Things To Do

South Florida's Best Eats and Drinks This Week: Bangin' Banjo Pairing Dinner, Barista Throw Down, Earth Day, and More

Around and around we go; today is the start to yet another lovely workweek. Hopefully, you have a bit of a spring in your step from some indulgent weekend activities. If not, don't fret; there are still plenty of events to keep you busy through your working days. Whether you're looking to sample some wine, beer, or coffee during a pairing dinner, learn how to pair cheese and beer, or want to attend a Mexican cooking class, there's something to do in Broward and Palm Beach counties this week.


Kegs & Cultures Beer & Cheese Pairings With Funky Buddha Brewery
Cheese plus beers equals "cheers." On Monday, April 20 the Fort Lauderdale Whole Foods Market will host a beer and cheese pairing dinner with Funky Buddha Brewery. Once each month through July, the cheesemongers from Whole Foods Market and beer experts from Funky Buddha Brewery will team up to pair beer and cheese. Learn and taste all about the beer and cheese from the experts themselves. The class on April 20th is at Funky Buddha Brewery. Half of the proceeds benefit Whole Planet Foundation. Space is limited to the first 30 customers, ages 21 and up. The event is $15 per person, and takes place from 7 to 9 p.m. To purchase tickets, visit

Wine Dinner at Valentino
Valentino, chef-owner Giovanni Rocchio's fine dining Italian restaurant located in Fort Lauderdale, will be hosting a wine pairing dinner on Monday, April 20. Guests will be given the opportunity to enjoy expertly planned dishes created by Rocchio and his chef de cuisine Jimmy Everett. Each dish will be paired with a complementary wine. The menu will include poached Maine lobster, chilled melon gazpacho, ricotta, green strawberries, and basil paired with a 2013 Cascina Del Pozzo Roero Arneis; cured duck breast, black plums, licorice, and bitter greens paired with a 2012 Fattoria Montellori Chianti; and English pea ravioli with spiced lamb ragu paired with a 2011 Fattoria Montellori “Caselle” Superiore; and roasted monkfish, braised oxtail, pearl onion, and spring garlic paired with a 2010 Claudio Alario “Sorano” Barolo. End with a passion fruit panna cotta, mango sorbet, and white chocolate chantilly shortbread paired with an Azienda Agricola Bocchino 2013 “Sori Dei Fiore” Moscato. The dinner is $150 per person. Limited seating is available. Call 954-523-5767.


Tucker Duke's Bangin' Banjo Brewing Beer Dinner
This is a beer dinner that can't be missed. Why? It provides the opportunity to sample one of the newest breweries of South Florida before they open, paired with food from one of South Florida's hottest new gastropubs, Tucker Duke's Lunchbox in Deerfield Beach. This beer dinner pairs innovative dishes from Tucker Duke's Lunchbox with the core brews from Bangin’ Banjo Brewery, soon to open in Pompano Beach. The four-coruse beer pairing dinner takes place from 7 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $55 per person, available for purchase on

Speed Networking at Maggiano's Little Italy in Boca Raton

You've heard of speed dating, but this is your chance to try speed networking. Join the Business Professionals of Pulse for their April Speed Networking event where you can connect with other Boca Raton professionals to grow your business. The event features a special non-member promotional price of $10, which includes a beer or wine ticket and appetizers. The event starts at 5:30 p.m. Register online, or pay $15 at the door. Maggiano's is located at 21090 St. Andrews Blvd., Boca Raton. Call 561-361-8244.

Grand Opening: Local Farmer's Market at Whole Foods Market West Palm Beach
This week marks the grand opening of the weekly farmers' market at the new Whole Foods Market in West Palm Beach. Every Tuesday, from 4 to 8 p.m., beginning April 21, Whole Foods Market will be hosting a number of local artisan food crafters in the parking lot. Over 30 vendors will be on-site featuring locally grown produce, homemade products, and other unique goodies not found at any other grocery store. Whole Foods Market will be kicking off the farmer's market with a traditional bread breaking ceremony and the first 100 customers to enter the market will receive a free reusable shopping bag.


Earth Day Dinner at Bistro Ten Zero One
Celebrate Earth Day with a party in the garden hosted by Bistro Ten Zero One in West Palm Beach. On April 22, from 6 to 8 p.m., the restaurant will be honoring Earth Day with a special dinner highlighting farm fresh ingredients straight from Bistro's onsite garden. Executive chef Mark Henry has created a full menu featuring local and seasonal ingredients, and stations will be set up throughout the garden for sampling. Wine, beer, and seasonal cocktails will also be included. The event is $45 per person (plus tax and gratuity), or $22.50 children ages 5-12. RSVP by visiting, or call 561-833-1234. 

Barista Throw Down at Oceana Coffee
Local baristas will gather for this month’s Thursday Night Throwdown on Wednesday, April 22, at 6:30 p.m. at Oceana Coffee’s newest coffee lounge at 150 North U.S. Highway One in Tequesta. The competition will determine who creates the best latte art and most creative coffee concoction! Each contestant has four minutes to create as many lattes as they can and show the celebrity judges their most beautiful latte art. The contestants can also come prepared with their most creative coffee drink recipe and compete for creativity and taste. This month’s celebrity judges will include Denise Castronovo from Castronovo Chocolate and Roy Villacrusis, the chef-owner at the soon to open Nitrogen Bar Grill & Sushi in Jupiter. Spectators can make their opinion count with $2 people’s choice votes for best art and best tasting coffee drink. Each Throwdown contestant pays a $5 entry fee. The top three winners receive cash and prizes. Expect lively competition and amazing Oceana Coffee. Call 561-401-2453.

Mexican Cooking Class at Whole Foods Market in Pompano Beach

On Monday, April 20, at 6:30 p.m. join the Whole Foods Market healthy eating specialist Lisa and department specialist Hope as they demonstrate how to make a variety of healthy Mexican dishes just in time for Cinco de Mayo. The event is free, and all class participants will not only get to learn how to make tasty Mexican cuisine, but will also get to taste everything they make in class. Register at customer service, or call 954-786-3500 to reserve a spot.


Wellington Food Truck Invasion
For the most part, invasions tend to have rather negative connotations. Have you ever heard of anyone being excited about a home invasion? Unlikely. On the other hand, we highly doubt anyone would be upset about being invaded by boatloads — or truckloads — of delicious food. Well, it’s time to prepare your appetites, because the Food Truck Invasion is about to take over Wellington. On the second and fourth Thursday of each month, the Wellington Amphitheatre hosts a food truck round-up from 5 to 9 p.m. Featured trucks include Bite Gastrotruck, Grill Master Café, Palate Party, and Sweet Sensations. The roundup is free to attend, and food will be available for purchase from individual trucks. The Wellington Amphitheatre is located at 12150 Forest Hill Blvd. in Wellington. Visit

Nicole Danna is a food writer covering Broward and Palm Beach counties. To get the latest in food and drink news in South Florida, follow her @SoFloNicole or find her latest food pics on the BPB New Times Food & Drink Instagram.