Ben Parsons brings Infinite Monkey Theorem Wines to Arugula tonight

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Five years ago Ben Parsons opened a winery in an old quonset hut just off Santa Fe Drive, and used Colorado-grown grapes to make wines in this unlikely setting. Last year, he moved his winery to a 30,000 square-foot facility in RiNo, where he also opened a tasting room. And Colorado has definitely developed a taste for Infinite Monkey Theorem wines. At tonight's

local winemaker dinner at Arugula, chefs Alec Schuler and Sven Hedenas will pair their courses with five of Parsons's wines -- and he'll be on hand to talk about them, including 100th Monkey, which received the highest score given by Wine Spectator to a wine from Colorado.

See also: First look at Infinite Monkey Theorem Winery and Wine Lab

The dinner, which starts at 6:30 p.m., costs $40, with an additional $29 for wines (plus tax and tip). Reservations are required; call 303-443-5100. To whet your appetite, here's the menu, including each dish (mostly made with local ingredients) and the wine with which it will be paired:

Arugula's September 24 Winemaker's Dinner

Dish: White balsamic dressed baby lettuces*, Charentais melon*, Armenian cucumber* 
and spiced roasted almonds; topped with seared Nantucket bay scallops

Wine: The Blind Watchmaker White, Viognier/Rousanne 2012

Dish: Seared wild Alaskan salmon over orecchiette pasta in corn* cream
 with roasted peppers*; topped with a petite fresh herb* salad

Wine: The Blind Watchmaker Red, Syrah/Petite Verdot 2011

Dish: Bacon* wrapped pork tenderloin* roasted with apples*; served in its 
natural jus with pecorino pepato gratinéed delicate squash*

Wine: Syrah 2012

Dish: Seared rare venison with roasted carrot*, new potato* and oyster
mushroom* medley and blackberry-red wine* demi glace

Wine: 100th Monkey, Malbec/Petite Syrah/Petite Verdot/Cabernet Franc 2010

Dish: Lemon pudding cake with toasted pine nuts, mint sorbet* and fresh berries

Wine: Orange Muscat 2012

*denotes local products

For more information, go to arugularistorante.com.

For information on dozens of culinary events around town, visit our online Food & Drink listings -- and if you have information for a culinary event you'd like included in our online calendar, send it to cafe@westword.com.

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