Cincinnati Food + Wine Classic Good Spirits — Get a sneak peak of September’s second annual Cincinnati Food + Wine Classic at Good Spirits, a paired cocktail dinner party featuring mixology and bites from the crew at Metropole. The party will be held at New Riff Distillery’s bar and outdoor patio, and will celebrate the recent release of the distillery’s Kentucky Wild Gin. Cincinnati Food + Wine Classic will also release the names of local, regional and national chefs, beverage experts, winemakers and storytellers booked for their 2015 event. 6-8 p.m. Monday. $25. 24 Distillery Way, Newport, Ky., cincinnatifoodandwineclassic.com.
Crawfish Boil — BrewRiver GastroPub flies crawfish in from Louisiana for a weekly Tuesday night crawfish boil. Buy them by the pound; includes potato, mushroom and sausage. $15 per pound. 2062 Riverside Drive, East End, brewrivergastropub.com.
How to Make a Steak — Precinct sous chef John Ruppel teaches this class. 6:30-9 p.m. $65. Cooks’Wares, 11344 Montgomery Road, Harper’s Point, cookswaresonline.com.
Homemade Pasta Workshop — Chef Bridget Lieb will teach you to make your own linguini using an Italian manual countertop pasta machine, and then finish it with a delicious Sauce. Noon-2 p.m. $70. The Learning Kitchen, 7659 Cox lane, West Chester, 513-847-4474, thelearningkitchen.com.
Lebanese Favorites — Learn some family-recipe Lebanese cuisine from Rita Heikenfeld, and learn some tips for growing the best produce, flower and herbs in containers or in the ground from Ron Wilson. 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. $50. Jungle Jim’s, 5440 Dixie Highway, Fairfield, junglejims.com.
Clean Eating & Label Reading — Chef Bridget Lieb will discuss what clean eating actually is and how to spot processed ingredients. In class you will prepare a soul-warming chicken soup with avocado, egg-fried quinoa with chicken, and snap peas with shallots. Noon-2 p.m. $65. The Learning Kitchen, 7659 Cox lane, West Chester, 513-847-4474, thelearningkitchen.com.
Lebanese Favorites — Learn some family-recipe Lebanese cuisine from Rita Heikenfeld. 6-8:30 p.m. $65. Jungle Jim’s, 5440 Dixie Highway, Fairfield, junglejims.com.
Taste of the World Food Tour — Take a guided foodie tour of Ohio’s oldest public market, Findlay Market. Includes stops and tastings at six merchants. 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Wednesdays; 3-4:30 p.m. Saturdays. $20. Meets at Daisy Mae’s Market at Findlay Market, 1801 Race St., Over-the-Rhine, cincinnatifoodtours.com.
May Beer Dinner at Christian Moerlein — A paired beer dinner featuring brews from Revolution Brewing. 6 p.m. $55. Moerlein Lager House, 115 Joe Nuxhall Way, The Banks, Downtown, facebook.com/moerleinlagerhouse.
Burger and Beer Wednesdays — A burger and a pint for $10. 9:30 p.m.-midnight. Fifty West Brewing Company, 7668 Wooster Pike, Mariemont, fiftywestbrew.com.
Pints for Paint — #PintsforPaint is a fundraising effort to benefit Memorial Hall's renovations; buy a drink, the money goes to Memorial Hall. 6 p.m. Free; buy alcohol. Memorial Hall, 1225 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine, facebook.com/events/425141254331782.
Sushi Bears, located in Findlay Market’s Historic Market House, offers Indian and sushi cooking classes for $80 per couple. Led by experienced chefs, the classes for two show proper cooking techniques and dissolve the mystiques surrounding Indian/Asian food cuisines over an hour and a half. You get to choose between the two cuisines and (of course!) there are vegetarian and vegan options for both — just be sure to tell the chef when you schedule your class.
In an effort to curb the copious amounts of money I spend on Indian take-out every month, I opted to take my date to the Indian food class. I scheduled our cooking class on a Wednesday; Findlay is pretty calm during the week (I wouldn’t recommend the weekend because it’s busier and noisier), and coupled with the warm weather, the mood was perfect. Inspired by the market’s intimate atmosphere, I was ready to get down on some good cooking.
We walked up to the counter and our chef was getting the food and tools together, ready to teach. With five years of Indian cuisine cooking experience under his belt, Chef Joshua Stewart was knowledgeable, funny and he (somehow) made cooking Indian food seem effortless.
Over the course of 75 minutes we learned about different spices and ingredients used in popular Indian dishes, how to prepare those ingredients and how to make paneer cheese. By the end of the class we made three different dishes: saag paneer (a creamy spinach dish topped with Indian cheese), golden curry (a base sauce used in around half of all Indian food recipes) and masala (curry with tomato paste and spices). We topped a bowlful of rice with the trifecta of sauces, sprinkled it with homemade cheese and dug in.
In addition to the cooking classes in the Market, the folks at Sushi Bears teach group classes in homes, serve food and drinks to market-dwellers and cater parties and events. Next time you’re at Findlay start off with the wheatgrass lemonade ($2.49), one glass has the same nutritional content as a pound of green leafy vegetables. For a meal try the chicken curry naan-wrap ($5.95) — that’s right, it’s like a burrito, only substitute the tortilla with fluffy naan and a heap of your favorite Indian dish inside. If you’re looking for more traditional Indian cuisine, try the chicken curry meal ($7.95). The portion sizes are pretty big, so be prepared to make some space in your fridge for leftovers.
Judging by the food baby in my date’s stomach (he finished his whole plate), I didn’t need to make room in my fridge. I had a feeling my leftovers would be gone by the end of the evening, and I wouldn’t be the person who ate them. Luckily, Chef Joshua sent me home with a DVD providing step-by-step instructions on the Indian dishes so I can recreate them at home.
Store Hours: 9 a.m.- 6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. Sunday
Full Disclosure: CityBeat's discount gift certificate program, Perkopolis, offers a half-price deal on Sushi Bears rolling classes, though it was not the inspiration for our intern to try out the class. For more information, go here.