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Four Edible Ways to Celebrate the Year of the Monkey

With an inbox full of more press releases packed with more monkey puns than you can throw your poo at, please allow me to drill down to a manageable number of food-focused ways to celebrate the Chinese New Year here in town, from the low to the high end.

Experience the Hunt for Red Envelopes at P.F. Chang’s
February, all month long
Well, I said I was going to give you a range. This Chinese-American chain is offering folks the chance to win P.F. Chang’s food for a year if they find the winning red envelope among those hung in the trees outside select stores. Five winners will be chosen, and for everybody who orders one of the dishes on the Chinese New Year menu during the month of February, or tweets a “wish” using hashtag #PFChangswish, the company will donate a dollar (up to $100,000) to Boys & Girls Clubs of America. Select “wishes” will also be granted, but I’m guessing wishing for more wishes is discouraged.

Watch Chefs Monkey Around at a No-Reservations Pop-Up at Wabi House
February 8, 5 p.m. until 10 p.m. (or until sold out)
For one night only, chef Dien Nguyen of Greenville Avenue’s Wabi House and chef Andrew Chen of Deep Ellum’s Monkey King Noodle Co. will share a kitchen with Uchi sous chef Stevie Nguyen, Fort Worth’s Shinjuku Station sous chef Tuan Pham and future Monkey King Banana Stand pastry chef Cuong Vo. The pop-up will feature ramen, small plates and dessert at “lucky” prices: $8, $9 and $11. Look out for creative interpretations of Chinese food classics as well as sneak peeks at some of what will be offered at the soon-to-be-always-full-of-money Banana Stand.

“Steel” a Glimpse at some Kung Fu at Steel Restaurant and Lounge
February 5 & 6, from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. with performances at 7:30 p.m.
For just $55 per person, excluding tax and tip, guests at Steel’s prix fixe, three-course dinner will be wowed by kung fu demonstrations and lion dancers while feasting on traditional dishes selected for their auspicious characteristics. Hungry for more? Guests can add a sea salt or robata-style lobster tail for $30. It is Uptown, after all.

Delight in Sky-High Celebrations at Five Sixty
Chinese New Year tasting menu: February 8 through 15; Night Market: February 10
Indulge your inner lunar-tic with a five-station feast on February 10 that Five Sixty Chef Jacob Williamson and his team are calling their Night Market. This unique event, priced at $95 plus an additional $35 for wine pairings, features a live lion dance and street-style food stations — including a whole suckling pig, dumplings, noodle bar and more — followed by a seated three-course dinner. Then, between February 8 and 15, guests can reserve a seat for a special Chinese New Year chef’s tasting menu for $105 per person. 

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