The Seven Best Events on the Culinary Calendar This Week — and More Later

Colfax Avenue: the hottest new food neighborhood in the country.
Colfax Avenue: the hottest new food neighborhood in the country. Danielle Lirette
This week starts off right, with National Tequila Day on Monday. After enjoying libations from south of the border, you can go on a culinary tour of other global hot spots: Champagne, Tokyo, West Colfax Avenue. Here are seven exciting food and drink events from July 24 through July 28, and a few more to start planning for.

click to enlarge There's much, much more to tequila than margs. - COURTESY OF LOLA COASTAL MEXICAN
There's much, much more to tequila than margs.
Courtesy of Lola Coastal Mexican
Monday, July 24
Everyone loves tequila — or at least they should. We're not talking about Cuervo (the fact that a song about the brand hit numbernone on the country charts in 1983 should tell you all you need to know about it). We're talking about smoky, smooth, peppery, delicious tequila, and Lola Coastal Mexican, 1575 Boulder Street, is celebrating National Tequila Day on Monday, July 24, with deals on the delicious Mexican dram. Neat tequila pours are half price, and tasters range from $1 to $3. Doors open at 4 p.m. Raise a copita and say salud!

Tuesday, July 25
You've been on a bar crawl, of course, but what about a restaurant crawl? Tasty Colfax is here to help you out with that. For $25, you'll be able to wander through a plethora of breweries, bars and bistros on Colfax Avenue between York Street and Colorado Boulevard, sampling bites and beverages left and right. Participating restaurants include Atomic Cowboy and Denver Biscuit Company, Humble Pie, Fat Sully's, Mezcal, Southside Bar Kitchen and To the Wind Bistro. The crawl (which may literally become a crawl as you become weighed down with food) runs from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 25. Find tickets at

Scott Mattson is a man of many talents. In addition to never forgetting a face or a name, the co-owner of Nocturne, 1330 27th Street, is also a certified sommelier, and he's playing professor at Champagne School. The three-class series starts Tuesday, July 25, and continues on the last Tuesday of each month, culminating in a Champagne dinner on Sunday, October 29. Students will sample four bubblies from 6 to 7 p.m. while learning about the region, as well as rosé and grower Champagne. Appetizers are included, and if you're a good student, you'll be invited to stay after class and listen to music free of charge (don't miss the chance to take advantage of the bar's excellent cocktails in the gorgeous space). Classes are $20 and the dinner is $80, but space is limited and going fast. Enroll at

Wednesday, July 26
Cheese + Provisions loves its neighborhood, so as any good resident does, it's throwing an old-fashioned summer block party on Wednesday, July 26 — except that this one is a Cheese Block Party, naturally. From 1 to 4 p.m., cheese makers Uplands Cheese Company, Baetje Farms and local favorite Haystack Creamery will set up in the shop's courtyard, 2432 West 44th Avenue, to hand out samples and talk to other dairy enthusiasts. Artisan food producers Jojo's Sriracha and Elevation Charcuterie will also be on hand. As with any good neighborhood party, all are welcome, and there's no charge. Meet your neighbors! Eat some cheese!

Thursday, July 27
Some people like to know a bit about what they're drinking, and while we're fine pounding rosé on a patio while smoking cigarettes, if you want to make more of an effort, try Hotel Teatro's Why We Love Rosé: A Tasting. The enological education takes place at the Study, the hotel's lounge at 1100 14th Street, on Thursday, July 27, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Guests will sample at least three rosés while nibbling on bites from the Nickel and learning about the variety of production and serving methods from different winemaking regions. The hotel's monthly Study Programming workshops are a bargain at just $20 (you know you'd spend more than that on one glass of halfway decent wine and a pack of American Spirits); check out Facebook for details and tickets.

Departure, 249 Columbine Street, is honoring its geographical roots with its Compass Dinner Series. But don't worry: The restaurant isn't paying homage to the cuisine of Cherry Creek North (California Pizza Kitchen, anyone?). These dinners will focus on Asia, the inspiration for much of chef Gregory Gourdet's menu. The first in the series starts at 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 27, and focuses on Tokyo. Expect nine courses (smoked scallop chawanmushi, a savory Japanese custard and grilled eel are on the menu), and while the beverage pairings are optional, there's no way we could resist the evening's cocktail list, which is made from a global mash-up of ingredients: rice whiskey, yuzu wine, beer hailing from Japan, and Glenmorangie whisky from Scotland. Dinner and drinks will run you $138 ($98 for food alone); call 720-772-5020 for reservations. Future installments in the series will include Thailand and Vietnam.

click to enlarge Summer Brew Fest 2016. - DANIELLE LIRETTE.
Summer Brew Fest 2016.
Danielle Lirette.
Friday, July 28
Denver can't go a week without a beer festival — literally. This week's installment comes at you courtesy of the Summer Beer Fest, which runs Friday, July 28, and Saturday, July 29, from 7 to 10 p.m. both days at Mile High Station, 2027 West Colfax Avenue. More than forty breweries will be pouring each day, and while there's naturally some overlap, you'll want to look at for a complete lineup of brewers for the two sessions; for instance, notable West Coast outfit Anderson Valley Brewing Co. will only be there on Friday, and Colorado-based Elevation Beer Co. will be in the house Saturday. Tickets range from $35 (GA) to $45 (VIP) and must be purchased separately for each day at

Keep reading for future events...and how to get tickets before they run out.

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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