This Week's Food and Drink Events

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Rooftop dinners, cupcake contests, foraged foods, and more.

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  • Girl Interrupted Eating@flickr
thursday15
Throughout July, the Center on Halsted transforms its rooftop garden into an alfresco restaurant, courtesy of a group of 15- to 18-year-old culinary aspirants from After School Matters. At this week’s installment of the Dining on the Rooftop series, Middle Eastern food will be served family-style. Nonalcoholic drinks are provided; alcohol is BYO. Reserve tickets here. 5:45 PM, 3656 N. Halsted, 773-472-6469, $25.

The brewers behind Boulder Beer visit Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap for an all-you-can-eat-and-drink tasting and meet-and-greet, featuring the dry-hopped Hazed & Infused, and Singletrack Copper Ale, both exclusively on tap at the bar this summer, plus draft samplings of additional Boulder beers including Sweaty Betty Blonde and Cold Hop Ale. 6-9 PM, 41 E. Superior, 312-266-0400, $25.

saturday17
Four years ago, Barry Sorkin ditched a career in IT to open the wildly successful Smoque BBQ. He tells his story, with samples, at Smoque Signals, a talk presented by the Culinary Historians of Chicago. 10 AM-noon, Kendall College, 900 N. North Branch, reservations at 847-432-8255 or rsvpchc@yahoo.com, $5.

Koi Sushi & Chinese owners Bing Zhou and Sandy Chen offer a Chinese Dumpling Class covering steamed and panfried versions of meat and vegetable pot stickers, along with dipping sauce. Admission includes samples, wine, and a $20 gift certificate from the restaurant. 11:30 AM, 624 Davis, Evanston, 847-866-6969, $20.

Gardener Bill Shores leads a kitchen garden tour of the three Bucktown lots that provide some of the produce for Rick Bayless’s restaurants. Afterwards, participants head to Frontera for a three-course lunch, with wines provided by Wines of Chile. 11:30 AM-2:30 PM,aiwf-chicago@sbcglobal.net, $85.

To celebrate the opening of its third location, Bleeding Heart Bakery hosts a cupcake-eating contest featuring prizes. To be a contender, e-mail lakeview@thebleedingheartbakery.com or call 773-327-6934. 2-6 PM, 2961 N. Lincoln, $25.

The focus is on local food at this year’s Taste of River North, with vendors selected for their neighborhood popularity: they include Green Door Tavern, La Madia, Zocalo, Ai Sushi, and Steve’s Deli. The fest also features other local merchants, a kids’ and pets’ area, and live music. Through Sunday. Sat noon-10 PM, Sun 11 AM-8 PM, Erie Park, 630 N. Kingsbury, 312-742-7898, $5.

monday19
A five-course meal at Bonsoiree highlights foraged foods and organic wines, with Pacific northwest-centric pairings provided by Cellar Rat Wine Shop. Dishes include broiled rabbit with dandelion leaves and chanterelles; octopus balls; duck foie gras; and wild asparagus panna cotta with cashews, saffron banana brulee, and edamame crème anglaise. Seatings are at 6 and 8:30 PM. 2728 W. Armitage, 773-486-7511, $95.

wednesday21
Vie sous chef Nathan Sears teaches a series of Back to Basics classes, starting today and running through December. The first session focuses on Spanish small plates, and successive classes—on topics like steak, salsa, fish, and soup—are 8/11, 9/1, 9/22, 10/13, 11/3, 11/24, and 12/15. All classes end with a lunch of whatever students have prepared. Call for reservations. 10 AM-1:30 PM, 4471 Lawn, Western Springs, 708-246-2082, $80 for all classes.

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