Every winter for at least 14 years or so the Culinary Institute of America hosts a Winter Dining Series January through March.  They have probably have had this program longer, but they hide it quite well.  I came across it one year many years ago, signed up for their mailing list and never heard about it again. I know the program gets announced in December, so this year, I had to send a tweet to the CIA looking for information on the series because I couldn’t find it on their website.

The Winter Dining Series offers lunch and dinner themed fixed priced dining.  The majority of the dinners are wine themed and offers a chance to meet winemakers of various regions throughout the world and learn about wine and terrior.  This year they have a Beer dinner featuring Dogfish that should be good.

I was REALLY excited this year to see that they are offering a dinner featuring Hudson Valley’s own Cereghino Smith Winery. AND it’s the first dinner of the series, January 12!  I’ve gotten to know Fred & Paula the past few years and their grapes are sourced from small growers in both California and New York and handcrafted in their Bloomington NY winery.  While they don’t have a tasting room, you can find them at all the local wine festivals.

Every winery has a story.  Cereghino Smith is no different.  Paula’s grandfather Joseph Cereghino was a winemaker in Washington State, but it’s Fred whose rock and roll past can been seen on the labels and he keeps very quiet about his music life.  Fred was the bassist and one of the original members of the music group Blondie and then with the group Television.

I am really looking forward to this dinner and sitting down and enjoying their wine.  Unfortunately, and I hate to say it, but when I see Fred and Paula it’s usually at a wine festival and I don’t have time to really taste and take notes to blog because I am working in some capacity.  I am excited about exploring their wine at this dinner.

If you want to sign up for the Cereghino Smith dinner or any of the Winter Dining Series, click here  for the listing of events and just click through to sign up.

A Winter Dining Series note:  Attend the dinners with the lectures before hand at the Danny Kaye Theatre.  These are the most informative dinners where you learn about the wine, terror, winery and have the opportunity to ask questions and meet the winemaker along with wine tasting.  The dinners that begin in the dining rooms, are just that, dinner with wine and no education.