Tuesday, February 20, 2007

The greatest double date of the week

You can think of at least 738 reasons to ditch work early today. And while perfecting your skills at bird whispering and watching the algae grow in your fish-less aquarium are totally valid reasons to call it quits, here are at least six more excuses to pack up your bags before the whistle blows: The Riverview Theater is showing the four Academy Award-nominated documentary shorts at 4:30 today through Thursday. And the theater's across-the-street neighbor, the Riverview Wine Bar, serves up the best wine flites and thin-crust pizzas in town.

Whether you're going solo, with a date, or with a friend, this pairing makes for a great double date. The famous art-deco theater is charging only five bucks for the quadruple feature of The Blood of Yingzhou District; Recycled Life; Rehearsing a Dream; and Two Hands. The award-nominated short films—ranging from stunningly heartbreaking to feel-good—run about 20 to 40 minutes each.

Afterward, head on over to the Riverview Wine Bar, where you can reflect on the four films. Cozy up to the fire and check out one of the bar's 12 different wine flites, a two-oz. sampling of wine varieties that comes with its own card so tasters can keep the names straight. There's a sampling of un-oaked whites and un-oaked reds. Funky whites and K-Syrah, Shiraz. No Merlot, Only Pinot and Cotes du Rhone, a selection of light and full-bodied wines from the French region first to turn grapes into vino.

You don't have to be a wine connoisseur or even know the difference between a bottle of fine French wine and a box of Franzia to enjoy toasting at this cozy neighborhood restaurant. In fact, drinking wine at the Riverview is a learning experience. The prices are cheap enough—and the selection deep enough—that a few tasty flites can make anyone feel like a wine critic.

The Riverview Wine Bar also has delicious pizzas like the Neufchatel and Goat Cheese, which also comes with pesto, roasted tomatoes, and pine nuts for $10.50. The sweet curry dressing on the roasted beet salad is so scrumptious you just might want to pour it into a glass and pretend it's Pinot. And to top off the evening and make you further dream of begging off work and sleeping in the next day, the desserts (like the cocoa-dusted homemade truffles) go great with the dark-roasted coffee from the Riverview Cafe next door.

Riverview Theater: http://www.riverviewtheater.com
Riverview Wine Bar: http://www.theriverview.net

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