On Tuesday, February 9, celebrate Mardi Gras and Fat Tuesday with a king cake cupcake from Ooh La La Dessert Boutique, available at all three bakery locations.
From Wednesday, February 10 through Sunday, February 14, treat your loved ones to Valentine’s Cuddle Fest at Phoenicia Specialty Foods and MKT BAR, 1001 Austin. Featuring karaoke (Saturday), themed-dining specials and in-store treats — think YUMMY! heart-shaped pita and baklava, dessert and wine flight tasting for two, kid’s meals with heart-shaped pizza and cookie decorating kits — this is one lovey-dovey event you don’t want to miss. And to help lovebirds find the perfect gift, they’ve even created a Valentine's Gift Guide with in-store suggestions for every type of person in your life: The Foodie, The Kiddos, The Wine & Beer Lover, The Coffee & Tea Addict, The Health Nut and The Sweet Tooth.
On Wednesday, February 10 from 4 p.m. to close, take yourself all the way back to 1930s Mexico City at The Pastry War, 310 Main. For one night only, the mezcaleria will be re-creating the La Cucaracha Cocktail Club, a bygone Mexico City cocktail bar featuring a well-dressed cockroach smoking a cigar on the cover of the menu, where it boasted about its English-speaking personnel. La Cucaracha’s 40-drink menu featured recognizable classics — the mint julep, the Manhattan cocktail, the Old-Fashioned, the Clover Club. This makes sense, as American bartenders fled the United States during Prohibition and took their cocktail recipes abroad with them. Yet, upon closer inspection, some things were lost in translation, like the misspelled Stingeri (Stinger) and Shangai (Shanghai) cocktails and the Clover Club recipe (green crème de menthe?). This got the team at The Pastry War thinking: How does this menu translate — and taste — today? Here’s your chance to find out!
On Friday, February 12, Rose Matchmaking will be hosting a Battle of the Sexes Valentine’s Quiz Night at The Barking Pig, 2307 Ella. Join other fabulous singles for happy hour starting at 6:30 p.m., then at 7 p.m., the battle begins with quiz master and comedian Derrick Cakley at the helm. Appetizers will be provided and drink specials will be available. Tickets can be purchased in advance for $16.82.
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Join Reserve 101, 1201 Caroline, for a Valentine’s Day celebration of chocolate and scotch pairings featuring Glenfiddich and gourmet chocolates by Cacao & Cardamom. There will be an 8 p.m. seating and a 10 p.m. seating on Saturday, February 13 and a 7 p.m. seating on Sunday, February 14. Cost is $65 per couple. RSVP at Reserve101.com.
And don’t forget to stop by Cacao & Cardamom, 5000 Westheimer #602, to purchase something sweet for your sweetie this Valentine’s Day. A variety of new aphrodisiac-inspired flavors are being rolled out for the holiday including Red Roses (a layer of pistachio ganache paired with raspberry pate de fruit and finished with a crunch of pistachio nougatine) and Sweetheart Purple (a milk chocolate ganache infused with star anise and sweetened with local honey in a dark chocolate shell).
One Monday per month starting Monday, February 15, Rebecca Masson will be hosting a “Dinner with My Friends” savory series at Fluff Bake Bar, 314 West Gray. First up: Clark Cooper Concepts’ Chef Brandi Key. Head to the shop at 6 p.m. to enjoy a six-course collaborative menu ($95 per person), along with wine pairings for an additional cost ($55 per person). Call 713-522-1900 to reserve your seat.
Tickets to the 4th Annual Houston Barbecue Festival are now on sale. Held on Sunday, May 22 at NRG Park (Green Lot), the smoke-tastic event already has a killer lineup of pitmasters, including Pizzitola's, Gatlin's, Lenox, CorkScrew, The Brisket House, Brooks' Place, Blake's, Fainmous, Gerardo's, Ray's BBQ Shack, Pappa Charlies, Spring Creek, El Burro & the Bull, Tin Roof BBQ, Roegels Barbecue Co., Feges BBQ, Pinkerton's BBQ, Blood Bros. BBQ and The Wooden Spoke, with more being added as we speak. Tickets are $60 for general admission ($50 early bird tickets on sale now in limited quantities) and include entry into the festival, plus unlimited sample portions from each spot. VIP admission for $120 ($100 early bird on sale now in limited quantities) will get you one-hour early entry, unlimited sample portions, a T-shirt and one drink ticket.