Plates CafÃ© and Catering is an innovative program that offers intensive on-the-job training programs to help formerly homeless women with children develop their skills and find careers in the hospitality industry. It operates in conjunction with St. John's Shelter for Women & Children.
One of the main attractions at Plates is the delicious and eclectic lunch menu, available weekdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
On the first Thursday night of every month, Plates also showcases the work of a guest chef. In August, it's Aimal Formoli, the enterprising and creative chef behind the superb food at Formoli's Bistro in East Sacramento. It's an honor to be selected for this guest chef position and it's a treat for patrons to try the food these chefs present for their special dinners. The featured wine maker on this occasion is Naggiar Vineyards; the desserts will be by Drizzle Cupcakes.
This dinner is Aug. 2. The wine tasting is 6-6:45 p.m., with dinner from 6:45-8:30 p.m. The price is quite a deal: $45. To reserve online, go here. Plates Cafe is at 14 Business Park Way #149, Sacramento. Phone: (916) 381-2233. Seating is limited to 145 people.
If you can't make this special occasion, there's always the chance to catch Formoli and crew at Formoli's Bistro (3839 J St., Sacramento). The food and service make it well worth a visit. And last time I checked, everything on the new menu was under $20. For this level of cooking, that's a real value. For more on Formoli's, visit www.formolis.com.