THE MISSION - The very talented Luis Villavelazquez is partnering up with Mission 60-year-old panaderia and cafe La Victoria to modernize and refine their baked goods. Villavelazquez, who has worked at Citizen Cake, Orson and Absinthe and is just getting his own company Les Éléments Pâtisserie off the ground, will offer his first pastry, a prickly pear- and chocolate-filled profiterole, on Monday. Overall, prices will go up a smidge to account for more expensive ingredients and labor, while Villavelazquez makes every effort to keep the classic items in the case so as not to upset the patrons who've been coming here for decades. [SFoodie]
HEALDSBURG - Tonight from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., Spoonbar and Scott Beattie will host a cocktail competition among bartenders from all over Wine Country. Beattie's own drinks will fuel the crowd for $5 a pop. RSVP by calling the restaurant. [EaterWire]
CUPCAKEWIRE - If digging into ten to 15 cupcakes from bakeries across the Bay Area in one fell swoop sounds like a delightful way to pass an afternoon, check out the first Bay Area Cupcake Challenge coming to Mezzanine next Sunday. Tickets here. [EaterWire]
MARINA - A16's annual Festa Della Donna (International Woman's Day) dinner is coming up on March 8. Owner and sommelier Shelley Lindgren and executive chef David Taylor are teaming up with various renowned food professionals, sommeliers, authors and winemakers -- including James Beard Award-winning chef Barbara Lynch and cheese maker Soyoung Scanlan -- to benefit La Cocina. Contact the restaurant for reservations. [EaterWire]
OAKLAND - On March 11, Camino restaurant is throwing an event to honor Gabrielle Hamilton, chef-owner of perennially loved New York restaurant Prune and the release of her new memoir Blood, Bones and Butter. Attendees will enjoy the rare opportunity to hear Hamilton read a passage from her book along with a cocktail hour and a 3-course family style dinner featuring dishes inspired by the book. Here's what Mario Batali had to say it: “I will read this book to my children and then burn the books I have written for pretending to be anything even close to this. After that I will apply for the dishwasher job at Prune to learn from my new queen.” Reservations are available via the Camino website.