Eat, Drink, and be Merry this weekend in Nevada County

Nevada County is a foodie and wine lovers delight this week! There are so many culinary adventures to be had, a wine trail to explore, and more.

On Wednesday, Sept. 21, Nevada County Grown presents Bounty of the County. An evening of great food and drink, the event pairs some of the area’s top local chefs with mmoodys-bistro-bar-beatsany local farms to create a unique Best Local Chef & Food Competition. And better yet…you get to be the judge!! That’s right, as a guest for the night, you will get to sample ALL the amazing food, and cast your vote on the dish that delighted your taste buds the most. The event is held at the lovely Gold Miners Holiday Inn in Grass Valley. Along with the amazing food, there is also live music, a beer and wine garden, a local artist show, and a silent auction filled with amazing local goods. This is truly a fun gourmet experience that foodies and just people who enjoy eating will love. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door.

The following day, Music in the Mountains Alliance presents A Feast for Bacchus Winemakers Dinner from 5-9 p.m. at the North Star House. This magical evening under the stars features a six-course dinner by Chef Antonio, paired with beautifully curated wines from Naggiar Winery, and accompanied by the winemaker’s commentary. It’s topped off with a fun, fast-paced live auction of unique opportunities and items. And, since it’s a Music in the Mountains event, there will be great classical music!

At both 5 and 8 p.m. on September 23-24, experience a nomadic-themed gourmet meal with Polly’s Paladar, a private supper club in the heart of downtown Nevada City. Brother and sister chef team JT Beggs and Emily Beggs-Kortman will be serving up an exotic feast which will offer old world cuisine for modern appetites. Al Pastor means “in the style of the shepherd,” and this Paladar is an evening of food inspired by pastoral cuisine. Ruminate over roasted lamb short ribs and fragrant quince fruit stewing on the fire. Colorful spiced meats, cheeses and summer vegetables smoked on skewers harvested from aromatic shrubs, served alongside small pies stuffed with chevre, honey and saffron will be set before you. This menu melds sister cuisines from herd-tending cultures of Spain’s Basque region, Iran, Greece, Chile and Northern Mexico.

The decadent five course meal will also offer such delicacies as Moroccan beef kofti, pumpkin frybread, shepherd’s sabzi, oxtail dumpling with wild bitters, a dulce de memrillo ice cream, and much more. It is truly a culinary journey through the less populated parts of the world where shepherds still tend to their flocks and then enjoy a hearty meal of fresh ingredients and exotic flavors. Vegetarian and gluten-free options are available with advance notice.  For more information, visit www.pollyspaladar.com.

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Sierra Vintners will be holding their final of three regional wine trails for 2016 from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 24, at six locations along the Hwy 49 and Hwy 174 corridors. Spend the day touring each location and enjoy wonderful wine tastings, delicious food, and enchanting entertainment. Each winery on the trail has its own personality in both taste and décor, and they all enjoy having the public come to enjoy their wine and hospitality. This wine trail includes Double Oak Vineyards and Winery, Katoa Cellars, Lucchesi, Nevada City Winery, Solune, and Sierra Sky. The cost to attend the wine trail is $35 per person or $30 for wine club members. Designated driver tickets (highly recommended) are only $15 and include food, water, and entertainment. Tickets can be purchased at www.sierravintners.com or at any participating winery on the day of the tour.

Also on Saturday, North Lake Tahoe’s largest Oktoberfest celebration is returning to The Village at Squaw Valley, complete with Bavarian Music, authentic German beer and food, the ever-popular Oktoberfest Games, and plenty of family fun. Squaw’s annual Oktoberfest will transform The Village at Squaw Valley into a miniature Bavaria on Saturday, September 24 from 2-6 p.m. Squaw Valley’s event is modeled after the original Oktoberfest, a 16-day annual festival held in Munich, Germany. Entrance to The Village at Squaw Valley’s Oktoberfest celebration and entertainment are free. Festival goers must be 21 years or older with a valid ID to purchase beer. No outside alcohol will be permitted. All of the proceeds from the festival will benefit the High Sierra Lacrosse Foundation.

End the weekend on Sunday at the annual Rough and Ready Chili Cook-Off in the historical downtown. Enjoy tasting chili samples from numerous chili chefs. Vote for your favorite. Tasting kits only $5. In addition to the chili tasting, the event has music, more food, raffles, Blacksmith demonstrations, vendors and crafters and much more fun for the entire family. For more information, visit www.roughandreadychamber.com.