Johnny Cupcakes, WOB Beer School, and More This Week in Metro Phoenix

The weekend may be over but there's no need to frown. Add a few of these dining and drinking to-dos to your calendar for something to look forward to this week in metro Phoenix.

Reopening of T. Cook's and Debut of The Mix Up Bar Today

Since late spring, one of the Valley's most picturesque dining and drinking spots has been closed for renovations. Today, the Royal Palms Resort is finally ready to unveil the T. Cook's version 2.0. Expect a full design renovation and a menu revamp courtesy of Executive Chef Paul McCabe. In addition, it will debut its new The Mix Up Bar, which will focus on hand-crafted cocktails designed by beverage consultant Kim Haasarud. For more information about the menus visit the Royal Palms website.

See also: Royal Palms Closes T. Cook's for Summer to Renovate, Operates Out of Pop-Up Called Cervantes Bistro, Hires New Executive Chef

Gertrude's and Heroes Vodka Dinner Wednesday, September 11

Head over to Gertrude's at the Desert Botanical Garden for a special dinner event to honor American heroes and the 19 firefighters lost in the Yarnell Fire. Gertrude's chef Stephen K. Eldridge and former White House Chef Sam Morgante have teamed up with Heroes Vodka, a veteran-owned premium vodka, for the dinner event to create a late-summer seasonal menu with a matching line up of cocktails. The dinner, which will start at 6 p.m., costs $65 a person and a portion of the proceeds will go to benefit the Yarnell 19. Seating is limited and reservations can be made online or by calling 480-719-8600.

Johnny Cupcakes Pop-Up Lecture Wednesday, September 11

Take a step into one of Johnny Cupcakes' stores and you'll be welcomed by the scent of frosting and the sight of awesome vintage ovens. But as for the cupcakes, well you'll only find those on his line of limited-edition T-shirts. Despite what the name implies, this world-famous faux-baker has made his name peddling shirts, not baked goods. What's most impressive is that he turned his silly idea of cupcaked T-shirts into a multimillion dollar business, and on Wednesday, he'll be at the Phoenix Art Museum to tell you how. The pop-up lecture, "How To Start Or Grow A Unique Biz With Little Or No Startup Money" will be from 6 to 8 p.m. with opportunities for questions, audience interaction and a chance to buy some limited edition Johnny Cupcakes shirts. Tickets cost $30 and can be purchased online.

Robert Craig Winery Dinner Wednesday, September 11

You might not associate Napa Valley with "mountain men" but that's exactly the reputation for which winemaker Robert Craig has made himself known. For years, Craig has been making world-renowned Cabernet Sauvignons from vineyards tucked into the most remote parts of the wine country and this week he's bringing them to Market Street Kitchen for a Southern-style dinner event. Chef Matt Taylor's menu includes Big Eye Tuna Rossini, Maple Braised Pork Cheek and Chilled Green Apple Soup for dessert. Each course will be paired with a Robert Craig wine. The dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m. and costs $85 a person. For reservations call 480-278-7044.

WOB Beer School Thursday, September 12

Normally, we look for excuses to skip class, not to get there early. But when class involves free beer, we're all in. This Thursday, World of Beer in Tempe is kicking off Beer 101 with Cicerone Zach Fowle, a weekly event at which he'll school you on a specific beer style and you can enjoy four free 5 oz samples. Hear a little bit about the history of beer and the stories behind each of the breweries. The event will be from 7 to 8 p.m. - but be sure to show up early since class is capped at 30 students.

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