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It has to be Balaban’s for weeknight specials to catered occasions to wine dinners extraordinaire

By: Kate Uptergrove

For Balaban’s West County patrons, especially those with ties to Chesterfield, a familiar face is now waiting to assist with their every catering and special event need. Bridget Nations, formerly with the Chesterfield Chamber of Commerce and a well-known civic leader and volunteer, has joined the award-winning bistro and wine destination.

Bridget Nations is Balaban’s new catering manager

“Bridget will be a bridge between the customer and Chef Phillip Stemmler,” explained Brian Underwood, who, with Steve McIntyre, co-owns Balaban’s. “Bridget will be able to advise customers on the timing of their party, do the scheduling, assist with decorations and more.”

Located at the intersection of Clarkson and Baxter roads, Balaban’s offers two special event spaces in addition to its main dining area.

Its Wine Room, which houses the Library Wines from the original Café Balaban cellar, is an intimate space that can seat up to eight people or serve as the perfect backdrop for a romantic dinner for two.  “We’ve had wedding proposals in there,” noted Balaban’s spokesperson Carol Miller.

Home to Balaban’s heralded wine dinners, the larger event space is Tuscany-inspired and can accommodate 80 guests for dinner or 100 for cocktails. “It’s the perfect place for a rehearsal dinner, corporate meeting, intimate wedding or a special birthday or anniversary celebration,” Miller said. “It’s even held a baby shower – and now, Bridget can help plan all those special occasions!”

A new catering manager isn’t the only thing new this spring at Balaban’s. “We’re also excited to be introducing two new dinner specials that provide exceptional value and outstanding food,” Underwood said.

On Tuesdays, Chef Stemmler puts the Balaban’s spin on barbecue, specifically BBQ Brisket, Pulled Pork and BBQ Chicken. “All the meats are prepared in-house and receive that special Balaban’s touch,” Miller said. She admitted that customers who love Balaban’s fancier cuisine and fine wines might not readily pair barbecue with Balaban’s. “But,” she said, “the kitchen here is really, really good. So even if barbecue isn’t your first thought when you think Balaban’s, you should try it.”

On Thursdays, guests can choose from one of three pasta dishes – Cajun Shrimp Pasta, Tomato Basil Penne or Spinach Tomato Tortellini. Once again, there’s nothing average about these flavorful dishes that turn classic combinations into masterpieces that pair perfectly with wine, of course!

Flavorful pasta dishes abound at Balaban’s.

Pairing wine with food has long been Balaban’s specialty of the house. And there truly is no better way to experience both than by attending one of the restaurant’s monthly wine dinners.

“We do things differently,” Underwood said of Balaban’s wine dinners. “First, we host one every month and second, Steve and I, along with our senior staff, select the wines before the food. Most people, when putting together a wine dinner, plan the menu first and then add the wine.

“What we do is select a particular wine maker or a specific region to feature and then we select a variety of five wines before finally deciding on the dishes to pair with the wine.”

In crafting its dinners, Balaban’s creates a taste experience that really showcases its wines.

“In the bistro or at a Balaban’s catered event, we want your experience to be something you won’t forget and that you’ll want to recreate again and again,” Underwood said.

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