The Week in Food Events: Cochon 555, St. Patrick’s Day Festivities, and the DC Craft Beer Festival

Plus cherry blossom season begins with the Pink Tie Party.

Chef Mike Isabella dishes up porky treats at a past Cochon 555 party. Photograph by Jeff Martin.

Birthday happy hour: Boqueria celebrates its third anniversary in Dupont with an all-night happy hour on Monday. Drop in for discounts on wines, sangria, and specialty cocktails, as well as a selection of tapas.

Head to trotter: Looking for an adventurous night out? If so, head to the Pig on Monday and Tuesday at 7 for the final dinner in a series focusing on whole animal butchery. The menu features a variety of unusual offal dishes, such as Filipino-style crispy pig intestine and Indian duck giblet curry, all paired with a beer or wine. Tickets ($70, not including tax or gratuity) are available online.

Barbecue pop-up: Brookland’s Finest teams up with Sloppy Mama’s food truck for a week-long barbecue pop-up menu at the restaurant starting on Monday. Drop in for an a la carte menu of smoked wings, pulled pork sandwiches, and ribs with mac n’ cheese and slaw. There’s also a weekly three-course beer dinner on Tuesday with DC Brau ($35 per person).

Happy St. Patrick’s Day: The green beer was flowing this weekend, but the real Irish holiday is on Tuesday and plenty of bars and restaurants are still celebrating. Check out our St. Patrick’s Day guide for parties like the Dubliner‘s all-day bash, corned beef and Irish whiskey at Star & Shamrock, a special three-course menu at BLT Steak, and more.

Rum class: Redwood hosts their last cocktail class on Tuesday at 7. The evening focuses on the history, production, and popular use of rums. Participants will learn about the spirit by mixing and sampling various recipes. Tickets ($25) are available online.

Moonshine night: Leave the bathtub gin at home and head out for a moonshine tasting on Wednesday. Guests snack on light bites while learning more about “the beverage of the mountains.” Distillers like Sonoma County Distilling and Catoctin Creek will be on hand with their own brews. Tickets ($45) are available online.

Pink tie party: One of the biggest events of the spring party season happens on Thursday at the Ronald Reagan Building: the annual Pink Tie Party, a celebration of the National Cherry Blossom Festival. Local chefs will be on hand with samples of their sweet and savory dishes, and an auction offers the chance to win weekend getaways and special culinary experiences among other items. Tickets ($225-$300) are available online.

Pork pre-games: Cochon 555 goes down on Sunday (see below), but if you can’t wait for the big event, there are two official pre-parties. First up on Friday, Bluejacket/the Arsenal throws a Chef’s Series dinner at 7, where talents like host chef Kyle Bailey and Spike Gjerde (Woodberry Kitchen) prepare a paired five-course dinner ($100 per person). Then on Saturday Del Campo serves a large-format feast at 7 with the theme “big beef vs. heritage pig” ($130.95 per person).

Cocktail dinner: Can’t get enough of Catoctin Creek in one week? Join distillery owners Scott and Becky Harris on Friday at 6:30 for an evening of whiskey, history, and dining. The event begins at 6:30 with a tour their Purcellville, Virginia distillery that’s been in operation for more than a hundred years. Chefs Wes Rosati and Maria Aros prepare a four-course meal afterwards. Tickets ($99 not including tax or gratuity) are available online.

Paella class: Javier Romero of Taberna del Alabardero hosts a paella class on Saturday from 10 to 2. Learn the art of making the Spanish rice dish while sampling five of chef Romero’s specialities. The class includes a recipe book and a glass of wine or sangria. Tickets ($100 all inclusive) are available online.

Beer festival: Join brewmasters from DC and all over the country on Saturday at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center for a day of tastings and seminars at the DC Craft Beer Festival. Guests sip unlimited two-ounce samplings from 75 breweries; some will feature newly-released beers. Participating producers include Old Ox, Port City, and Allagash, among many others. Tickets ($50 to 75) for both sessions are available online.

Oyster festival: Take a road trip this weekend to Madison, Virginia (near Charlottesville) for Early Mountain Vineyards‘s annual bivalve festival. The winery teams up with Rappahannock Oyster Company on Saturday from 11 to 5 for a day of eating and drinking. Guests can order crab cakes, fresh oysters on the half shell, oyster chowder, and a small selection of picnic items (priced a la carte). Ti
($12 in advance, $15 on site) include a wine tasting and a commemorative glass.

Pig party: One of the most popular food events of the season goes down on Sunday at Union Market: Cochon 555, a national pork-filled competition that stops in Washington each year. A lineup of top chefs including Spike Mendelsohn of Bearnaise, Victor Albisu (Del Campo, Taco Bamba) and Vidalia‘s Jeffrey Buben roll out their best heritage pig dish, which guests can wash down with a variety of wines, beers, and craft spirits. The prize is big (which can mean good eating for attendees), as the winner goes on to the final competition in Aspen. Tickets ($130-300) are available online.