Ventanas in Fort Lee Offers Discount to Veterans on Memorial Day

Plus: A pork roll festival in Trenton, the Jersey Shore Wine Festival in Lakewood and more.

Memorial Day Brunch at Ventanas
Sunday, May 26

Brunch is special any day you can get it, but Memorial Day brunch in the shimmering, recently minted Ventanas in Fort Lee is extra special this weekend, with holiday buzz and a 25 percent discount for veterans (also available at dinner). Especially if you’re without plans, Ventanas makes for a nice substitute: it’s casual (because it’s brunch) but it’s also luxe, with Asian-Cuban fusion touches on David Burke’s sleek menu, vaulted ceilings and a fairly stunning river view. Get your fill of Mimosas and Pastrami-smoked Salmon Benedict in style. Ventanas, 200 Park Avenue, Fort Lee; 201-583-4777

6th Annual Pork Roll Festival
Saturday, May 25, 10 am – 7 pm

Whether you call it pork roll or Taylor Ham, all that matters at this Saturday’s festival is you’re ready and willing to eat a lot of it. It’s the sixth time fans of the reconstituted porcine product will gather at Mill Hill Park in Trenton to honor the stuff in all its meaty glory. There will be live music, wearable pig snouts, a recipe contest (which you can still enter), and, of course, plenty of food truck vendors featuring pork roll in a mind-boggling variety of ways. There will be pork roll-smothered tater tots, pork roll and pepperjack waffles, pork roll mac n’ cheese, and pork roll meatballs to start. (And yes, there will be egg sandwiches and coffee for purists.) Tickets are $5 per person, or $15 for a family of four. Mill Hill Park, 100 South Broad Street, Trenton

9th Annual Jersey Shore Wine Festival
June 1-2, noon – 5 pm

It’s rain or shine for the 9th Annual Jersey Shore Wine Festival, so the spirit is high. The basic premise: gather in a lovely outdoor space and taste a lot of wine (100-plus). Among the wineries and producers signed up are places like Hammonton’s Plagido’s Winery (showcasing a timely, summer-perfect rose), Four Sister’s, who will also serve a rosé as well as their Beaver Creek Red, and Velanzano Winery, who will anticipate fall with samples of their bourbon-aged apple cider, among other things. There will be music both days as well as craft and food vendors—you can check the festival’s Facebook page for updates on newly signed vendors. All net proceeds go to benefit Sylvia’s Children, the Holmdel-based organization dedicated to helping orphans of the Mbirizi Village in Uganda. Early Bird tickets are $20 and available until May 31. First Energy Park, 2 Stadium Way, Lakewood

“Una Fiesta con Clase Azul” Tequila Pairing Dinner
Thursday, June 13, 6:30 pm

It’s not unusual to see a little bit more tequila as temperatures rise. What is a bit unusual, and entirely welcome, is a tequila pairing dinner like they’re hosting at the Salt Creek Grille in Princeton. In coordination with Clase Azul tequila, chef Wally Weaver and sous chef Feliciano Lopez are serving up a multi-course authentic Mexican dinner complete with tequila pairings (some of them will be tequila cocktail pairings). There will be Clase Azul Reposado Tequila cocktail with fresh grapefruit and Jarritos grapefruit soda paired with Mesquite Grilled Beef Brisket Empanada with Chimichurri, Clase Mezcal served neat alongside Traditional Mexican Pulled Chicken with Corn and Red Mole, and Clase Azul Anejo with a rich, milky Tres Leches. Tickets are $129. Call to reserve. Salt Creek Grille, 1 Rockingham Row, Princeton; 609-419-4200

Four Course Beer Dinner at Blue Morel
Thursday, June 13, 6:30 pm

Not only will Thursday’s partnership with Ramstein Brewing feature four courses paired with four beers, it will be the debut of the TC Dunkel Ale, a beer paying homage to the night and the collaboration between Ramstein Brewing founder Greg Zaccardi and Blue Morel chef Thomas Ciszak (interesting profile note: the beer was aged for three months in a bourbon barrel that previously housed chef Ciszak’s Private Select Bourbon). No notes on the exact menu yet, but the price seems like a steal just the same—four courses from Blue Morel executive chef Dennis Matthews and four beers from Zaccardi, who actually did a brewer’s apprenticeship in South Germany prior to founding Ramstein. Tickets are $59 and—we’re told—these collaborations tend to sell out quickly. Blue Morel, 2 Whippany Road, Morristown; 973-451-2619

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