Ten Best Food Events This Weekend: Aug. 24-26

Friday (Aug. 24):

Murder in Maybury! @ Maggiano's Little Italy A three-course family-style dinner and two drinks get accompanied by a murder mystery. Call 314-824-2402 for reservations. 6:30 p.m.

8th Annual Downtown Restaurant Week @ Downtown St. Louis Choose from twenty downtown restaurants that have three-course dinner menus for $25 per person. Some options include roasted leg of lamb at Cielo, ricotta gnocchi at The Dubliner, and pan seared Canadian salmon at Mosaic. Call the restaurant of choice for reservations. Visit the Downtown Restaurant Week web site for a list of all the menus. Friday, August 24 through Sunday, August 26.

Saturday (Aug. 25):

Festival of Nations @ Tower Grove Park Peruse small plates from over 40 ethnic food booths, check out dance and music performances, and shop an international bazaar. Saturday, August 25 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday, August 26 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

STLVegGirl: Quinoa Discovered Learn how to incorporate this mother grain into your diet with recipes like creamy fruited breakfast quinoa, mixed bean quinoa, and quinoa, walnut and bean burgers. $25 per person. Register online via the Whole Foods Market web site. 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Feast Day Festival @ The Royale Honor the city's patron saint, one King Louis IX of France, by enjoying brews from Civil Life Brewing, Schlafly, 4 Hands and Urban Chestnut. Admission is free. 12 p.m.

I Scream for Ice Cream Art Gallery Show @ I Scream Cakes Grab on to that last little bit of summer by sipping on PBR, indulging in a scoop of ice cream or two, and checking out locally-submitted ice cream themed art. Bring pups to enjoy frozen treats of their own. Admission is free. 6 to 9 p.m.

Sunday (Aug. 26):

Back to School Brunch @ Big Sky Cafe Take a respite from the first week of classes with live music from Tommy Halloran and a two courses for $17 menu featuring the likes of big sky beignets, peaches and cream pancakes, cheddar and chorizo omelets and more. Call 314-962-5757 for reservations. 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Loufest @ Forest Park Sure, the focus is on the music at this two day festival, but any good festival includes a load of great local food. Think loaded nachos from Atomic Cowboy, gourmet shaved ice from Kona Ice, sliders from Sub Zero, and ribs and other barbecue from PM BBQ. Regular admission for the festival is $70 for two-day and $40 for singles. Check out ordering info at the Lou Fest web site. Saturday, August 25 and Sunday, August 26 from noon to 10 p.m.

21st Annual Kookin' for Kids @ Chase Park Plaza Meet local celebrities and snack on samples from restaurants like Bailey's Range, Haveli and Modesto. $75 for single tickets -- proceeds to benefit St. Vincent Home for Children. See additional ticketing options at the Kookin' for Kids web site. 4:30 p.m.

Perennial Beer Dinner @ Taste Taste and Perennial team up for a four-course beer dinner. Try roasted mushrooms with peach berliner weisse, seared escolar with wild ginger saison, dry-aged wild boar loin with black IPA with cedar berries, and Sump "collaboration" hickory panna cotta with "Fantastic Voyage." $75 per person. Call 217-556-5772 for reservations. Multiple seatings are available.

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