Tuesday, October 21
If you love wine but still can’t tell one grape from another, consider GiraMondo Wine’s beginners wine class, which will explain major wine regions and their differences, pairing food and wine, and etiquette. Participants will taste six wines with cheese and crackers. Appetizers will be served at the end of class, which is $54 a person and held from 6:30 to 8 at the Whitemore House (1526 New Hampshire Ave., NW). For reservations, call 301-841-7609.
Wednesday, October 22
Celebrate our area’s farmers with an evening showcasing the Chesapeake region’s freshest food, hosted by Edible Chesapeake magazine and the Local Food Project. Participants can sample Virginia wines and appetizers made with locally sourced ingredients, and there will also be drawings for door prizes and take-home bags with advice on how to eat locally. The event, which is $40 a person, runs from 7 to 9 at Georgetown’s Letelier Theater (3251 Prospect St., NW). For reservations, call 301-675-2299 or click here.
Thursday, October 23
A four-course wine dinner at BlackSalt (4883 MacArthur Blvd., NW) highlights the wines of Austria’s Kirchmayr family, known for its Grüner Veltliners and Rieslings. The dinner, which is $98 a person, runs from 6:30 to 9:30. For reservations, call 202-342-9101.
Friday, October 24, and Friday, October 31
Sleepy from all of that wine tasting? Try coffee-cupping. Boutique roastery Caffé Pronto (2329 Forest Dr., Annapolis) has dedicated October to free sniffings and tastings of its handcrafted cups of coffee. Stop by for a gratis caffeine jolt between 2 and 3. Click here for more.
Friday, October 24
The Joan Hisaoka “Make a Difference” Gala honors the founder of Hisaoka Public Relations, who died of cancer earlier this year. The black-tie dinner, with a four-course menu overseen by Equinox’s Todd and Ellen Gray, will be followed by a live auction featuring a number of local restaurants such as Citronelle, Vidalia, CityZen, and Marcel’s. The gala, which begins at 6, will be held at the Ritz-Carlton, Washington, D.C. (1150 22nd St., NW). Tickets are $500 a person, and proceeds benefit the Smith Farm Center for Healing and the Arts. For tickets, contact Jacquelyne Willis at 202-237-0090, ext. 28.
If you’re looking to learn more about bubbly (or are just in the mood for a whole lot of the stuff) join wine expert Hugues Mialhe for a tasting of Blanc de Blancs, a Champagne made purely from Chardonnay grapes. Part of the French Wine Society’s “Grands Vins” series, the seminar will be held at the Sofitel Lafayette Square (806 15th St., NW) and will include tastings of ten Blanc de Blancs, ranging from nonvintage to vintage. The event, which is $99 a person, runs from 6:30 to 8. Call 202-466-0808 for more information.
Saturday, October 25
The Smithsonian Resident Associates program holds Oktoberfest at the Brickskeller (1523 22nd St., NW). Horst Dornbusch, German beer expert and author of Prost: The Story of German Beer, will lead a discussion and tasting focusing on the beers of Bavaria. He’ll cover everything from Bavaria’s 1518 Beer Purity Law to its modern beer scene. Tastings include beers from artisanal breweries such as Brauerei Zotler, which dates back to 1447. The event, which is $65 for Resident Associate members and $82 for nonmembers, runs from 1 to 4:30. For tickets and more, call 202-633-3030.
Sunday, October 26
Spend the morning touring a 28-acre public garden and historic site during the Smithsonian Resident Associates program’s Fall Harvest at Green Spring Gardens (4603 Green Spring Rd., Alexandria). Horticulturist Cindy Brown first will demonstrate how to use seasonal fruits and vegetables to create a fall feast. Then guests can tour the gardens before settling in for a traditional high tea, where finger sandwiches and scones with clotted cream will be served. The event, which is $59 for Resident Associate members and $79 for nonmembers, runs from 10 to 1:30. For reservations, call 202-633-3030.
Celebrate Diwali, India’s “festival of light,” with street snacks, live music, and a henna artist on the terrace of Indique Heights (2 Wisconsin Cir., Chevy Chase). The event, which is $20 a person, runs from noon to 8 PM. Call 301-656-4822 for more information.