The coming week, in events that get to your heart through your stomach.
Wednesday, August 5
Culinary History Enthusiasts of Wisconsin (CHEW) hosts a talk by Debra Shapiro, lead cook at the School Woods Supper Club on the east side of Madison. Shapiro will speak about the private dining club and her approach to a culinary life. Goodman Community Center, 149 Waubesa St., 7:15 p.m., free. Call 233-5488 for more information.
Madison Public Libraries hosts a book discussion about Michael Pollan's best-selling In Defense of Food today as part of the UW-Madison Go Big Read program. It is one of several gatherings leading up to Pollan's visit to town in September during the Food for Thought Festival in September. Meadowridge Library, 5740 Raymond Rd., 6:30 p.m., free. Call 608-246-4547 for more information.
Friday, August 7
Stop by the Just Coffee P2P Fundraiser and help send a member of the LaFEM women's coffee producing cooperative in Nicaragua on a Just Coffee delegation to another co-op in Central America. Enjoy food and drinks, coffee tastings, tours of the roasting facility, and bike tune-ups from Revolution Cycles. Just Coffee world headquarters, 1129 East Wilson Street, 6-9 p.m., free. Call 608-204-9011 for more information.
Saturday, August 8
Dreaming of being able to participate in a hot dog eating contest but you live too far away from Coney Island? It's your lucky day. Craig Carpenter of Ripley's Bakery & Eatery in Cambridge, reports that the town east of Madison will be holding just such a contest at noon today as part of its Maxwell Street weekend. "We are requesting that all spectators bring either $3 or 3 non-perishable food items, to be used to kick off the opening of our new local food pantry," writes Carpenter. Call him at 608-423-4300 for more info.
Sunday, August 9
Savor a sundae and support Independent Living, Inc. at its annual neighborhood ice cream social. Enjoy a free concert by The Capital City Band while you lap up tasty summer treats. The Gardens, 602 N. Segoe Rd., 1-3 p.m., $2 to build your own sundae. Call 608-274-7900 for more information.
Fitchburg Fields puts on a gardening workshop by Nox Seehafer, who will teach his method for high-temperature quick-composting and the basics of shading fall crops. The class will be on Syene Road in Fitchburg, 2-4 p.m., cost TBA. Call 608-223-9571 for more information.
Monday, August 10
Slow Food UW hosts its latest family dinner night, which will feature paella and a special cheese tasting. Accompanying the meal will be a discussion on the geography and culture behind Spanish cuisine. The Crossing, 1127 University Ave., 7:30 p.m., $5 for members and $7 for non-members.