Smiles, sizzles and shots will be in abundance at this weekend's Bacon & Bourbon Fest.
Smiles, sizzles and shots will be in abundance at this weekend's Bacon & Bourbon Fest.
Danielle Lirette

The Eight Tastiest Events on Denver's Culinary Calendar, January 20-22

The gang's all beer on Inauguration Day, with breweries all over Denver unveiling new brews and hosting parties, related or not to today's historic events. As the weekend goes on, you can enjoy Bacon & Bourbon aplenty, visit a true cow palace, or sign on for a brunch/fitness event to help you feel/feed the burn. Here are the tastiest food events this weekend.

Friday, January 20

It may seem like a crazy idea, but it's a Denver tradition 72 years old: The champion steer of the National Western Stock Show will preside over afternoon tea at the Brown Palace. At 11 a.m. today, the Grand Champion bovine will make his entrance into the Palace's atrium, where onlookers can take photos and hobnob with rodeo royalty until 1 p.m. Gawking is free, but the Brown is also offering a VIP luncheon and buffet to benefit There With Care, a local nonprofit supporting families with children dealing with serious illnesses. Admission to the luncheon is $125 per person; e-mail invite@brownpalace.com to inquire about tickets.

Inauguration Day presents opportunities for both resistance and celebration all over town. For example, the rEVOLution Launch Party, hosted by Project VOYCE in the Annex, will offer food,  music, discussion, and an "atmosphere of inclusion and awareness." Pizza and adult beverages will be provided by AshMoki Mobile Kitchen, and a percentage of sales will go to Project VOYCE. Admission is free, and the party goes from 6 to 10 p.m.; RSVP on the Facebook event Page.

Bess Dougherty (left) and Kelissa Hieber will unveil their Pussy Riot saison on Inauguration Day.
Bess Dougherty (left) and Kelissa Hieber will unveil their Pussy Riot saison on Inauguration Day.
Jonathan Shikes

The five breweries involved in brewing Makin' Noise: A Pussy Riot Beer will all tap their creations today, Donald Trump's inauguration day. The beer, which was brewed entirely by women, is an imperial saison, but each brewery made it with a different ingredient. Check out this week's Beer Calendar to find today's five tappings.

And at 4:20 p.m. inside Lucky Pie in LoDo, the Lagunitas Inauguration Defenestration Party kicks off with special tappings of four Lagunitas Brewing beers, including Dark Swan Sour Ale, CitruSinensis and the Cappucino Stout. Get there before the taps run dry.

For the third year, Colorado Plus Brew Pub is hosting the Big Barrel-Aged Beers Festival. If the beer's rare, aged with care, and the ABV is way up there, you may just find it here. Look for imperial stouts, imperial porters, barleywines and other strong brews from breweries like Great Divide, Dry Dock, Epic, Verboten and more. Along with Colorado Plus's own contributions, these special beers will be on offer throughout the weekend, from today at 11 a.m. to close on Sunday. Head to the Facebook event page for more updates.

Brider's interior will host an intense workout and a less-intense brunch this Sunday morning.EXPAND
Brider's interior will host an intense workout and a less-intense brunch this Sunday morning.
Danielle Lirette

Saturday, January 21

Bacon goes with everything — and for that matter, so does bourbon. But what happens when the two collide? Perhaps a hole in the space-time continuum caused by an explosion of joy? Actually, it's just the Bourbon & Bacon Fest, which is all set to sizzle from 3 to 5 p.m. today at the McNichols Building. Now in its fourth year, the collision of whiskey and pork belly promises dozens of choices of spirits, from big-name producers to small-batch artisans. On the food side, twenty Denver restaurants and food vendors will cook up bacon mac and cheese, bacon cupcakes, bacon-whiskey milkshakes and plenty of other tasty, smoky grub. Grab your tickets for $55 each at the event site.

Whole30 is a burgeoning, self-administered health program, meant to help reset the system with a month-long diet. Whole30 devotees and the curious can learn more when co-founder Melissa Hartwig will be at the Tattered Cover Aspen Grove to promote The Whole30 Cookbook: 150 Delicious and Totally Compliant Recipes to Help You Succeed with the Whole30 and Beyond. The discussion, Q&A and book signing will begin today at 2 p.m.; RSVP at the Eventbrite site.

Sunday, January 22

FIT36 is taking over Brider with a free workout and brunch combo this morning. Starting at 9:30 a.m., get a taste of the 36-minute, high-intensity interval workout, then recharge with brunch by Brider. A $20 donation to LiveWell Colorado is suggested but admission is free, and attendees will receive a free week of FIT36 classes. RSVP at the FIT36 website.

For more Food & Drink events, go to our online calendar. If you know of an event that should be included in that calendar, send information to cafe@westword.com.

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