By proadAccountId-354431 21 Nov, 2017
What can you pair with Emeritus Wines ? The answer to that question is simple: a wine dinner at Ivy.

Back in September, we had the utmost pleasure and opportunity to host a wine dinner with Emeritus Vineyards. It was an event that had been placed high on our “must happen” list for 2017, and thanks to the stars aligning and schedules cooperating, we were able to get Emeritus’ Mari Jones in the Chicagoland area for not one, but two wine dinners.

Over 75+ guests enjoyed 5 courses prepared by Executive Chef Joe Pascolla, and each course was accompanied with a carefully selected Emeritus wine. The art of collaboration and the synergy between Mari, Chef Joe, and General Manager Jason Sandquist made the evening a most memorable one.

After the event, we caught up with Mari for a quick Q&A:

Ivy: What was the most rewarding moment for you at this wine dinner?
MJ: Having people enjoying the wines, it’s always nice to hear compliments about your product, and it was so rewarding to have the wines received so well by the guests.

Ivy: If you had to describe our wine dinners using only 3 words, what would they be?
MJ: Lively, delicious & FUN!

Ivy: If Emeritus, the brand, was a person, how would you introduce him/her to a room full of strangers?
MJ: Emeritus is elegant and charming, but don’t let her elegance put you off. She is excited to meet you and have a party! I can promise that you’ll love to share a meal, a deep conversation and just a fun night with Emeritus; there are many layers beneath the lively persona, so take a little time, share a meal and you’ll find so much more to love. And in a few years, you’ll discover so much more than you thought was there before.

Ivy: Give us an interesting/unusual fact about Emeritus.
MJ: I talked about this at the dinners. Our vineyards are dry farmed, meaning we don’t use supplemental irrigation for the vines. It’s hard to do in California because we don’t get any rainfall during the growing season, only during the winter when the vines are dormant. That means our soil has to capture and hold the rain during the winter for the vines to use during the summer. It makes for a lighter more elegant style of wine with brighter fruit flavors and more acid than when our vineyard was irrigated. We have found that our wines age better over longer periods of time now and are vineyards are better suited to thrive during hard vintages (like 2011 and 2015).

Ivy: What is a rule or a "must-remember" wine enthusiasts (seasoned and novices) should keep in mind when enjoying Emeritus wines?
MJ: The first thing I learned about wine; it’s best when shared with family and friends, and usually over a meal. That has always stuck with me as the most important thing about wine. Wine enhances your life; it is supposed to be enjoyed, so enjoy it!

And to say we enjoyed having Mari is an understatement! A special thanks to all those who attended along with extreme gratitude to everyone at Emeritus and Mari Jones for making this happen.

Please scroll through our gallery of images to recap and relive this special event.

To receive information about upcoming wine dinners and events, sign up for the Ivy League Newsletter by texting IVY to 42828.
By proadAccountId-354431 06 Nov, 2017

One of our favorite events of the year is our annual pumpkin carving party. It gives us a great opportunity to bring families together for an afternoon filled with laughs, snacks, and a lot of pumpkin guts!

This year, we decided to do things a little different and add an interactive photo opportunity. In years past, we’ve procured our pumpkins from various stores. But this year, we chose to support a local business by partnering with Sonny Acres Farms in West Chicago. Thanks to this long-standing establishment, the families who attended had 100 pumpkins to choose from. To show our additional support, we also had Sonny Acres apple cider on hand (in addition to our signature house-made hot chocolate) and crafted up a specialty cocktail for the parents to enjoy: The Sonny Acre Cocktail.

To make the most of our event, we also gave kids and adults the chance to transform into a not-so-scary scarecrow with our interactive scarecrow cutout. Throughout the day, people were thrilled to stick their head in the circle and have their pic snapped and shared on their personal Instagram and Facebook accounts!

Despite the rain, it was a wonderful time for all. Creating events like this for our community members and guests helps bring us all together. From seeing the kids smile and the parents getting involved in the process, and witnessing our dedicated staff making certain everyone is enjoying themselves, is the reason we will continue on with the annual tradition of ours.

See you next season!

By proadAccountId-354431 13 Oct, 2017
On October 20, 2017, Camerata Chicago Orchestra will be performing Vivaldi and Bach at the Gary Methodist Church here in Wheaton. We are more than honored to collaborate and partner with Camerata Chicago Orchestra to create a dinner and orchestra package that will make for a lovely night out for local couples.

Before the 7:30pm performance, we invite you to the restaurant to enjoy our "Veuve & Vivaldi" experience. Guests of the restaurant will be invited to experience Veuve Clicquot by the glass (something that is very rarely ever offered by restaurants!) or by the bottle. It’s a lovely way to toast to Vivaldi the night before Sweetest Day.
Glass: $16
Bottle: $78
You will also have an opportunity to purchase tickets to the Camerata Chicago Orchestra event at 50% off—we encourage you to reserve tickets when you call to make a reservation or pick up tickets beforehand—and if weather is cooperative, you can walk to Gary Methodist Church and take full advantage of our complimentary valet service.

Prior to Music Director Drostan Hall leading the talented ensemble, the Mayor of Wheaton Mike Gresk will say a few words at the concert. Plus, the just-retired Vice President of WFMT radio station Steve Robinson will recite some romantic poetry.

Now that we have the event details mentioned, let’s talk about Antonio Vivaldi. Best known for his concerto The Four Seasons, Vivaldi also has led quite an interesting life:

  • It all started on the day he was born, March 4, 1678, right before a massive earthquake rattled Venice. It is believed that Vivaldi was immediately baptized for people feared God had plans to destroy the city completely. 
  • In 1703, at the age of 25, Vivaldi became an ordained priest and later that year a teacher and the maestro di violino at an orphanage called Ospedale della Pietà. While there, the music he composed was for the female music ensemble. During his 30-year span as an instructor and maestro, he composed most of his major works at this orphanage. 
  • Vivaldi wrote a lot of sound effects in his music as can clearly be heard in his Four Seasons. This is one of the reasons it’s such a famous piece. Vivaldi used a lot of sequences of notes repeated in different keys, which is very appealing to the ear. The violin soloist does this in the Four Seasons.
  • Vivaldi wrote over 500 concertos, almost half of which are for violin, in addition to composing over 46 operas. Even though some of his music is lost, new pieces keep being discovered all the time.
  • Bach was a great fan of Vivaldi’s was inspired so much that he used various Vivaldi formulae in his music.
  • Additional Event Details:
  • Concertmaster Mathias Tacke, formerly of the Vermeer String Quartet and Amelia, who was featured on WFMT’s Introductions radio show last year, will perform the Bach double violin concerto.
  • After the performance, attendees will be given a delicious parting gift of Graham’s Fine Chocolate!
  • Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons will be performed by 16-year-old virtuoso violinist, Amelia Piscitelli.
Watch this video of Amelia performing the Svendsen Romance with Camerata Chicago Orchestra in 2016 and get an idea of just how immeasurably talented this young violinist is.

To secure your table and tickets for this event, please contact us at (630) 665-2489.

To learn more about Camerata Chicago Orchestra we invite you to visit their website, HERE .
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