Things to Do

Plates for the Peak, Pinot Party: The Fifteen Top Culinary Events This Week

Halloween is creeping ever closer, with events filled with spooky stories and fake blood, but this week you can still enjoy a few more civilized activities, including wine dinners, cocktail and restaurant crawls, fundraisers and a very elegant whisky-tasting. Keep reading for a taste of what's on the culinary calendar.

See also: Sidewinder for Sale, Yazoo Raises the Roof: A Second Helping of Cafe Society, October 13-17

Monday, October 20

The Corner Office Restaurant + Martini Bar is hosting a mixology competition benefiting the Athena Project at 7 p.m. tonight. The contest will pit six Denver bartenders against each other in a battle to create the best "Athena" themed drink. In addition to the cocktail competition, the event will feature comedy by the all-female improv troupe Dishwater Blondes. Admission is $20 in advance or $22 at the door; tor information or to reserve a seat, visit

The annual Plates for the Peak, at charity event benefiting Urban Peak, the only non-profit organization in Denver providing a full convergence of services for youth experiencing homelessness, will take place tonight at Vesta Dipping Grill. The event features several passed courses and stations created by the chefs of Vesta, Steuben's and Ace, as well as a silent auction and open bar. The fun runs from 6:30 to 10 p.m. and tickets are $75; for more information, visit

Einstein Bros. Bagels is opening its first Lafayette location today. The new store will be located at 548 West South Boulder Road, and will be offering free coffee to the first 300 customers on opening day; there will be a week of promotions from November through November 8. For more information, visit

Tuesday, October 21

From 6 to 8 p.m. today, Elway's Cherry Creek will throw a Pinot Patio Party and Tasting while selecting new wines for its fall and winter wine lists. The restaurant will be tasting more than fifty wines from Oregon, California, Italy, France, Germany, New Zealand and Chile, as well as serving hors d'oeuvres. Reserve your spot, $40, by calling Elway's at 303-399-5353.

Grimaldi's Coal Brick-Oven Pizzeria is partnering with local business leaders to host "A Day of Giving" today to raise money for Susan G. Komen Colorado; 50 percent of all food sales today will be donated to the organization. For reservations and more information, call the restaurant at 303-623-3271.

Crown the Town, the fall cocktail edition, is a self-guided bar crawl through the Baker neighborhood from 6:30 to 9 p.m. At the end of the night guests can vote for their favorite drink at stops that include The Hornet, Adrift Bar, The Irish Rover and Skylark Lounge. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 on the day of the event; click here for tickets and more information.

Get in the swim at the Seafood Dishes Made Easy class at Stir Cooking School, where you'll learn to make some dishes as pan-seared salmon with oranges and fennel; crispy coconut shrimp with ginger carrot dipping sauce; and linguine with a garlicky white wine clam sauce. Class will begin at 6:30 p.m. and tuition is $80; visit for more information and registration.

Join Arugula Bar e Ristorante tonight for a wine dinner "Down Under," a five-course meal paired with Australian wine. Dinner is $50 per person (plus an additional $34 for wine pairings) and will be served at 6:30 p.m. Make reservations by calling Arugula at 303-443-5100.

Wednesday, October 22

Axios Estiatorio is celebrating ancient Greek varieties of Puglia through four courses and five wines tonight. The Mediterranean trip for your taste buds is $59; for reservations, call Axios at 720-328-2225.

TAG is throwing an Orange Crush Pumpkin Dinner tonight featuring a spooktacular five-course menu with cocktail and beer pairings. Things will get cooking at TAG at 7 p.m. and dinner is $65. For reservations and more information, call TAG at 303-996-9985.

In anticipation of his upcoming guest chef appearance at the James Beard House, Ryan Leinonen and his team at Trillium will host a "practice" James Beard dinner tonight. The meal will feature six courses and wines, along with a three-course hors d'oeuvres reception, also matched with wines. Reservations for the 6:30 dinner are $100; call 303-379-9759 or visit to make yours.

Thursday, October 23

During Hoofin It: Uptown, guests are invited to hoof it from one restaurant to the next between three stops in the Uptown Neighborhood. Ace, The BSide and Park & Co. will each offer a paired course for the restaurant crawl. Tickets are $40 and reservations can be made in three different waves (5:30, 6:30 or 7:30 p.m.); for menus, reservations and more information, visit

Join professional bagpiper and Celtic Entertainer Scott Beach at Cherokee Ranch and Castle for an exploration of the heritage and tradition of single malt whisky-making around the globe. This event runs from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.; tickets are $80. Find our more here.

The second installment of Axios Estiatorio's Greek wine dinner series will feature ancient Greek varieties of Southern Italy's Apuglia Region. Dinner will start at 7 p.m. tonight; reservations are $59. Call Axios at 720-328-2225.

At 7 p.m. tonight, DiFranco's is hosting a Peter Franus wine dinner featuring a three-course meal paired with four Peter Franus wines. The cost is $85; to reserve your spot, call the restaurant at 720-253-1244.

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 [email protected].

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Ben Landreth