The Best Events on the Culinary Calendar This Weekend

Turkey, Swiss, extra bacon and extra giardiniera is Nathanial Rateliff's standard Snarf's order when he rolls through town.EXPAND
Turkey, Swiss, extra bacon and extra giardiniera is Nathanial Rateliff's standard Snarf's order when he rolls through town.
Devin Tyler
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Sandwiches, sauce and the Super Bowl are all on the menu over the next few days, to counter all the sweetness coming up for Valentine's Day (see our list of some tasty options here).

Keep reading for events this weekend, as well as more coming up in the remaining weeks of February.

Friday, February 5
Local sandwich shop Snarf's debuted the Rateliff — the regular order of hometown musician Nathaniel Rateliff — on February 1, with 25 percent of all sales of the sub being donated to a pair of nonprofit organizations working to alleviate hunger in Colorado. The sandwich comes with turkey, Swiss cheese, extra bacon and giardiniera as well as all the standard toppings; proceeds will benefit Fill the Void and Hunger Free Colorado. The offer is available at all Snarf's locations through March 31.

The Best Events on the Culinary Calendar This WeekendEXPAND
Courtesy Brass Tacks

Saturday, February 6
If you're looking for some really, really expensive bottles of whiskey to spend your money on, visit the Brass Tacks Instagram page at noon on Saturday, February 6, for a live auction of rare whiskeys. Brass Tacks bartenders will wax rhapsodic about the ten bottles up for auction; bidding on a few of them starts at $100 (a relative bargain, when the starting price for Old Rip Van Winkle aged only ten years is $400 and a twelve-year-old Van Winkle Reserve is $500). Our favorite offering? The bar's private label from Weller that's being sold with the full-sized, albeit empty, barrel it was aged in (starts at $300). Photos and starting bids are up now on Instagram.

In honor of Patty Michael Melnice, whose last wish was to "keep the homeless warm," all Little Man Ice Cream locations are hosting a Winter Coat and Blanket Drive on February 6 and February 7. Bring new or gently used coats and blankets to any Little Man locations; find hours and addresses here.

Sunday, February 7
We know what you're doing today: capping off the lamest NFL season in years by watching what's sure to be the weirdest Super Bowl ever. Here are some not-lame, not-weird food options for the big game.

Keep reading for future food and drink events.

Tuesday, February 9
Denver chef Dave Hadley (formerly of Biju's Little Curry Shop and the Food Network's Chopped, currently of his own Samosa Shop) is returning to the cable channel on Tuesday, February 9, in an episode of Supermarket Stakeout. The cooking competition involves open-air cooking in a parking lot and sticking up shoppers for their recently purchased groceries, but the real reason to tune in at 8 p.m. is so you can nosh on Hadley's samosas, which have been popping up at markets around town and will be available to order on the Samosa Shop website the same day.

Join Gustavo Arellano in raising a taco to Den-Mex and even Pueblo-Mex.
Join Gustavo Arellano in raising a taco to Den-Mex and even Pueblo-Mex.
Gustavo Arellano Facebook

Thursday, February 11
Food historian and writer Gustavo Arellano (perhaps best known in these parts as the Mexican from his "Ask a Mexican" column) has a lot to say about Mexican food in Colorado — which should be a surprise to no one who's heard him talk about Den-Mex and Pueblo-Mex food. (He knows "Colo-Mex" is too broad a term to describe the variety of Mexican dishes in the Centennial state.) Listen to him wax poetic about all the Mex (though we're guessing he won't be that interested in, say, Highlands Ranch-Mex) during a livestreamed talk on Thursday, February 11. From 6 to 7 p.m., he'll chat about the history of south-of-the-border cuisine in the north-of-the-border United States (as if arbitrary borders can contain the spread of one of the world's greatest cuisines), and especially in Colorado. Tickets for the Zoom event are $10; find out more on the event's Facebook page and purchase your seat on History Colorado's online storefront.

The Dairy Block, 1800 Wazee Street, is hosting another progressive dinner in advance of Valentine's Day — albeit one that's stationary for you (the diner) and pretty far removed from the original ’70s-era experience of going door to door in the suburbs to eat with your neighbors. This progressive dinner includes five courses that will be served to you while you sit inside one of the Dairy Block Alley's bubble tents: charcuterie board and Rosé from Blanchard Family Wines; ceviche from Kachina with a cocktail from Poka Lola; braised pork belly and a cocktail from Foraged; yakitori skewers from Bruto with a Seven Grand cocktail; and opera cake frovem Denver Milk Market with Irish coffee. Dinner starts at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 11, or Friday, February 12; the cost is $175 per person, with the heated tents seating a maximum of four people. Read more details and purchase tickets through Rebel Experiences.

Everyone knows there are vineyards in Colorado, but it's not that common to find the fruits of the Western Slope's labor on wine lists around Denver. On Thursday, February 11, at 6:30 p.m., Stoic & Genuine (1701 Wynkoop Street) is hosting a feast pairing Palisade's Colterris Winery's juices with five courses. Think scallops in citrus beurre blanc with Sauvignon Blanc; crispy black bass and sunchokes two ways with Malbec rosé; seafood cassoulet (octopus, mussels, seafood sausage and pork belly) and Petit Verdot. If you want to dine in (the restaurant has both indoor and outdoor seating), the price tag is $100; if you want to take out, it's $65. Reserve your meal on Tock.

