For the first time in what feels like forever, we had a pretty awesome -- i.e. sunny -- weekend. Unfortunately, all good things come to end. It's time to head back to the fluorescent lights of your cubicle from the hours of 9 to 5. On the bright side, this week brings some awesome evening food and drink events. Whether you're looking to eat some ice cream, take a cooking class, or attend an awesome Funky Buddha beer dinner, there's something for you to do to minimize your midweek boredom.
Ice Cream Social With a Modern Twist
Ice cream socials are usually reserved for elementary school fundraisers -- not grown-up gourmands. Not anymore. On Monday from 6 to 8 p.m., The Ancient Olive is hosting an ice cream social with a unique twist. Blue Bell ice creams will be paired with gourmet toppings like blood orange olive oil, cinnamon pear balsamic served over Italian cream cake ice cream. Anyone who spends more than $15 on olive oils gets a free pint of ice cream to take home and 60-mL bottle of extra virgin olive oil or balsamic vinegar. The event is free to attend.
Savvy Summer Salads
Salads seem like they should be easy to throw together, but after a while, you're average garden variety gets kind of old. To help healthy eaters amp up the creativity, Publix Aprons Cooking School in Boca Raton is teaching a class on inventive summer salads, including marinated mussel salad: Low-Country boil pasta salad: roasted red pepper, arugula and bulgur salad; and more. The class takes place Tuesday at 6 p.m. The cost to attend is $40 per person.
Publix Apron Cooking School is located at 5050 Champion Blvd. in Boca Raton. Call 561-994-4883, or visit publix.com/aprons.
Back to School Sushi & Bento Boxes
Whether it's made at home or not, school lunches get kind of bland. It's no wonder the little ones want to pig out on Hot Pockets and Dr. Pepper when they get home. Spcie things put by taking the Back to School Sushi & Bento Box class at Whole Foods Market Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. For $20 per person, parents can learn how to make sushi and other Japanese-style lunch boxes.
Whole Foods is located at 2000 N. Federal Highway in Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-565-5655, or visit wholefoodsmarket.com.
Dinners with random groups can be awkward. Fortunately, as with most things in life, wine can ease the pain away. On Wednesday at 7 p.m., Bistro 1001 is hosting a wine dinner. For $40 per person, guests get to sample four-coureses with wines paired to match.
Bistro 1001 is located at 1001 Okeechobee Blvd. in West Palm Beach. Call 561-833-1234, or visit bit.ly/8_14.
Funky Buddha Beer Dinner
Beer is great with just about anything, especially amazing food. On Wednesday at 7 p.m., Hot and Soul is hosting a Funky Buddha beer pairing dinner. For $50 (excluding gratuity), diners get to sample five courses paired with brews from Broward's favorite brewery. Hot and Soul is located at 3045 N. Federal Hwy in Fort Lauderdale. Call 754-206-2155, or visit facebook.com/events.
A Taste of Tuscany
If it's Italian, you know it's going to be good. Tuscan wines are hailed as some of the best in all of Italy -- and the world. Taste them for yourself on Wednesday at 13|Even. From 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., the restaurant will be going through several different reds and whites and offering sample food pairings to match. 13 Even is located at 2037 Wilton Drive in Wilton Manors. Call 954-565-8550, or visit 13-even.com.
New Belgium Debut Party
Beer is definitely a cause to celebrate. To commemorate the Florida launch of New Belgium Brewing in Florida, Smokey Bones BQ & Sports Bar is hosting a New Belgium beer pairing dinner on Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. For $35 per person, guests get to try five-courses, each paired with a New Belgium brew. Each pairing will be guided by a brewmaster.
Smokey Bones BBQ & Sports Bar is located at 809 S. University Drive in Plantation. Call 954-474-3833, or visit smokeybones.com.
Dinner in the Garden
You can't get fresher than straight from the garden. On Thursday at 7 p.m. at Tanzy is hosting a dinner in its herb garden. Executive Chef Andre Lane will be sharing his technique and concept behind the menu with guests. The four-course dinner costs $38 per person with optional wine flight for $20 per guest.
Tanzy is located at 301 Plaza Real in Boca Raton. Call 561-750-3500, or email Caitlin@thegabgroup.com to RSVP.
Wine of Northern Italy
When Americans think of Italian culture, we usually tend to slant toward the south -- most of the Italians that emigrated over came from Naples, Sicily, and other southern Italian ports. Learn something about North Italy, or at least its wines, on Thursday at 6 p.m. at Virginia Philip Wine Shop & Academy. Philip and her staff will be sampling five Northern Italian wines for the cost of $35 per guest.
Virginia Philip Wine Shop & Academy is located at 101 N. Clematis St. in West Palm Beach. Call 561-721-6000, or visit virginiaphilipwineshopacademy.com.
Follow Sara Ventiera on Twitter, @saraventiera.