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Dinners dovetail with the locales, themes of operas

September 29, 2006

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    September 29, 2006
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    Opera Carolina News

Dinners dovetail with the locales, themes of operas

In a fine example of something I wish Charlotte did a lot more of, Opera Carolina and a handful of area restaurants are creating immersion opportunities: Dinners coordinated with opera themes to really let you get the taste of a place, in preparation for experiencing the opera set there.

- First up is Madama Butterfly, the Giacomo Puccini opera set in Nagasaki, Japan, and Restaurant i (1524 East Blvd.). Dinner specials will be offered Oct. 12-14 and 19-21, and the evenings of the performances: Oct. 26-29. To go with the ill-fated love story of an American naval lieutenant and a former geisha, i will offer a five-course dinner, including sake or wine, with choices for each course for $45. Among the choices are entrées of pan-seared halibut and shrimp; Wagyu flank steak; grilled chicken with teriyaki sauce; or a sushi plate; and dessert options of souffle-style cheesecake; white-wine-poached peach with peach sorbet; or flourless chocolate cake.

- Next comes Amahl & The Night Visitors and the Mediterranean spot Taverna 100 (at Founders Hall, 100 N. Tryon St.), with dinner specials Dec. 1, 2, 8 and 9 and on performance nights: Dec. 15 and 16.

- The new year will bring Charlotte's first opera performed in Spanish, La Vida Breve, along with the classic Pagliacci and Spanish dinner specials at Miro(7804-A Rea Road) and Sole (1608 East Blvd.). Dates are Jan. 12, 13, 19 and 20, plus performance evenings Jan. 25, 27 and 28.

- To go with Rigoletto, the Italian story of a cursed jester in Mantua, Luce (214 N. Tryon St. in the Hearst Tower) will do specials Feb. 16, 17, 23 and 24, plus March 1, 3 and 4, the performance nights.

- Finally, Big Ben (801 Providence Road) brings British pubbiness to The Pirates of Penzance on March 30 and 31, April 6 and 7, plus performance nights of April 12, 14 and 15.

For more information on the operas, go to www.operacarolina.org.

The Skinny on Dining.

Helen Schwab
Charlotte Observer