Hard to believe, but another year has passed as we prepare to host one of my favorite events, our 3rd annual Mexican Passover Seder at Comal. This year we will be celebrating Passover on two nights, Monday, April 6 and Tuesday, April 7.
There will be a few new twists to the menu this year, but for those who prefer to stick to tradition, we will be serving Comal’s “traditional” Jalapeño Matzo Balls and Beef Brisket braised in Ancho chile adobo. As was the case at past dinners, each ingredient from the Seder plate will be represented in one of the dishes served.
We will once again be following the more liberal Sephardic tradition that allows for corn, beans and rice. It will be a fun, secular celebration, a cultural mash up. There will be no Hagaddahs, and the dinner will not be kosher (meat and dairy will be served), but it will be both festive and delicious.
Last year, many members of the Comal family returned for the second consecutive year, but we would love to see some new faces around the Seder plate as well. We expect both nights to sell out quickly, so don’t hesitate to secure your tickets!
This year it seems oddly appropriate that the last of our autumn/winter cocktails is hitting the menu the night before we change the clocks and spring forward. In what feels like the shortest winter of my lifetime it’s been a mad dash to get all of our favorite seasonal fruit on the menu before its time to eat strawberries and go swimming again. This drink is my attempt at a stall tactic to trick the seasons into dragging their heels and letting me enjoy baked apples for a few weeks.
Hachiya persimmons came to us via a suburban foraging project in the North Bay. We let them ripen on the racks in the prep kitchen until they turned to delicious mush and cooked them down with cinnamon, allspice and cane juice. Persimmons tend to lend more texture and color to cocktails than flavor, and the syrup we made has a soft, slightly tannic feel that helps offset the lemon’s brightness.
Dried Fuji apple-infused tequila was a project I started months ago for a previous drink. The two ideas came together when I wanted another sour (egg white) cocktail to bridge the gap before we bring back the ‘Summer Camp’. The vermouth and spiced syrup combined with the dried apple infusion add up to one delicious baked apple, tin foil and campfire not included.
Bedrock Wine Co. was founded in 2007 by Morgan Twain-Peterson in a 550 square-foot, former chicken coop with eight-foot ceilings and no fermentation space. After six years of Bedrock being a one-man-show, Morgan was able to talk his best friend, Chris Cottrell, into moving to California from New York to join him. They now happily have a little more space to move around in but share the same objectives that guided the winery from the start. The son of Ravenswood Winery founder Joel Peterson, Morgan made his first batch of wine at the age of five and has never looked back.
Morgan was named 2015 co-winemaker of the year by The San Francisco Chronicle’s Jon Bonné, who credits Morgan with being “responsible for some of the most significant, and critically successful, wines in California.” Bedrock makes over twenty different wines, ranging from Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Chardonnay to Rosé, Zinfandel and a number of blends featuring a dizzying array of little-known heirloom varietals. As Peterson said in a recent interview with Santa Rosa’s Press Democrat, “My goal with Bedrock has always been to make delicious wines of place, usually sourced from very unique vineyards.”
On Monday and Tuesday, March 23nd and 24th, Comal will welcome back Morgan and Chris for two more special dinners showcasing a selection of Bedrock wines paired with dishes by Comal’s executive chef Matt Gandin. Dinner guests will have the opportunity to engage in lively conversation with Morgan and learn firsthand about his winemaking approach.
This is the latest in an ongoing series of wine producer dinners (previous dinners have featured Wind Gap, Arnot-Roberts, Unti and Donkey & Goat) held in Comal’s private dining room, Abajo. All previous events have sold out in advance.Details: DATE/TIME: Monday and Tuesday, March 23nd and 24th at 6:30 PM PRICE: Tickets are $110 inclusive of food, wine and gratuity RESERVATIONS: Space is limited – to purchase tickets, follow these links: Monday March 23 Tuesday March 24 ADDRESS: Comal is located at 2020 Shattuck Avenue (at University Avenue) in Berkeley
Under the Wire “Brousseau Vineyard” Chalone 2011
Scallop crudo Serrano chiles, verdolagas, and hoja santa oil
Ode to Lulu Old Vine Rosé, California 2014
Requeson, shaved raw artichokes and asparagus lemon and epazote
Cuvée Karatas, Sonoma County 2012
Mushroom tamal mole coloradito
Bedrock Vineyard Heritage, Sonoma County 2013
Chile mulatto braised lamb favas and black olives
Hudson Vineyard Syrah, Carneros 2009
Oaxacan chocolate budin whipped crema
Bedrock Wine Co. Objectives: