A spirited week ahead on the culinary calendar

Wine dinners this week will transport you from Larimer Square to the South Rhone, and from Boulder to Italy. And at a special spirits tasting at the Museum of Colorado Denver on Wednesday, you can celebrate drinking right here at home: MCA will feature Denver-based Leopold Bros. at the event. Keep reading for a taste of what else is on the culinary calendar this week. See also: Meet Todd Leopold of Leopold Bros. Monday, June 9

Frasca Food and Wine continues its Monday night wine dinner series with special guest Giampaolo Venica, of Venica & Venica. In what has become an annual tradition, Venica will bring a variety of Italian wines to pair with chef/co-owner Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson's seasonal menu. The four-course wine dinner is $50 a person (not including wines, $45-$50); make your reservations by calling 303-442-6966.

Bistro Vendome continues its "Adventures on the Wine Route" dinner series with delections from Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant of Santa Barbara; tonight's installment focuses on Southern Rhone. For more information, call 303-825-3232.

Tuesday, June 10

At 5 p.m., Session Kitchen will host the kickoff party for the nineth annual Climbing for Kids mountain climb benefiting Children's Hospital Colorado. Session Kitchen will be donating 20 percent of all food sales and 100 percent of specialty beverage sales to Climbing for Kids. Learn more here.

Wednesday, June 11

Elway's Cherry Creek will be hot tonight when more than a dozen celebrity chefs fire up for the Hot Rocks Griller Challenge, benefitting the Denver Health Foundation. Tickets are $100 or $250 VIP; The fun runs from 6 to 9 p.m. (VIP opens at 5:30). Find more information and buy tickets here.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Denver is hosting Museum Quality Drinking, Meet the Maker: A Food & Beverage Trunk Show, on Wednesdays from 6 to 8 p.m. on the MCA Denver rooftop. At this week's edition, guests will be able to meet the makers of Leopold Bros. and enjoy free samples. Admission to the museum itself is always free for members and just $5 after 5 p.m. for non-members. For a complete lineup of the MCA's summer art and entertainment, go to mcadenver.org.

The Lyons Farmette will host a Colorado Farm Aid dinner prepared by chef Jason Rogers of Oskar Blues featuring locally raised food from Hops and Heifers Farm. There will also be a silent auction and live music from Miner (Los Angeles based VH1 "You Outta Know Artist") as well as local musician Pete Kartsounes. Proceeds from the event go to many of the Colorado farms that were damaged in last year's historic floods. Tickets are $100; make a reservation here.

Sprouts will open its new store at 5001 South Broadway in Englewood at 7 a.m. today. The first 200 shoppers in line will receive 20 percent off their purchases, and there will be other deals all day. For information, call 720-612-6595.

Thursday, June 12

This evening from 6 to 8 p.m., A Taste of Art kicks off with Arts Hors D'Oeuvres in the MacMillan Family Lobby at The Dairy in Boulder. Four of Boulder's top chefs -- Kelly Whittaker, chef/owner of Basta; Arik Markus, chef at Zeal; Matt Collier, head chef at The Kitche; and Chris Canales, head chef at Volta -- will provide the appetizers. Tickets for the event are $25 and can be purchased here.

Friday, June 13

The Hideaway Steakhouse will offer a five-course Italian meal, paired with wines and hosted by Italian wine rep Riccardo Bertocci. Dinner is $100; call 303-404-9939.

For information on dozens of culinary events around town, visit our online Food & Drink listings -- and if you have information for a culinary event you'd like included in our online calendar, send it to cafe@westword.com.

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