The Six Best Events on the Culinary Calendar This Weekend

Station 26 Brewing is pouring black beers for Black Friday.
Station 26 Brewing is pouring black beers for Black Friday. Danielle Lirette
You've done it: You've survived another Thanksgiving dinner! Whether it was the sheer volume of food or a family brawl threatening to do you in, you've come out on the other side. And whether you escaped unscathed or need to lick a few wounds, you should celebrate your victory at one of these six great events this weekend. They're almost entirely boozy affairs (since you're probably overflowing with stuffing and mashed potatoes), but there's one food happening that's sure to destroy any latent hunger pangs. Cheers!

click to enlarge Relax and recharge at Dead Battery Club on Black Friday. - MARK ANTONATION
Relax and recharge at Dead Battery Club on Black Friday.
Mark Antonation
Friday, November 23
Station 26 Brewing, 7045 East 38th Avenue, celebrates Black Friday slightly differently than your local big box retailer. There may be people waiting impatiently when the doors open at 11 a.m. on Friday, November 23, but they'll be waiting for beer, not cheap television sets. Specifically, they'll rush the bar for the brewery's barrel-aged imperial stout, Nightfall of Diamonds (formerly Dark Star). Chances are low that anyone will be trampled in this stampede, though, as there will be plenty of pours for everyone: Eleven versions of the 13 percent brew will be on tap, including Mexican Chocolate, Manhattan and Strawberry balsamic versions and 2016 and 2017 vintages (subject to change). No tickets are required; just show up and be prepared to defend your spot at the bar. Pours will be priced from $5 to $8; details are up on the Station 26 Facebook page.

Beer drinkers closer to Highland who'd rather drink black beer than compete in Christmas-themed Hunger Games on Friday, November 23, should make sure they pay a visit to Hops & Pie, 3920 Tennyson Street, for its Stout Fest. The doors open at 11:30 a.m., beckoning drinkers into a wonderland of inky beers; almost fifteen different brews from twelve breweries will be on tap. What are we looking forward to? Comparing Fremont Brewing's Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Star to the Beer Formerly Known as Dark Star from Station 26 Brewing Co.; sampling Bell's Cherry Stout; and checking out an over-the-top Chocolate Vanilla Maple Imperial Stout (a collab from Untitled Art and Angry Chair Brewing). Find the full tap list at Hops & Pie's Facebook Page.

It escapes us why anyone would venture out into the world to do their holiday shopping when the Internet exists, but if you prefer to brave the post-Thanksgiving retail landscape in person, take advantage of a friendly local bar along the way. Dead Battery Club, 2420 17th Street, is offering a free glass of champagne to shoppers who show up with a receipt from any Platte Street shop on Friday, November 23, and Saturday, November 24. With spots like Common Era, Tomte, Savory Spice Shop and Armitage & McMillan along the block, you'll be supporting local businesses as well as recharging your own batteries during the hectic holidays. Doors open at 3 p.m.

click to enlarge Some folks live in fear of the Cuban Reuben. Don't be one of them. - COURTESY SUGARFIRE SMOKE HOUSE
Some folks live in fear of the Cuban Reuben. Don't be one of them.
Courtesy Sugarfire Smoke House
What's the best sandwich in America — and quite possibly the world? The title could easily go to a massive construction created by Sugarfire Smoke House chef David Molina. The chef recently returned from Orange Beach, Alabama, with first prize in the sandwich category from the World Food Championships. His winning effort was the "Cuban Reuben," a run-for-the-hills monstrosity made with smoked ham, stone-ground mustard, pulled pork, pastrami, Swiss cheese and pickles, all barely contained between two sourdough grilled cheese sandwiches (which each ooze with provolone, white American cheese and Koops’ horseradish mustard). Think you're brave enough to take on the beast? Gird your loins and grab $13 before making the trek to Sugarfire, at 14375 Orchard Parkway in Westminster, this Friday, November 23. The Cuban Reuben goes on sale at 11 a.m., and the restaurant will keep making them until ingredients run out that day.

click to enlarge Elephants and cats: an odd couple. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
Elephants and cats: an odd couple.
Danielle Lirette
Saturday, November 24
Think you have nine lives? Drink at least three of them away at Rocky Mountain Feline Rescue's Cat Crawl on Saturday, November. That's right: Don your fluffy tail, draw on some whiskers and relinquish one of those lives to sheer embarrassment (at least before you've had sufficient drinks to make you think yowling at the bartender is an acceptable form of communication). Tickets, $20, benefit the animal shelter, and participating bars (Bang Up to the Elephant, Your Mom's House, X Bar and Charlie's Denver) will have free shots and drink specials for cools cats on the prowl. Get your ticket right meow at, then meet at Bang Up to the Elephant, 1310 Pearl Street, at 8 p.m. for a furr-ious good time.

click to enlarge Louie the Frenchie loves classic cocktails. - MARK ANTONATION
Louie the Frenchie loves classic cocktails.
Mark Antonation
Sunday, November 25
It's fitting that a cocktail bar named after the Kentucky Derby is setting up shop behind the bar at a joint that's all about the ponies. On Sunday, November 25, the soon-to-open Run for the Roses is taking over the cocktail menu at Pony Up, 1808 Blake Street, starting at 6 p.m. Eleven classic cocktails from the venture's opening menu will be on offer, with Pony Up's full menu of French dip sandwiches (plus an excellent turkey sandwich with cranberry mayo for all of you who aren't sick of leftovers yet), and wine (half off champagne all day!) will be available as well. Find out more on the Run for the Roses Facebook page, then it's off to the races!

Keep reading for future food and drink events.
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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