Monday, November 24
Iron Chef winner Roberta Donna will lead a hands-on cooking class on the cuisine of Rome at his Bebo Trattoria (2250-B Crystal Dr., Arlington). The class, which starts at 6:30, includes a five-course dinner with wine, an apron, and recipes to take home. It’s $110 per person. For reservations, call 703-412-5077.
Tuesday, November 25
Capitol Hill’s Belga Café (514 Eighth St., SE) hosts a dinner and tasting of winter and Christmas beers. Beer sommelier Jens Piferoen will lead the sampling, which will also include an entrée and dessert. The event starts at 6:30 and costs $49 per person. Call 202-544-0100 for reservations.
Hungry for sweets? Cheesetique (2411 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria) in Del Ray hosts chocolatier Eric Johnson of Krishon Chocolates, who’ll offer free samples of his handmade confections. Krishon Chocolates will be discounted 10 percent, and now through Thanksgiving, if you buy 12 bottles of wine, each will be 20 percent off. The tasting runs from 4 to 7.
Thursday, November 27
Check out our Thanksgiving guide, which has restaurant menus, recipes, chefs’ cooking tips, and more.
Friday, November 28, through Friday, January 2
Have you ever seen a life-size gingerbread house? Now’s your chance. The culinary team at the Ritz-Carlton, Pentagon City (1250 S. Hayes St., Arlington) used 187 pounds of butter, 10 pounds of ginger, and 200 pounds of candy to assemble the eight-foot-tall house. Today at 2, the house is officially presented to the public, and guests can walk around inside. The gingerbread house, on the first level of the hotel, will be on display until Friday, January 2. Interested in decorating your own gingerbread house? There are two workshops with pastry chef Noree Hatheway on Saturday, November 29, from 10 to noon and from 1:30 to 3:30. The classes, which include a light lunch buffet, cost $54 for kids and $25 for adults. For additional information, call 703-415-5000.
Saturday, November 29, through Tuesday, January 6
Once Thanksgiving is over, it’ll be time to break out the Christmas decorations. George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens (3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Hwy., Mount Vernon) will be decked out with a dozen Christmas trees, former White House pastry chef Roland Mesnier’s gingerbread replica of Mount Vernon, and a Christmas camel in honor of the one George Washington had in 1787. Guests can also take part in historical-chocolate-making demonstrations. Tickets cost $13 per person; call 703-780-2000 for additional information.
Sunday, November 30
Throwing a holiday party? Wagshal’s Bakery & Catering Kitchen (4845 Massachusetts Ave., NW) is showing off its party-planning skills at an open house from 6 to 8:30. Guests will be able to view more than 100 dishes from the catering menu and sample food and wine. You’ll also have the chance to win free party-staging services from interior designer Belinda Ramos. The event costs $10 per person; call 202-363-0884 for reservations.