The holidays are charging toward us like a pack of hyenas at a fresh piece of meat. But if you need to find an excuse to take a break between the planning and hosting and baking to get out and do a little something for yourself, we’ve got you covered.

Saturday, Nov. 19

Holiday Tea with John Kraus –  It seems the folks behind Patisserie 46 and Rose Street Patisserie will never stop with the charm and sophistication. So you shouldn’t be surprised to hear about this queen-worthy evening of hand-selected teas, champagne and crafted sweet and savory delicacies. The menu for the event, which begins at 5 p.m., includes winter root vegetable chowder and a ham and Gruyere tea sandwich, among other things, followed by tea pairings such as pairings such as warm madeleines and Earl Grey scones with fresh lemon curd. Tickets are $75. More info here.

Indeed Brewing Co. brewing tour – File this under ‘cool free things.’ The tour of the production hall, the packaging hall, the warehouse and the taproom – as well as samples of Indeed’s flagship and seasonal beers – are all gratis. But we want blame you if you sit down for another cold pint afterward. 

Intro to Brewing – If you haven’t heard about Midwest Supplies’ array of (free!) classes, you’re missing out. Learn how to home brew without spending a dime. Or catch one of their other events this month: advanced brewing high-gravity beers on Nov. 20 or their cheesemaking class on Nov. 26. More info here.

Lela Thanksgiving Cooking Class – If late November is the time of panic for you – or even if you feel you’ve put together a pretty darn solid turkey fest in years past, but still think you can improve, pop by Lela Restaurant in Bloomington for a holiday instruction with chef Steward Woodman from 1-3 p.m. Tickets are $65 a person and include two glasses of wine, tastes of the menu items – a classic meal – and take-home recipe cards. More info here. 

Rise Bagel Co. pop-up at Lowry Hill Meats -- The picturesque butcher shop next to Burch Steak is becoming a favorite venue for getting a sneak peek at yet-to-open eateries. Last week, it was the upcoming Mrs. Dumpling that took over the space. Now, Rise Bagel, which is slated to open in the North Loop early next year, is getting its shot. Stop by Lowry Hill Meats from 9 a.m. to noon for a taste of your favorite hollow carbs.

Monday, Nov. 21

Pie pop-up -- Nothing screams the holidays like a pie sale. When those pies are from local pastry star Michelle Gayer from Salty Tart? And you can buy them at a place that serves tiki-inspired cocktails? Well, all the better. Such are the details for this pie pop-up — chocolate cream, bourbon pecan, caramel streusel apple and pumpkin chiffon, $27 each — at Hola Arepa from 3 to 7 p.m. (or until she sells out, which is likely). 

Tuesday, Nov. 22

Chef-tender – The light-hearted series featuring Monello and Constantine chef Mike DeCamp continues with Spoon and Stable pastry chef Diane Yang slinging drinks at the downstairs cocktail emporium. There is no cover for the show, which goes from 8 p.m. to 12 a.m.

Friday, Nov. 25

Holidazzle begins – The Winter bonanza (pictured above, photo credit: Aaron Lavinsky) is back at Loring Park beginning on Friday with Fulton Brewery beers, Sociable Ciderwerks hot mulled ciders, Spyhouse coffee, Kramarczuk’s sausage, pierogis, crepes and other street foods on hand to keep patrons toasty while they ice skate, shop and take in the live performances. The celebration will be open on Thursdays through Sundays until Dec. 23. Entry is free. More info here.

Saturday, Nov. 26

Japanese Cooking class: Shabu ShabuMississippi Market Natural Foods Co-op is hosting an instruction where guests can learn to make the hot pot dish with thinly sliced beef, vegetables and sauces. Tickets are $35 for members and $40 for non-members. More info here.

Restaurant Alma reopens – Alex Roberts’ lauded eatery is slated to make its grand return following months of renovations. The adjoining cafe is already open and the hotel debuts on Nov. 18. Read more here. 

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