Tuesday, Feb. 28:
Celebrate National Pancake Day at one of the IHOP’s seven locations within Charlotte and Mecklenburg County and receive a free short stack of three buttermilk pancakes. Be sure to show your thanks by leaving a donation for the Children’s Miracle Network. IHOP has raised nearly $8 million since beginning National Pancake Day in 2006, and is aiming for an additional $2.7 million this year. Free pancakes are available 7 am-10 pm.
Enjoy a $60-$70 bottle of wine for just $30 tonight at the Midtown or Lake Norman locations of the Melting Pot. This is also one of the final nights for the February bar special: a small cheese and a small chocolate fondue for $20, available only in the bar area, Monday-Thursday.
Leap Year Day, Wednesday, Feb. 29:
Leap Year Day offers a wealth of options. Choose from beer, wine, or tequila tastings; feed upon Schnitzel – or frog legs.
- Old Meck Brewery taps its first kegs of Fruh Bock spring seasonal beer. 5:30-9 pm at the Brewery.
- Vida Mexican Kitchen y Cantina in the EpiCentre hosts a Don Julio Tequila Dinner pairing Don Julio tequilas with spice rubbed grilled shrimp, P.E.I. mussels steamed in a coconut/serano broth, and chile glazed pork belly with roasted poblano cream corn. See the full menu here. 7 pm. $40. Reservations: 704-971-8432
- The Leap Day Dinner at Rooster’s SouthPark features Frog’s Leap Wines paired with five courses, beginning with a charcuterie platter and seafood-rich bouillabaisse, followed by wild mushroom tagliatelle and – yes – pan-roasted frog legs. $65. Reservations: 704-366-8688.
- Villa Antonio on South Boulevard hosts a Spanish Wine Tasting tonight, featuring five wines introduced by the sommelier, appetizer buffet, and live music. 6:30-8 pm. $20. 704-523-1594.
- Feb. 29 is the first night of Schnitzelfest at Waldhorn Restaurant, Charlotte’s most authentic take on German cuisine. The special menu, featuring nine special schnitzels (pork, veal, and chicken), will be available through March 10. 704-540-7047.
Born on Feb. 29? Be sure to head over to the Leap Year Celebration at D’Vine Wine Cafe. They have some special treats for you, as well as live music from Carey Sims & Skate Rink Jukebox.
Friday, March 2:
The Food Trucks are coming! The South End First Friday Gallery Crawl, 6-9 pm on March 2, features a wealth of galleries to visit as well as the return of Food Truck Friday in the Lunch Lot at the corner of Camden and Park Avenue. Stop by during your crawl for some refreshingly different refreshment from Charlotte’s amazing food trucks. Alchohol can be purchased at the nearby Common Market or Phat Burrito and brought (unopened) to the lot to be consumed there. Other culinary events during the Crawl include a free Spice 101 Class offered by the Savory Spice Shop in Atherton Mill. The interactive 30-45 minute tour introduces spices and how to use them in cooking. There is no charge for the class but register in advance (980-225-5419) to ensure a spot.
Ruth’s Chris Steak House in SouthPark hosts a Riedel Glass Seminar, an educational sit-down event featuring five top-rated varietals, each served in its special Reidel glass. Don’t they taste better in the right Austrian crystal? Learn more at Reidel’s Wine Glass Guide. 6 pm. $30. Reservations: 704-556-1115.
Saturday, March 3:
The Gallery Restaurant & Bar at the Ballantyne Hotel features a Beaucanon Wine Tasting with winemaker Louis de Coninck, who will be signing bottles sold that night. $20 admission includes wines, fruit, cheese and lavosh. Reservations: 704-248-4100.
Upstream gets you up to speed for St. Patrick’s Day with a cooking class focusing on Irish Seafood Specialties. $40. Reservations: 704-556-7730.
Make your reservations today for the upcoming Women Who Feed Us Dinner, scheduled for Monday, March 5 at the Harvest Moon Grille. The six-course field-to-table dinner of locally sourced foods will be prepared by an all-woman culinary team, and honors Marylyn Williams, a member of Slow Food Charlotte and the Southern Foodways Alliance, as 2012 Local Food Activist of the Year. Proceeds from the dinner benefit the expansion of Leading Green, the only local food distributor serving local farms. Although aimed at women, men are welcome at the event. $55 per person. RSVP: 704-342-1193 or online at Open Table.