Tampa Bay food and drink events

Thursday, March 3: Columbia Restaurant Ybor

Enjoy a five-course wine dinner featuring the wines of Dominio De Tares, with special guest Laura Vazquez, Dominio De Tares Export Manager. $85 (all inclusive); 7-10 p.m. 2117 E. 7th Ave, Tampa. 813-248-4961, columbiarestaurant.com

Friday, March 4: Chik-fil-A

March 4, 2011 is being declared Free Fry Day at all Chick-fil-A restaurants nationwide. Ketchup lovers who ask for Heinz Dip & Squeeze and the Free Fry Day promotion at Chick-fil-A restaurants will receive a free medium order of Chick-fil-A Waffle Fries (limit one per customer). 2-4 p.m. All Bay area locations. chick-fil-a.com

Friday, March 4: Whole Foods Market

Cooking Demo: Bring Quinoa in Your Life. Healthy Eating Specialist Curtis Whitwam will demonstrate how to create a delicious, easy dish using the protein-rich grain, quinoa. No registration necessary. Free; 5:30-7 p.m. 1548 North Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa. 813-874-9435, wholefoodsmarket.com

Friday, March 4: Bern's Fine Wine & Spirits

This Crush Hour event will feature cult winemakers and Napa Valley legends and their 2007 Cabernet Sauvignons. Great winemakers such as cult heroes Mia Klein (Pininfarina), Heidi Peterson Barrett (Fantesca), Paul Hobbs (Merus), Celia Welch (Hollywood & Vine) along with Napa Valley legends like John Williams (Frog’s Leap) and newcomers Round Pond (94 Points), Kathryn Hall (96 Points) will be featured!. $25; 6:30-8:30 p.m. 1002 South Howard Ave, Tampa. 813-250-9463, bernsfinewines.com

Friday, March 4: Tampa Bay History Center

Enjoy an evening of tapas tasting and wine sampling while helping find a cure for pediatric sarcoma at the Fifth Annual "Andrea’s Sip for Life", sponsored by the Columbia Restaurant and the Gonzmart Family Foundation. More than 150 premium wines from Spain, California and South America will feature during the event to benefit pediatric sarcoma research at Moffitt Cancer Center. 100% of the proceeds will support the Pediatric Sarcoma Fund at H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute. For reservations, call 813-248-3000, ext. 24. $100; 7-10 p.m. 801 Old Water St, Tampa. 813-228-0097, columbiarestaurant.com

Saturday, March 5: Publix Apron's Cooking School

Learn  how to make all those curry dishes you always get for take-out, but never feel like making at home. Menu: Jamaican Curried Chicken; Japanese Curried Pork; Thai Red Curry Seafood; Indian Curried Cauliflower; Burmese Curried Beef. Register here. $40; 6 p.m. 7835 Gunn Hwy, Tampa. 813-926-4465, publix.com/aprons

Saturday, March 5: Cajun Cafe on the Bayou

Celebrate Cajun Cafe's annual Mardi Gras Celebration. $15 admission gets you live Zydeco bands, a full Cajun meal and craft ales on draft. Door prizes: Cajun Cafe on the Bayou gift certificates and a 3-day admission for 2 at their 14th Annual Crawfish Festival. Costumes encouraged but not required. $15; 7-11 p.m. (gate opens at 6 p.m.) 8101 Park Blvd N, Pinellas Park, 727-546-6732, cajuncafeonthebayou.com.

