Wine pairing, mochi pounding, beer education, and more.
On New Year’s in Japan, rice and water are pounded with a kine—a big hammer—until the mixture becomes the chewy, glutinous substance known as mochi. Today at Japanese supermarket Mitsuwa, pounding demos are held on the hour between noon and 3 PM; samples will be handed out with toppings like kinako (sweet soy flour), sweet red bean paste, and daikon. Noon-3 PM, Mitsuwa Marketplace, 100 E. Algonquin, Arlington Heights, 847-956-6699.
Stout Fest 2011 comes to Quenchers in two installments: today, the bar taps 12 varieties including Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout, Southern Tier Imperial Oatmeal Stout, and Bell’s Special Double Cream Stout. A dozen more are slated to be tapped on January 15. Quenchers Saloon, 2401 N. Western, 773-276-9730.
As part of its regular Monday Night Flights series, One SixtyBlue hosts a “blind” pairing of five wines—domestic, international, and “winter-friendly”—with five small plates including crispy suckling pig with black truffle and cauliflower, house-cured salmon with pumpkin pancake, and Dietzler Farm short rib with yellow grits, root vegetables, and smoked mozzarella. Buy tickets here or by phone. 6 and 7 PM seatings, One SixtyBlue, 1400 W. Randolph, 312-850-0303, $47.
Rock Bottom brewmaster Chris Rafferty presents the first in a new Beer School series, with classes slated to take place on the first Tuesday of every month. Each includes a sampling of brews currently on tap, beer history lesson, brewery tour, snacks, and a ticket redeemable for a free pint. Call to RSVP. 6-7:30 PM, Rock Bottom Brewery, 1 W. Grand, 312-755-9339, $15.