Hop on the Year of the Horse at these Chinese New Year celebrations

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If you think Americans do it big on New Year's Eve, think again: The Chinese New Year blows any ball drop or Champagne toast out of the water. One of the longest-running and most celebrated festivals in China, the Chinese New Year, or Lunar New Year, celebrates and honors the past lives of deities and ancestors. An emphasis on family, thanksgiving and honor runs through the festivals but there are also beautiful dances, elaborate paper dragons and, of course, decadent dishes.

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Starting at 3 p.m. today and continuing tomorrow, Ace will prepare a five-course Chinese New Year's meal for two, paired with two house-made sodas. If you want to party with something a bit stronger, there will be alcoholic beverage pairings available for an additional cost -- as well as Ace's newest concoction: The Year of the Horse, created by bar manager Randy Layman. All of the dishes created for this meal will also be available a la carte; Ace's regular menu will also be offered. Tickets are $52 per couple, plus tax and gratuity. For more information, check out the Ace website.

Denver's oldest Vietnamese restaurant, T-Wa Inn, will be celebrating the Chinese New Year with the traditional dragon dance, which diners can watch as they enjoy dishes from the regular menu. There will also be drink specials, as well as firecrackers and more. The celebration starts tonight at 6:30 p.m. and repeats at 6:30 p.m. tomorrow.

For information on dozens of culinary events around town, visit our online Food & Drink listings -- and if you have information for a culinary event you'd like included in our online calendar, send it to cafe@westword.com.

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