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A Taste of Spring Five-Course Dinner Features Local Chef


May 2, 2019

A five-course dinner is planned for the dining event of the year, Monroe Arts Center’s (MAC) A Taste of Spring dinner fundraiser on Monday, May 6, 2019, from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., at Peppercorn Banquet Room (Ludlow Mansion), 1417 Mansion Drive, Monroe, Wisconsin.

Pancho and Lefty’s Outlaw Grill Executive Chef Russ Brown, along with co-owner Nadine Brown, have created a dinner menu which features farm-to-table elements inspired by spring in the Midwest. Paired wines for each dinner course, fine beer, live music provided by Frank Calvagna and Flamenco Italiano, a silent auction, and live auction will complete the evening’s happenings.

This dining experience will start with a first course appetizer plate to include Emmi Roth Smoked Moody Blue cheese, Kalamata tapenade, crostinis, and other delectable creations. The second course consists of a spring asparagus soup with tarragon crème fraiche and topped with gruyère croutons. A fresh spring salad drizzled with a vinaigrette dressing delightful becomes the third course. Next on the menu is the fourth course, the entrée. This course is a red wine rosemary braised lamb shank, butter whipped chive potatoes, and sautéed shallots and vegetables. Rounding out the meal for the evening is the fifth course. Chef Russ has created a decadent, moist rhubarb cake dessert with strawberry coulis and Chantilly crème.

Wine pairings for each of the A Taste of Spring courses have been selected by wine expert, Steve Borowski. Featuring wines that are both affordable and locally available, Borowski has been the wine sommelier at this event for a number of years. He has also served as a judge at international wine competitions. He is the Director of Facility Services and Operations Effectiveness at Monroe Clinic.

During the dessert course, the live auction will be conducted by Freeport auctioneer Doug Munda. Some of the items to be included in the live auction are a “West-Side Soirée” for thirty people in MAC’s newly renovated banquet space; a hand-tooled metal weather vane sculpture by Wisconsin artist Nana Schowalter; “Dinner on the Deck” for six people at the home of John and LuAnne Rosa; a framed original oil painting by Wisconsin artist Jonathan Wilde; and a vintage one-of-a-kind wood cabinet/buffet table hand crafted by James Reese.

Monroe Arts Center invites you to join A Taste of Spring on Monday, May 6th. Individual tickets are $90 and tables of eight are $640. Reservations, or to order a gluten free meal variation, must be made by Friday, April 26th, by calling (608) 325-5700. Additional information and details can be found at


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