This week we celebrate a birthday, booze at cost and food traditions straight from the 1970s while preparing for Passover and the overthrow of the patriarchy — all while filling up on good food and drink. Here are the six best food and drink events from Monday, March 5, through Friday, March 9.
Monday, March 5
Booze markups are a bitch; everyone knows that's the biggest profit margin in a restaurant. So let's raise a collective toast to Citizen Rail, 1899 16th Street, as it brings the high end to the hoi polloi with its Break-Even Bottle series. On the first and third Mondays of March and April, the restaurant will serve select top-shelf booze at cost. This Monday, March 5, it will be Angel's Envy Cask Strength Bourbon for a measly $5.59 per ounce. Future installments include Ichiro's Malt and Grain Japanese Whisky for $3.22 per ounce; A.D. Laws Sauternes Finish Bourbon at $2.19 per ounce; and Hazelburn 13-Year Oloroso Cask Single Malt for $3.26 per ounce. Visit Citizen Rail's Facebook page for dates and details, and get there at the stroke of 5 p.m. — the bar is only opening one bottle of each.
Tuesday, March 6
Passover is sneaking up on us (it begins in a mere three weeks, on March 30) but there's still time to prepare for the most beloved part of any holiday — sweets. Temple Emanuel, 51 Grape Street, is hosting You Are Invited to Bubbe's Kitchen, a series of Jewish cooking classes; this Tuesday, March 6, students will learn about Passover desserts in plenty of time to get their shopping done and maybe even practice making a kugel or two at home. The class runs from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. and is a bargain at just $10 per person; visit the temple's Facebook page for details and for upcoming classes, which include gefilte fish and bagels and lox. If you get lucky, you'll get to drink the traditional four (count ’em, four) glasses of wine at class — just watch out for that state-dependent learning.
Wednesday, March 7
Elevate that oh-so-crafty Blue Moon beer with Beethoven and Brews on Wednesday, March 7, from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m., when the Colorado Symphony's ongoing series hits Blue Moon Brewing Company, 3750 Chestnut Place; its largest performance group to date will take advantage of the expansive taproom to serenade drinkers with a selection of classical music while the suds flow. For $65, guests will enjoy a performance by symphony musicians, plus appetizers and two pints; $85 VIP tickets include a brewery tour, VIP seating, souvenir glassware and an additional tasting. Because no one in Colorado can truly enjoy a happening without a beer in hand, these events sell out quickly, so nab your ticket at coloradosymphony.org. And if you miss out on this one, you can always book the next event in the series, at Left Hand Brewing on Wednesday, May 30.
When was the last time you went to a progressive dinner? Hell, when was the last time you heard of a progressive dinner? We're guessing it was when your parents — or grandparents — went to one back in the ’70s. What's old is new again on Wednesday, March 7, when Denver Central Market, 2669 Larimer Street, hosts a Walking Progressive Dinner. Instead of hopping in your car and driving from house to house for each course, you'll get eight dishes, one from each of the Market's vendors, without having to search for a new parking spot each time. Dinner will run you $45 per person or $60 each with wine and cocktail pairings, and seatings start at 6:30 p.m.; call The Local Butcher at 303-297-3953 to make your reservation. The full menu is up at Denver Central Market's Facebook page.
Thursday, March 8
Thursday, March 8, is International Women's Day, and women-centric events organizer Moxie Collective is busting out the bourbon and belly laughs for broads with a sense of humor at its Make Your Mark event. From 7 to 10 p.m., the McNichols Building, 144 West Colfax Avenue, will host a standup revue with an all-female lineup (including Janae Burris, Trista Pickell, Jacki Carr and more) that will prove, once and for all, that women are funny. Maker's Mark will provide the cocktails, along with the chance to purchase limited-edition bottles celebrating the day. Gather up your girls — and your guys, as all are welcome to this event — and get extremely affordable tickets ($20) and the compete lineup at Moxie's Facebook page.
