Dining and Drink

5 events to get your summer started

Treat yourself the first official week of summer

Wednesday, June 21
Need a hump-day pick-me-up? Relax and enjoy a specialty dinner designed to entice and excite. The Coopers Tavern is hosting a Bier Hall Dinner series in true bier hall style with community seating. Coopers Tavern partners with Founders Brewing Company for the dinner that includes three 8 oz. beers and a three-course meal created and cooked by Executive Chef Cooper Booth with the idea of matching and enhancing flavors in each sampled beer. This week’s menu features marinated beet salad with arugula, smoked duck and local oyster mushrooms. $40, 6-9 p.m., thecooperstavern.com

Thursday, June 22
Is wine not your thing? Try out “Utflukt” Happy Hour! Meet the Madison Food Explorers outside the front door of Monona Terrace on Wilson Street (by the flags) to begin this evening excursion. The Explorers have pre-picked three food and drink stops to get your taste buds tingling. The evening will end at the Edgewater on Lake Mendota—stay for dinner if you'd like. $30, 5:30-6:30 p.m., madisonfoodexplorers.com

Taste the world without leaving Madison. Food Fight Restaurant Group is hosting 100 Rieslings on the Rooftop, a wine-tasting where wine-lovers can sample more than 100 styles of Riesling from around the world, hand-picked by sommelier Caitlin Suemnicht, all while lounging at Fresco on the rooftop garden of the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art. Enjoy a panoramic view of the city while sampling cheese pairings and hors d’oeuvres from Fresco Chef Chris Myers. Background grooves will be provided by DJ Nick Nice. Wine vendors will also be available to help explain the many facets and nuances of tasting a riesling. $35, 6-9 p.m., frescomadison.com

Friday, June 23
Congratulations—you made it to the end of the work week. Want to have one of the Best. Fridays. Ever.? Join the party hosted by Allen Centennial Garden every Friday this summer (or maybe just one or two, it’s up to you). Enjoy artisanal food from local food cart vendors; bring your kids, your friends and your appetite!  This Friday’s line-up includes original tunes and covers from University of Wisconsin–Madison student Kevin Clarke, authentic Japanese cuisine from Umami food cart and one-of-a-kind chili pepper products created by Savory Accents. Or kick it old school and roast some marshmallows over the fire—s’mores materials provided. Other activities include watercolor mosaic painting, sidewalk chalk and giant Jenga. 5-8 p.m, allencentennialgarden.org

Saturday, June 24
Campo di Bella is offering a Farm to Table Dinner featuring thinly sliced pork loin with a rhubarb port reduction and endive this Saturday evening. The meal will start with a refreshing summer salad followed by pasta with snap peas and pork lardons along with an artisan cheese board, ending with house-made vanilla ice cream with fresh strawberries. Treat yourself, it’s time to enjoy summer. $55, 6-9 p.m., campodibella.org

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