Dec. 1, 2004

Advance registration or reservations are recommended for most events. Prices exclude tax and gratuity unless otherwise noted. ON THE PLATE Dec. 4 Love gingerbread houses but hate the mess of preparing the fixings? At this event, Kaspar's will provide the gingerbread, so you and your kids can decorate your own festive cookie compound. 9 a.m. or noon. $35 per gingerbread house. 19 West Harrison, 206-298-0123. QUEEN ANNE Dec. 5 Try some of Kathy Casey's Dish D'Lish gourmet grocery items at Capers' holiday open house. The local author and chef will also sign her latest books, Dishing With Kathy Casey and Star Palate, which features recipes from celebrities and benefits cancer research. 719 N. 34th St., 206-545-7876. FREMONT Dec. 8 Ending in a 2-foot-high Belgian chocolate fountain, the Northwest Enological Society's holiday party, held at the St. Demetrios Cultural Center, features over 35 Northwest wines and myriad sparkling and dessert wines. $27 for nonmembers. 7 p.m. 2100 Boyer Ave. E., 425-603-9558. MONTLAKE through Dec. 28 Love pink tutus and family dinners? Kaspar's three-course Nutcracker Dinner menu includes the Nutcracker's grilled chicken with roasted pear and the Sugar Plum Fairy's homemade s'mores. A children's menu available as well. $30 adults, $15 children. From 4:30 p.m. on performance nights. 19 W. Harrison, 206-298-0123. QUEEN ANNETHE GRAPEVINE THE GRAPEVINE Dec. 2 Please both your Francophile friends and your environmentally correct family with knowledge of French and Washington wine pairings gleaned from this South Seattle Community College class. $32. 6–9 p.m. 6000 16th Ave. S.W., 206-764-5339. WEST SEATTLE Dec. 3 & 4 No doubt you're aware of Oregon's reputation for making great pinot noir; at these special Ponzi Vineyard winemaker dinners at Earth & Ocean, you can meet Maria Ponzi and taste her pinots—and more. Fair warning: The adventurous menu includes buttermilk fried frog legs! Call for times. $45 for dinner, $20 for the wine flight. 1112 Fourth Ave., 206-264-6060. DOWNTOWN Dec. 4 & 5 Many small wineries can't always pull off an open house, but at this time of year, this collective effort makes it possible. Celebrate the holiday season with wine tastings, entertainment, food, and general perusal in Woodinville's wine country. Visit www.woodinvillewinecountry.com for more information. Dec. 5 Sampling a bottle of 1977 Colheitta port ought to put you in just the right mood for the holidays—or at least for tackling your shopping. Join sommelier Arnie Millan in looking at five varieties of port at the Warwick Hotel. $39. 4 p.m. 401 Lenora, 206-612-6547. DOWNTOWN Dec. 8 Champagne's not just for breakfast anymore, darling. At this Flying Fish festive dinner, representatives from Taittinger and Domaine Carneros will guide you through a five-course menu of bubbly and cuisine. 6:30 p.m. $95. 2234 First Ave., 206-728-8595. BELLTOWN BACK TO SCHOOL Dec. 4 Yeah, those brown-and-serve rolls are a guilty pleasure, but at this Cook's World class, Essential Baking Company's chief baker will show you how to make artisan breads like Italian pannetone. $44. 10:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m. 2900 N.E. Blakeley St., 206-528-8192. UNIVERSITY VILLAGE Dec. 7 Christmas Eve dinner is at your brother-in-law's house but you get the family the next morning? RainCity offers Christmas brunch recipes and instruction that ought to help out. 6:30 p.m. $60. 1883 145th Place S.E., 425-644-4285. BELLEVUE Dec. 7 Already decided that your Christmas dinner is going to vary just slightly from the tried-and-true? This Seattle Central Community College culinary class teaches roasted New York strip steak with cabernet sauce and other not-strictly-traditional dishes. 6–9 p.m. $45. 1701 Broadway, demonstration kitchen/room BE2119, 206-587-5424. CAPITOL HILL Dec. 8 Learning to prepare Chinese food seems daunting, but NuCulinary at Uwajimaya wants to disprove that notion by teaching you how to make dishes like Mongolian beef and Hong Kong–style chow mein. 6 p.m. $50. 600 Fifth Ave., 206-624-6248. CHINATOWN/INTERNATIONAL DISTRICT Dec. 9 You know the hostess with the mostes': Well. how about the hostess who lets you do it yourself? This Dish it Up! class on fondue and raclette (a Swiss tradition that combines fondue and grilling) is made-to-order for those party-planners who don't want to spend all night in the kitchen (and whose guests are fond of cheese). 2425 33rd Ave. W. Suite B, 206-281-7800. MAGNOLIA

 
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