Whether you are having a get-together with friends or a party of one, this margarita will make your taste buds tingle with pure happiness.

In the spirit of spontaneity, we cruised the menu of events for Midtown Cocktail Week, which kicks off today and wraps up Sunday, keeping an eye on those pop-ups. Try this sampling, both shaken and stirred.

Legendary rocker Sammy Hagar will re-open his namesake Roseville restaurant with a concert in September.

To the Miraflores winemaker, the most original California wine is angelica.

Midtown Cocktail Week kicks off today and wraps up Sunday. Here is your guide to the event:

Ready for another 180?

Sacramento has a new country music club and eatery.

Check out the most interesting Tweets and Instagram photos from Sacramento's Midtown Cocktail Week and get in the mix by using the hashtag #MCWSac

The film that likely launched a thousand hunts for Cuban sandwiches around the country when it was released in May will return to theaters Aug. 29.

Sacramento’s cocktail industry has bubbled over with acclaim during the past year, and Andrew Calisterio’s line of POP beverages captures the excitement in a bottle. The bartender’s sodalike cocktails include ingredients such as grilled blackberries, peaches and local herbs, and are capped inside quaint 187-milliliter bottles. The flavors change all the time.

Sacramento has been getting plenty of attention for its bars and cocktails in recent years – high praise in everything from the San Francisco Chronicle and Sunset magazine to a major thumbs-up from Playboy and extensive coverage in Imbibe magazine.

Bartenders are challenged to balance craftiness and good service to the waiting customer.

Fifty years ago, a Buffalo, N.Y., bar owner embarked on a bold culinary experiment by taking chicken wings initially intended for her soup pot and frying them in butter. After she coated them in hot sauce and garnished the plate with celery and blue-cheese dressing, appetizer history was made.

Crafted in the United States, these winning cheeses have roots in Europe.

On the Tuesday in June when the Assembly health committee killed a bill to require warning labels on sodas, 13 lawmakers and more than three dozen legislative staff members attended a reception inside California’s Capitol sponsored by PepsiCo.

You don’t use the term “craft cocktails” at Jamie’s, but if you’re looking for old-school done right – whether it’s the cooking or the drinks – you’ve come to the right place.

Smoothies are a nutritious way to stir things up in the kitchen, especially if the ingredients come from your garden.

Most sodas are notoriously full of processed sugar and artificial ingredients. Their contents lists can resemble the handbook that comes with a chemistry set.

Get a big helping of Polish food and culture at the 25th annual Polish Festival, a celebration from noon to 6 p.m. Sept. 6 on the grounds of the Polish American Club, 327 Main St., Roseville (916-781-8035, www.polish-club.org).

It wouldn't be the Labor Day weekend without the annual Greek Festival (the 51st), and it wouldn’t be the festival without the food. The dishes are handmade from scratch by volunteers who are experienced home cooks and members of the sponsoring Greek Orthodox Church of the Annunciation.

UC Davis’ Honey and Pollination Center has developed a new tool for describing honey’s 300-plus varietals.

Chef/owner Kurt Spataro shares his thoughts on how Centro Cocina Mexicana came into being and where it’s going.

Here is the wildest, craziest, most mind-blowing fact about cardamom: Not only is it a spice that is used in both savory and sweet dishes, it is an important ingredient in the cuisines of India, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Scandinavia.

Two dozen cheeses representing the ‘Real California’ cheese program win awards at American Cheese Society competition in Sacramento. Among the sheep’s milk cheesemakers, Bleating Heart wins two blue ribbons.

Dukkah can be sprinkled on meat or veggies but most people enjoy it by combining it with some olive oil and dunking some warm pita or crusty bread in it.

For the past several years, there has been something of an IPA arms race within the craft beer industry. Bigger, bolder, more bitter. Double IPAs. Triples. IBUs in some cases well into the 100s.

Classes focus on cooking and even growing your own vegetables.

The king is dead; long live the king! The French invented the term long ago to bid farewell to a deceased monarch and pledge fealty to a new one.

Maple Rock Gardens ready to host its first celebration Aug. 23, saluting all sorts of flavorful melons.

Bologna suggestion, request for cuke soup.

Donations will provide breakfast for needy children.

Is barbera best on its own or when blended with another variety?

A smokehouse restaurant tied to Lance Briggs, the former Elk Grove High School football star now a Chicago Bears football standout, plans to open Sept. 1 in Elk Grove.

2 Towns Ciderhouse announced Monday that Auburn-based Mussetter Distributing is now distributing the Oregon company’s hard apple ciders to sites in Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado, Yolo, Solano and Nevada counties.

A bear on a bike. A dog that is a bike. A landmark bridge. A smiling sun. An old-timey boxer. A kid-looking character chomping a cigar.

In the 13 months Capital Dime has been open, its defining characteristic has been change.

Henry de Vere White, 35, knows the social power of suds.

Amador winemakers wonder what effects the Sand fire will leave on the upcoming harvest.

With a rich golden color and lightly sweet, thick flavor, Sonomic Almost Vinegar is almost impossible to describe.

On Sunday, Sacramento will be host to Have Another Offal Day, a festival that celebrates offal and sets out to reverse any taste aversion by serving elegant dishes prepared by 12 top-rated Sacramento chefs.

Annual celebration of Yolo County tomato crop will be held Saturday on historic Main Street.

We happened to be cruising around the Fountains shopping center in Roseville the other day when lunchtime hunger struck.

Event organizers are planning on 3,000 foodies to bring their appetites to the 29th annual Lake Tahoe Autumn Food and Wine Festival, Sept. 5-7. Maybe now’s the time to get in line. The crowd will converge on the Village at Northstar California Resort and the neighboring Ritz Carlton Hotel, in the high country near Truckee, and at other venues around the lake. Some events are free, others are ticketed ($12 to $95).

Statistician-journalist Nate Silver and his colleagues are having some fun at their “polling aggregation” webite and blog, www.fivethirtyeight.com, where Silver is editor-in-chief.

There’s room for two iconic ice cream parlors in this town. And no good reason not to go to both, if you ask the members of the Sacramento Walking Sticks.

Unusual gala includes invited guests from the charities it serves.

The banana will be the star of its own festival.

Faced with a choice between updating a beach wardrobe or my cache of cookbooks suited to warm weather, I’ll go with the latter every time. Waves of spring and summer ingredients ebb and flow with such urgent appeal that it’s all too easy to celebrate them simply, and mostly unadorned. But an innovative recipe that involves, say, blueberries will work its way into my gray matter – the result of which is that twice the usual amount comes home from the farmers market, or half of what’s on hand is held in reserve.

It's that time of year again. Pears!

Yvonne Mitchell of Fairfield has been looking for a good chicken tortilla soup recipe.

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