Cinco de Mayo, Derby Day and First Friday are only a few of the excuses to get out and get your drink on this weekend. Besides that, rejoice over the bounty of a new farmers' market season in Tower Grove Park, celebrate Big Sky Cafe's 21st anniversary or take a tour or class this weekend. Details on all of the above and more await after the jump, dear food fanatics.
Friday (May 3):
First Friday @ Contemporary Art Museum DJs Boogieman and Invisible Cola perform a set to accompany CAM's current exhibit. A cash bar and eats by Kitchen Kulture are available to fuel walks to other Grand Center arts organizations that also open to the public. Free. 5 to 9 p.m.
Grapes and the Garden @ Missouri Botanical Garden Sample over 100 wines and hor d'oeuvres while grooving to live music. Tickets cost $45 for general admission and include a souvenir wine glass. Make a reservation online via the Missouri Botanical Garden website. 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Saturday (May 4):
Harvest Sessions @ Tower Grove Farmers' Market TGFM returns (hooray!) along with another series of KDHX's free Harvest Sessions concerts. Bask in the glory of beautiful local goods and produce to the tunes of the Lodge Brothers, the Trio Project and Rough Shop Trio. Admission is free. The market season's inaugural event features extended shopping hours from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., with music from 10 a.m. to noon.
Pasta La Vista, Baby @ Kitchen Conservatory Chef Bernard Pilon of Norwood Hills Country Club leads this hands-on class in preparing shrimp-stuffed tortellini, pork jowl and fresh egg carbonara sauce, spinach gnocchi with oyster mushrooms and ravioli with egg yolk. $60 per person. Register online through the Kitchen Conservatory website. 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Cinco de Mayo @ Cherokee Street and more Head down to Cherokee at 11 a.m. for the People's Joy Parade and then use this guide to restaurants on Cherokee Street to find some grub between sips of street margaritas and daytime festivities, including plenty of live entertainment. Check out Gut Check's Guide to Cinco de Mayo in St. Louis for plenty more food and drink specials all over town this weekend
St. Louis Microfest @ Forest Park Upper Muny parking lot) Sample international and craft beers at three different sessions times over two days. Event festivities also include live music, silent auction and food vendors. $30-$60 per ticket - proceeds to benefit Lift for Life Gym. More info available via stlmicrofest.org. Friday, May 3, from 7 to 10 p.m. and Saturday, May 4, from noon to 4 p.m. and 6 to 10 p.m.
Tea on the Terrace @ Shaw Nature Reserve Sipping tea and nibbling on a selection of delicate desserts whilst overlooking a field of wildflowers sounds too good to be true, but check out this event to make that weekend fantasy become a reality. Enjoy all of the above, followed by a guided tour. Admission is $36 for adults. Call 636-451-3512 for more information. 2 to 4 p.m.
Derby Day Best Bets @ various area restaurants Watch the Kentucky Derby over a mint julep or choice of any other food and drink special at participating area restaurants. Get the full list of places to wear that silly hat by checking out this Gut Check list of Derby Day best bets.
Sunday (May 5):
21st Birthday Brunch @ Big Sky Cafe Celebrate 21 years in business with Big Sky as it serves its two courses for $17 menu. Options include vanilla almond granola yogurt parfaits, Prairie Breeze cheddar omelets with Geisert ham steaks and Loch Duart salmon burgers. Call 314-962-5757 for reservations.
Allergy Awareness Month @ Modesto Throughout the month of May, Modesto features a special gluten-free, peanut-free and dairy-free menu to benefit the Asthma and Allergy Foundation. Tapas such as grilled chicken and chorizo skewers with a cumin-honey glaze and braised beef cheeks with red pepper marmalada sound like they're nothing to sneeze at! Call 314-772-8272 for reservations.