Trotter tostadas from the February 19 Comal at Home dinner kit.EXPAND
Trotter tostadas from the February 19 Comal at Home dinner kit.
Courtesy Comal Heritage Food Incubator

Friday, February 12
Until now, fans of Comal's excellent Mexican food had to make it to the restaurant's dining room, 3455 Ringsby Court, for weekday-only lunches. But this month the outfit has started offering weekly Comal at Home dinner kits for pick-up and (coming soon) delivery. For $60, you'll get kits that serve four to six people, plus instructions for finishing the spread at home. Orders must be placed on Comal's virtual storefront no later than Wednesday for pick-up between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. each Friday. The menu for Friday, February 12, includes mixiote de pollo (marinated chicken drumsticks, nopales, potatoes, onions and carrots steamed in banana leaves and served with rice, beans and handmade tortillas); a vegetarian version is also available. Future offerings include tostada de pata (tostadas with trotter and pickled carrots, red onion and habanero) and pork or vegetarian mixiote.

Burns Family Artisan Ales, 2505 West Second Avenue, is no Johnny-come-lately when it comes to making beer. The combined decades of the owners' experience in brewing and in life result in complex, high-alcohol brews as well as a mental Rolodex of TV commercials — you know, back when your viewing choices were network or cable. From 7:30 to 9 p.m. on Friday, February 12, the brewery is hosting a pre- and anti-Valentine's event callled What Do You Want on Your Lover's Tombstone? For $10 per person on Eventbrite, you can reserve a seat at a table along with a personal pizza, which will be served to you with a sympathetic ear. (The beer in which to drown your sorrows is extra.) Pre-orders are due by Wednesday, February 10.

Chef Taj Cooke's colorful Jamaican cuisine from a previous pop-up.EXPAND
Chef Taj Cooke's colorful Jamaican cuisine from a previous pop-up.
Mark Antonation

Sunday, February 14
Yes, we've already published our annual Valentine's Day list, but there are plenty of places to spread your love around on Sunday, February 14. Here are a couple more (ahem) unusual offerings we've come across:

Noble Riot is offering a Valentine's Day wine pairing from 4 to 5:30 p.m., but it's not with chocolates (even fancy confections) or flowers. Instead, sign up on Tock ($69, naturally) and you'll get a half-bottle of Champagne, a half-bottle of red, a virtual lesson in BDSM from domme Mistress Nicci, and a branded blindfold. You can add on a heart-shaped paddle or a black riding crop (but you can't add on extra wine, you greedy slut). While pick-up details on the wine bar's Instagram page are scarce, we assume you'll be filled in on the info when you've done enough to deserve it.

In a less, um, intense, V Day experience, chef Taj Cooke is turning out a Jamaican menu at Pony Up, 1808 Blake Street. Reserve your spot for one of the three seatings (4 to 6 p.m., 6 to 8 p.m. or 8 to 10 p.m.) on Eventbrite, then show up and get your island on with umbrella drinks from the bar, both sweet and savory fritters, ackee and saltfish, jerk chicken, jerk shiitake sandwiches, escovitch snapper, rum cake and more.

Monday, February 15
Food access and advocacy group Front Line Farming is now accepting applications for 2021's beginning farmer apprenticeship. The program, which runs from May 24 through October 8, is designed to educate apprentices about composting, planting from seed, irrigation systems, pest management and harvesting (among many, many other things) through twenty hours per week of hands-on farm work as well as classes and seminars. Stipends will be paid to those who are selected for the program. The apprenticeship is open to aspiring BIPOC growers. Applications are due by Monday, February 15; find the application and more details here.

Frasca (pictured here pre-COVID) is offering at-home wine education this winter.
Frasca (pictured here pre-COVID) is offering at-home wine education this winter.
Courtesy Frasca

Sunday, February 21
If your love affair with boxed wine is waning at the same time your income is soaring, enroll in Frasca's series of wine classes. Each lesson includes six bottles of wine, a workbook, a pre-recorded course video and access to a live Q&A. Visit Tock to choose from one of three classes (or sign up for them all, though at $350 a pop, you'd better be one loaded learner): the Rhône Valley (Q&A scheduled for Friday, March 19); Reisling (Q&A takes place on Friday, March 26); and soil and minerality (Q&A on Friday, April 2). You'll pick up your course materials on Sunday, February 21, so you'll have a month to sip, study and mull over questions before the Q&As (all of which are scheduled at 5:30 p.m.). Pick-up locations in both Denver and Boulder are available; visit Frasca's website for details.

Wednesday, March 24
Denver's Staenberg-Loup Jewish Community Center generally hosts its expansive JAAMM (Jewish Arts, Authors, Movies and Music) Festival over several months in the fall, with live cultural events across the city. In 2020, of course, that was upended. The silver lining: The fest is going on for a full twelve months (starting last year and well into 2021), and all programming is virtual. On Wednesday, March 24, James Beard Award-winning author of The Cooking Gene, food historian and deeply engaging Instagram presence Michael Twitty will discuss the holiday of Passover. Tickets for the 7 p.m. lecture, $18, are on sale now at the festival's website, where you can also see previous events on demand.

Know of an event that belongs on this calendar? Send information to cafe@westword.com.

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