The holiday bacchanals have started in earnest. You may have stuffed yourself silly on Thanksgiving, but that's no reason to practice restraint now — not when there's an endless orgy of eating and drinking that continues through December. Here are ten food and drink happenings to keep you busy through Friday, with a couple of additional events to put on the calendar for the future.
Monday, December 2
You need a stiff cup of coffee and a sugary sweet doughnut to get you going on Monday morning, right? Stop by Voodoo Doughnut, 98 South Broadway, at any time with a donation of a new, unwrapped toy and you'll get a free cake doughnut topped with brightly colored sprinkles (you'll still have to spring for the cup of joe). The toy will go to the Together 4 Colorado Toy Drive, and you'll go to the office high on sugar and caffeine. Running late Monday morning and don't have time to stop? No worries; Voodoo is open 24/7, and this deal is good through Sunday, December 22. Take a look at the shop's Facebook page for more info.
Tuesday, December 3
Thanksgiving has passed, and you now have our permission to crank up the Christmas music, dig out the decorations and trim the tree. Get started the right way at Breckenridge Brewery, 2990 Brewery Lane in Littleton, with its One Stop Christmas Shop on Tuesday, December 3, from 6 to 9 p.m. We recommend showing up early, because the first fifty folks who order a twelve-pack of the brewery's Christmas Ale will get to take home a free Christmas tree. If you can't strap it to your itty-bitty Yaris (or you sensibly ordered a Lyft to get to the party), Breckenridge will even deliver it for you — again, free of charge — at a later date. Even if you're not among the first to rush the bar, order the holiday brew anyway, since the purchase of every pint means a full meal donated to Food Bank of the Rockies. Then stick around for a gingerbread house-making class and shopping from thirteen local vendors. Visit the brewery's website for details and a link to sign up for the class.
Wednesday, December 4
What do you get when you cross two regional specialties (St. Louis barbecue and Colorado weed), former Denver Broncos and a pair of competitive eaters? That would be Rocky Mountain Hi, a mashup of two of chef/restaurateur Mike Johnson's food-service concepts, Sugarfire Smoke House and Hi-Pointe Drive In. Both joints originated in St. Louis, with Hi-Pointe dubbing itself "the munchie capital of the Midwest" and Sugarfire expanding outside the region only in 2018. But on Wednesday, December 4, the two menus are colliding at the Westminster Sugarfire outpost at 14375 Orchard Parkway for a Mile High-themed menu, with items like bacon blunts (bacon-wrapped mac and cheese), the Denver Burncos (a burger stuffed with cheese and burnt ends), the Dabwood (a burger served with brisket, turkey, bacon and hemp aioli) and Hot Cheeto mac and cheese cupcakes. There will also be appearances by former Broncos including Mark Jackson (you can beg him to take the field again; he'd probably be an improvement to this year's team) and competitive eaters vying to ingest as many pounds of food as they can in twenty minutes. The fun starts at 11 a.m. with the celebrity appearances at 5 p.m. Visit Sugarfire Westy's Facebook page for more details.
The lesser known but at least as culturally significant cousin to Christmas Eve has arrived: Repeal Day Eve. Remember that long-ago night in 1933 when adults around the country sleeplessly awaited the arrival of the end of Prohibition, at Hearth & Dram's Pappy Repeal Dinner on Wednesday, December 4. At 6 p.m., the four-course, six-drink meal begins with a welcome cocktail, followed by pairings that include smoked duck and foie gras sausage with Old Rip Van Winkle 10 Year; a sixty-day dry aged steak with mushroom ragu and Van Winkle Special Reserve 12 Year; and housemade ice cream with Pappy Van Winkle Reserve 20 Year. Call the restaurant (1801 Wewatta Street) at 303-623-0979 to reserve your spot for $145.
Thursday, December 5
There are two kinds of people in the world: people who love eggnog, and total monsters. Even if you eschew traditional holiday trappings — decorations, music, gifts, good will toward men — there's something fundamentally Christmasy about what's essentially a boozy melted milkshake that warms the cockles of the heart. And Longmont's Dry Land Distillers, 471 Main Street, takes its nog seriously. Starting at 3 p.m. on Thursday, December 5, the tasting room is hosting its annual ’Nog-Off; order a flight of three different recipes and vote for your favorite. The winner will become the distillery's go-to recipe for the season. Voting will continue through 7 p.m. on Saturday, December 7, when the ultimate victor will be announced and you can settle in for eighteen days of amazing eggnog. Details are available on Dry Land's Facebook page.
