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The Tastiest Events on Culinary Calendar This Weekend (and Remember Mom!)

Like the look of these Cherokee purple tomatoes? Grow your own this year.EXPAND
Like the look of these Cherokee purple tomatoes? Grow your own this year.
Linnea Covington
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Get started with seedlings, celebrate Mom and chug Champagne: There are plenty of tasty events on the culinary calendar this weekend.

Savor our picks for the next few days, then keep reading for future happenings in the weeks (and months) ahead.

Lorena Cantarovici, owner of Maria Empanada.
Lorena Cantarovici, owner of Maria Empanada.
Evan Semón

Friday, May 7
Start making your gardening wish list for the season. Boxcar Willy tomatoes? Check. Red Zeppelin onions? Got it. Pineapple mint? Yum. Big Beef tomatoes? Yup. Those are just a few of the varieties of organic plants you'll be able to pick up at the Growing Gardens Community Plant Sale on Friday, May 7, through Sunday, May 9. Show up between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. at Hawthorn Farm, 1630 Hawthorn Avenue in Boulder, and you'll have your pick of the plants to get your garden growing. Find out more about the sale — including a complete list of available starts — on the Growing Gardens website.

Despite what your Instagram feed may lead you to believe, not everyone is out there turning their passion into a thriving one-person startup. Entrepreneurship is on the decline, according to The New Builders, a book that tackles the perception (young white dude) versus reality (women and BIPOC folks) of who's starting new businesses — and what kind of enterprises they're launching. On Friday, May 7, the Tattered Cover Book Store is hosting a livestreamed panel discussion with some of these new builders in Denver. One of them is Lorena Cantarovici, owner and founder of local Argentinean hand pie purveyor Maria Empanada. Visit the bookstore's website for details and to register for the 6 p.m. conversation.

Union Station Farmers' Market is back in business.EXPAND
Union Station Farmers' Market is back in business.
Ashton Ray Hansen

Saturday, May 8
Saturday, May 8, marks the opening of the Union Station Farmers' Market, 1701 Wynkoop Street. The plaza outside the station will be full of vendors shilling everything from basil, broccoli and berries to blooms and bread every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. through October 23. Walk-ups are welcome, but the market encourages shoppers to make a reservation for their preferred shopping time on Eventbrite in order to avoid the line.
Admission is free, and while the world is slowly creeping toward normal, organizers still require guests to leave their four-legged friends at home, avoid fondling the eggplant, and to shop with a sense of urgency. Find all the details on the Boulder County Farmers' Market website.

The Chocolate Lab, 2504 East Colfax Avenue, is breaking out the good stuff — the capital "C" Champagne — on Saturday, May 8, with a chocolate and Champagne pairing starting at 11 a.m. For $125, you'll get a bubbly cocktail and a brunch bite, four pours of French sparkling wine paired with chocolates, and a cheese plate and take-home gift. The event is limited to twenty attendees, so call 720-536-5037 to reserve your spot.

Family Jones knows what moms want — bourbon (and matches).
Family Jones knows what moms want — bourbon (and matches).
Courtesy Family Jones

Sunday, May 9
Here's hoping you've seen your mom in person — and been able to give her a hug — at least once since last Mother's Day (2020 was certainly the mother of all years). If not, here are three spots offering fun events on Sunday, May 9, that will show the woman who raised you (and refuses to put up with your shit) that you care about her:

Even when the kids try to help cook, it's a near certainty that mom will get dragged back into the kitchen when things start going awry. Skip that step with Uncorked Kitchen's livestreamed Mother's Day brunch. The class runs from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. and includes ingredients and instruction for cocoa and hazelnut French toast, chorizo and sweet potato hash and strawberry shortcakes; there will be no shouts of, "Mooooommmm, come help!" during this class. Order the meal kit on Uncorked's website and pick it up prior to class at 8171 South Chester Street in Centennial.

