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October 10, 2012

Wine, dinner and sex — oh my!

Local restaurant brings in sexual health expert for ladies-only event

By Tiffany Esshaki
C & G Staff Writer

BIRMINGHAM —  Girls night out just got a lot more interesting.

On Oct. 15, Bellapiatti restaurant will host an evening of wine, food and no-holds-barred conversation about sexual health with an expert on the subject.

Mindy Lopus is the owner of Bellapiatti, along with Tallulah Wine Bar and the upcoming bistro called Addie and Jack’s in Birmingham, which is set to open before the holidays. She said the Red, White and Grey event was inspired by the recent popularity of the bestselling erotic novel trilogy “Fifty Shades of Grey” by E.L. James. Lopus hosts a number of events for women at her restaurants and said her customers were clamoring for a night to dish about the book and how it’s affected their own sex lives.

The evening will welcome women of all ages with a multi-course dinner, a selection of wine pairings, and an open discussion with Dr. Renee Horowitz, founder of the Center for Sexual Wellness in Farmington Hills.

“She’s really a terrific doctor,” said Lopus of the event’s guest speaker. “Sex is always kind of one of those things that’s never really talked about. This book is a phenomenon that I’ve had women come to me and say you should do something about the book and women’s issues. So we’re going to do (several) events, and this is the first one.”

Horowitz, who has been practicing gynecology for about 30 years, said she’s excited to talk with women about what’s going on behind closed bedroom doors. She said many issues that women have are extremely common, yet most won’t disclose their concerns with anyone, even their doctor.

“This is one of the areas I’m interested in because no one wants to deal with it,” said Horowitz. “Low desire, pain, problems with arousal, problems with orgasm — those are the big categories.”

Guests will hear about everything from how to lower inhibitions to maintaining sexual hormone levels to sparking the neurotransmitters that lead to sexual arousal. According to Horowitz, as much as 40 percent of women have a sexual complaint, and she credits the success of the book with getting even modest women talking about the delicate topic.

“I think it’s important for our relationships to have an active, healthy sex life,” she said. “Nothing is forbidden. We’ll see where the conversation goes. There’s great things to explore — literature, visual movies, toys (…) fantasy play. There’s a lot out there.”

Both Lopus and Horowitz agreed that if the nearly sold-out event is a success, they’ll likely book a second evening. Lopus advised that ladies interesting in attending Red, White and Grey reserve their spots early. Horowitz agreed, saying the unique night of wine, food and fun is not to be missed.

“I think it’ll be a fun night. It’ll be a lot of laughs and a good time, and you’ll learn something in the process.”

Red, White and Grey will begin at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 15. Tickets are $65 per person. To reserve a spot, call (248) 494-7110. Bellapiatti is located at 167 Townsend St. in downtown Birmingham.

You can reach C & G Staff Writer Tiffany Esshaki at tesshaki@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1095.