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16 Jul

Explore Northern Italian Cuisine at Via Umbria

Via Umbria is a unique Italian Restaurant and market in Georgetown, Washington DC. Owners Bill and Suzy Menard, and Head Chef Johanna Hellrigl, of Johanna’s Table, are dedicated to the mission of bringing authentic and little known Italian cuisine to the heart of Washington through their cooking classes, dinners, and wine tastings. Throughout the summer months they are taking guests on a tour of Italy week to week as they explore the culinary and oenological histories and traditions of its different regions.

The week of July 25-31 is no exception as Via Umbria brings guests on a tour of Alto Adige, one of Italy’s northernmost, and most culinarily diverse regions. With unique dining events from Thursday July 28- Sunday July 31 guests will have several opportunities to experience the distinct Bavarian and Austrian inspired culinary culture of this region.

Dinner on Thursday, July 28, offers diners an opportunity to cross the typical restaurant barrier of customer and chef and join Chef Johanna in the kitchen as she creates several Sudtirolese dishes with a special emphasis on knodel, a bread dumpling that can be enjoyed in either a savory or sweet preparation. Guests will enjoy a cooking demonstration around the island, and interested parties are encouraged to get their hands dirty and help Chef with part of the meal, before retiring to the communal table to enjoy their creations. Thursday Demo Dinners cost $75 per person, and pricing includes a welcome cocktail, demonstration, three course meal, and wine tastings with each course. Dinner begins at 7:00pm, reservations are required as space is limited.

For guests interested in learning more about the history and traditions of wine from Alto Adige in addition to enjoying the cuisine, the CYOB dinner on Friday July 29, Supper in Sud Tyrol, offers a unique and affordable solution. Guests are encouraged to arrive early for dinner and participate in a wine tasting with a member of Via Umbria’s experienced wine staff to taste and learn about the unique selection Via Umbria has to offer. Diners then select their favorite bottle and purchase it from the market (at retail price) to accompany their meal. Dinner will include traditional Sudtirolese fare such as Gnochetti di Grano Saraceno (Buckwheat and Potato Gnocchi), Filetto di Maiale Farcito (stuffed filet of pork), and Strudel Tirolese (apple strudel). Friday CYOB dinner cost $65 per person and pricing includes the cost of the dinner and wine tasting, beverages during dinner are purchased separately and are not included in the price. Dinner begins at 7:00pm, reservations are required as space is limited.

Guests interested in exploring the spectrum of food and wine from the Alto Adige region will find what they are looking for at Saturday, July 30th’s Wine and Dine: Journey Through Alto Adige. Chef Johanna will take guests on a culinary tour of Alto Adige with four courses of traditional fare artfully paired with wines from the region. These communal dinners are a staple of Via Umbria’s programming as they highlight the mission statement to Discover, Savor, Share all things Italian. Guests can expect to enjoy delicacies such as Zuppa al Vino de Sudtirolo (Sud Tyrolean wine soup), Schlutzkrapfen (Traditional Sud Tirolean Ravioli) and Manzo Brasato al Vino Santa Maddalena (Beef braised in Santa Maddalena Wine). Saturday Wine and Dine dinners cost $110 per person and pricing includes the cost of the dinner and wine pairings. Dinner begins at 7:30pm, reservations are required as space is limited.

Guests interested in a more casual take on Sud Tyrolean cuisine are encouraged to join Via Umbria for Sud Tyrol Sunday, a bottomless bellini brunch featuring three courses of Sudtirolese inspired brunch cuisine. Guests will enjoy family style antipasti and side dishes, and their choice of Kaiserschmarrn (fluffy shredded pancakes with a summer berry sauce), Omelette del Contadino con Speck (farmer’s omelette with speck), and Via Umbria’s Sud Tirol Burger (in-house ground burger with taleggio and speck), as well as their choice of dessert from the daily pastry offerings. Brunch is offered as a single seating at 1:00pm and costs $35 per person. Pricing includes brunch food and bottomless bellinis, mimosas, or bloody marys until 3pm. Reservations are required as seating is limited.

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