|Plascencia + Playa this week|
Toast National Sake Day today and mark the official start of sake brewing season in Japan. Pick up a bottle for home - Mitsuwa Marketplace has one of the best selections in town - or hit your favorite Japanese restaurant for a sip. Or just go to Fuku Burger, which has 50 percent off all sake cocktails all day. The new cocktail menu has things like the Spicy Hollywood (Ichishima Tokubetsu sake, pineapple, jalepeno) and the Blushing Geisha (Nigori sake, green tea, cranberry, lemon). Oh yes, sake bombs too. Kanpai! (1634 N. Cahuenga Blvd.; 323-464-3858)
Playa's Baja Chef Series gets serious this week, with Tijuana's superstar chef Javier Plascencia in the house today and Wednesday. "You can see his creativity in action at his refined and adventurous Misión 19," says host chef John Sedlar. "But he also shows tremendous respect for Baja's past, with the street stand-style seafood dishes he serves at Erizo, or the way he and his family have restored and expanded Caesar's, birthplace of the Caesar salad, into a glorious celebration of Tijuana's past." Plascencia's dishes like yellow fin tuna with beef marrow and onion foam, and avocado soup with smoked pork and black radish, will be available a la carte (7360 Beverly Blvd.; 323-933-5300).
Crave crab? Chaya Downtown celebrates all things shellfish with a special menu for the month-long Crustacean Food Fair. Executive chef created dishes like rock shrimp and bay scallop ceviche, Maine lobster sushi, pan-roasted langoustine ojja, and Dungeness crab pilaf. The specials are available for dinner only through October 28 (525 S. Flower St.; 213-236-9577).
It's National Vodka Day today, and we can't think of any better place to honor it than at the Vodbox at Nic's in Beverly Hills. Throw on a faux fur coat and hat, go into the 28-degree room and sip some icy cold vodka. Flights start at $21 per person (453 N. Canon Dr.; 310-550-5707).
Tonight the Colonial Wine Bar starts an omakase-style tasting menu with wine and beer pairings. Dishes you might find on the seven-course menu include deviled eggs with bacon and pickled jalapenos, bone marrow crostini, and mushroom risotto, all served with some eye-opening wine selected by owner David Haskell. $68 per person (7166 Melrose Ave.; 323-657-1827).
Century City's RockSugar Pan Asian Kitchen introduces several new noodle dishes for National Noodle Day today. You'll find chicken pho, penang flat rice noodles, chiag mai curry noodles, and mapo egg noodles among others, all for $10.50 a slurp. The noodle menu is available all day (10250 Santa Monica Blvd.; 310-552-9988).
Tickets are still available for Ray Garcia's first annual Sausage Fest at Fig in Santa Monica. Garcia and some of his chef pals - including Vartan Abgaryan (Public Kitchen), Greg Daniels (Haven Gastropub), Daniel Mattern (Cooks County), Bernhard Mairinger (BierBeisl) and Kris Morningstar (Ray's & Stark Bar) - are making their own links for the grills. There will be some sides and other snacks, plus beers from Smog City, Hopf Wheat and Noble Ale Works. $69 per person (101 Wilshire Blvd.; 310-319-3111).