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Saturday, January 24, 2015 |  Madison, WI: 31.0° F  Overcast
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Madison eats agenda: Food-A-Rama, a herb fair, Polish Christmas, Fest-of-Ale, Pie Palooza

The coming week, with events that get to your heart through your stomach.

Tuesday, November 3

"Does a nice corned beef on rye with a pickle slice set your taste buds to tingle? Or maybe some matzo ball soup like your grandmother's?" Those are the questions asked by asked by the Temple Beth El Sisterhood about its 43rd annual Food-A-Rama, held on Election Day every November. Delivery and carry-out are both available, with the menu also including sweet and sour cabbage soup, ready-to-heat meat knishes, kosher-style hot dogs, blintzes, and a bakery overflowing with confections. Proceeds from this fundraiser go to benefit the temple and community organizations. Tample Beth El, 2702 Arbor Dr., bakery opens at 10 a.m., deli and carryouts at 10:30 a.m., and dine-in lunches served from 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Call 238-3123 for carryout orders or more info.

Join the Wisconsin Union for Come to the Table, the inaugural edition of a new community dinner and lecture series focusing "on food, sustainability, local and organic sourcing, biogenetic, policy, social justice and world trends in food consumption." Professor Michal Bell of the Department of Community and Environmental Sociology and the Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies will be discussing "The Merchant is the One Who Gets it All: Food, the 'middleman,' and the Agroecology of Justice." Locally sourced food is the focus of the menu, of course, and includes cream of mushroom soup, rosemary butternut lasagna, organic white beans with braised kale and Usinger's Italian sausage, sourdough rolls, and organic pumpkin pie with locally roasted coffee. UW Memorial Union, 800 Langdon St., 6 p.m., $12.50. Call 263-2458 for more info.

Wednesday, November 4

Shoppers bid farewell for the season to a pair of mid-week outdoor markets today. The Hilldale Farmers' Market, located in its North Segoe Road parking lot, runs from 7 a.m.-1 p.m. The Dane County Farmers' Market, located on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, runs from 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m.

This month's local food happy hour put on by Ferment features "Heritage Apples" as its November theme. Several varieties of the fruit from Madison-area orchards are on the tasting menu, including Black Gilliflower, King David, and Tollman Sweet. This informal and free event seeks to bring together community members who have a passion for sustainable agriculture and local food issues. Orpheum Theater, 216 State St., 5:30 p.m., free. Call 205-8020.

The UW Agroecology Program's "What To Eat: A Seven Discourse Meal" lecture series continues today with Growing Food & Knowing Food: The Traceability of Sustainability, a talk featuring Hugh Campbell, Director of the Centre for the Study of Food, Agriculture, and Environment at Otago University, New Zealand. UW Soils Building, Room 270, 1525 Observatory Dr., 4 p.m., free.

Friday, November 6

Rejoice, for 'tis the day for the much-heralded annual lutefisk dinner at Lakeview Lutheran Church. (Read about last year's meal in Fringe Foods.) Try some doused with melted butter. Don't like lutefisk? Take refuge in Swedish meatballs and gravy. The annual bazaar will be held during the dinner, with baked goods, lefse, crafts, jams, jellies and more available for purchase. Lakeview Lutheran Church, 4001 Mandrake Rd., 11 a.m.-7 p.m., $15 for adults with a child rate available. Call 244-6181 for more info.

Saturday, November 7

Today marks the final Saturday of the season for the outdoor farmers' markets that have remained open through the harvest. The granddaddy of them all, the Dane County Farmers' Market, located on the Capitol Square, runs from 6 a.m.-2 p.m. The Westside Community Farmers' Market, located at Hill Farms Dept. of Transportation Bldg. parking lot on Segoe Road, runs from 7 a.m.-1 p.m. Finally, the Hilldale Farmers' Market, located in its North Segoe Road parking lot, runs from 7 a.m.-1 p.m.

Thankfully, the indoor McFarland Farmers' Market makes its debut today for the winter season. McFarland Municipal Center, 5915 Milwaukee St., 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Call 873-9443 for more info.

Organizers of the Madison Herb Society Fair describes the event as "a great time to learn about herbs, stock your herbal pantry, and ask experienced herbalists questions about growing and using herbs." Bay laurel is featured by the society as its "Herb of the Year," with a cookbook featuring the ingredient on sale at the fair along with others. Free classes will be held throughout the day. Olbrich Gardens, 3330 Olbrich Ave., 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m., free. Call 334-4969 for more info.

Coffee Hounds Hour brings together dogs and their joe-swilling humans for free java and canine treats first Saturday of the month. All pet treats are 10% off during the hour. Bad Dog Frida, 2094 Atwood Avenue, 9:30-10:30 a.m. Call 442-6868 for more info.

The Polish Heritage Club of Wisconsin is holding its third annual Polish Christmas Bazaar today, offering an early start on the local holiday fair shopping season. Polish arts and crafts, ornaments, amber jewelry, and Boles?awiec pottery will be on sale, with the celebration also featuring the sharing of op?atek (Christmas wafers) and demonstrations of the craft of wianki (girls' floral head wreathes). A Polish lunch will be available for eating in or caryring out. Weso?ych Swi?t! West Side Club, 437 Cty. Hwy. M, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., free. Call 222-2857 for more info.

Join the Arthritis Foundation for its annual International Wine Tasting, featuring the expertise of highly ranked sommelier Tori Johnson of Professional Wine Consultants. Over 100 wines from around the world will be served, with hors d'oeuvres, artisanal cheeses, and single-origin chocolates ready for cleansing the palate. Madison Club, 5 E. Wilson St., 4-7 p.m., $60. Call 221-9800 for more info.

The Janesville Kiwanis are putting on their seventh annual Fall Fest-of-Ale, a beer-tasting fundraiser featuring dozens of breweries and brewpubs from around the state. Attendees get to vote for winners in four categories: Best Ale, Best Lager, Best Seasonal Product and People's Choice. Holiday Inn Express Conference Center, Janesville, 6-10 p.m., $50. Call 608-758-4429 for more info.

Sunday, November 8

The Northside Winter Farmers' Market makes its debut today. Nearly two dozen producers are participating, with produce, meats, dairy, and baked goods available from the vendors. The market also includes a special breakfast, with eggs, bacon, pancakes, baked goodies, Laotian curry, egg rolls and sweet Cajun Beignets from Brady's Market Café on the menu. Northside TownCenter, corner of Northport Dr. and Sherman Ave., 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Call 217-9631 for more info.

Don't miss the return of Pie Palooza, the popular party put on by the REAP Food Group. The celebration features both sweet and savory creations, available as entire pies or by the slice, with an eye towards showcasing locally-grown ingredients and the talented chefs who use them. It's all a benefit for REAP, which provides more information about the menu and online ordering options. Goodman Community Center, 149 Waubesa St., 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., tickets $16 in advance and $18 at the door. Call 310-7836 for more info.

Monday, November 9

Beer Monks & Maidens is holding its robed monthly meeting and membership drive for those who enjoy good beer and fun. Babe's Grill & Bar, 5614 Schroeder Rd., 7:30 p.m., free. Call 628-9806 for more info.

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