There's still time for you to order mom what she really wants — a stiff drink — from the Family Jones. The distillery is selling two gift boxes for the most important lady in your life: the Break Time and Bourbon kit (a bottle of Ella Jones bourbon, a scented candle and tiny stoppered apothecary jar of matches, a bracelet and dark chocolate caramels, $95) and the Get Rose-y and Rested kit (a bottle of Automatic Jones Cosmopolitan, a bracelet, a chocolate bar and a coconut-rose face mask, $75). Order on the Family Jones website and pick up your box on Mother's Day between 9 a.m. and noon at the Spirit House, 3245 Osage Street.

Finally, Que Bueno Suerte!, 1518 South Pearl Street, if you make a reservation for brunch between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., Mom will get a free entree and a free drink — making this a perfect choice for cash-strapped kids whose mother isn't going to offer to pick up the tab. Make a reservation (required) on the Mexican eatery's website.

Keep reading for future food and drink events.

Pie purveyor extraordinaire Hinman Pie is one of the chefs celebrating at Feast To-Go.EXPAND
Pie purveyor extraordinaire Hinman Pie is one of the chefs celebrating at Feast To-Go.
Courtesy of Hinman Pie

Thursday, May 13
Sold Out! For years, Westword celebrated the Denver dining scene at Feast, an annual eating extravaganza that filled the McNichols Building with tables hosted by local restaurants sampling their best dishes. Given the pandemic, Feast has pivoted and turned into Feast To-Go, a drive-thru event at Stanley Marketplace (2501 Dallas Street in Aurora) on May 13 from 4 to 8 p.m. that will again celebrate the city's resilient restaurants. But sorry, if you haven't bought your ticket yet, this event is sold out. Read more about what you're missing here.

There are still just a few tickets left for the Thursday, May 13, installment of chef Taj Cooke's Supper Club series. Cooke is joining forces with chef Jesus Silva (of Misaki, the still-hibernating Broadway Market, and the new Golden Mill) to turn out a multi-course meal at French 75, 717 17th Street. The menu hasn't been released yet, but visit Ms. Betty's Supper Club Instagram for pics and details about the previous two collabs in the series. Mythology Distillery is providing the cocktail pairings for the feast. Get all the details on the event website, where you can also purchase tickets, $125, for a 5:30 or 8 p.m. seating.

Saturday, May 22
The love affair with adding bacon to everything seems awfully 2012, but we're including this year's Bacon and Beer Classic both because that seems a million years ago, and also because the event is one of the first summer food fests we've seen return to a fourth wave/post-COVID/mid- to late-apocalyptic landscape. Guests will be ushered along a path at Kennedy Golf Course, 10500 East Hampden Avenue, where they'll pause at stations to throw back beer, cider and pork products. The Classic touts full-sized bacon-based dishes instead of sample sizes this year. Purchase tickets ($79 or $59) on Eventbrite, where — like any bacon-munching, beer-swilling golfer — you'll need to pick your "b" time (11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.) to start your beer and bacon death march. Visit the event website for details.

The upcoming Vail Wine Classic will have a similar vibe to 2020's Vail Craft Beer Classic, pictured above.EXPAND
The upcoming Vail Wine Classic will have a similar vibe to 2020's Vail Craft Beer Classic, pictured above.
Courtesy Team Player Productions

Thursday, August 12
Treat yo' self to a long, boozy weekend in Vail from Thursday, August 12, to Sunday, August 15, at the Vail Wine Classic. The fest — which was one of the very few events that didn't go digital or "postpone" (aka cancel) its 2020 iteration — is putting on a pair of two-hour grand tastings at 1:30 and 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Tickets will run you $99 for GA; $129 for thirty minutes early entry; or $225 for the aptly named "double trouble" pass, which gets you into both sessions at the early entry time. The tastings are an outdoor affair at Vail Athletic Fields, 646 Vail Valley Drive. Details about wine dinners, seminars and the inevitable day-after brunch are yet to be announced, but you can visit the event website for complete info and Eventbrite for tickets.

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

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