Pastiche Modern Eatery owner Pat Connors has started a group that meets once a month to sample and learn about different whiskies. It's called the Pastiche Whiskey/Whisky Club, and Connors said attendees at last month's event were treated to Jameson whiskies and an Irish whiskey that had never been seen before stateside. They'll be sipping small-batch bourbons with an official from Booker's bourbon when the group meets at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 24. Each meeting is priced according to what's poured; this month's event will cost about $10. Pastiche is located at 3025 N. Campbell Ave.; 325-3333; www.pasticheme.com.
Guinness drinkers, prepare to raise thine foamy glasses! The "Great Guinness Toast," the annual attempt to break the world record for the largest simultaneous toast, takes place at 9 p.m., Friday, Feb. 19. The Auld Dubliner (800 E. University Blvd.) pays tribute with giveaways and $1 off Guinness, Harp and Smithwick's from 8 to 10 p.m. O'Malley's (247 N. Fourth Ave.) is holding an identical event at identical times. Hotel Congress (311 E. Congress St.) celebrates with festivities and live music by the Killdares at 7 p.m. Visit www.thegreatguinnesstoast.com for more information.
The Tucson Community Food Bank's fruit-gleaning program is on track to make many thousands of pounds of fruit available to the needy this year. Bill Carnegie, the Food Bank president, says two crews will collect unwanted fruit from residents through March so it can be redistributed to hungry Tucsonans. "We bring in 3,000 to 4,000 pounds every day, and it's gone by the next day," said Carnegie. "And you know how good fresh fruit is for people." Call 622-0525 to have a crew come to your house. Marana has a similar program (682-3001).
Learn about and try two Chinese green teas at a tasting from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 20, at the Seven Cups Tea House at the Tucson Botanical Gardens (2150 N. Alvernon Way). Certified tea master Zhuping Hodge will speak about the teas being served—long jing and an ji bai cha—and tea scholar Eric Carr will discuss how the histories of tea and silk are intertwined. The event is free with admission to the gardens. Call 326-9686, ext. 10, or visit www.tucsonbotanical.org for more information.