GRANDPARENTS TEA: Noon and 2:30 p.m. Sun., Davis and Daughters Tea Cottage, 530 Alt. U.S. 19 N, Palm Harbor. Guests are invited to bring their grandparents to afternoon tea, prince or princess tea for children, five-course Grand Tea for adults; $11.95 children, $15.95 adults. RSVP: (727) 785-7790.
LIKE IT HOT?: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sept. 18, Honeywell Minnreg Hall, 6340 126th Ave. N, Largo. Sample hot sauces, fiery salsas and jellies, piquant pickles and spices; also, pepper plants and pepper-related items at annual "I Like It Hot" spicy foods festival; $2 admission, free 15 and under. Call 727 423-8433 or go to www.ilikeithotfestival.com
TAMPA BAY CULINARY CLUB: 11:30 a.m. Sept. 18, 42nd Street Bistro, 516 Howard Ave., Tampa. Tampa Bay Culinary Club members meet for a demonstration and sampling of favorites by Chef Ruilova; $10. RSVP: (727) 789-2605.
LATIN WINE DINNER: 7 p.m. Sept. 18, Bellarte Restaurant, 12600 Roosevelt Blvd., Clearwater. Six-course wine dinner features tastes of Latin wines; $75, plus service charge and tax. Call (727) 561-7332.
TAMPA BAY VEGETARIANS: 7 p.m. Sept. 21, Mirage Restaurant, 2284 Gulf-to-Bay Blvd. (SR 60), Clearwater. This month's meeting of the Tampa Bay Vegetarians features menu of Greek specialties, plus after-dinner speaker; $12.99 per person, plus $2 for nonmembers, includes tax and gratuity. Reserve by 5 p.m. Sept. 17: (727) 461-2636 or (813) 269-4665.
Wine and beer tastings/classes
ART AND WINE: 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thur., West Palm Wines, 2009 N 22nd St., Ybor City. Indulge the senses with display of art by Katy Alderman, plus tasting of Argentinian wines and sampling of traditional gaucho recipes from El Puerto Argentinian Grill. Free, but RSVP required by today: (813) 241-8587.
SERIOUS ABOUT SYRAH: 6:30 p.m. Fri., Uncorked Fine Wines and Accessories, 2706 Fourth St. N, St. Petersburg. Sample syrahs; $10. Proceeds benefit PARC. Call (727) 892-9463.
FRENCH COUNTRYSIDE WINES: 6:30-8:30 p.m. Fri., Got Wine, 662 Main St., Dunedin. Try some of Burgundy's best, along with wines from Cote du Rhone, Bordeaux and other French wine-growing regions at free tasting. Call (727) 736-4077.
ESSENCE OF ITALY: 6-8:30 p.m. Fri., International Cellar Wine Boutique, 11655 Countryway Blvd. at Racetrack Road, Tampa. Italy's diverse wine regions, including Tuscany, Sicily, Piedmont and Verona, in free tasting. Call (813) 855-8099.
ALL ABOUT WINE: 5:30-8 p.m. Sept. 18, Florida Estates Winery, 25241 SR 52, 4 miles west of Interstate 75, near Land O'Lakes in Pasco County. Learn about varietals, oak aging, cork history, evolution and uses, brief history of wines, how to taste and rate wines, and more in class with cellarmaster Ron Hunt; $20 in advance, $25 at door, includes wine tasting, snacks, dessert and wine glass. RSVP: (813) 996-2113.
COLD BEAN SALADS: 7-8 p.m. today, 10-11 a.m. Thur., Nature's Harvest Market, 1021 N MacDill Ave., Tampa. Vegetarian cold bean salads are the focus in free vegetarian class led by Debby DeGraaff. Call (813) 873-7428.
WEEKNIGHT GOURMET: 1 p.m. Thur., Clearwater Main Library, 100 North Osceola Ave, Clearwater. Chef Mitchell of Publix's Apron's Cooking School shows how to make busy weeknights easier with tasty meals that take only minutes to prepare. Free. Call (727) 562-4970, ext. 5284.
CLASSES AT LA MAISON: La Maison Gourmet, 471 Main St., Dunedin. Hands-on class for couples, French brasserie, with mussels muniere, goat cheese tart, 6:30-9 p.m. Fri., $45 each or $85 per couple; "Delightful Dessert" class makes roasted Caribbean bananas, ginger and lemon pudding cakes with vanilla custard, 6:3-9 p.m. Tue., $39.50; South Beach- and Atkins-focused class makes low-carb garlic and soy grilled pork chops, Thai vegetable stir fry, flourless chocolate cake, 6:30-9 p.m. Sept. 15, $25. RSVP: (727) 736-3070.
