Things to Do

Best Culinary Events and Takeout Deals This Weekend and Beyond

Stoic & Genuine's oysters make everyone happy — even in the midst of a pandemic.
Marc Piscotty
Stoic & Genuine's oysters make everyone happy — even in the midst of a pandemic.
As more restaurants reopen for takeout in anticipation of getting the go-ahead to finally welcome diners for eat-in service, some are testing the waters of walk-up service and eschewing the rigmarole of having customers order in advance. This weekend, you can take advantage of a couple of rare moments of dining-out spontaneity. (Yes, you still have to wear a mask, and yes, hipster couple, that means you — just holding your T-shirt over your nose while you wait in line doesn't count.)

We also included a beer dinner, a market, a cooking class and a wine tasting you won't regret planning ahead for, plus ongoing online and socially distant events.

Friday, May 15
You don't have to miss out on a perfectly prepared steak just because you can't visit a steakhouse; take the bull by the horns and learn how to make a restaurant-worthy steak dinner at home with Uncorked Kitchen's dinner for two on Friday, May 15. Bourbon and beef are what's for dinner, and starting at 4:30 p.m., you'll be guided through making spinach salad with bacon; bleu cheese and bourbon dressing; sweet potatoes with a boozy maple sauce; and bourbon-glazed steaks with Roquefort sauce. In addition to ingredients and instruction, purchase of the class, $95, gets you pre-mixed cocktails, apps to munch on while you cook, and a prepared dessert (double bourbon pecan pudding); you can also enroll without the cocktails for $65. Pick up ingredient kits from the school, 8171 South Chester Street, Centennial, then cook along with the chef from the comfort of your own kitchen.

click to enlarge Englewood Grand is serving (most of) its usual suspects from its walk-up window this weekend. - COURTESY OF ENGLEWOOD GRAND
Englewood Grand is serving (most of) its usual suspects from its walk-up window this weekend.
Courtesy of Englewood Grand
Saturday, May 16
One of the great delights of visiting a bar that's just a bar (not a gastropub, not a music venue and definitely not an experimental cocktail "concept" where you'll find pretension and snootiness mixed into every fussy fifteen-ingredient, fifteen-minutes-to-prepare beverage) is the simplicity of the experience. Belly up to the bar, pick your poison and start a conversation with the bartender (no "mixologists" here). Or don't — there's no shame in solitary drinking at just-a-bar. While you can't do that yet, one of our favorite joints for such indulgences, Englewood Grand, at 3435 South Broadway, is offering drinks to go from its walk-up window on Saturday, May 16, and Sunday, May 17. From noon to 8 p.m. each day, the Grand is serving to-go drinks with no need to pre-order or reserve a pick-up time. It's also sending you home with a bag of popcorn — the only grub you'll find here, even under normal conditions. It's the closest thing you can get to the bar experience right now; find details on the Englewood Grand Instagram page. 

Last weekend, staff at Stoic & Genuine, 1701 Wynkoop Street, took to the restaurant's patio to shuck and shill oysters in a move that proved so popular it prompted a quick sellout, as well as accusations that the seafood shack had opened its outside space for dining. It hadn't — cooks were just serving takeout orders from the patio — but let that be a reminder to Denverites that unless you want to be mistaken for Trumpers from Castle Rock, wear a mask and maintain a six-foot distance when you show up for S&G's second oyster pop-up this weekend. Starting at noon on Saturday, May 16, you'll be able to get oysters, lobster rolls and fish and chips, plus paella from sister restaurant Ultreia, until the grub is gone. (Stoic's regular takeout menu is still available until 8 p.m.) No need to pre-order; just show up (early!), and if you miss the goodies, try again on Sunday, May 17 — the restaurant has doubled the amount of bivalves on hand in order to ensure a second day of patio pop-ups. Find details on its Instagram page.

click to enlarge Chef Franco Ruiz is serving churro doughnuts (among other delights) on  Sunday, May 17. - MARK ANTONATION
Chef Franco Ruiz is serving churro doughnuts (among other delights) on Sunday, May 17.
Mark Antonation
Sunday, May 17
Chef Franco Ruiz (of the temporarily shuttered Woodie Fisher) is teaming up with longtime friend and colleague Drew Watson (Hops & Pie) and Golden's Cannonball Creek Brewing Co. for a takeout beer dinner on Sunday, May 17. The tentative menu includes Southern-inspired comfort foods (jalapeño fried chicken, collard greens, bread and butter pickles and banana pudding) as well as Mexican fare (mole-glazed baby back ribs, posole with trimmings like onion, lime and cabbage, refritos made from Ruiz's mother's recipe, and churro doughnuts), paired with three pints of Cannonball brews (Mindbender IPA, Tenacious P pilsner and Return of the Mackaroon, a coconut and chocolate oatmeal stout). Dinner can be purchased for two, four or six diners at $50, $75 or $100 with suds — the latter includes three Crowlers instead of 16-ounce pours — or $35, $60 or $85 without libations. Email [email protected] to reserve your meal, then pick it up on Sunday at Hops & Pie, 3920 Tennyson Street, starting at 4 p.m.

click to enlarge Beast + Bottle is working with Ollin Farms to bring farm-fresh produce to Denver. - MARK ANTONATION
Beast + Bottle is working with Ollin Farms to bring farm-fresh produce to Denver.
Mark Antonation
Saturday, May 23
Chef Elise Wiggins's Southern roots are no secret, and later this month, she's heading home to Louisiana and hauling back 3,000 pounds of crawfish and 200 pounds of andouille sausage for a massive crawfish boil on Saturday, May 23. Call Cattivella at 303-645-3779 to place your order for enough boiled mudbugs, corn, potatoes and sausage, plus pralines for dessert, to feed four ($125), then pick up the feast at the restaurant, 10195 East 29th Drive, between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Of course, pre-batched Hurricanes and Sazeracs are also available for purchase if you want to spend your time sucking on heads instead of mixing your own drinks. Visit Cattivella's Facebook page for details.

Beast + Bottle, 719 East 17th Avenue, is turning the sidewalk in front of its Uptown restaurant into a drive-by farmers' market on Saturdays. Since many of the region's markets are closed to in-person browsing, Beast + Bottle has teamed up with Longmont's Ollin Farms to offer produce boxes for pick-up every Saturday. Order and pay online between 11 a.m. Tuesday and 5 p.m. Thursday; different veggies are available every week (last week's box included rhubarb, radishes, cherry tomatoes, spring onions, mixed greens and mustard greens for $30), and you can add on items like fresh asparagus, microgreens, local honey, hot sauce, pickles and peanut butter. Then pull up to the loading zone outside the restaurant on Saturday between 10 a.m. and noon (you must wear a face mask) for contact-free pick-up. Details are up on Beast + Bottle's Instagram page.

Sunday, May 24
The Dairy Block's Blanchard Family Wines, 1855 Blake Street, is hosting a virtual wine tasting on Sunday, May 24, to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project in anticipation of Memorial Day. Place your order on the winery's storefront no later than May 17, and you'll get four half-bottles of wine — enough for two people (theoretically) —  delivered to your doorstep in advance of the tasting. Tune in to Zoom from 7 to 9 p.m. for a tasting guided by co-owner James Blanchard, and 20 percent of the $70 fee (not including the $18 in shipping costs) will be donated to the nonprofit organization, which assists injured military service members.

Keep reading for ongoing online events every day of the week....