Bratwursts, Boston cream pie and breweries in Aurora; you'll have a chance to dig into these and more this weekend around Denver. Whether you're a sports fan prowling for a cheap (or even free!) beer and a dog, a cider fan looking to learn ukulele, or a Post Brewing Co. fan with a hankering for East Coast eats, you'll find something to love. Here are the top food and drink happenings for the weekend of Friday, April 5, through Sunday, April 7, plus more tasty times ahead.
Friday, April 5
You've called in sick (cough) for Friday, April 5, right? It's the Colorado Rockies' home opener, and there are drinking and dining deals all over town to celebrate the annual rite of spring. Avanti Food & Beverage, 3200 Pecos Street, is opening its doors at 10 a.m. with a free beer for the first 25 customers of each concept, $4 New Belgium bottles and cans, and happy hour during the whole game (2 to 6 p.m.). Then check out Avelina, 1550 17th Street, where you'll enjoy a housemade brat and Coors Light on the house from 11 a.m. to first pitch at 2:10 p.m.; on your way there, make sure you pass Vesta, 1822 Blake Street, which will be handing out sidewalk samples of Nitro Cracker Jacks until game time. The Pig & the Sprout, 1900 Chestnut Place, is just a hop, skip and a jump away from Coors Field, and it's offering $4.50 shots of Jameson and the ominous-sounding Purple Drink from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Those across town needn't worry about missing out: Stapleton's Dog Haus Biergarten, 8316 East Northfield Boulevard, is treating customers to a free beer for every dog, sausage, burger or chicken purchased from 2:15 p.m. to the end of the game. If you were to watch the game at the ballpark, each of these deals would run you $127.95 plus your firstborn — and you'd probably catch something from all those other sick folks milling around the...er...doctor's office. For more opening-day deals, see our complete slideshow of downtown joints doing something special.
Saturday, April 6
Central Denver isn't the only place with a thriving brewing scene; Aurora has plenty of excellent breweries, along with our favorite cidery and a meadery. On Saturday, April 6, you can get a taste of the action at Last Call, the Aurora History Museum's tasting event and the final weekend of its Drink Local exhibit. For $25 in advance ($30 at the door), you'll get access to the museum at 15051 East Alameda Parkway; unlimited beers from Cheluna, Bent Barley, Dry Dock Brewing and more; a cider from Haykin Family Ciders; a mead from Dragon Meadery; and a commemorative tasting glass. Get tickets and a complete list of participating breweries on Eventbrite.
Sunday, April 7
Stem Ciders' RiNo taproom, 2811 Walnut Street, is well known for hosting weekly bluegrass and singer-songwriter performances as well as cider paired with everything imaginable (Pop-Tarts, cupcakes, cured meat, Mongolian food), but on Sunday, April 7, it's going full-on quirky with ukuleles and cider from 1 to 4 p.m. A Swallow Hill instructor will teach a beginner's ukelele class followed by an open jam. So rustle up your tiny gee-tar and get ready for your hands to look yuuuuge. Details are up on Stem's Facebook page.
The Post Brewing Co., 2027 13th Street in Boulder, concludes its Battle of the Brewmasters series on Sunday, April 7, with an East Coast edition. Post bewmaster Nick Tedeschi is taking on his mentor Bryan Selders, who took a break from his job at Dogfish Head to launch the Post before returning to the warm embrace of Sam Calagione. Each of the four courses (expect regional classics like Boston cream pie, scrapple and a Philly cheesesteak) will be paired with a beer from each brewer, with voting taking place live on Instagram. Snag your tickets ($60 including tip) for the 6 p.m. dinner on Eventbrite. We expect the meal will make you as happy as Tom Brady's first tweet, though with less crushing disappointment than when you realized that was a joke.
Keep reading for future food and drink events.
Tuesday, April 19
It may feel like winter will never end in the Mile High City, but in fact it's already time to start planning your spring garden dinners. The early bird gets the worm, after all, and the earliest feast to hit the table this year is already scheduled for Tuesday, 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 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.
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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.
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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