BASIC VEGETARIAN COOKING: 11 a.m. Sat., Nature's Food Patch, 1225 Cleveland St., Clearwater. Free class with Debby DeGraaff on "Basic Vegetarian Cookery-Florida Style," with dishes such as Cuban-style black and brown rice, vegan key lime pie; also learn about the role of proteins, carbohydrates and "good" fats. Call (727) 443-6703.
CARIBBEAN CUISINE: 6:30-8 p.m. Mon., Saffron's Caribbean Cuisine Restaurant, 1700 Park St. N, St. Petersburg. Chef Edyth James shares secrets for her award-winning Caribbean cuisine in cooking demonstration that captures the flavor of the islands; $25, includes dinner and beverage, gratuity extra. Reserve: 727 345-6400 or e-mail email@example.com
COOKING AT THE ACADEMY: Tampa Bay Cooking Academy, 700 Central Ave., No. 102, St. Petersburg. Hands-on classes: Potatoes, including Dauphine, Duchess and galette, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 6-9:30 p.m. Tue.; Desserts II, with creme brulee, white chocolate mousse, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 6-9:30 p.m. Sept. 15; Taste of Mexican Cooking, with carnitas chipotle, jicama relish, spit-roasted game hen with anchiote, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 6-9:30 p.m. Sept. 16. Cost per class: $60, plus food costs. Register: (727) 898-2665.
ALL THINGS ITALIAN: 6-7 p.m. Tue. through Oct. 12 at Castellano & Pizzo Italian Gourmet Foods, 4200 S Henderson Blvd., or 6-7 p.m. Sept. 16 through Oct. 14 at Gianpiero's Pick of the Vine, 2506 S MacDill Ave., both in Tampa. Five-week course immerses participants in the language, foods, culture and customs of Italy, creating a three-course meal at each class, along with lessons on speaking beginner conversational Italian. Cost: $185, includes all materials. Registration required: Call 727 866-6892 or go to www.learnitalian.us
BAKED ALASKA: 7-9 p.m. Tue. and Sept. 21, 28 at Cappuccinos Bakery Cafe, 733 Broadway, Dunedin. Learn to make a perfect baked Alaska at dessert class; $15, plus food costs. Call (727) 738-8009 to reserve, limited class size.
VINOY CHEF'S HEALTHY SECRETS: 5:30 p.m. Sept. 15, St. Anthony's Hospital classroom D, first floor, 1200 Seventh Ave. N, St. Petersburg. Chef Nathan Rich of the Renaissance Vinoy Resort, along with registered dietitians, share cooking and menu tips for heart-healthy, flavorful meals. Cost: $15; tickets must be purchased before Fri.. Call (727) 820-7910.
WONDERFUL WORLD OF VEGGIES: Sept. 15, Nature's Food Patch, 1225 Cleveland St., Clearwater. Free class with Kerry and Robert Broe on fresh vegetable juices, superfoods and how to use algae powders for nutrition. Call (727) 443-6703.
LIGHT AND LEAN LUNCHES: 7-8 p.m. Sept. 15, 10-11 a.m. Sept. 16, Nature's Harvest Market, 1021 N MacDill Ave., Tampa. Debby DeGraaff shows how to create vegetarian lunches in free class. Call (813) 873-7428.
APRON'S GUEST CHEFS: Apron's Cooking School, Publix Supermarket at Shoppes of Citrus Park, 7835 Gunn Highway, Tampa. Douglas Rodriguez, a pioneer of "Nuevo Latino" cuisine and cookbook author, shows how to create flavorful, restaurant-quality dishes that are low in carbs, 6:30 p.m. Sept. 17, $60; Cafe Ponte chef Chris Ponte with his award-winning cuisine, 6:30 p.m. Sept. 21, $40. Reserve: (813) 926-4465.
DON YOUR APRONS: Apron's Cooking School, Publix at Shoppes of Citrus Park, 7835 Gunn Highway, Tampa. Tamales, rellenos and salsas class makes curried shrimp tamales, sweet dessert tamales and chilies rellenos, 6:30 p.m. Sept. 18, $35; Cooking for the Week class, where participants take home key ingredients to make dinner for two for four days, 4 p.m. Sept. 19, $70. Reserve: (813) 926-4465.
SURF AND TURF: 7 p.m. Sept. 22, Drew Coffee Shop, 1907 Drew St., Clearwater. Chef Fred shows how to make surf and turf prime rib stuffed with garlic and shrimp, stuffed portobello mushroom and cherries jubilee in monthly cooking class; guests may bring wine or beverage; $24.99, includes dinner. RSVP: (727) 441-2572.
- Send news of coming events at least two weeks in advance of the publication date to Food File, the Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731.