Shuttlecork, Derby Day, and more: KC’s food and drink events for April 30 – May 6

Monday, April 30

Rye on the Plaza (4747 J.C. Nichols Parkway) is hosting a J. Rieger & Co.-themed cocktail dinner tonight beginning at 6:30 p.m. Master distiller Tom Nichol (the legendary distiller behind not only the Rieger brand but Tanqueray and others as well) will be on hand for the four-course meal. Seasonal dishes, including potato gnocchi with asparagus and country ham, spring pea soup, and roasted rack of lamb with carrots and spring onion will be served with Rieger cocktails. The dinner is $85 a person, and includes tax and gratuity. Call 816-541-3382 to inquire about reservations. 

Chef Ty Wood of 801 Chophouse (71 East 14th Street) is preparing a six-course organic Mexican-themed menu with wine pairings. Among tonight’s dishes: barbacoa lamb tamales (with the lamb slow-cooked in a pit), lochetive trout ceviche with beef shank, charred watermelon soup, and more. The meal is $108 per person, including tax and gratuity. Purchase your tickets here

Serious appetites should head to the Rieger (1924 Main) at 7 p.m. for tonight’s Beefsteak Dinner. The event is a nod to the beefsteak dinners of the 19th century, which were typically held for working-class people and functioned as political fundraisers. No utensils are involved (though aprons are provided) for this meal of shrimp cocktail, bison sliders, chops and, of course, bottomless plates of sliced beef. Drinks include unlimited Schlitz and cocktails prepared by Brock Schulte. The meal is $75, not including tax or gratuity. The dinner is sold out, but cancellations always happen; call 816-471-2177 to check.

Thursday, May 3

The fifth annual Shuttlecork begins tonight benefiting the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (4525 Oak Street). This evening’s dinners are hosted in notable homes throughout the city, and are prepared by some of KC’s best-known chefs. These dinners are $1,500 per person, and entirely benefit the museum. Call  816-751-1278 and select option 8 to check on availability. On Friday, the festivities head to the museum, where two grand tastings and a live auction will take place. “Grand Tasting I” takes place at Rozelle Court and will feature wine from 20 West Coast makers, as well as food from restaurants including Krokstrom Klubb & Market, Parker at the Fontaine, Bluestem, Corvino Supper Club & Tasting Room, Eddie V’s, Michael Smith, Novel, and more. “Grand Tasting II” takes place after the auction and includes late-night bites, desserts, more wine, and cocktails. Tickets to Friday’s events are $250 a person; call 816-751-1278 and select option 8 to purchase. 

EJ’s Urban Eatery (1414 Ninth Street) is hosting the next in its series of beer dinners, this one featuring beers from Martin City Brewing Company. The four-course menu includes a welcome beer and dishes including scallop carpaccio, Ora King salmon served with roasted shiitake mushrooms, and a 24-hour braised lamb shoulder. Tickets are $50 (not including tax or gratuity); call 816-491-8262 or email to purchase. 

Friday, May 4

Columbus Park favorite Happy Gillis (549 Gillis Street) is currently undergoing a makeover to mark 10 years in business. Tonight, beginning at 5 p.m., the restaurant is offering free (yes, no money required) cocktails, wine, and snacks. It’ll be hosting a silent auction to sell off its beloved furniture and decor; 10 percent of the proceeds go to Harvester’s. 

Saturday, May 5

Out south, Martin City Brewing Company is hosting its fourth annual Derby Day party at the Martin Event Space (13440 Holmes Road) beginning at 4 p.m. All-you-can-eat shrimp, rare beer releases, bluegrass music, giveaways, and more mark the event. Get more information and purchase advance tickets here

A few more events for your Kentucky Derby watching-and-drinking fun: Julep (4141 Pennsylvania Avenue) will be offering drink and food specials and will be showing the race. Char Bar (4050 Pennsylvania) will host costume contests, a raffle and a silent auction benefiting Big Brothers Big Sisters, in addition to offering drink and food specials. Tickets are not mandatory for the event but a $25 ticket will get you lunch in addition to also benefiting BBBS; get those here. The Monarch Bar (4808 Roanoke Parkway) is hosting a party, including a costume contest with the winner receiving a $100 gift card. The $25 cover at Monarch includes complimentary punch, passed hors d’oeuvres, and a Mint Julep or Seelbach.

Chef Theresia Ota will be onsite for a pop-up event at Crane Brewing (6515 Railroad Street) today from 4 to 8 p.m. in honor of Cinco de Mayo. Get Korean, carnitas and vegetarian tacos, plus rice and beans. 

Looking for more Cinco de Mayo events? This is a perfect time to check out the Pitch‘s new events calendar