Planning on dinner and a movie? Go to Café Voila and the movie's on them! This charming French restaurant in the shadow of the Marriott Pyramid has partnered with Madstone Theaters to give patrons two clever ways to save money on their dates. Option Number One: If you order full-priced dinner entrées, Café Voila will give you each a free movie ticket. Option Number Two: Bring your ticket stub from a Madstone matinee to Voila that same evening and they'll take the cost of your ticket (usually $5.50) off of your dinner entrée's price. I think it's a brilliant marketing idea for them and a screamin' deal for us. For full details call Café Voila (821-2666) or Madstone Theaters (6311 San Mateo NE, 872-4000).
Pars Cuisine (4320 The 25 Way NE, 345-5156) will be celebrating Persian New Year on Tuesday night. The holiday, called Now Ruz, coincides with the spring equinox and celebration dates back more than 2,500 years. They are taking reservations for a $35 per person dinner that includes a choice of sabzi polo mahi (a traditional holiday dish of fish over a pilaf of rice, cilantro and green onions) or joojeh kabab (broiled Cornish game hen) and kookoo sabzi (an herbed soufflé/omelet thing). All dinners come with soup or salad and dessert. You can also expect belly dancers to gyrate their way through the dining room. Definitely call for reservations.
The patio at Tucanos Brazilian Grill (First and Central, 246-9900) opens this Saturday night so you'll be able to chug caipirinhas and scarf beef under the night stars. Right now service on the patio is limited to cocktails and the Tucanos Tempter plate—meat carvers only circulate inside the dining room. The Tucanos Tempter allows you to choose two or three meats from the list (you get one portion of each) and gives free reign at the salad bar. It's a few bucks cheaper than eating inside. But Manager Ron Montoya says he plans to start buffet service on the patio this season—keep your eyes peeled. Tucanos also serves brunch, did you know? Yup, on Sundays from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. they put out an all-you-can-eat spread that is similar to their other meals with the addition of eggs, pancakes, bacon, sausage, biscuits and gravy. Brunch costs $20 for grown-ups, $7 for kids 7-12 and little ones eat free. Oh, and Tucanos also has a portable grill they use for catering so if you'd like to stage a little churrasco party in your back yard then give them a call.
Easter and Passover are coming up in about three weeks so you might want to start your menu planning now. Pick the longest line at the grocery store so you can read all of Gourmet and Bon Appétit before you check out. Order your ham or lamb, make the guest list and while you're at it, see if you can come up with a few more recipes for hard-boiled eggs. Wait, that's my job. You make the guest list and I'll come up with a brilliant new twist on egg salad.
Oh, and by the way, in last week's story on making your own cleaning products we inadvertently cut a very important line that warned never to mix bleach and ammonia. The easiest way to do this is to simply use bleach and never ammonia. If there's no ammonia or ammonia-based product in your house, you'll never mix the two together into a toxic-fume fog that will leave you lying dead as a doornail on your bathmat.