|Hollywood Schoolhouse to offer intimate wine dinners|
|Written by Deborah Stone|
Senator Rosemary McAuliffe and her husband Jim have owned Woodinville’s iconic Hollywood Schoolhouse since 1977. In 1989, they began making the place available for weddings.
Jim brought in antiques, adding richness to the décor and spent countless hours creating a palette of eye-catching colors to the surrounding landscape. Since then, the venue, with its bucolic views of the Valley and Mt. Rainier, has become one of the top special occasion locales in the area.
Over the years, everyone from brides to corporate CEOs has booked their events at the Schoolhouse.
Now, the couple also wants to offer intimate wine dinners.
“We’re in the middle of Wine Country,” explains Senator McAuliffe, “and we have five wineries on site, including one, Alexandria Nicole Cellars, which is downstairs in our building. It just seemed like a natural step to take.”
She adds, “We plan to open a wine cellar or barrel room on our top floor and redo the upstairs kitchen so that we can hold these events up there. It’s such a great space for small dinner parties and wine tastings. And the views up there are wonderful.”
McAuliffe sees the wine dinners as a way to showcase the Schoolhouse’s chef, Frank Pantoya, as well as the various wines of Woodinville.
She comments that Pantoya, who has collaborated with Alexandria Nicole Cellars to create dinners for its wine club members, is very popular and well-respected.
“He’s so talented,” she remarks. “He has 20 years’ experience in the industry and worked under Chef Pascal Olhats at Tradition by Pascal Restaurant in California. Pascal is regarded as one of the finest chefs in the country.”
McAuliffe goes on to tout Pantoya’s abilities, adding, “Frank is very versatile and has such a wide background that covers several different cultures of cuisine. He’s been Executive Chef for us since 2005 and we are so fortunate to have him here.”
The first wine dinner at the Schoolhouse is scheduled for October 20.
It will be a five-course meal emphasizing the best seasonal ingredients, which will be paired with Alexandria Nicole Cellars’ special wines to create a memorable fine dining experience.
“We also purchased wine glasses for these dinners,” adds McAuliffe. “I am told that they actually breathe red wine.” Based on the success of the upcoming event, McAuliffe hopes to hold monthly wine dinners in the future.
She believes people will enjoy the experience of eating good food and drinking good wine in a unique venue.
She says, “The Schoolhouse means a lot to this community. It’s going to be 100 years old in 2012 and there’s so much history associated with this place. It’s actually on the historic register for King County. The community loves it and values it. They appreciate and respect its history. And they see it as a peaceful place in a beautiful spot right in the middle of the Wine Country.”
What: Intimate wine pairing dinner featuring Chef Frank Pantoja’s seasonal fare with wines from Alexandria Nicole Cellars
Where: The Hollywood Schoolhouse
When: Thursday, October 20th, 6:30 p.m.
Cost: $85 per person
Due to limited seating, reservations are required: (425) 481-7925
In the story last week on the the Hollywood Schoolhouse wine dinners piece, the correct day and date for the first dinner should be Thursday, October 20.