Sunday, March 6: Hyde Park Village

This Sunday, March 6th, marks the inaugural Hyde Park Village Fresh Market -- a monthly event giving the people of Tampa Bay yet another opportunity to buy a variety of locally produced products. This new market will feature over 70 vendors offering fresh produce, handmade arts and crafts, delicious food from local vendors, live music, cooking demonstrations, as well as a local massage therapist. The Fresh Market will take place around the in Hyde Park Square fountain the first Sunday of every month, year round, rain or shine, from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. Admission and parking is free to the public and friendly dogs on leashes are welcome. 742 S. Village Circle, Tampa. 813-251-3500, hydeparkvillage.net

Monday, March 7: Gulfport Casino

The Kiwanis Club of the Gulf Beaches will be celebrating with their annual Mardi Gras Ball on Monday, March 7, at the Gulfport Casino. Cajun food, live music, dancing, cash bar, a silent auction and an appearance by the Mardi Gras King and Queen, King Rick Vaughn, VP of Communications for the Tampa Bay Rays and his wife Sue. Ticket sales and a silent auction will benefit a variety of Kiwanis charities. Call 727-398-1360 or visit kiwanisgulfbeaches.com for more information. $25; 7-11 p.m. 5500 Shore Boulevard S, Gulfport.

Tuesday, March 8: Downtown Dunedin

It's Dunedin's 20th annual Mardi Gras street party! Admission is free and there will be plenty of beer, wine, food and feathered masks. The main stage at Pioneer Park will feature two bands: "Swamp Logic" from 5:30-7 p.m. and headliner "Curley Taylor and Zydeco Trouble" from 8-11 p.m. The parade starts at 7:30 p.m. so be prepared to catch some beads! Free event; 5-11 p.m. Downtown Dunedin: Main Street between Louden Avenue and Broadway. delightfuldunedin.com

Tuesday, March 8: Donatello Italian Restaurant

Donatello Italian Restaurant will transform into a Venetian Carnival in celebration of Fat Tuesday.  Just as Venetians have done for centuries, Donatello will recreate the lively festival held every year in the Piazza San Marco in Venice, Italy. Belly Dancers and magicians will perform and guests will have the chance to listen to live music while enjoying the authentic Italian cuisine offered by Donatello’s Chef Luciano Visentin. Costumes and masks are encouraged. Call for more information. 6-11 p.m. 232 N Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa. 813-875-6660, donatellotampa.com

Wednesday, March 9: ABC Fine Wine and Spirits - 66th St. N, St. Pete

Another installment of ABC's tastings which feature over 50 wine selections from around the globe and cigars. Each guest receives a souvenir wine glass and a coupon for $5 off any purchase the night of the event. $10, 5:30-7:30 p.m. 2855 66th St N., St. Pete. 727-345-6149, abcfws.com

Wednesday, March 9: Maestro’s Restaurant at the Straz Center

Italian Bacchanalian Wine Dinner: This special culinary dinner at Maestro's Restaurant will feature a four-course meal with wines from the best Italian vineyards. See the menu here. Reservations can be made by calling 813-229-7827, in person at the Straz Center Ticket Office or online at www.strazcenter.org. $75 (including tax and gratuity); 5:30 p.m. 1010 N WC MacInnes Place, Tampa.

Wednesday, March 9: Total Wine & More St. Pete

Beer Class: Lagers and Ales, Beyond Pilsners and Pales. Taste a range of different color beers covering a wide, palate-smacking flavor spectrum. Class includes beer selections, tasting sheets, take home educational materials, and discounts on the beer presented in class. Class limited to 30 people. Call store for reservation. $15; 6:30-8:30 p.m. 4880 Park Street N, St. Pete. 727-544-6018

Thursday, March 10: ABC Fine Wine and Spirits - Fletcher Ave, Tampa

Another installment of ABC's tastings which feature over 50 wine selections from around the globe and cigars. Each guest receives a souvenir wine glass and a coupon for $5 off any purchase the night of the event. $10, 5:30-7:30 p.m. 2330 Fletcher Ave E, Tampa. 813-971-2122, abcfws.com

Thursday, March 10: Cru Cellars

This month, Tampa Bay Uncorked will take place at Cru Cellars. Meet with fellow wine lovers and sample wines by the glass from all over the world. All proceeds to benefit The Spring of Tampa Bay, Hillsborough County's only certified Domestic Violence Prevention and Emergency Shelter Agency. Representatives from The Spring will also be on hand to collect donated items. $10 at the door (cash or check only); 6:30-8:30 p.m. 2506 S . MacDill Ave, Tampa. 813-831-1117, crucellars.com

