This weekend and beyond

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Tonight a portion of your tab at a whole bunch of Chicago restaurants goes toward the HIV/AIDS support organization Dining Out For Life.

Also tonight (Friday) there's a Unibroue beer tasting at Cooking Fools, 1916 W. North, hosted by a rep from the Quebecois brewery. It starts at 6; call 773-276-5565. 

Friday night at 7:30 Ghetto Gourmet hosts another secret dinner "in a very very special place near Southside." The menu includes "Forbidden Empanadas: ground pork, granny smith apples, and dried cherries w/ truffled onion jelly," "roasted chicken, rice, and cassava w/ chipotle peanut marinade, wrapped in banana leaf," and more. Guests are advised to bring a bottle and a floor cushion. $45 tickets can be purchased here.

Also Friday, Fig Catering throws an anniversary party in its new kitchen space, 1850 S. Blue Island; the menu star is bacon in one form or another. Call 773-793-1035.   

Saturday at 11:30 AM the Chicago Brauhaus throws a traditional Fruh Schoppen or "special brunch" featuring the 10-piece Bavarian brass band Die Blaskapelle Seefeld and Bavarian specialties. Call 773-484-4444.

Blue Sky Inn, a support organization for at-risk teens, holds an open house Sunday at Kitchen Chicago, 4664 N. Manor to benefit its new transitional jobs program. Coffee and pastries are free. Its from 9 AM to 3 PM; call 773-710-7346.

Also on Sunday Custom House launches a series of monthly "Jazz Sessions" featuring live music and seasonal food and drink pairings. This month the Chris Greene Quartet accompanies a selection of bubblies from Moet Hennessey, paired with antipasti (3 for $16). Call 312-523-0200.

The organic agriculture job training program Growing Home holds its fifth annual benefit Tuesday, 5/1, at the Garfield Park Conservatory, 300 N. Central Park, featuring the labors of chefs such as Michael Altenberg, Shawn McClain, Jason Hammel and Amalea Tshilds, and others. It's $80 and starts at 6 PM. Call 312-435-8601.

On Wednesday evening Chicagoland Baskin Robbins locations will be selling 2.5 ounce scoops of all 31 flavors, for 31 cents. Proceeds benefit the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.

Also on Wednesday Fox & Obel hosts a faceoff between farmstead and artisinal cheeses featuring Deborah Dickerson of London's Neal’s Yard Dairy. It starts at 6 PM, and costs $25. Thursday at the grocery there's a free organic blood orange and tangerine juice tasting from fruit grown on the slopes of Mt. Etna in Sicily. It starts at 4 PM; call 312-379-0139.  

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