Here’s how to afford high-end restaurants – like Erna’s – in Madera County this month

Erna's Elderberry House

If you’ve ever wanted to eat at a high-end restaurant like Erna’s Elderberry House or The Vineyard Restaurant & Bar without a high-end bill, this is your chance.

Restaurants in Madera County are participating in Madera Restaurant Month, offering special meals at reduced prices.

So far, this promotion is limited to Madera County, though Fresno is in the process of planning something similar for later this year.

The Madera County specials are happening throughout the month of January. The most important thing to know: Make a reservation. Also remember that taxes and the tip are usually not included in the price.

Erna’s Elderberry House in Oakhurst, the only restaurant in the Central Valley with a Forbes Travel Guide’s four-star rating, is hosting a three-course meal as part of the promotion.

Typically costing $75 per person, a three-course meal during most of January will cost $48 per person. Some important fine print: The deal will not be offered from Jan. 7 through Jan. 13th but will be for the rest of the month.

Details: 48688 Victoria Lane, Oakhurst. (559) 683-6800.

The Vineyard Restaurant & Bar in Madera is offering a three-course meal for $21 each. Diners choose an entree from The Vineyard’s signature lasagna, meat ravioli, chicken carbonara or vegetable pasta. Each comes with a green salad and almond polenta cake for dessert.

Details: 605 S I St., Madera. (559) 674-0923.

Ducey’s on the Lake in Bass Lake is offering a three-course dinner for $30 per person. It includes a salad, a Harris Ranch filet mignon, dessert and a glass of house wine.

Details: 54432 Road 432, Bass Lake. (559) 642-3121.

The Mountain Room Restaurant at Yosemite Valley Lodge in Yosemite Valley is offering a three-course meal for $40. This is the restaurant inside Yosemite Valley Lodge near Yosemite Falls.

The meal includes a “shrimp-tini” cocktail with chipotle aioli, tortilla strips and pico de gallo. The main course is roasted free-range chicken with Aztec blend rice and vegetables, and chocolate cake for dessert.

Details: 9006 Yosemite Lodge Drive in Yosemite National Park. (888) 413-8869.

South Gate Brewing Company is hosting a four-course wine dinner with Idle Hour Winery Thursday, Jan. 10 and unveiling a special beer for the month.

The Yuzu IPA is made with yuzu fruit, a tart citrus popular in East Asia that resembles a grapefruit and a mandarin orange. The beer has 7 percent alcohol by volume.

Details: 40233 Enterprise Drive, Oakhurst. (559) 692-2739.