Thursday, December 5, is a day that will live in...wait, what's the opposite of infamy? In particular, drinkers who enjoy post-Prohibition luxury will want to hit up the Cruise Room, 1600 17th Street, which has been open for exactly 86 years, for its annual celebration of Repeal Day — and its birthday. You'll get 1933 pricing on five classic cocktails; your first Tom Collins, martini or sazerac will set you back just 35 cents, while a Side Car or Old Fashioned will run you a whopping fifty cents. The good times (and good prices) run from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m., with live jazz until 6:30. More information is available on the bar's Facebook page.
It's that time of year again. No, not the holiday season — something much better. It's truffle season, when bristly hogs and (increasingly) adorable curly-haired doggos snuffle through the forest, uprooting pungent fungi. Oak at Fourteenth, 1400 Pearl Street in Boulder, is passing the harvest on to you with its truffle menu, available only at dinner from Thursday, December 5, through Saturday, December 7. The à la carte dishes range from $12 to $42 and include options like savory two-year-old Parmigiano Reggiano ice cream with a drizzle of olive oil and shaved truffles; prime rib with white Italian truffles and rich mushroom jus; an Umami Bomb Burger made of dry-aged beef, aged cheddar and truffles; and Japanese rice with Wagyu beef jerky and truffle shavings. Make your reservation at 303-444-3622.
Folks who don't drink booze but love the bar experience (the giant ice cubes, the tiny umbrellas) can scratch their itch on Thursday, December 5 at Dry Curious, a mixer for the sober and "sober curious" (also known as light drinkers). From 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., the space at 3899 Jackson Street will be the site of three non-alcoholic beverage stations, plus a panel discussion on sobriety. Tickets, $25, are available now on Eventbrite.
What's your favorite holiday movie? Say Love Actually again — I dare you. If your cinematic tastes run more Grinch than Good King Wenceslas, make a visit to Steuben's, 523 17th Avenue, on Thursday, December 5, for its annual toy drive — and this year, rather than asking you to don an ugly sweater, the eatery is telling you to come dressed as your favorite Quentin Tarantino character, which just means donning that oversized black suit that's been lurking in the back of your closet since 1994. But don't start the Pulp Fiction fest quite yet, boys: You've still got to show up with a toy (worth $10 or more, cheapskates) and you'll get your first drink free. For the rest of the night (9 p.m. to midnight) drinks are just $5, and all gifts will be donated to kids living in Denver Housing Authority homes. Find more details on Steuben's Facebook page.
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Friday, December 6
Looking to learn how to make traditional Latin American tamales for this holiday season? Westwood food co-op and business incubator Re:Vision, 3738 Morrison Road, is offering four tamale-making classes in December that cover different countries' versions of the dish. Starting Friday, December 6, you'll learn how to make Mexican tamales in a two-hour class that begins at 6 p.m. Future classes are scheduled for Saturday, December 7, at 10 a.m. (covers Guatemalan-style tamales); Friday, December 13, at 6 p.m. (Mexico); and Saturday, December 14, at 10 a.m. (Puerto Rico). Each class costs $20; sign up for them on Re:Vision's website, where you can also place your holiday orders for pork, chicken, vegetarian, vegan and sweet tamales, if you can't attend class.
Saturday, December 7
On Saturday, December 7, chef Edwin Sandoval, who's turning out some of our favorite Latin American food at his Xatrucho pop-ups around town, is setting up shop at Fort Greene, 321 East 45th Avenue, for late-night noshing. From 8 p.m. until last call, Sandoval will serve his creative cuisine, with all menu items under $12. This version of Xatrucho's menu will include fried chicken roulade with mole gravy; squash soup with crema catracha, plantains and sofrito jam; red beans and rice with and egg and optional achiote porchetta; and pork tenderloin with chimichurri and citrus aioli.
And if you're planning ahead...
Saturday, January 11
Is it too early to start planning your New Year's resolutions? Not if yours is to eat more oatmeal. On Saturday, January 11, the City of Lafayette is holding its 24th annual oatmeal festival. That's right: In the realm of quirky agricultural festivals around Colorado, this one celebrates neither peaches nor Pueblo chiles, but porridge. A massive breakfast of 200 gallons of oatmeal with 100 different toppings, 4,000 oatmeal pancakes and 1,200 oatmeal muffins will be served from 7:30 a.m. to noon, At 9:30 a.m., you can take to the streets in a 5K run (and walk, if you're not looking to exceed the speed of an ocean of oatmeal oozing down the course). Breakfast runs $8, or $20 with race registration; find out more on Lafayette Chamber of Commerce's website.
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