Weekdays: Wood Fired Pizza Wine Bar

Monday- College Night: 2-4-1 happy hour with college or faculty ID, 5 p.m.- close; Tuesday- Half-priced wine bottles, 5 p.m.- close; Wednesday- 2-4-1 glasses of wine. 5p.m.- close; Thursday-  $12 unlimited drafts, 8-10 p.m. 2822 E. Bearss Ave., Tampa. 813-341-2900, wood-firedpizza.com

Mondays: Peabody's

Penny pitchers! Buy one pitcher get the second for a penny, including well liquor pitchers and select draft beers. 15333 Amberly Dr., Tampa. 813-972-1725, peabodysbilliards.com

Tuesdays: Cafe Alma

Who needs a Friday or Saturday date night? Get out on a Tuesday to indulge half-priced bottles of wine and tapas all evening, starting at 4:30 p.m. Being frugal never tasted so good. 260 1st Avenue S., St. Pete. 727-502-5002

Tuesdays: Beak's Old Florida

Get 25% off Palm Plate entrees of steaks, pork and choice seafood dishes for "T-Bone Tuesdays" at Beak's (dine in only). 2451 Central Ave., St. Pete. 727-321-9100

Tuesdays: MacDinton's

Specials from 7-close, including: $2 Sam Adams Seasonal drafts, $2.50 Smirnoff vodkas, and $4 Smirnoff shots, and $3 build-your-own-burger. And free karaoke makes this night even better. 7 p.m.-3 a.m. 405 South Howard Ave, Tampa. 813-251-8999; macdintons.com

Wednesdays: World of Beer (all locations)

Half-off select drafts and, if you kill one of the kegs, you'll be the lucky winner of a $10 gift card to spend on even more beer at WOB. Open-close. www.wobusa.com

Fridays: Taps Wine and Beer Eatery

Ladies receive $4 martinis from 5-10 p.m. 777 N. Ashley Dr., Tampa. 813-463-1968, www.tapswineandbeer.com

Tampa Bay Fresh Markets: Click here to see a list of weekly markets in Tampa Bay.

Photo: opacity via Flickr

Thursday, March 3: PRP Wines Warehouse

Taste over 35 exclusive, small vintage international wines — that can't be found in any local stores or restaurants — at this free tasting event benefiting the Easter Seals. Light appetizers, cheese and Godiva chocolates will be served, and there will be a raffle and silent auction. Bring a new or gently used children's book (ages 0-5) and receive a free raffle ticket. All wines will be available for purchase by the bottle. RSVP required. Free; 5:30-8:30 p.m. 5910F Breckenridge Parkway, Tampa (across from Hard Rock Casino), 239-410-8261, prpwine.com

Thursday, March 3: Kona Grill

Enjoy a night at Kona Grill with a live DJ, sushi girls, and a world renowned sushi chef, Takeshi Trinitapoli. Proceeds to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project. Tickets may be purchased by stopping into Kona Grill or emailing [email protected]. $25 in advance, $30 at the door; 6 p.m. 4134 West Boy Scout Blvd, Tampa. 813-877-5938, konagrill.com

Thursday, March 3: Whole Foods Market

It’s going to be a battle royal in your mouth, as the top contenders from wine country battle it out on your palette. Who will reign supreme? Will it be a flashy Napa Cabernet, or will a rustic old world French syrah come out as the top dog. To find out you have to be there – just bring your thirst and love of great wine. Class limited to 30 people; register by the exit lobby or by emailing [email protected]. Free; 6:30-7:30 p.m.

Thursday, March 3: SideBern's

Attend this exclusive, six-course whiskey pairing dinner which will feature the award-winning Compass Box Scotch Whiskeys. Guest speaker Mark Pruckner will present each whiskey and discuss the methods of distillation and aging techniques unique to each bottle. Purchase tickets online here. $125 (all Inclusive); 6:30 p.m. 2208 West Morrison Ave, Tampa. 813-258-2233, sideberns.com


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