The culinary calendar offers a few options to help move the work week along. Start out with a funky beer-bar opening, and by the time Friday rolls around, you'll be ready for the sweet, sweet prospect of a chocolate-filled weekend. Round out the rest of your week with a brand-new beer-and-burger combo, a Mother's Day brunch alternative and a visit from Boston chef/restaurateur Barbara Lynch. Here are the seven best food and drink events for the week of May 8 through May 12.
Monday, May 8
Lambic lovers, rejoice! Goed Zuur is opening its doors at 3 p.m.; the new taproom has 26 handles pouring sour and wild beers from around the globe, as well as a bottle list, charcuterie, cheese and small plates. The bar will focus exclusively on the tangy and funky end of the beer spectrum, so if you're the type that religiously orders Coors Light or turns up your nose at everything but but pilsners and pale ales, take a pass. But if you have a more adventurous palate, head over to 2801 Welton Street this afternoon and settle in for a wild (and sour) ride.
The nonprofit organization Work Options for Women (WOW) has been around for twenty years, providing culinary training, job placement and case management for low-income women in Denver. Tonight, top female chefs in town are coming together for WomenCook!, WOW's annual fundraiser. Elise Wiggins (Cattivella), Jennifer Jasinski (Rioja), Dana Rodriguez (Work + Class), Aniedra Nichols (Fish N Beer) and Cindhura Reddy (Spuntino) will all be on hand to tempt you with delicious bites. Temple Emanuel, at 51 Grape Street, will host the event, which runs from 5 to 9 p.m. Tickets ($125) and a complete list of participating chefs are available at eventbrite.com.
Tuesday, May 9
For a totally different museum experience, check out History Colorado Center's Ignite!Nite. The wonky punctuation belies what's sure to be a unique evening for local history buffs: From 5 to 8 p.m., you'll have access to History Colorado, 1200 Broadway, where live music, art and cooking demos and DIY craft activities will be taking place — all based on the bison. A cash bar and bites will also be available, so you'll be well provisioned as you learn about buffalo drives, buffalo soldiers, buffalo gals and the buffalo nickel. Tickets are just $12 (free if you're a member) and can be purchased at History Colorado's website.
What goes together better than burgers and beer? Literally nothing; a frosty beer paired with a hot ground-beef patty have been naturals ever since the first caveman busted out his Big Green Egg and cooler, way back in the Stone Age. So it was historically inevitable that 5280 Burger Bar and Resolute Brewing Company would team up with Resolute brewing the 5280 Lager, a pilsner that's now on tap exclusively at the burger joint. But the Resolute Taproom at 7286 South Yosemite Street in Centennial is also getting in on the action: It's launching the beer there from 5 to 7 p.m., and Burger Bar apps will be served to celebrate.
Wednesday, May 10
If you love your mom but hate the Mother's Day brunch industrial complex, consider Firenze a Tavola's Community Table dinner at 6:30 p.m. at 4401 Tennyson Street. Tonight's theme is casareccio (homemade), in honor of all the mothers out there who kept you fed — even if it was occasionally with a can of Manwich. A bargain at $33 per person, dinner boasts three courses, including veggie lasagna and chicken scallopine, along with dessert. Drinks are additional, but at that price point, you can share a bottle of wine and even pick up the check before your mom gets to it. Find the full menu on the restaurant's website, where you can also make reservations.
Thursday, May 11
Interested in meeting one of the 100 most influential people in the world? So named by Time magazine, chef/restaurateur Barbara Lynch is also a three-time James Beard Award winner; she's taking a break from her seven restaurants to appear as the special guest for dinner at Coohills, 1400 Wewatta Street. The sumptuous five-course menu (available on Coohills website) includes butter soup studded with lobster, and prune-stuffed gnocchi with foie gras, as well as five wine pairings. Diners will take home a signed copy of Lynch's new memoir, Out of Line: A Life of Playing With Fire. Call 303-623-5700 for reservations; even at $165 per person, the event is likely to sell out.
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Friday, May 12
Everybody loves chocolate — dark, milk, white, in a fountain, on strawberries, in your martini — and the fact thatthe Colorado Chocolate Festival has been around for a decade proves it. The indulgent soiree runs from 4 to 9 p.m. tonight, with a tenth-anniversary cake, a chocolate-and-wine-pairing demo, and free hazelnut truffles followed by a performance by Denver's second favorite Hazel, Ms. Miller. Admission is just $5, with food tickets for sale inside ($10 for 12 samples, $20 for 24) to use at the nearly fifty food and chocolate booths on hand. If you can't make it Friday, head to the Denver Mart, 451 East 58th Avenue, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday for a chocolate-pudding-eating contest and a paint-by-chocolate session that will establish you as the next Jackson Pollock of confections. Check out a full schedule, list of vendors and tickets at the event website.