Tag Archives: Carole MacDonal

Racing for Good Reason

Team Il Cortile

Team Il Cortile

We at Parker Sanpei are so proud of our friends at Il Cortile Ristorante in Paso Robles. Last weekend, 13 riders from the restaurant, including Owner and Managing Partner, Carole MacDonal, raced with 150 cyclists in the Tour of Paso to raise funds for the Central Coast Cancer Support Community. Nearly doubling their contribution from last year, the team at Il Cortile Ristorante raised a staggering $20K in support of the Cancer Support Community’s free resources to local cancer patients and their families. Charitable contributions for the event totaled over $100K, up $30K from last year.

Fundraising at Il Cortile included proceeds from a special “reverse wine dinner” menu crafted by Chef Santos MacDonal and his kitchen, as well as proceeds from the sale of complementing wine, L’Aventure Optimus 2011 Zinfandel. Additionally, servers at the critically-acclaimed restaurant generously donated all tips from the dinner toward Il Cortile’s efforts in support of the Cancer Support Community.

Santos & Carole MacDonal

Santos & Carole MacDonal

This year marks the third that Il Cortile has contributed toward and participated in the Tour of Paso. In 2012, the team raised over $5K, and $12K in 2013.

Thank you so much to all of those who participated in the event, especially our friends at Il Cortile. Your generosity is making a difference in our community. Bravi!

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A Refreshing Take on Winemaker Dinners

Il Cortile Ristorante’s “Reverse Winemaker Dinners” Put Wine Front and Center

827bb6b412944a9c43a307a5d7f7650eOur good friends at Il Cortile Ristorante in Paso Robles Wine Country will once again welcome top local wineries to offer guests a unique take on food and wine pairing this winter season.

Each Wednesday in January and February, the downtown Paso Robles fine dining establishment will hold “Reverse Winemaker Dinners,” in which Chef Santos MacDonal crafts seasonal three-course menus to complement a handful of very special local wines.

Carole and Chef Santos MacDonal

Carole and Chef Santos MacDonal

“Unlike a traditional winemaker dinner, where the winemaker selects wines to pair with a meal, we wanted the food to come to the wine, so to speak,” said Owner, Carole MacDonal. “We are fortunate to live in a region that boasts such wonderful wines and talented winemakers. This is our way of honoring their craft.”

The Reverse Winemaker Dinners will be held on Wednesday evenings, and each Wednesday will feature a different local winery. Once guests select a varietal from the featured producers’ handful of wines, Chef Santos will then “reverse” it and create a three-course meal to complement the flavors and textures of the wine chosen. This unique evening is offered at $40 per person, plus the cost of wine which will vary depending on the varietal chosen.

See you there!

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La Cosecha Bar + Restaurant Opens in Paso Robles Wine Country

Fresh Latin flavors, signature cocktails, inviting ambiance

La-Cosecha-Bar-and-Restaurant

At Parker Sanpei, we have the great good fortune of being involved in projects from their inception, including the new restaurant from acclaimed chef, Santos MacDonal, La Cosecha Bar + Restaurant.  This new hot spot just off Paso Robles’ charming City Park will open July 5, and we are tickled rosa to help spread the news!

Chef Santos MacDonal

Chef Santos MacDonal

You may know Chef Santos’ first “baby,” the incredible Italian Il Cortile Ristorante. La Cosecha, whose name means “the harvest,” is a celebration of Latin cuisine, boasting flavors from Spain, Central and South America.

“By trade, I’m an Italian chef,” said Chef Santos, “but I’m Honduran by birth.  Developing La Cosecha has immersed me back into the tastes, textures and aromas I know best.”

Along these lines, Chef Santos has crafted a rotating menu inspired by seasonal local produce, proteins and grains; and accented by imported fruits, roots, herbs and spices from Latin America and Spain.  From small plates, entrees to desserts, guests can expect the quality of ingredients and creative cuisine for which Chef Santos is recognized, and many will be treated to their first experience with authentic flavors and recipes, including:

  • Peruvian assorted fresh ceviches and Bistecca a la Pobre, a hangar steak over rice with fresh sautéed plantains in Peruvian spices and topped with poached egg and lime
  • Rare imported hams, sausages and chorizo prepared in a variety of ways from Spain
  • Honduran pollo asado, pasture-raised chicken marinated in regional Honduran spices, roasted and served with plantains
  • Monfongo, a traditional Puerto Rican dish of mashed sweet plantains and Caribbean spices, crispy pork and fresh local fish

In the kitchen, the culinary team consists of Chef Santos, his brother and longtime collaborator, Jorge MacDonal, and Chef de Cuisine, Fernando Bedolla, Jr., who arrives fresh from Santa Monica where he was Executive Chef at farm-to-table restaurant West 4th & Jane.

La Cosecha's mixologist, Eric Carfagnini, puts the finishing touches on a signature cocktail.

La Cosecha’s mixologist, Eric Carfagnini, puts the finishing touches on a signature cocktail.

Chef Santos has also partnered with mixologist Eric Carfagnini, to develop a cocktail menu that includes specialty drinks made from garden-fresh ingredients, imported herbs and spices and artisanal spirits. A sampling of La Cosecha’s signature cocktails includes:

  • Botanicos Espumosos made from fresh thyme, lemon, rhubarb and gin, topped with cava
  • Seasonal Caipirinha with fresh berries, lime, simple syrup, St. Germain elderflower liqueur and cachaça. 

With its ideal location, La Cosecha’s ambiance is casual, sophisticated and engaging.  Per MacDonal’s commitment to sustainably-sourced décor, the wood used to shape the beautiful bar was reclaimed from Paso Robles’ Windfall Farms and built by carpenter Peter Smith. “I love taking classic architectural elements and applying them to reclaimed, rustic materials,” said Smith. “In this case, we took 30-year-old pasture fencing from Windfall Farms and combined it with good solid design and traditional craftsmanship, making for a beautiful, inviting finished product.”

The rest of the design elements followed suit, with hand-crafted light fixtures by Jon Wommack of Wommack Electric and PB&J Custom Lighting in Paso Robles, using reclaimed and leftover materials, including slate floor tiles, copper conduit from discarded refrigerators, among others. The glass used in the scones was hand-blown by Eric Dandurand of Harmony Glassworks. “The overall effect is very rustic-meets-modern,” says Wommack. “I’ve gotten much more into the artistic side of things in the past few years with a concentration on going green, using solar and LED whenever possible. I was allowed to have artistic freedom, collaborating with Eric, and the result is fantastic.”

In designing the restaurant’s interior, Chef Santos’ wife and partner, Carole MacDonal, said, “Our goal was to honor tradition while mixing it up with a fun and inviting ambiance. The reclaimed wood reflects our belief in sustainable and reusable goods, while the hand-blown glass sconces provide a modern, clean edge and demonstrate our commitment to local artisans.”

La Cosecha Restaurant is located at 835 12th Street, Suite A, in Paso Robles. Business hours are lunch Monday through Friday, 11:00-2:30pm, brunch Saturday and Sunday, 10-2:30pm, dinner Sunday through Thursday, 5-10pm, and dinner Friday and Saturday, 5-11pm with a late night menu 11pm-12am.  Please visit www.LaCosechaBR.com or call 805.237.0019 for more information.

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