ON THE PLATE 5 Spot The season's special menu features dishes inspired by immigrant Italian cuisine: Try a cup of pasta fazool (white beans and macaroni in a rich broth, $5.50); continue with rigatoni tossed with saut饤 prosciutto and tomato in vodka-cream sauce ($12.75) or a garlic-rubbed rib-eye steak in Chianti-butter sauce ($18.50). Hot tip: The amaretto-peach crisp ($5.75) takes a half-hour to bake. 1502 Queen Anne N., 285-7768. Gene's Ristorante This neighborhood Italian place in Renton became an institution for its old-school house-made calzones, pastas, and sauces. Now it has a new owner, handpicked by Gene; a new chef, Charles Maddrey, formerly of Campagne; a new interior; and new daily specials. Plus you'll pay a little less than you would in the Jet City. Sounds like it's worth the drive. 212 S. Third St., Renton, 425-271-7042. The Rose Club Every Monday night is Ladies' Night at this sweet little Mount Baker spot, with half-price bottles of wine (that's ANY bottle, ladies), $2 beers, and half-price pizzas (including potato and roasted garlic; spinach, feta, and artichoke heart; and sesame garlic chicken). Future Ladies' Night events will include a women's clothing swap, a fund-raiser for local women's shelters, and a women's business networking group. (P.S.: Gentlemen are welcome, too.) 3601 S. McClellan, 725-3654. IN THE GLASS Andrew Will '00 merlots Pepper Bridge, Seven Hills, Klipsun, Sheridan, and the legendary Ciel du Cheval: five new single-vineyard releases by Chris Camarda, Washington virtuoso of merlot. All five about $40: free tastings 11a.m.- 5 p.m. Sat., Jan. 19 at McCarthy & Schiering Wine Merchants, Queen Anne and Ravenna. Leavenworth Brewery Ingall's ESB From Fish Brewing in Olympia, this unfiltered medium-bodied English-style ale is available on draft only: Try the Old Town in Ballard, Fiddler's Inn in Wedgwood, and Kirkland's Rose Hill Alehouse & Cafe. AT THE MARKET Think there's no fresh local produce these days? It's high season for hedgehog mushrooms, and, stretching a point, the first-crop California strawberries are said to be the state's best. While waiting for the first tiny Castro Valley artichokes, revel in a rainbow of citrus: Rio Star and Orchid Island grapefruit, Honeyball tangerines, and Minneola tangelos. In the cheese department, Pasta & Co. has snagged a shipment of Abondance, a mild and creamy cheese from France and the perfect base for your wintertime fondue party. THIS WEEK FareStart 10th Anniversary Banquet A seven-course extravaganza contrived for your grazing pleasure by Flying Fish's Christine Keff, syndicated KCTS-TV chef Nick Stellino, and host chef John Sarich of Chateau Ste. Michelle. 6- 9 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 24 at the Chateau, 14111 N.E. 145th, Woodinville. $100 or $150 (with wine tasting reception). Reservations 728-1742. COMING UP Jan. 25 Maine lobster, Hudson Valley foie gras, and other dainties are paired with wines of five continents in celebration of the second anniversary of Mistral. Just $222 per person. 5:30- 10 p.m. 113 Blanchard, reservations 770-7799. Food and/or beverage news? Anything about noodles? Or beets? E-mail the Hot Sheet at firstname.lastname@example.org.