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Pomegranate Euro Bistro opened in Shockoe Slip; Belle B wine tasting Monday, 7 p.m. 

Tastemakers

The hole Café Indochine left in Shockoe Slip has been filled. Pomegranate Euro Bistro opened at the beginning of February, and of course, owner and chef Kevin LaCivita had some changes to make to the décor. With brick walls and white linens, the restaurant's functional setting is outshone by a more daring menu. It represents flavors from parts all around the Mediterranean — Greece, Italy, Southern France — sometimes all in the same dish. The wine list is no less interesting. Probably because the vintages are carefully selected by LaCivita, himself a wine enthusiast. LaCivita plans on doing monthly, instructional wine dinners. He left his job as a chef at the Jefferson more than a decade ago and has since returned to Richmond to open Pomegranate. Why open it in Richmond? "Basically," he says "I wanted to be closer to family." So what does LaCivita, an American Culinary Institute graduate, recommend from his own menu? The house specialty is the pomegranate and rosemary marinated lamb chops over creamy mascarpone polenta, root vegetables and red wine demi-glace. LaCivita recommends the Stags Leap cabernet sauvignon as a perfect accompaniment, or, for those who only desire a glass, the ever-popular Gab Mefre "Fat Bastard" Syrah. Pomegranate is open for dinner Thursday through Saturday, and lunch weekdays. 1209 E. Cary St. 643-9354. For more wine tasting excitement, reserve a seat at for its wine tasting Monday, 7 p.m. Five courses paired with five French wines from the Rhone Valley will be offered, with commentary by Terence Shiple from Country Vintner. $55. 261-4500.
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