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Wine, dine with your valentine


<strong>Valentine's Dinners at Two Dierk's:</strong> Brothers Roger J. and Mark Dierkhising are teaming up, sort of, for dinners next Friday night.

Mark's menu will be served at Dierk's Parkside Cafe (404 Santa Rosa Ave.). The prix fixe menu begins with crab cakes with Meyer lemon aioli. Next comes a salad of arugula, roasted vegetables, blue cheese and blood orange dressing.

There's a choice of entree — ribeye steak with wild mushrooms and a bed of roasted root vegetables; seared wild salmon with citrus, spinach and mushrooms and a saffron sauce or roasted leg of lamb with red wine glaze and scalloped potatoes.

There will be a trio of chocolate desserts. Cost is $127 per couple ($63.50 per person), plus gratuity and beverages.

If you'd like to a bring a special wine of your own, there is no corkage fee at Dierk's, ever.

For reservations, call 573-5955. Seating is between 5:30 and 7 p.m.

A few blocks away at Dierk's Midtown Cafe (1422 Fourth St., Santa Rosa), Roger will preside over a menu that kicks off with live Maine lobster, leek and mushrooms and tarragon mariniere, followed by a salad of frisee, arugula, beets, a blue feta cheese and blood orange-caraway dressing.

For your entree, you'll choose from roasted filet of beef with cabernet-shallot sauce and pomme frites; sauteed wild salmon with soba noodles, Asian vegetables and ginger-blood orange beurre blanc or seared duck breast with wild rice pilaf and pomegranate sauce.

Dessert options include chocolate lover's souffle for two, raspberry creme Anglaise and petit fours.

Cost is $60 per person. For reservations, call 545-2333.

<strong>Valentine's Day at Paradise:</strong> Paradise Ridge Winery Tasting Room is hosting a Valentine's Day fete next Friday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., with seatings available from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Here's how it works. Each couple will enjoy three glasses of wine — Blanc de Blanc, 2010 Posse and 2009 Rockpile Cabernet Sauvignon — and three nibbles, Mt. Tam, a triple-cream cheese, with strawberries; Point Reyes Blue Cheese crostini with fig preserves and cabernet-infused truffles and raspberries.

Cost is $30 per couple or $25 if you're a member of the wine club. Reservations, available at 528-9463, are required.

This same option is also available at the Kenwood Tasting Room (8860 Sonoma Highway, Kenwood). For reservations, call 282-9020.

<strong>Giddyup!</strong> The Redwood Empire Chinese Association will host its annual Chinese New Year Celebration early this year, on Saturday, Feb. 15, at the Veterans Memorial Building in Santa Rosa (1351 Maple Ave.).

Doors open at 5 p.m., with a social hour and an opportunity to preview raffle and silent auction items. At 6 p.m., the buffet begins and is followed by entertainment, including the spectacular dragon and lion dances, along with performances of traditional dance, song, martial arts and more.

Tickets are available in advance only; none are sold at the door. Admission for children aged 3 to 10 is $10; all others are $25. You can get tickets at Asia Mart (2481 Guerneville Road, Santa Rosa), G &amp;amp; G Supermarket (1211 West College Ave., Santa Rosa) and from Nancy Wang (576-0533) and Judy Cheung (528-0912).

The Year of the Horse began with the new moon on Jan. 31.

Proceeds from the event benefit the organization's scholarship fund, which provides assistance to graduating seniors of Asian descent or who are RECA members. March 31 is the application deadline; for more information, call Mirin Lew at 545-6173.

<strong>Paws for Love this Saturday!</strong> If you didn't get tickets for this Saturday's 15th annual Paws for Love Gala and Auction, you can likely pay at the door. As of press time, the event was not yet sold out.

Cost is $50, or $40 in advance.

It all takes place at Finley Community Center (2060 West College Ave., Santa Rosa) from 6 to 10 p.m. If you're hoping for a painting by a feline artist, it's best to arrive early as the cat paintings typically go first.

For more information, visit <a href="http://pawsforlove.info" target="_blank">pawsforlove.info</a>.

<strong>Sauerkraut Party!</strong> If you want to snag a ticket for Claypool Cellars' Third Annual Sauerkraut Party, taking place on March 29, you'd better hurry. This hugely popular event always sells out weeks in advance and for good reason. It is a whole lot of fun.

It all takes place at the Fancy Booze Caboose Tasting Room (6761 Sebastopol Ave., Suite 500, Sebastopol) on Saturday, March 29, from 7 to 10 p.m.

Admission is $40 per person, which includes sauerkraut and sausage, live music, costumes and polka dancing. How can you resist?

For tickets, call 861-9358 or email info@claypoolcellars.com.

<strong>Gluten-free Dining:</strong> Earlier this week, we chatted with Brandon Guenther, co-owner and chef of Rocker Oysterfellers and Firefly Catering, who told us his menu is now more than 50 percent gluten free.

"Most customers haven't even noticed," he says.

Guenther has perfected making roux, gravy and even breading for, say, buffalo wings, with varieties of flour that function as they should without gluten and taste good. His motivation has been primarily personal, as he explored natural ways to deal with a health issue. But now the gluten-free community benefits, too.

Rocker Oysterfellers Restaurant and Saloon is open for dinner from 5 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. It opens at noon on Saturday and serves brunch on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

It is located in the tiny Valley Ford Hotel at 14415 Highway 1 in Valley Ford. For more information, call 876-1983, email info@ffrsi.com or visit <a href="http://rockeroysterfellers.com" target="_blank">rockeroysterfellers.com</a>.

<strong>When Cupid Goes Shopping:</strong> Patisserie Angelica (6821 Laguna Park Way, Sebastopol) will keep special hours next Thursday, Feb. 13, and Friday, Feb. 14, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

They will have some special treats, too, including coffee and cocoa nib toffee; chocolate and raspberries in a cloud of red ruffles; a little satchel filled with six gluten-free brownies, cartamel cheesecake and Parisian macarons, with a gluten-free option.

If you like, you can place your order on line and then pick it up at the sweet little shop. Visit <a href="http://letthemmailcake.com" target="_blank">letthemmailcake.com</a> and follow the prompts for locals.

<em>Michele Anna Jordan hosts "Mouthful" each Sunday at 7 p.m. on KRCB 90.9 &amp;amp; 91.1 FM. E-mail Jordan at michele@micheleannajordan.com. You'll find her blog, "Eat This Now," at pantry.blogs.pressdemocrat.com.</em>