Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Maki Madness and more

Ra Sushi's signature "Tootsy Maki" (Photo: Ra Sushi)

How much sushi can you stuff in your face? You've still got a few days to enter a competitive eating contest at one of the area RA Sushi locations for Maki Madness. Organized like a bracket system, competitors who demolish three uncut RA Sushi signature Tootsy Maki in the fastest amount of time advance to the next round. The rounds take place March 28 at 6pm in Glenview (2601 Aviator Lane), March 29 at 4pm in Chicago (1139 N. State St.) and April 2 at 6pm in Lombard (310 Yorktown Center). Deadline to register is March 21 and all contestants must be at least 18. Two semi-finalists will be crowned at each location and will advance to the Championship Sushi Showdown on April 9 at the State Street location. Call 312-274-0011 for more info.

Also, one sixtyblue (1400 W. Randolph St., 312-850-0303) celebrates its 10th anniversary with a party in conjunction with Green City Market and ChicaGourmets. Chow down on special bites prepared by Executive Chef Martial Noguier, drink libations from an interactive "green" cocktail station, and check out a fashion show highlighting garments from eco-friendly boutique Pivot. A portion of proceeds benefit Growing Home, a charity providing job training and employment opportunities to homeless and low-income people. Thursday, March 27 6-9pm. 2 tickets for $160.

And finally, starting the first week in April, La Madia (59 W. Grand Ave., 312-329-0400) chefs Jonathan Fox and Gianni Zonca kick off a series of cooking classes that spotlight Italian cuisine. After demos, students get to sample their creations complemented by wine and cocktails. Each class is $25 and happens at 11am on Saturdays:

April 5: Perfect Pizzas and Tuscan Red Wines
April 12: Savory Pasta and Crisp Chardonnay
April 19: Spring Salads and Cool Cocktails
April 26: Pretty Paninis and Pinot Noir

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