I was very happy to receive an invite for the Cakebread Cellars Wine Dinner at Dawson’s, located at the Hyatt Regency in Sacramento. The menu just sounded awesome. Premium wine paired with upscale food? Yes, please!
I took my close friend Jean, and we arrived just in time to sample some Cakebread Chardonnay and fill our plates with appetizers. The main appetizers were Prosciutto Bites, and Brie with Apricot Chutney & Mint. They were served with fresh vegetables and house made ranch dip. I really liked the Prosciutto Bites with fresh tomato in them. The fresh tomato made the whole thing gush in my mouth and it was very tasty. The Brie was awesome. I kind of wanted some bread or cracker with the Brie.
After the appetizers they escorted us inside to our assigned seats. We liked our dining companions immediately. I found myself sitting next to the men from Cakebread Cellars who were responsible for arranging this Wine Dinner as well as a Producer from KOVR 13 and his wife. They turned out to be fascinating dining companions.
I absolutely loved the first course, Cured Hamachi, with Carbonated Grapes, Sauvignon Blanc Gelee, and Toasted Bread Puree. Raw fish makes me happy and this hamachi was spectacular. I’ve honestly never had wine in a gelee form so the gelee was really interesting. It actually adds to the flavor. The puree was great. It really did taste like toasted bread. The hamachi was my favorite dish of the night!
I really liked the next course, Corn Agnolotti, with Pickled Shrimp, Chive Blossoms, and Bellweather Sheep’s Milk Ricotta. Basically, agnolotti is similar to ravioli. It was filled with the ricotta and topped with the shrimp and chive blossoms. I had never had agnolotti or picked shrimp before. This dish made an appropriate 2nd course. It just tasted very fresh. You’ve gotta love homemade pasta.
The 3rd course turned out to be Wild Boar Pave with Huckleberry Pickled Pearl Onions, Okinawa Sweet Potato Crumble, and Forest Essence. The Chef told us that pave means “brick” in French. Essentially, they form the boar into a brick surrounded by onions, potato crumble, and an earthy mushroom or fungus (forest essence). I’ve never had boar before and I liked it a lot. By this time I was starting to be full. I used my fork to cut through the boar. It was that tender. I’m a mushroom person and the “forest essence” worked.
The main course entailed Crusted Hanger Steak with Sunfed Beef, Summer Truffle Reduction, Crushed Pee Wee Potatoes, and Carmelized Blue Lake Beans. If you’ve never had Sunfed Beef, you’re missing. They produce a really really high quality steak. The tender steak almost melted in my mouth. It’s one of the tenderest cuts of meat I’ve ever had. I would count this as my 2nd favorite course of the night.
I should mention that each course was accompanied by Cakebread Cellar wines. They served Cakebread Cellar Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon. The Cabernet Sauvignon and the Sauvignon Blanc were excellent to me. All of the wines paired well with the the accompanying dishes.
Dessert presented as an Apricot Upside Down Cake with Buttermilk Sorbet, Smoked Almond Tulle, and Freeze Dried Apricot. This light and fruity dessert perfectly ended the meal. I’ve never had buttermilk sorbet before. You expect buttermilk to be in an ice cream but not a sorbet. This sorbet had a light texture. The apricot cake was moist and deliciously fruity. I totally cleaned my dessert plate even though I felt ready to explode.
Overall, I really enjoyed my experience at Dawson’s. The upscale food is delicious, the customer service is excellent, and I had awesome dining companions. If they have another wine pairing dinner, I’m in. I will definitely be visiting Dawson’s again in the future. It’s a hidden gem in downtown Sacramento. Jax approved!
1209 L Street
Sacramento, CA 95816
Dr. Jacqueline "Jax" Cheung grew up in Sacramento, California. She is a Christian Wife, Proud Mom, Major Foodie, Sacramento Native, Elk Grove Resident, Feminist, Adoption Advocate, Blogger, Freelance Writer, and Cat Lover. Jax is the owner of the award winning Jax Chronicles Blog & Adoption Ministry. She is also the Editor-In-Chief of the Elk Grove Tribune, and freelances for Sacramento4Kids, and many other publications. Jax is married to Dr. Kenneth Cheung (Kenny). Jax and Kenny live in Elk Grove, California and have 2 daughters named Roxy and Carissa, and 3 cats named Mochi, Miso, and Mango. To follow her journey please like her Jax Chronicles Facebook page, follow her Instagram @jaxchronicles, follow her Twitter @jaxchronicles, or check out Jax Chronicles Blog & Adoption ministry.