Chowdown for Charity: The 6th annual Chowdown for Charity is 6-8:30 p.m. Oct. 30 at Riverhouse Banquets and Weddings facility in Palmetto. This unique culinary event features 10 area restaurants that will participate in an exciting competition for the coveted "Best of" Chowdown Trophy. The chef's dishes will be judged by an expert grand panel. Students from Manatee Technical Institute, Southeast High School and University of South Florida Hospitality Program will take part in this competition. The event raises much needed funds to help support and continue culinary education in Manatee County schools. Event attendees will enjoy samplings from the finest area restaurants and culinary programs in Manatee County. Tickets are on sale and are available at www.chowdown2014.eventbrite.com or by calling 941-365-2800. Ticket pricing is $50 in advance that includes complimentary bar, or $60 at the door (if available). Limited tickets available.
Halloween costume party: Mattison's City Grille, 1 N. Lemon Ave., Sarasota, hosts a Halloween Costume Party on Oct. 31. Come dressed in costume for a frighteningly fun time and enter the costume contest starting at 9 p.m. First prize wins a $100 Mattison's gift card, second prize wins a $50 gift card and third prize wins a $25 gift card (one costume contest for the men, one for the women). Live music by Billy Seward & The Memphis Soul from 8 p.m. to midnight and enjoy ghoulish drink, appetizer and dinner specials along with festive decorations. Information: 941-330-0440 or mattisons.com.
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Pine Avenue Edible Garden Tour: On Nov. 13, the Sandbar will host the Pine Avenue Edible Garden Tour and Sandbar Tasting Lunch which will begin with a walking tour of the community gardens located on Pine Avenue, the "Greenest Little Main Street" in America. The hour tour, which beings at 10:30 a.m. will be led by renowned native plant expert and designer, Mike Miller, who will educate attendees about the gardens and encourage on-site tastings of produce contained in the gardens. Next, attendees will join Ed Chiles at the Sandbar Restaurant for a multiple course tasting lunch showcasing produce freshly picked from the Pine Avenue gardens and company owned, Gamble Creek Farm, as well as fresh, local seafood from the Gulf waters. Tickets are $30 and proceeds benefit the All Island Denominations Roser Food Pantry. For more information on this event and to purchase tickets visit groupersandwich.com/news.
ON THE MENU
Prime Rib Saturdays: The Polo Grill, 10670 Boardwalk Loop, Lakewood Ranch, offers a prime rib special exclusively available on Saturdays evenings in October. It's "wet aged" in-house for 20 days in olive oil and gently scented with a blend of hand-picked whole and coarse ground spices. It's intentionally light and floral, so it acts as an aromatic rather than a heavy seasoning. Beginning at 5:30 p.m., choose from a Queen Cut for $18.99, King Cut for $22.99, or a Royal Cut for 27.99 complimented with au jus, creamy horseradish, buttery popovers, curry roasted root vegetables and garlic mashers. Reservations: 941-782-0899, ext. 2 or pologrillandbar.com.
wine & COOKING CLASSES
Pickle making: Learn how to make pickles 4-6 p.m. Nov. 8 at the Manatee County Agricultural Museum, 1015 Sixth St. W., Palmetto. The class, held outside near the Victory Garden, will be led by Lisa Bosner from Sunshine Canning. The focus of the workshop will be safety, equipment, and science. Other topics will include brine, sweet and dill recipes, and ingredients needed for a successful product. Students will also participate in the hands-on portion of the class when a seasonal vegetable is pickled. Students will go home with a jar made in class. All supply costs are included in the registration fee. Cost for this workshop is $25 for Ag Museum members/$30 for nonmembers. Contact Melissa Dagenais at Melissa.Dagenais@manateeclerk.com or call the museum at 721-2034 for more information and registration. The class is limited to 15 people, pre-registration is required.
Italian cooking: Giuliano Hazan, chef, teacher, cookbook author and son of Italian culinary legend Marcella Hazan, will launch a new series of intimate Italian cooking classes Nov. 18. Recipient of the "Cooking Teacher of the Year" award from the International Association of Culinary Professionals, Hazan is the author of five cookbooks. His most recent is "Hazan Family Favorites," a collection of 85 recipes, taste memories and family stories based on a 56-year-old family notebook. Hazan and his wife, Lael Hazan, a food historian, will open their Sarasota riverside home to a maximum of nine participants per class. Guided by Hazan, attendees will prepare a four-course Italian meal, which will be enjoyed at the table and paired with select Italian wines. All classes are from 10:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Cost is $150 per person per class. For a full schedule and to make reservations, call 941-363-1258 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on Hazan, his cookbooks, Italy cooking/tour excursions and cooking demonstrations, go to www.giulianohazan.com.
Apron's classes: Apron's Cooking School at Publix At University Walk, 2875 University Parkway; students may register for all classes online at www.publix.com or by calling 941-358-7829.
Brewers discussion: Motorworks Brewing, 1014 Ninth St. W., Bradenton, will hold a weekly brewers discussion at 6:30 p.m. Thursdays. One or more of our brewers will be give an hour-long discussion on beer styles and brewing. A different Motorworks Brewing beer will be on spotlight with the option to enjoy a snack paired perfectly for it. This educational discussion will include Q&A at the end. This is a free event, open to the public. Everyone from beginning craft beer drinkers to craft beer connoisseurs can learn. Information: 941-567-6218.
Culinary Calendar: Email information to email@example.com.