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West Lakeview Liquors hosts a free tasting of Christmas Belgian beers Thursday from 6-9 PM. Included in the lineup are Kasteel Rouge, Delirium Noel, Gouden Carolus Noel, and Samichlaus, all paired with cheeses.
Local company Great American Cheese Collection distributes cheeses from small artisan makers in 28 states to restaurants all over the country. But until now it’s been tricky for Chicago consumers to get their hands on these domestic gems without visiting restaurants like Tru, Sepia, or Charlie Trotter’s. This Saturday from 8 AM to noon, though, as well as December 8 and 22, the company is opening its warehouse at 4727 S. Talman to the public; customers can sample or buy any of the 200-plus cheeses in stock. Among the offerings are Humbug Mountain, a creamy goat milk pyramid with black peppercorns, and Pennsylvania Noble Mature, an organic farmstead Amish cheddar. 773-519-5055 or 773-835-5055.
Saturday from 2-5 PM, West Lakeview Liquors has a free single malt and blended scotch tasting with scotch expert Martin Duffy. It features the just-released Crown Royal Cask no. 16, a blend aged in cognac casks, and the Singleton of Glendullan, also released this year, which earned 92 points from the Beverage Tasting Institute. Johnnie Walker Swing—named for the distinctive bottle, whose irregular bottom lets it rock back and forth—is also on the roster. Rounding out the selection are distillers’ editions of the classic Scottish malts Oban and Lagavulin.
ChicaGourmets and Eden Rosenbush, chef-owner of the catering company Big Red Oven, host a dinner and book signing with Crescent Dragonwagon, author of The Cornbread Gospels, Tuesday at 6:30 PM at Cambium Furniture and Kitchens. The cookbook’s focus is on corn bread, fritters, and even tortillas and tamales, though there are also recipes for other traditional accompaniments like beans, greens, soups, and stews. The dinner will feature mini johnnycakes, corn-bread rolls, and corn-bread croutons along with white bean crostini, a salad with pomegranate seeds and hazelnuts, the Portuguese stew caldo verde, and glazed ham.
Wednesday at 8, Webster's Wine Bar has a tasting of the Reds of Argentina. Malbecs, cabernets, bonardas and others from this up-and-coming country in wine production will be paired with an array of meats. $40.
'Tis the season . . . for Brazilian beach parties, apparently. Exposure hosts one, complete with live Brazilian music and muddling lessons, Wednesday at 6 PM.
Also Wednesday, the Tasting Room at Randolph Wine Cellars has a champagne tasting from 6-8 PM. Included in the selection are champagnes from Krug, Ruinart, Jose Dhondt, and Andre Clouet, as well as sparkling wines from around the world, accompanied by hors d'ouevres. $50.