As mentioned earlier this week, StarChefs.com has recognized Houston's "Rising Star Chefs" for the first time ever and is holding a gala on March 17 to honor the chefs it's feted with awards. The ceremony and dinner will take place at the Four Seasons (1300 Lamar, 713-276-4700) from 7 to 10 p.m. and tickets cost $95 a person, but a portion of that cost will go to benefit Recipe for Success. That ticket will also get you samples of each winners' signature items as well as the chance to hobnob with your favorite restaurateurs and chefs.
If glitzy galas aren't your thing, maybe you'll enjoy Fratelli's (10989 Northwest Freeway, 713-957-1150) current dining deal better. Through March 29, the homestyle Italian restaurant will be hosting an all-you-can-eat Spaghetti Festival every Monday and Tuesday night from 5 to 9:30 p.m. The AYCE extravaganza is $12.95 a person and includes a house salad. Need something to wash it down? House wines are only $3.50 a glass.
Fratelli's doesn't have the only great dining deal in town, though.
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Right now, venerated luxury hotel La Colombe d'Or is celebrating its 30th anniversary as well as the revamp of its restaurant, now called Cinq (3410 Montrose, 713-524-7999). In honor of these occasions, the restaurant is offering a three-course menu for only $30 every Monday and Tuesday through November 29. Menu options include escargots bourguignon, ceviche, petit filet mignon, braised short rib and more. Cinq is also offering a $30 bottle of house reserve wine for your meal, as well. Reservations are required.
Finally, one of our favorite annual food events is coming up: Empty Bowls, the annual fundraising event to benefit the Houston Food Bank held on March 19 at Lawndale Art Center (4912 Main) from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. People are asked to come out and provide a donation of at least $25 for their lunch that day. For your donation, you'll receive "a simple lunch of soup, bread and water (and a treat of a little something sweet) provided by Whole Foods Market, and then select a bowl from 1,000-plus one-of-a kind, hand-crafted bowls donated by Houston area ceramists and craft artists." This popular event is a one-of-a-kind fundraiser, so the soup -- and the bowls -- go fast. Get there early!