Friday, March 9
At the corner of West Colfax Avenue and Pierce Street in Lakewood, someone is having a birthday party. Nope, it's not inside the pink palace that houses Casa Bonita; it's at Westfax Brewing, 6733 West Colfax Avenue. And while Westfax, sadly, doesn't offer endless sopaipillas, it's almost certain you'll have a much better time at the brewery's birthday. Starting Friday, March 9, at 7 p.m., there's a wing-eating contest in conjunction with the release of Concussion Protocol, a Belgian quadrupel ale (as if your belly will be able to accommodate wings and a quad). The fun continues through Saturday, March 10, with beer releases every two hours starting at noon; a blueberry sour and three IPAs are on deck throughout the afternoon. Comida food truck and Crisp Barber Shop will also be on site offering sopes and shaves, respectively (here's hoping some ale-loving women get their legs shaved — why should men have all the fun?). Get the full schedule at Westfax's Facebook page.
Keep reading for tasty events worth planning ahead for.
Saturday, March 10
There's another chili cook-off on the calendar this week, but this time, you have the chance to be named the town's chili champion — or at the very least, to pet some cute dogs. Yes, that's right: The 24th Annual MaxFund Chili Cook-Off is back on Saturday, March 10. Jackson's LoDo, 1520 20th Street, will host the family-friendly event from 1 to 4 p.m.; $10 will get you plenty of chili to taste, while for $30 you can enter your own creation in one of four categories (red, green, white and veggie). Chow down on chili while meeting adoptable pets that want nothing more than for you to take them home. If you're not up for getting a dog, get some cheap drinks instead, then stick around and vote for your favorite creation. Get your tickets in advance at maxfund.org, because prices go up on Saturday.
Thursday, March 15
Great Chefs of the West is back on Thursday, March 15, for another year of dazzling your tastebuds and raising money for the National Kidney Foundation. This is the 35th year of the event, and the roster of participating restaurants is perhaps the best yet: The Populist, Ototo, Sushi Den, Rioja, Mercantile Dining & Provision, Izakaya Den, Hop Alley, Fish N Beer, Beast + Bottle and Hop Alley, among others, will compete at the Exdo Event Center, 1399 35th Street, to see who can create the best dish. Add to that an open bar with signature cocktails and a live auction, and the night can't get any more fab. Get your ticket for the fest, $200, at the National Kidney Foundation's website.
Thursday, March 22
If you've eaten at the SAME Cafe, you know it's not the same old story. Because of the restaurant's mission to provide people of all income levels healthy food, the menu doesn't include prices; customers pay what they can or swap volunteer hours in exchange for a meal. But there are other, subtler touches that aren't immediately apparent. For instance, there are always two pizza, soup and meal choices on the menu — one vegetarian — so that customers are able to make a real choice about what they want to eat. That's an organization dedicated to treating people with real dignity, and you can support the eatery at the So All May Eat Gala on Thursday, March 22. From 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., Space Gallery, 400 Santa Fe Drive, will host the fundraiser, where you enjoy small plates and beverages from Que Bueno Suerte, City O' City, The Corner Beet, Renegade Brewing Co., Woody Creek Distillers and more. Tickets are a bargain at $60; find out more on SAME Cafe's Facebook page and snag your tickets at eventbrite.com.
Saturday, March 31
Imagine that old stalwart The Dating Game was still on the air. Imagine you went on it and didn't end up on a date with a serial killer; instead, you went out with a nice boy or girl and had to brew a beer together the first time you met. In a nutshell, that's the premise of Collaboration Fest. The beer festival has spent the past five years teaming up breweries and seeing what maniacal brews come from the partnership. This year, the fun is moving to bigger digs at the Hyatt Regency Denver, 650 15th Street, where on Saturday, March 31, you'll be able to imbibe creations from nearly 100 teams of brewers. Our most anticipated collabs? Local favorites Our Mutual Friend and TRVE Brewing Co., and Renegade Brewing Co. and French brewery Brasserie du Baril. The event runs from 4 to 7 p.m., though VIP ticket holders get in at 3 p.m. Get your ticket before the fest sells out at the Collaboration Fest website.
If you know of a date that should be on this calendar, send information to email@example.com.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.