The Eight Tastiest Events on the Culinary Calendar This Week

Chef Michael Scelfo brings his award-winning cooking from Cambridge, Massachusetts, to Old Major this week.
Chef Michael Scelfo brings his award-winning cooking from Cambridge, Massachusetts, to Old Major this week. Courtesy of Old Major
Are you feeling confused lately? Can't tell your macaron from your macaroon? Your street tacos from your gourmet tacos? Your Italian wines from your California cultivars? Take a look at our culinary calendar for June 19 through June 22 — surely one of these happenings will help you solve the great mysteries of life.

click to enlarge Bistro hosts beauties and beasts. - SCOTT LENTZ
Bistro hosts beauties and beasts.
Scott Lentz
Monday, June 19
Bistro Vendôme continues to do all your dating dirty work for you with the return of its Monday Movie Nights (okay, the staff at this classic French cafe may not do all your work for you — they probably won't break up with your date on your behalf while you hide in the bathroom — but they're definitely pulling more than their fair share of the weight). All you have to do is make the call to 303-825-3232 to reserve your table at the Monday, June 19, showing of 2017's Beauty and the Beast, complete with a three-course menu. You'll look like a genius for finding dinner you won't have to rush through and a movie showing without sticky floors for just $55 per person. So get to 1420 Larimer Street for one of the two screenings (5:30 or 8:15 p.m.) and check out the restaurant's website for more details and future cinematic plans.

Tuesday, June 20
Coohills, 1400 Wewatta Street, is kicking off its popular Beats on the Creek series on Tuesday, June 20. The concert series takes advantage of the restaurant's prime location overlooking Cherry Creek and the bridge that spans one of Denver's few waterways. Hazel Miller will take the bridge (er, stage) at 6:30 p.m., and while admission to the bridge itself is free, who doesn't love lounging in a comfortable seat with a cocktail in hand at a good show? Call Coohills at 303-623-5700 to reserve a spot on the patio for just that, or get there when the doors open at 5 p.m. for first come, first served seating in the bar. Food and drink minimums do apply on the patio, so be sure to check out the website for more information as well as the full summer lineup.

One of these refugees who went through food-service training at DU might be preparing your dinner on World Refugee Day. - MARK ANTONATION
One of these refugees who went through food-service training at DU might be preparing your dinner on World Refugee Day.
Mark Antonation
Tuesday, June 20 is World Refugee Day, and to celebrate and support those who have had to leave their birthplaces to escape from war and persecution, the African Community Center is hosting Full Bellies, Full Hearts. Three restaurants in the Denver area owned by refugees will be participating during dinner service: Chai & Chai, at 12501 East 17th Avenue in Aurora; Mesob Ethiopian, at 1422 Poplar Street; and India's Best, at 1500 West Littleton Boulevard in Littleton. A $25 to $27 ticket will get you a buffet meal (inclusive of tax and tip), which includes a $5 donation to the African Community Center. Check out the event's Facebook page for information and ticket sales. Doing good has never tasted so good.

Old Major (3316 Tejon Street) chef/owner Justin Brunson makes plenty of friends when he visits other cities to spread the good word about Denver's culinary scene. That's great news for Denver diners, since it means out-of-town chefs reciprocate with visits to Brunson's LoHi eatery. This week the guest of honor is Cambridge, Massachusetts, restaurateur Michael Scelfo, of Waypoint and Alden & Harlow, the first of which was just named one of the ten best restaurants in the country by Food & Wine. Scelfo will join Brunson at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, June 20, to create a four-course dinner for $55 per person, with beverage pairings available for an additional $25. Reservations are required, so call Old Major at 720-420-0622. The amuse-bouche will be a battle of the oysters between the two chefs, and from there Scelfo will present grilled octopus, pork-belly steaks with crispy skin, and smoked chocolate bread pudding, among other delights. See the restaurant's Facebook page for a complete menu and other details.

Keep reading for more great food and drink events this week...
Wednesday, June 21
It's wine-dinner Wednesday — hell, who are we kidding? You can find a wine dinner every night of the week in this town. We've got two for you on Wednesday, June 21; the only question is whether you feel like Old or New World. Join Firenze a Tavola, 4401 Tennyson Street, at 6:30 p.m. for a dinner spotlighting Tuscan producer Castello di Querceto. Diners will receive four courses (including rabbit stew with pasta and roasted duck a l'orange) and six wines for $75; call 303-561-0234 to secure your spot.

If you're not feeling the pull of the old country, check out Elway's Downtown, 1881 Curtis Street, which is pairing Napa Valley vintner Staglin Family Vineyards with its New American menu. The four-course dinner starts at 7 p.m. with crab-stuffed Cornish hen, lamb chops and a vertical Cabernet tasting paired with a ribeye tasting of local Wagyu beef, Holstein and bison. This decadent night will run you $130; call 303-312-3107 for reservations.

Thursday, June 22
It's possible that tacos are the perfect food; they're easy to hold in one hand, adapt well to any filling and are oh-so-satisfying. Whether you prefer yours traditional (carne asada, onions, cilantro) or all gussied up (pork belly, butternut squash, chipotle aioli), you'll find something with which to quell your hunger at Top Taco on Thursday, June 22. The River North Festival Grounds, 3715 Chestnut Place, is hosting the street-food extravaganza from 7:30 to 10: 30 p.m. Unlimited tacos, tequila and margaritas can be yours for $74; get your tickets and a complete list of participating restaurants at the event website.

click to enlarge Pastry chef MJ Szymanski with a tray of her passion-fruit macarons. - MARK ANTONATION
Pastry chef MJ Szymanski with a tray of her passion-fruit macarons.
Mark Antonation
Friday, June 23
End the work week with sweet treats at Stella's on 16th, 1550 Wewatta Street. On Friday, June 23, pastry chef MJ Szymanski will run the Boozy Baking Class, where pupils will learn how to prepare French macarons while sipping champagne. For just $50, you'll get apps to nibble while cooking, a glass of champagne, an additional beverage (beer, wine or a cocktail) and the collective knowledge of centuries of Gallic pastry chefs. You'll also get happy-hour pricing on any additional beverages you purchase during your class (so you stay hydrated during the learning process, of course). Class runs from 5 to 8 p.m.; enroll at

See the Westword calendar for even more food and drink event listings.

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Amy Antonation knows that street tacos are infinitely superior to tacos that come covered in squiggles of crema, and she will stab you with her knitting needles if you try to convince her otherwise.
Contact: Amy Antonation