- Uncommon Ground on Clark hosts a free tasting of cocktails made with spirits from North Shore Distillery and appetizers by executive chef Brian Millman from 6 to 8 PM.
- John Freyer of Dogfish Head Brewing Co. leads a free tasting of his company’s beers, paired with cheeses, at West Lakeview Liquors from 6 to 9 PM. The star of the show is the just-released Festina Peche, a light-bodied summer brew in a Berliner Weisse style made with peaches.
- Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral’s three-day Taste of Greece on LaSalle Street (Fri-Sat 4-11 PM, Sun noon-11 PM) features Greek food, beer, wine, ouzo, dancing, and music by the John Linardakis Band. Also: a silent auction, raffles, children’s games, and tours of the cathedral. $2.
- New Belgium Brewing Company‘s annual Tour de Fat begins with registration at 9 AM, followed by a bike parade at 10. The parade ends at 11, at which point the kegs get tapped and the “revivalation,” with live music and other entertainment, begins. Festivities last until 4 PM, culminating with “Would You Trade Your Car for a Bike?,” in which the winner of the contest of that name will hand over his or her car title and keys in exchange for a new commuter bike and trailer.
- Amelia Saltsman, author of The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook, gives a talk titled The Fabled Farmers’ Markets of Southern California from 10 AM to noon at the Chicago History Museum (a Culinary Historians of Chicago program). $5.
- Pizza Fest Chicago, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 10 PM at Racine and Fullerton, features not only slices and whole pies for sale by eateries including Connie’s Pizza, Nonna’s Italian Pizzeria, and Vinci, but also a contest for the city’s best pizza (thick crust, thin crust, and gourmet), a pizza-eating competition, “acrobatic pizza dough tossing” by the U.S. Pizza Team, live music, wine tasting, cooking demos, and cornhole competitions. $5.
- The first Chicago Kids’ Restaurant Week kicks off Saturday from 9 AM to 12:30 PM at Green City Market with cooking demos, food tastings, and culinary activities for kids; it continues through Sat 6/28 with a prix fixe dinner deal at restaurants including Blue Water Grill, Lula Cafe, Otom, Prairie Grass Cafe, and Vie. From 5 to 6:30 PM, kids under 11 pay their age, while adults and kids 12 and over each pay $20.08. A dollar from each meal benefits Green City Market.
- At West Lakeview Liquors from 6 to 9 PM, Highland Park single malt scotch, from the Orkney Islands, is on the table in a free tasting showcasing the 12-, 15-, and 18-year-old batches.
- The Farmers’ Market Fiesta, from noon to 3 PM at Frontera Grill, offers food, margaritas, cooking demos by Rick Bayless, and stalls with local artisanal products ($45, $15 kids under 12). It’s followed by a six-course dinner with wine pairings, featuring early summer produce, meat and fish from local farms and producers ($150). All proceeds benefit the Frontera Farmer Foundation.
- Bev Art Brewer & Winemaker Supply presents a winemaking class Wednesday from 6:30 to 8:30 PM at Whole Foods in Lakeview. Budding vintners can create their own wines from an assortment of juices, ranging from Australian shiraz and French sauvignon blanc to estate-grown Stag’s Leap District merlot and Sonoma Valley pinot noir; they’ll learn about techniques of aging and cellaring wine as well. Each student will make a six-gallon vat of wine—enough for 25-30 bottles. Bev Art will ferment and rack it for ten weeks; at a second session (exact date TBD at the first), students will balance their wines by adjusting tannins and residual sugar levels and, finally, bottle them. $65 plus $70-$200 for supplies including juice, bottles, and labels.