It is officially Food and Wine week in Denver! Don’t miss out on Denver’s very own food and wine festival, an event with over 700 wines and spirits and food from 35 of Denver’s top restaurants. This week there will also be celebrations in the name of beer with the Longmont Oktoberfest and the Tour de Fat. Finally, Denver chefs or those from around the country will be in town either participating in the James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour or competing for the winning title in Colorado’s First Annual Chili Fest.
Denver Food and Wine Festival
When: September 9 – 12
Tickets: Available here
The Low Down: This food and booze festival will include celebrity chefs, cocktail competitions, entertainment, over 700 wines and spirits, and more than 35 of Denver’s top restaurants. The first night will be held at the Sunset Idea house. The night will include a tour and food and wine pairings from Frank Bonanno of Bonanno Concepts; Gabe Kennedy, winner of ABC’s “The Taste”; Paul Reilly of beast+bottle; Hosea Rosenberg, Top Chef winner and owner/Chef at Blackbelly; and Elise Wiggins – James Beard winner and Executive Chef at Panzano. The second night will be a Panzano Wine Pairing Dinner featuring celebrity Chef Rick Tramonto and Chef Wiggins. The third night will be an “End of Summer” cocktail party and a Riedel Wine Glass Seminar, and the final night will be The Grand Tasting. The four-day event benefit The Denver Post Community Foundation, Metropolitan State University of Denver, and the Colorado Restaurant Association Education Foundation. Showcasing some of Denver’s best food and wine, this is a festival you won’t want to miss.
James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour
When: Friday, September 11, 6:30 p.m.
Where: Infinite Monkey Theorem Winery, 3200 Larimer St. Denver
Cost: U.S. Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Visa Signature Cardholders: $85 JBF members and general public: $155
Tickets: Available here
The Low Down: The Infinite Monkey Wine Theorem announce it will host a multi-course interactive dining experience for the forthcoming Celebrity Chef Tour stop in Denver. Beginning in 2004, this tour was launched “to bring the one-of-a-kind experience of dining at the famous James Beard House in New York City to foodies around the country, “said Jeff Black, James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour event director. “Denver is certainly one of our most anticipated stops this year.”
The dinner will feature wine pairings from Infinite Monkey Theorem’s very own CEO and winemaker, Ben Parsons and will highlight the following chefs: Jason Alley of Comfort in Richmond, VA; Justin Brunson of Old Major, Denver, Colo; Jeff Cleary, Grateful Bread, Denver, Colo; Chad Colby, Los Angeles, Calif; Stephen Gerike, National Pork Board, Church Hill, Md.; Troy Guard, TAG Restaurant Group, Denver, Colo; Jeff Osaka, Osaka Ramen, Denver, Colo ; Paul C. Reilly, Beast + Bottle, Denver, Colo; Adam Sappington of Country Cat, Portland, Ore; Kelly Whitaker: Basta, Boulder, Colo; and Cart-Driver, Denver, Colo.
When: September 11, 4-10 p.m. and September 12, 12-10 p.m.
Where: Roosevelt Park, Longmont CO
Cost: GA $5 or VIP Lounge: $35 VIP
Tickets: Available here
The Low down: This two-day festival presented by Left Hand Brewing Company will host 10 bands and nine Longmont breweries, including Left Hand, Oskar Blues, Pumphouse Brewery, 300 Suns, Grossen Bart, Long’s Peak Tap House, Shoes & Brews, Skeye Brewing and Wibby Brewing. With hopes that the attendees will be in the Deutschland spirit all weekend long, the festival will include games such as a brat eating and stein holding contest for both kids and adults, a locomotion parade, a best dresses competitions, and of course dancing. Longmont will even once again build the world’s longest bratwurst at over 200 feet long! Headlining the festival this year is Brooklyn band, Pimps of Joytime. This celebration will help you end summer on a high note, while giving back to the Denver community as proceeds will go towards the Left Hand Brewing Foundation, St. Vrain Valley Schools, and The Inn Between of Longmont.
Tour de Fat Denver
When: Saturday, September 12
Where: City Park, Denver
Tickets: Cost, free. To register go here.
The Low Down: “Maybe you already bike all over town, or you’re a weekend warrior, or just a little bike curious,” said Matt Kowal, New Belgium Brewing’s Tour de Fat Impresario. “If so, this is for you.”
Tour de Fat, New Belgium’s day of bikes and beer, is returning to Denver. It is time for you to dig up an old costume, grease those bike chains, and strap on a helmet, so that you can have some good laughs, drink some good beer, and get involved with New Belgium’s mission to spread awareness about sustainable transportation. Parade kicks off at City Park at 11 a.m. on the northeast side of the park and will continue throughout the day with musical performances from bands like In The Whale and Bud Bronson and the Good Timers. To see the full lineup and the biking route, go here.
When: September 12, 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. & September 13, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Where: Centennial Center Park, 13050 E. Peakview Ave., Denver
The Low Down: This week, Colorado chefs and restaurants will compete against local competitors boasting their family recipes of salsas and chilis to be the winner of Denver’s First Annual ChiliFest. Attendees are in for a day filled with music, dancing, singing, and activities for all ages. This event will donate 100 percent of its profits to support the Second Wind Fund, which “believes that every child and youth at risk of suicide should have access to the mental health treatment they need.”
Denver Flea, Fall 2015
When: September 12- 13
Where: Sculpture Park, 1345 Champa St., Denver
Neighborhood: Theatre District
Cost: FREE, RSVP for a free beer here.
The Low Down: The sixth rendition of Denver Flea returns this fall with a new location. This time around instead of a parking garage or a massive warehouse, Flea is embracing the outdoors and posting up at Sculpture Park. But, as always, the event will host over a 100 unique vendors including multiple cocktail bars so that visitors can browse local goods while sipping on skillfully made libations. View the full list of vendors here.
Mark your calendars
Choctoberfest Colorado 2015
When: September 19, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Where: Omni Interlocken in Broomfield
Cost: $5, children under five are free
First Draft’s Oktoberfest
Where: First Draft, 1309 26th St.
When: September 19 & 20, 10 a.m. – Close
When: September 20, 11 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Where: Sculpture Park, Champa St & Speer Blvd., Denver
Words by Christina Walecka with contributions from Brittany Werges.
[UPDATE, September 8, 2015 at 2:45: Article was updated to include additional events]