Six Can’t-Miss Upcoming Culinary Events

A tribute to Julia, sidewalk barbecue, and one hell of a TV dinner.


Nowruz (Persian New Year) Dinner & Reception

Beacon Hill Bistro executive chef Josh Lewin, Katrina Jazayeri (Belly Wine Bar), Geoff Lukas (Sofra Bakery) and cookbook author Louisa Shafia (“The New Persian Kitchen”) will ring in Nowruz (“new day”) with an ambitious spread of modern Persian cuisine. The VIP dinner will begin with a procession of amuse bouche courses including a traditional caviar service, followed by plates like Abgousht Bozbash, a labor intensive lamb stew made with saffron, dried lime, and tomato; Asheh Reshteh, a hearty noodle and lentil soup; and Chef Lukas’ take on chicken albaloo, that utilizes duck confit. Tickets are also available for the post-dinner cocktail reception which will feature Katrina Jazayeri’s Persian take on classic cocktails, like her dried lime gimlet.

VIP Dinner $125 per person/ cocktail reception $35, March 23, 6:30 p.m. – 11 p.m., Anthony’s Function Hall, 156 Highland Ave #4, Somerville, 617-628-4220,

Stacked Donuts at Commonwealth

Stephanie Cmar continues her ongoing Stacked Donuts pop-up series at Chef Nookie Postal’s Commonwealth in Kendall Square. This weekend’s menu includes a chocolate toffee, a Creamsicle filled, and a Lucky Charms doughnut. Doors open at 10 a.m. and supplies are extremely limited, so get there early.

$3 per donut, March 22-23, 9 a.m., 11 Broad Canal Way, Cambridge, 617-945-7030, @StackedDonuts.

The Spotted Tiger Pop-Up at Empire

Considered one of the best cocktail minds in Massachusetts, Ran Duan has made Woburn’s Sichuan Garden II (inside the Baldwin Mansion) one of the go-to spots for mixologists in the know. On March 24 Duan will be joining bar luminary Brother Cleve and Dan Lynch of The Hawthorne at Empire Asian Restaurant and Lounge for a night of cocktail excellence. Enjoy Wu-Tang inspired concoctions like the “C.R.E.A.M.” (rum, blood orange, cardamom coconut cream) or a “Shadow Boxing” (Bacardi 8, Punt E Mes, Averna, amaro, and mole bitters) on tap. Chef Kevin Long will provide unlimited sushi and pupu platters for $25.

$25 per person, March 24, 7 p.m. Empire Asian Restaurant and Lounge, One Marina Park Dr. Boston, 617-295-0001,

Puritan & Company Hosts “A Tribute to Julia Child” Dinner

Puritan & Company chef/owner Will Gilson will pay homage to one of Cambridge’s culinary legends, Julia Child, with a family-style menu inspired by her most famous recipes. For one night, the Inman Square spot will offers guests a taste of the French cuisine which inspired one of America’s most beloved culinary figures. The menu includes hors d’ouevres like salmon mousse and croque monsieur. Other Julia Child classics include ratatouille, vichyssoise, Baked Alaska, and of course, boeuf bourguignon.

$75 per person, March 26, 5:30 p.m. – 10 p.m., Puritan & Co., 1166 Cambridge St., Cambridge, 617-615-6195,

The Future of Junk Food 

Former jm Curley chefs Sam Monsour and Mark O’Leary continue their quest to create quality “junk food.” Their “Future of Junk Food” pop-up series aims to start a conversation about the role of junk food in our consumption by developing new gluttonous snacks from whole, seasonal, and sustainable sources. For their debut menu, Monsour and O’Leary will be making a Snickers bar from chicken liver and Vietnamese caramel sauce, a Filet-O-Fish sandwich from Peekytoe crab and uni, and a Salisbury steak TV dinner from beef short ribs and black truffles.

$125 per person, March 28, 6 p.m. and 9 p.m., Emerald Lounge, 200 Stuart St., Boston,

Formaggio Kitchen’s Sidewalk BBQ

One of the real highlights of the spring season returns on March 29 when Formaggio Kitchen in Cambridge rolls out their massive Weber grill. Named one of the “Top 10 New Barbecue Restaurants” in 2009 by Bon Appétit, Formaggio’s barbecue chicken, ribs, and pulled pork is the perfect way to harken in the warmer weather. Remember, for larger orders, you must place a pre-order by the Wednesday prior to the weekend. Otherwise head out for some Niman Ranch hots dogs, brisket sandwiches, and some heaping sides of baked beans and coleslaw.

March 29, 11 a.m.  4 p.m., 244 Huron Ave., Cambridge, 617-354-4750,