Pumped for Iron


Jamie Oliver would indeed look enticing as an actual naked chef, and we love watching Nigella Lawson workin' her English muffin over a stainless steel range. But no cooking show compares to the intense culinary combat of Iron Chef. We eagerly anticipate the announcement of each episode's "surprise" ingredient--what will it be, albino carrots or beaver's toenails? If we're lucky, there will be no eel's eggs or bean curd at Down's Iron Bartender competition, though one might argue that Jägermeister with banana rum is no better. Some mixologist may have to face that combo, though, as each experienced bartender draws the names of two liquors from a hat and attempts to combine those with mixers into a tasty, attractive cocktail. Judges will assess each drink on flavor, presentation, originality, degree of difficulty and style for a grand prize of $750. Observers will also be offered samples of each concoction. Coffee liqueur and cranberry vodka, anyone? The Iron Bartender competition takes place at Down Bar & Lounge, 2038 Commerce St., on March 27 at 8 p.m. Admission is $10. Call 214-744-3696. --Michelle Martinez

Hard-Boiled Prize

People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. But what about throwing glass eggs? Vetro Glassblowing Studio & Gallery's Glass Egg Toss throws clichés against the wall and shatters them, literally. And since they're into shattering clichés and not contestants, the studio tweaks the traditional egg-toss rules. Participants will throw glass eggs against a wall, and the person whose egg remains intact wins an art glass piece by Gary Hayes and David Gappa. It's at 2 p.m. March 26 at Vetro Glassblowing Studio & Gallery, 701 S. Main St., Grapevine. Registration is at 1 p.m. Admission is free. Call 817-251-1668. --Stephanie Durham

Chef's Hat Trick

The title character in the German film Mostly Martha is essentially a white, female reincarnation of the early-'90s British comedy Chef!'s anal-retentive Gareth Blackstock: food-obsessed, work-obsessed, self-obsessed. But Martha's insular world is turned upside down when she is forced to take in her young niece--an important event that happens to coincide with the arrival of a hot guy in her kitchen. Good food, cute children and hot men. Mostly Martha is obviously the perfect movie to follow Chef Morris Salerno's gourmet meal at this Dinner and a Movie event at the Angelika Film Center and Café, 5321 E. Mockingbird Lane, in Mockingbird Station. The price of admission ($80 to $85) gets you a multicourse meal prepared by an award-winning chef, a private screening of Mostly Martha, tax and gratuity. Dinner begins at 7 p.m.; the movie at 8:30 p.m. This evening opens the 2005 Dallas Wine and Food Festival, which begins March 30 and runs through April 3. Call 214-741-6888 or visit www.dallaswineandfoodfestival.com. --Mary Monigold

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