Culinary calendar for the week ahead: Beer, cheer and New Year's Eve parties

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While the year draws to a close, you can find something special at just about every one of your favorite foodie spots, plus sign up for charity events that will help kick 2010 off to a great start. Here's a taste of what's ahead:

Monday, December 28:

Wynkoop Brewing Company, 1634 18th Street, gives back to the community with its Will Drink Beer for Food special: For every draft beer, six-beer sampler tray and Railyard Ale to-go six-pack you buy through January 3, the brewery will donate $1 to Volunteers of America. There are also special $100 draft beers available (complete with a $100 tax voucher, keep-the-glass perk and other treats), and on January 3 from 5 to 10 p.m., Wynkoop will donate 15 percent of all food and beer sales to the charity. Call 303-297-2700 or visit www.wynkoop.com.

Tuesday, December 29:

We hope you're getting your New Year's resolutions in order; if they involve losing weight (and let's be realistic -- whose don't?), then make sure you sign up for the Biggest Loser Pound-For-Pound Challenge. For every pound you lose, General Mills and other companies will donate fourteen cents to Food Bank of the Rockies. FBR is currently in third place nationwide, so let's help them keep their edge. Sign up at www.pfpchallenge.com.

The Whole Foods at Capitol Hill, 900 East 11th Avenue, is hosting the Grab and Give program to benefit the Gathering Place. Purchase a non-perishable breakfast, lunch or dinner bag now through December 31 to help feed a needy family of four; call 303-832-7701 or visit www.wholefoodsmarket.com.

Wednesday, December 30:

Z Cuisine Wine Tasting Series continues for another month; the series has followed the Tour de France, exploring the wine varietals along the stages of the bike race. Today's regions follow the last leg, from Tonnerre through Annecy and finishing in Paris via Alsace and Savoie. Proceeds benefit the restoration of the Elitch Theatre; it costs $40 and includes wine, appetizers and dessert. The last leg of the series kicks off at 5 p.m. at 2239 West 30th Avenue; call 303-477-1111.

Thursday, December 31:

Today is your last day to nominate a beer-minded man or woman for Wynkoop Brewing Company's fourteenth annual Beerdrinker of the Year contest; send the beer resume by e-mail to beerdrinker@wynkoop.com, and get details at www.wynkoop.com.

Steuben's, 523 East 17th Street, started box-roasting fifteen whole pigs at 2 a.m. today; they'll serve up pork and eggs (with a Cuban option), as well as sides of fresh pulled pork, through New Year's Day tomorrow, and the restaurant will be open 24 hours in celebration. Call 303-830-1001 or visit www.steubens.com.

There are dozens more restaurant-centric events taking place on New Year's Eve; for a full list of what's happening, check out our online New Year's Guide listings.

Sunday, January 2:

The Navajo Street Art District hosts Art A La Carte, a progressive dinner art walk that begins at D Gallery, 3558 Navajo Street, at 6 p.m. You'll enjoy hot toddies there before moving on to hors d'ouevre, soups, a main course and dessert at five more galleries in the district; visit www.navajostreetartdistrict.com for information.

Monday, January 4:

Cook Street School of Fine Cooking, 1937 Market Street, is hosting a Kitchen Basics class. It's $69, and you'll need to register in advance at 303-308-9300 or www.cookstreet.com.

For information on dozens of culinary events around town, visit our online Food & Drink listings.

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