Bold Face — Bacchus has nothing on Bender’s

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From The Repository | Feb. 12, 2011

By Diana Rossetti

How many people can $18,000 feed? Eric Smer, program director of the Stark County Hunger Task Force, says that figure translates into 30,000 grocery bags — 126,000 pounds of sustenance — loaded with enough food to last three to five days.

So what’s the significance of $18,000? That is how much money has been raised for the Task Force during the last three guest sommeliers nights at Bender’s Tavern in Canton.

The fourth annual event is set for Feb. 26 with three reservation times, 6, 7 and 8:15 p.m. Because reservations will be limited, the table you book will be yours for the night.

Dr. Michael Linz joins passionate oenophile forces this year with attorney David DePasquale and Dr. William Murphy. The experienced trio will be pairing wines with entrees ordered from the menu. Bender’s Jerry and Jon Jacob take pride in the exquisitely and diversely edited wine cellar in their 1899 building, now listed on the National Historic Register. Not only will the guest sommeliers peruse the carefully calibrated cellar for specialty wines by the glass, they also will offer tastings from their private collections. Tips for their tips, er, suggestions, go straight to the Task Force.

Carl Falcone, Bender’s chef, will prepare a few special accompaniments for the evening including foie gras — sauternes’ best friend — as well as quail and rack of lamb. For the second year, artist Joe Martino has created a signature abstract acrylic painting to be auctioned at the event. Wine baskets from the guest sommeliers’ personal cellars also will be auctioned.

For reservations, call 330-453-8424.
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