Tacoma offers a Northwest Summer Barbecue cooking class July 12 from 2-4 p.m. The cost is $65, which includes recipes and instruction, lunch with a glass of wine, tax and gratuity. Call Jacqueline at 253.383.7000 to reserve.

The Mix

What we’ve been eating/drinking

  • BLT on rye, Pinwheel Catering’s Herban Café, Tacoma

  • Potato-crusted cod, Maxwell’s Speakeasy + Lounge, Tacoma

  • Lobster spaghetti, Pacific Grill, Tacoma

  • Gorgonzola ravioli, Sofia Bistro, University Place

Sippin’ Out

  • Thursdays: Wine tastings, 5-7 p.m., complimentary, Cork!, 3012 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.212.1492.

  • Fridays: Wine tastings, 6-8 p.m., $7.50-$10, WineStyles Wine & Gifts, 2665 N. Pearl St., Tacoma, 253.756.1922.

  • Saturdays: Wine tastings, 1-4 p.m., $5-$7, Swing Wine Bar, 825 Columbia St. S.E., Olympia, 360.357.9464.

  • Saturdays: Wine tasting, 2-5 p.m., Wine Bank, 7017 27th St. W., University Place, 253.564.1101.

  • Saturdays: Wine tasting, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Corky Cellars, 22511 Marine View Dr., Des Moines, 206.622.2010.

  • Saturdays: Wine tasting, 1-6 p.m., Wildside Wine, 608A S. Oxford St., Tacoma, 253.565. 0811.

  • Mondays: $5 Wine Mondays, 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., $5 glass of wines, Rosewood Café, 3323 N. 26th St., Tacoma, 253.752.7999.

  • Tuesdays: Wine Tuesdays, 5 p.m., Toscano’s Café & Wine Bar, 437 29th St. N.E., Puyallup, 253.864.8600.
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