Event Hosts

Although many in the chef community wince at the term “molecular gastronomy”—this rose also goes by another name. Many accomplished culinary artists happily describe their menus as “modernist.” And after all, what respectable foodie wouldn’t be up for trying the different ways temperatures and air infusions affect the viscosity and surface tension of eggs? As for food as art, we’ll leave the debate to the essayists and academics. In our world, the innovation and creativity and attendant sensory delights are high art, indeed. Add cultural and social experience to the mix and you have a gastronome’s dream come true.

We typically choose restaurants whose chefs are found on FOOD & WINE Best New Chefs list and among those nominated for James Beard awards. Fine Diners Over 40™ Portland events are hosted by Vicente (“Vin”) Pina, a Society of Wine Educators’ Certified Specialist of Wine (CSW). Vin is the owner/operator of Vin de Vin Wine Tasting & Collecting Consultants LLC (www.vindevin.com). He has over 20 years of experience in wine education. Recently Vin has hosted dinners at Renata, St. Jack, and Rue.

Leslie Hale is our Fine Diners Over 40™ host in Seattle. She is a dyed-in-the-wool foodie who also knows a thing or three about wine. A talented chef in her own right, she also seeks out well-prepared dishes at award-winning restaurants, local cafés, and gourmet food trucks. Leslie is a raconteuse with a gift for making guests feel at home. Recently she has hosted dinners at The Corson Building, Joule, Lark, and Loulay.

FDO40 founder Janet Basilone hosts our New York dinners. Over the past year she has hosted events at Hearth, Dovetail, Lincoln, Annisa, Dirt Candy, Tocqueville, Huertas, Riverpark, and Boulud Sud.