’Fess up, Denver: All you're really going to be doing for the next 48 hours is waiting on the edge of your seat until Game of Thrones returns to the airwaves. Who will die next (Bran, hopefully)? What other icky familial relationships will be consummated? In the meantime, channel your inner Tyrion, drink, and bide your time with these events from Friday, April 12, through Sunday, April 14.
Friday, April 12
The universe gives with one hand and takes away with the other: On Friday, April 12 — just a few days before Tax Day — comes National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day, and we have an ooey, gooey trio of specials that will slake your craving for cheddar, your jones for Jarlsberg, your lust for Limburger. South-siders can make a quick trip to the Pint Room, 2620 West Belleview Avenue in Littleton, for its barbecue grilled cheese with scratch-made chips for just $10, while Boulder's West End Tavern, 926 Pearl Street, is doubling down with Grilled Cheese Month running through April 30. This week's offering is a deep-fried grilled cheese served with tomato jam; visit the bar's website to see what cheesy sandwich creations are coming up in the rest of the month. And downtown's Courier, at 1750 Welton Street, sells a four-cheese version that comes stuffed with braised-then-fried pork belly for an impressively decadent option that's worth the $14 price tag.
Saturday, April 13
The folks at Flatirons Food Film Festival generally put on their multi-day event in October, but they're starting early this year — by getting caffeinated at the inaugural Coffee Fest happening on Saturday, April 13, and Sunday, April 14. The weekend includes tastings, coffee-roasting demos, latte art lessons, Q&As and a screening of the documentary Caffeinated. Visit the film fest's website for details about the agenda and locations (Saturday's happenings take place in Lafayette, Sunday's in Erie) and ticket sales ($15 per day or $26 for the weekend, with a buck rebate if you show up with your own mug).
Drinkers that are dreading the onset of warmer months (ice-cold lagers? Bleccch. Quaffable summer ales? Perish the thought!) can get a reprieve of sorts at the Barrel Aged Beer and Whiskey Festival on Saturday, April 13. Starting at 3 p.m., lovers of the big, bold beers and smoky spirits that are more associated with winter months can enjoy unlimited samples of both; Crooked Stave, Banded Oak, Wit's End Brewing Co., Deerhammer Distilling Co. and Distillery 291 are just a handful of the nearly forty beverage outfits that will be pouring at Number 38 event center, 3560 Chestnut Place. Tickets (ranging from $49 to $89) are on sale now on Eventbrite.
The Masters golf tournament teed off on Thursday and runs through Sunday. This Saturday, April 13, you have the opportunity to watch the golf action without going full Al Bundy: The Mule Masters will have the tournament on the big screen, but the drink choices are going to be a lot better than Girlie Girl Beer (and hopefully you won't have your hand down the front of your pants). Instead, the Sports Castle, 1000 Broadway, is serving ten different mules (based not just on vodka, but also tequila, gin, rum and whiskey), wine, spritzers, and beer from New Planet, Colorado Sake Co. and LandLocked Ales. Even if you find watching golf to be as titillating as watching snow melt, go for the activities: miniature golf, archery, dodgeball, cornhole and Puttskee. The fun starts at 4 p.m., and tickets run from $55 to $80 (though you can get some sweet discounts if your rustle up a friend or three to go in on a multi-pack) on Eventbrite.
Sunday, April 14
There's only one way to spend Sunday, April 14: A girl will be watching Game of Thrones. If you plan your day wisely, you'll be able to drink and know things from dawn until night gathers. Get your blood flowing at 11 a.m. at Littleton's Coal Mine Avenue Brewing Co., 9719 West Coal Mine Avenue, with a workout worthy of Brienne of Tarth and the Hound (though with less ear biting) for $15; get your tickets (which include a buck off pints afterward) on Eventbrite. If you're opting for a (potentially) less dangerous option, Pony Up, 1808 Blake Street, will serve a GoT-themed brunch from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. Trivia, a costume contest and a deadpool — though hopefully not actual deaths — are included in the meal; find details on the eatery's Facebook page. And finally, for those poor souls who haven't bent the knee and sworn fealty to HBO, there's always Zuni Street Brewing Co.'s watch party; the taproom at 2355 West 29th Avenue is screening the final season every Sunday at 7 p.m. through May 19; visit Zuni Street's Facebook page for more information.
Keep reading for future food and drink events.
Friday, April 19
It's already time to start planning your spring garden dinners in the Mile High City. One of the first spring feasts to hit the table this year is on Friday, April 19, at Kingman Estates Winery, 800 East 64th Avenue. Chefs Samantha New (Éclat Culinary) and Brandon Becker (Cirque Kitchen and Spirits) are teaming up to turn out an impressive nine-course meal, with wine pairings crafted from grapes grown entirely in Colorado, from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Fresh ingredients like melon will be served with chicory, speck and riesling, while heavier courses of beef and morels with merlot will be accented with seasonal ramps. Tickets, $138, include tax and tip, with 10 percent of sales going to No Kid Hungry, and are on sale now on the winery's website, where you can get a peek at the entire menu.
Monday, April 29
Take an evening to support aspiring female chefs at Work Options for Women's Women Cook event on Monday, April 29. The culinary training program for hard-to-employ women offers three programs (all at no cost to participants) ranging from four weeks to two years long; the dinner presents a handful of the top names in Denver's professional kitchens coming together to cook at the Exdo Event Center, 1399 35th Street, to support their sisters just getting started in the food-service industry. Dana Rodriguez (Super Mega Bien, Work & Class), Caroline Glover (Annette), Carrie Baird (Bar Dough), Shelia Lucero (Jax Fish House) and Cindhura Reddy and Austin Nickel (Spuntino) are just a few ladies giving their time and considerable talents to the feast, so don't miss out on tickets, $125, on WOW's website.
Thursday, May 2
Good food, good cause: On Dining Out for Life day, restaurants donate 25 percent of sales (sometimes food, sometimes food and drink) to Project Angel Heart, which provides medically tailored meals for Coloradans living with serious and chronic illnesses. Thursday, May 2, marks the 25th year of the fundraiser, and more than 250 eateries will be participating. For a complete list of those restaurants — or to sign up your own place to join the effort — go to the Dining Out for Life website.
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Tuesday, May 14
Chef/owner Jeff Osaka's 12@Madison, 1160 Madison Street, is putting its money where its mouth is on Tuesday, May 14, with the inaugural Seasonal Charitable Dinner. The twelve-course meal will make use of traditional spring ingredients (baby root veggies, shell beans, rabbit) while donating a full 100 percent of the proceeds to the Gathering Place, a day shelter providing meals, counseling and job, education and financial support to women, children and trans folks. Seating is extremely limited — just 28 seats — so email email@example.com to reserve your spot for $150, with optional beverage pairings for $75. More info is up on the restaurant's Facebook page.
Saturday, August 17
Save the date: Tacolandia will return to Civic Center Park, Broadway and Colfax Avenue, for a fourth year on Saturday, August 17, celebrating food, art, music and culture. Join us in honoring that great Mexican invention, the taco, in its many forms as presented by the city's top cantinas, taquerias and food trucks. Although tickets aren't yet on sale, get this on your calendar before your summer weekends start filling up, and watch westwordtacolandia.com for updates.
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