This is a great week for thrifty food fans, as you could easily fill your calendar with back-to-back events that give you tons of gastronomic bang for your buck -- and in one strange case, no buck(s) (but perhaps a beak) required! Not only is Flavor Palm Beach in full effect for several more weeks but you'll also find special events this week that give you a chance to try a wide variety of restaurants and wines for a reasonable and fixed price point. Read on to learn more about six food and drink events this week in Broward and Palm Beach counties:
Tastemakers at Mizner Park -- This high-end all-you-can-eat concept clocks in at an affordable price. For a $30 ticket, you can sample all kinds of goodies from restaurants in Mizner Park, including the Dubliner, Racks Downtown Eatery and Tavern, and Uncle Julio's. The event is 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday.
Kick Off Your Heels Cocktail Party -- The supergirly cocktail gathering from 7 to 10 p.m. at Caliente Kitchen exudes (at least on paper) a pampered-princess vibe with "My Skinny Senorita" margaritas, mojitos, and daiquiris and "light" appetizers, but proceeds will benefit the worthy efforts of Think Pink Rocks, which aims to put an end to breast cancer. Tickets cost $25, but if you bring a superdooper clean piece of designer women's clothing or an accessory, you'll get $5 off admission.
New Times Fourth-Annual Pairings -- Three guesses as to where the New Times crew will be chilling (or feverishly working/eating/drinking) Thursday evening, and the first two don't count. There are still tickets left for this foodie paradise, which teams eats from dozens of South Florida's hottest restaurants with complementing beverages. Pairings is 7 to 11 p.m. at Broward Center for the Performing Arts -- spring for the VIP ticket and delve into the world of gluttony at 6 p.m. Get your tickets online and save yourself some time and $$ at the door. Not sure where to begin once you get inside? Our food critic, Melissa McCart, offers suggestions on five dishes to try at Pairings.
The Grand Reopening of Whale Raw Bar and Fish House -- Face-lifts are simply a part of South Florida living -- maintenance, darling -- and restaurants are certainly no exception. The Whale Raw Bar and Fish House will be showing off its nipped and tucked self with a party from 5 to 11 p.m. with free samplings of new menu items and a look at the revived space. A raffle will be held to raise money for Boca Helping Hands, and you'll hear live tunes. Happy hour from 5 to 6 p.m. comes with two magic words: Open. Bar.
Free food at Pollo Tropical -- Willing to sell your dignity for free stuff? Yeah, same here. As luck would have it, September 15 is National Chicken Lovers Day, which is not, as the name would suggest, a day to recognize the special bond between a man and his feathered friend but rather a tribute to those who enjoy the consumption of said poultry. Dress in yellow from beak to tail, head to a participating Pollo Tropical, go inside to a counter (this part is important, since there must be witnesses), and cluck like a chicken to receive a free quarter-chicken meal. More humbling than finding a frequently viewed YouTube clip of yourself enthusiastically performing the Chicken Dance at your cousin's wedding last spring? Only you can decide. The deal runs 2 to 7 p.m.
Mexican Independence Day -- Rocco Mangel -- he of Rocco's Tacos and Tequila Bar fame -- may not need a ton of excuses to throw a party, but September 16 is certainly apt nonetheless. All three South Florida locations of the eponymous chef's restaurants -- Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach -- will host entertainment and drink and food specials from 4 p.m. to close.
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Down the Line:
We'll be back Thursday with a look at more events happening this weekend in Broward and Palm Beach counties. Want to be the first to know about upcoming events and specials? Sign up to receive New Times' weekly dining newsletter, Cafe Bites. Other specialty newsletters focus on music, arts and culture events, and free stuff! Check them out, and sign up here.