Lists

The Seven Best Events on the Culinary Calendar This Weekend

This little oinker could not be more excited to ring in the Year of the Pig.
This little oinker could not be more excited to ring in the Year of the Pig. Mark Antonation

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click to enlarge Get a taste of N'awlins when Jax Fish House brings in Big Easy chef Ryan Prewitt for a pair of dinners. - COURTESY BIG RED F
Get a taste of N'awlins when Jax Fish House brings in Big Easy chef Ryan Prewitt for a pair of dinners.
Courtesy Big Red F
Tuesday, February 5, and Wednesday, February 6
Get ready for some Big Easy eating at Jax Fish House in February. Founder Dave Query and culinary director Sheila Lucero are bringing in New Orleans chef Ryan Prewitt for two five-course dinners, one at Jax in Boulder (928 Pearl Street) on February 5, and the second in LoDo (1539 17th Street) on February 6. Prewitt, director of operations for the Donald Link Restaurant Group, won a James Beard Foundation award for Best Chef South in 2014, and one of his restaurants, Pêche, won Best New Restaurant in America from the JBF the same year. These mark the first in a series of guest dinners with New Orleans friends of Query and Lucero's coming to Jax to cook. The five-course dinners are $85 each ($125 with wine pairings); reservations can be made by calling the Boulder Jax at 303-444-1811 or the LoDo Jax at 303-292-5767.

click to enlarge Dig in at the Denver Mac & Cheese Festival. - ROXILLER/ISTOCK
Dig in at the Denver Mac & Cheese Festival.
roxiller/iStock
Friday, February 8
Whether you use macaroni, rigatoni, penne, farfalle, fusilli, orecchiette, cavatappi or cavatelli — or cheddar, Gouda, provolone, mascarpone, Monterey Jack, muenster or mozzarella — there's really no wrong way to construct mac and cheese. On Friday, February 8, you can sample more than fifteen creamy, crusty and cheesy creations from local restaurants at the Denver Mac & Cheese Festival, which runs from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at 3560 Chestnut Place. Tickets start at $59 (which includes unlimited mac and wine, beer and spirit samples) and top out at $109 (5:30 p.m. entry, a T-shirt, unlimited mac and an open bar). The most intriguing part of this fest? The commemorative spork that comes with each ticket purchase. We're a fan of commemorative flatware: It takes up less space than beer glasses, and if you're resourceful enough, you can scrounge up a full set for next Thanksgiving. Ensure your entry to the extravaganza by snagging tickets on Eventbrite.
click to enlarge A fanciful churro doughnut from one of the Inventing Rooms previous molecular doughnut pop-ups. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
A fanciful churro doughnut from one of the Inventing Rooms previous molecular doughnut pop-ups.
Danielle Lirette
Thursday, February 14, through Sunday, February 17
Fans of Ian Kleinman's doughnut pop-up shops have been waiting a long, long time to get their hands on the confectioner's breakfast creations; the last time the pastries made an appearance was over two years ago. But from Thursday, February 14, through Sunday, February 17, the Molecular Donut Shop returns to the Inventing Room Dessert Shop, 4431 West 29th Avenue, from 6 to 11 a.m. Ten flavors will be on the menu, ranging from $5 to $8; we're most excited for the Buttermilk Fried Chicken, a take on chicken and waffles that includes fried bird, coffee gravy and hot sauce caviar. Think you can do better? Submit your own flavor combo at tirdenver.com (where you can also drool over all the varieties and place a pre-order); Kleinman will pick his favorite to add to the menu and announce the winner on February 4.

click to enlarge Jerk chicken with coconut rice and peas, slaw and grilled pineapple is on the Restaurant Week menu at Bang Up to the Elephant. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
Jerk chicken with coconut rice and peas, slaw and grilled pineapple is on the Restaurant Week menu at Bang Up to the Elephant.
Danielle Lirette
Friday, February 22, through Sunday, March 3
Denver Restaurant Week is coming, so clear your calendar from February 22 through March 3; you'll want to visit a different eatery every day. Hundreds of Denver’s top restaurants will offer multi-course dinners for three tasty prices ($25, $35 or $45) during the fifteenth year of the wildly popular week. Participating restaurants and menus are up on the Visit Denver site; be sure you book your first choices right away, before someone else nabs your table. Find out more here.

Sunday, May 19, and Monday, May 20
Chefs and aspiring charcutiers will want to plan ahead for a Denver visit from the maestro of meat, Brian Polcyn, who will lead a butchery course next spring at Stir Cooking School, 3215 Zuni Street. Polcyn and author Michael Ruhlman will spend two days teaching students how to break down hogs using both USDA and European seam butchery techniques; how to work charcuterie into menus; and how to properly dry-cure and smoke cured meats. Recipes for pâté, fresh sausage and offal will be provided, as well as a copy of one of the duo's books (their third title, Pâté, Confit, Rillette, will be released May 19), a private cocktail hour and dinner with the pair. Tickets are $800 and are on sale now at Eventbrite.


If you know of a date that should be on this calendar, send information to [email protected].
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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