by Mabel Suen
It's a hoppin' holiday weekend ripe with colorful festivities and food in the Lou. If May flowers aren't enough of a reason to celebrate the return of sunny skies this spring, look ahead to this weekend for excuses to enjoy the harvest season, like the opening of Clayton Farmers' Market. With Cinco de Mayo and Mother's Day on the radar, plenty of opportunities open up for enjoying plentiful food and drink with friends and family.
Friday (May 6):
16th Annual St. Louis Microfest @ Upper Muny Parking Lot in Forest Park As the ad for this event boldy states: "Get your glass in gear." St. Louis' premiere craft beer tasting returns with over 80 craft beers and 50 international beers. Come for the beer and stick around for the Brewer Olympics, the Homebrew Competition, live music, chef demos and more May 6-8. All proceeds to benefit Lift for Life Gym. $32-47.
Ferguson tornado relief @ participating Ferguson restaurants Enjoyalocal.com and "Dine Ferg" sponsor an evening of eating out to aid recovery and repair efforts of severe storm and tornado damage in the Ferguson neighborhood. Dine out at Ferguson Brewing Co., Marley's Bar and Grill, Cork Wine Bar, Corner Coffee House or Vincenzo's to help - 20% of all sales go to the cause. All day.
Mango Hometown Tour Taste-Off @ Monarch Restaurant and Wine Bar Chef Josh Galliano of Monarch and Chef Nick Miller of Harvest compete to see who can best capture the essence of New American cuisine with mangoes. The National Mango Board and Schnucks have some mango treats and surprises up their sleeves as well. Make reservations here [http://mangostl.eventbrite.com/]. 3:30-5 p.m. Free.
Bullets In the Bathtub Dinner Murder Mystery @ The Lemp Mansion Restaurant Forget dinner and a movie! Try out dinner and a murder! See what trouble is brewing in the setting of a 1920s speakeasy and help solve the case. Call 314-664-8024 for reservations. 7 p.m. $48.95.
Saturday (May 7):
Cinco de Mayo celebration @ Cherokee Street Grab a margarita and enjoy the cultural festivities delayed from last Wednesday. Peep the People's Joy Parade and musical performances in the streets, and dine out at any of many neighborhood restaurants sure to be serving their finest. 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Free.
Opening Day @ Clayton Farmers' Market Enjoy the bounty of newest harvest during the return of this farmers' market to the Clayton neighborhood. Stock up on local fresh fruits and veggies, artisan foods, baked goods, and arts and crafts. Grab a meal or snack from Cha Cha Chow, Straub's Smoker or another fine vendor while you're there. 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Kentucky Bourby Showdown @ ITAP Enjoy the horse race at either the Soulard or Chesterfield ITAP location while enjoying two different stouts: Founders Kentucky Bourbon Stout and Goose Island Bourbon County Stout. See which one pulls ahead of the race! 1 p.m.
4th Rocket to Roxana Party Bus Trip @ The Silver Ballroom Hop on the party bus at The Silver Ballroom to trek down to CP Pinball in South Roxana, Illinois for access to 80 pinball machines on free play. There will be plenty of drinks available both on and off of the bus. Call 314-832-9223 to reserve seats. 7 p.m. $35.
Sunday (May 8):
Mother's Day two-course brunch menu @ Big Sky Cafe Take the opportunity to thank the special woman in your life with a special two-course brunch menu of localized comfort food. Choose from entrees like cinnamon swirl bread pudding and sausage, a house smoked salmon burger, pancakes with fresh strawberry topping and more. Make a reservation by calling 314-962-5757. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. $17.
Mother's Day brunch buffet @ Spazio's Westport Make the meal all-you-can-eat. Russo's Catering provides a wide spread including prime rib, an eggs benedict station, speciality entrees and more for the whole family to enjoy. For reservations, call 314-576-0400. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. $22.95 for adults; $9.95 for children ages 6 to 12.