May is a busy month. There's Cinco de Mayo, the Kentucky Derby, Mother's Day and the fact that it's National Burger Month to consider. Meanwhile, restauranteurs and chefs are creating events to attract even part-time foodies. This month, it's a mixture of business and pleasure. Below, find 15 of the best events to check out this month.
Freddy Smalls Bar + Kitchen Hosts a Derby Day Celebration
When: Saturday, May 5, from noon until 4 PM
Where: Freddy Smalls Bar + Kitchen; 11520 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90064
What: First celebrate Derby Day and then celebrate that other big holiday. $8 mint juleps (classic, blackberry and maple) and $15 fried chicken sandwiches will do the trick.
How: Walk-ins are welcome.
Momed's Anniversary Specials
When: Saturday, May 5 and Sunday, May 6
Where: Momed; 233 S. Beverly Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90212
What: This South Beverly favorite is offering diners a gratis glass of sparkling Segura Viudas Cava with the purchase of the prix fixe brunch or the Tajine special.
How: Walk-ins are welcome.
When: Sunday, May 6
Where: The House of Blues; 8430 W. Sunset Blvd.,
West Hollywood, CA 90069
What: You don't know PIG if you haven't been to Cochon. This year, Chad Colby (Mozza), Ben Ford (Ford's Filling Station), Neal Fraser and Travis Lorton (Strand House), Jason Neroni (Superba Snack Bar), and Micah Wexler (Mezze) compete by each creating five dishes made from all parts of their own heritage pig. There's wine too, of course.
How: Tickets are actually still available for purchase online.
The Clooney Combination
When: Through Monday, May 7
Where: Locanda del Lago; 231 Arizona Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90401
What: Locanda del Lago's cuisine is inspired by the region of Italy surrounding Lake Como. Everyone knows George Clooney lives there part of the year. In honor of Clooney's birthday, Locanda del Lago is presenting a small menu available for just $19.61 (Clooney's birth year, of course).
How: Walk-ins welcome.
When: May 8; May 21, 22
Where: Good Girl Dinette; 110 N. Avenue 56, Los Angeles, CA 90042
What: The notorious Laurent Quenioux continues to pop-up this month at Good Girl Dinette. Besides the ant larvea, LQ is also making foie. Complete menu here.
How: Reservations are required.
Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
When: Thursday, May 10 from 2 - 6 PM
Where: Participating Locations Only
What: It's Coffee Bean's summer Open House. 12oz Cookies & Cream Ice Blended or Mocha Mudslide Ice Blended are $1 each.
How: Open to the public, at participating locations only.
UCLA's Anderson School Presents: The key challenges, breakthroughs and findings from starting a business in the competitive restaurant space
When: Friday, May 11
Where: UCLA Anderson School
What: Chefs and restauranteurs gather together for a panel discussion on the industry's high failure rate (upwards of 95%). They will share stories of success and the challenges they faced when embarking on this career path. The panel includes: Fran Camaj (Gjelina), Terry Heller (Plan Check) and a food trucker, Aarti Kanodia (Crispy Waffle and Frite). Jeffrey Faust and Woogene Lee (Fundamental LA) will moderate.
How: Register online.
LA Vegan Beer & Food Fest
When: Saturday, May 12, from 12 to 5 PM
Where: The Roxy; 9009 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90069
What: Tony's Darts Away, QuarryGirl.com and the Roxy present the 3rd Annual LA Vegan Beer Fest. There will be a beer garden with Golden Road Brewing, Sierra Nevada and Green Flash, among others. Vegan food will be served as well.
How: Tickets available for purchase in advance.
C.H.E.F.S. Host Foie Gras "Battles"
When: Monday, May 14, 5:30 PM
Where: Mélisse, The Royce at The Langham, Lemon Moon, Animal
What: Chefs at Mélisse, The Royce at The Langham, Lemon Moon and Animal, will simultaneously host a six-course prix fixe dinner to support sustainable farming practices and “the whole duck.”
How: Reservations must be secured in advance. $200 per person; $150 per person for Lemon Moon only, inclusive of tax and gratuity
Michael's Market Meet-Up: Blood Oranges and Wild Fennel
When: Wednesday, May 16, 2012, 8:30 to 11:30 AM
Where: Michael's; 1147 3rd St., Santa Monica, CA 90403
What: Michael's monthly market meet-ups aren't just a shopping excursion through the Santa Monica Farmers Market, they're also a lesson in how to prepare the month's best produce. Bonus: story time from Michael and plenty of wine before noon.
How: Reservations are required: 310-451-0843
St. John’s Well Child and Family Center’s “The Movable Feast”
When: Saturday, May 19, from 3 to 6 PM
Where: Union Station; 800 N. Alameda St.,
Los Angeles, CA 90012
What: A long line up of benefit restaurant tastings start with St. John's this month. Participating restaurants include: Mohawk Bend, The Gorbals, Starry Kitchen, Canele, Pitfire Pizza, Takami, Red Hill, and Pazzo Gelato, among others.
How: Tickets must be purchased in advance.
Sushi Cooking Class
When: Saturday, May 19
Where: Sushi Institute of America; 843 E. 4th St.,
Los Angeles, CA 90013
What:Learn to make how to make Nigiri, rolls and several other Japanese savory items.
How: Tickets are $80 per person.
Pop-Up at Colburn Cafe
When: Sunday, May 20, 6 PM
Where: Colburn Cafe; 200 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012
What:Jet Tila (The Charleston) pops-up at The Colburn School this month. This is a continuation of Tila's Bistronomics tour. $60 per person includes a five-course menu and performances by some talented kids.
How: Reservations are recommended 213-621-4515.
Trap Door Dining
When: Monday, May 21
What:Kenny Seliger (Wirsthaus) launches Trapdoor Dining. The concept, unrelated to Wirsthaus, has been described as a five-course "head to tail fin" menu.
How: $59 per person. Reservations must be requested via email.
LAMB ROAST NIGHT AT LUCQUES
When: Monday, May 21, 2012, 6 to 9 PM
Where: Lucques; 8474 Melrose Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90048
What: Goin and Styne bring back the Lamb Roast. Goin’s three course dinner, with spit-roasted Windrose Farm lamb as the main dish, is priced at $75 per person.
How: Reservations are recommended: 323-655-6277