Beer events coming up
Beer lovers take note: Two events that you'll want to put on your calendar are coming up soon.
Omaha Beer Week begins Feb. 3. Local craft beer bars, retailers and breweries are teaming for 10 days of beery events.
Each participating business has its own calendar of events during Beer Week, and a joint event, the Craft Beer Bus Crawl, is slated for Feb. 4 from noon to midnight.
People can ride a free bus between locations, and a special pint glass will be for sale at most participating establishments. Buying the glass earns you discounts and admission to special tastings. The current list of participating businesses includes Beertopia, Brass Monkey, Brix, Crescent Moon Ale House, Empyrean Brewing Company, Jake's Cigars & Spirits, Krug Park Beers & Bloody Marys, Gator O'Malley's, House of Loom, Huber Haus German Bier Hall, Lauter Tun, Lucky Bucket Brewing Company, Max & Joe's Belgian Tavern, Mojo Smoke House and Ales, Nebraska Brewing Company and both locations of the Upstream Brewing Company.
For more information, visit omahabeerweek.com.
Contest has burger diversity
Blanc Burgers and Bottles is six weeks into its Burger Wars contest and the first six winning burgers vary widely.
The winners so far: Jeffery Bose's "Tribute to Germany," a six-ounce marinated beef patty topped with beer bratwurst, sauerkraut, smoked Gouda and Blanc mustard on a pretzel bun; Kristal Walenz's "The Sophisticate," an eight-ounce Kobe patty topped with Gruyere cheese, mayo, red onion, tomato, watercress and a balsamic reduction sauce on a focaccia roll; Mike Roach's "Chipotle BBQ," a six-ounce patty topped with Anaheim peppers, cheddar, pepper jack cheese, french-fried onion strings and chipotle barbecue sauce on an onion brioche bun; Beverly Rodriguez's "The Luci(fer)," an eight-ounce patty topped with sport peppers (a small hot pepper packed in vinegar), pepper jack cheese, bacon and creamy barbecue sauce on a four-seed brioche bun; Bryan Arntz's "The Spin Dip," an eight-ounce patty stuffed with creamy spinach dip and topped with cream cheese aioli, Parmesan crostini, arugula and a balsamic reduction on a four-seed brioche bun; and Clinton Baker's "The Country-Fried Burger," a six-ounce beer-battered patty that's deep-fried and served on an open-face onion brioche bun topped with mashed potatoes, country gravy and fried shoestring onions.
To enter the contest, post your recipe to the Blanc Facebook page, facebook.com/BlancOmaha, by Saturday morning to be considered for the following Friday's menu. Burgers posted after the Saturday deadline will be considered for the following week.
The restaurant will make the top three burgers for the Blanc staff, and they will choose the top two. Those two will be on the menu each Friday from 2 p.m. to closing. Whichever one sells the most is that week's winner.
The contest continues in the same fashion every week through March 15. All of the weekly finalists and the two highest-ranked runners-up will then compete in a Sweet 16 burger bracket during March Madness for the chance to win a to-be-determined grand prize.
All the weekly winners will get a $15 Blanc gift card, the chance to give their winning recipe a name and their picture on the wall of the restaurant.
Healthy heart day
A chef, a cardiologist and a nutritionist are helping people celebrate a "heart healthy" Valentine's Day with a special cooking demonstration.
Alegent Health's Lakeside Hospital will play host to "Heart Healthy Cooking" on Feb. 8 at 6 p.m. Chef Jared Clarke of Blue Agave will prepare a crispy yellow corn tostada with poached shrimp, a roasted sweet potato and chipotle soup, pork tenderloin with Mexican stir-fried rice and agave papaya sorbet.
Dr. Eric Van De Graaff, an Alegent Health cardiologist, will talk about heart health, and registered dietitian Toni Kuehneman will answer nutrition questions.
The event is $15 per person or $25 per couple. For more information or to register for the class, visit www.alegent.com/hhc or call 800-253-4368.
Happy third birthday
Lucky Bucket Brewery is turning three years old and is having a party in the Old Market.
On Friday, the brewery will celebrate at Havana Garage with appetizers, beer and a special gift for the first 50 people in the door.
Lucky Bucket brews will be specially priced for the evening to allow guests to try the brewery's different varieties. Lucky Bucket also will unveil its newest year-round bottled beer. The celebration begins at 7 p.m. at the bar, 1008 Howard St.
Hy-Vee wine dinner
Hy-Vee is playing host to a special winemaker's dinner on Feb. 3.
The dinner, which will be held at Castle Barrett, 4330 Leavenworth St., will feature dinner and a wine-signing event with winemaker Mark Stupich from Kenwood wines.
The menu includes a classic bruschetta, crab cakes, winter harvest soup, mustard crusted tenderloin and a chocolate dessert. Each course will be paired with a Kenwood wine, and the list includes white, red and sparkling selections.
The dinner is $60 per person. Pre-registration is required, and all the proceeds from the dinner will be donated to a local charity. The doors will open at 6:30 p.m., and the dinner begins at 7.
To register or for more information, call 402-384-8495.
Guide to restaurants
Sarah Baker Hansen's first book, "The Insider's Guide to Omaha and Lincoln," includes her take on more than 150 restaurants. Buy it online at owhstore.com or in the lobby of the Omaha World-Herald building at 13th and Douglas Streets.