Upcoming Houston Food Events: A "Chopped" Field Trip & a Very Special Pop-Up

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Mark your calendars, because you don’t want to miss these deliciously fun culinary events:

In honor of Chef Justin Turner’s epic victory of Food Network’s "Chopped," Bernie’s Burger Bus, 5407 Bellaire, 2643 Commercial Center (Katy), is offering an extra special Field Trip menu, inspired by dishes from the show. Get burgers topped with truffled goat cheese, balsamic eggplant chutney, and crispy bacon; hand-cut fries topped with pho-spiced pork belly, cheese curds, and pho gravy; and a shake featuring caramelized apple, pinenut “rice pudding” and a Flaming Hot Cheetos brittle, which is just crazy enough to work. The special will be available at least throughout the month of May and possibly even longer.

On Monday, May 16, Moody Tongue Brewery will be featured at a special Beer Dinner at Underbelly, 1100 Westheimer, at 7 p.m. When Chef Chris Shepherd met Moody Tongue Brewing Company brewmaster Jared Rouben at an event this past year, he was immediately struck by how well Moody Tongue's beers paired with a variety of dishes. And with Moody Tongue soon expanding into the Houston market, he knew he had to invite Rouben to Underbelly for a dinner. Cost for the four-course dinner with beer pairings is $80 per person.  

In partnership with MAX’s Wine Dive - Washington, 4720 Washington, Prison Break Tattoos CEO and owner BK Klev will host a special first responders luncheon on Tuesday, May 17 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Open to all first responders in uniform or with a proper identification, the private event will provide Houston area, on and off-duty guests a complimentary meal to show appreciation and support for their heroic efforts in the community. Attendees will receive choice of either two bison or chicken sliders with MAX 'n cheese, green beans and a dessert. For more information, call 713-880-8737.

For one night only on Wednesday, May 18, from 6 to 8 p.m., James Beard Award-winning chef Justin Yu of Oxheart is doing a pop-up at Anvil Bar & Refuge, 1424 Westheimer, and there’s not a carrot to be found on the menu. Instead, he’ll be serving up eight-ounce rib eyes, mashed potatoes and corn to 100 lucky carnivorous customers. Plates will be $20 per person while quantities last, first-come, first-served. And in honor of the momentous occasion, Justin Vann is creating a special wine menu with a selection of red wines by the glass. Keeping with Anvil tradition, he’s chosen four Break-Even [Wine] Bottles, ranging in price from $200 to $1,000 per bottle. Guests will be able to opt for three-ounce pours of wines never sold by the glass, much less at cost, giving customers the opportunity to try some exceptionally rare, cool and, yes, expensive wines at cost. Additionally,  Vann will also select another wine served in standard six-ounce portions at a more approachable price. The Anvil team will be featuring six martini varietals with classic accouterments on each table, table service and reduced pricing on Anvil’s exceptional brandy list.

Rainbow Lodge, 2011 Ella, is welcoming Stefano Poggi of Batasiolo Vini for a special wine dinner on Wednesday, May 18, at 6:30 p.m. Highlights of the four-course wine-paired meal include a local feta and chickpea salad, and buttermilk-fried quail with sweet potato mash and chipotle gravy. Cost is $110 per person plus tax and gratuity. For reservations, email marc.borel@rainbow-lodge.

After four successful years in North Texas, Big Texas Beer Fest is splashing into Houston on Saturday, May 21, at NRG Park. The festival is well-known for exclusive and rare beers, one-offs and special firkins, and will feature at least 80 breweries and more than 300 beers to sample, with food trucks and live music making the day that much cooler. Tickets are $39 for general admission and $65 for VIP. 

The Great Taste of the Heights will be held on Saturday, May 21, from 5 to 6 p.m. at All Saints Catholic Church, 215 East 10th. The community food festival features live entertainment, and food samples from Heights-area restaurants including BB’s Café, Beaver’s and Fat Cat Creamery, to name a few. Tickets can be purchased online for $25 plus a $1 handling fee.

Rebecca Masson’s “Dinner with My Friends” series continues at Fluff Bake Bar, 314 Gray, on Monday, May 23, at 6 p.m. The collaborative six-course dinner features chef Josh Sutcliff, of the seasonally inspired New American eatery FT33 in Dallas. Cost is $95 per person, with a $55 additional wine pairing. Limited seating available. Call the shop at 713-522-1900 to reserve your spot.

Chef Antoine Ware and sous chef Ryan Sawka are cooking up some exciting things at Harold’s Restaurant & Bar, 350 West 19th, and on Tuesday, May 24, at 6:30 p.m., the duo will close out the first “volume” in their series of pop-up dinners, “Cooking from the Soul: A Reflection of Cajun and Creole Cuisine.” After hosting pop-ups at different restaurants and venues, this grand finale dinner will feature six courses, including crawfish pie, whole roasted cochon de lait and bananas Foster. The full six-course meal costs $65 plus beverages, tax and gratuity, or guests have the option to pair each dish with cocktails, beer or wine for $85 plus tax and gratuity. 

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