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Film buffs and foodies, take note: The Flatirons Food Film Festival is back, running from September 27 to October 1. The Boulder event, now in its fifth year, features a movie smorgasbord covering a wide range of trailblazing culinary figures, as well as curated tastings and special meet-the-directors events. There’s not a bad showing on the docket, but here are the movies/events you absolutely won’t want to miss:
Wednesday, September 27
James Beard: America’s First Foodie (6:30 p.m.): The festival kicks off at north Boulder’s food truck park, Rayback Collective, with a documentary about James Beard, the pioneering author, journalist, and teacher who redefined American food culture in the 1960s and 1970s. Before settling in for the viewing (which begins at 7:30 p.m.), sample hors d’oeuvres based on Beard’s own recipes, such as chile-cheese dip and biscuits with honey butter, prepared by chef Michael DeBoer of the French Twist Food Truck. After the film, join Izabela Wojcik of the James Beard Foundation and director Beth Federici for a Q&A moderated by former Denver Eater editor, Andra Zeppelin. Rayback Collective, 2775 Valmont Road, Boulder
Friday, September 29
A Journey Through the People’s Republic of Fermentation (7:30 p.m.): Watch this series of eight short films in which fermentation expert Sandor Katz and Mara King, co-founder of Ozuké, a Lafayette-based pickled goods company, explore southwest China to learn more about the history of fermenting foods. During the intermission, you can chat with King about age-old techniques, and snack on pickled veggies and mapo tofu from Ozuké and fermented rice pudding with apple compote from Fresh Thymes Eatery. Canyon Theater, Boulder Public Library, 1001 Arapahoe Ave., Boulder
Saturday, September 30
Children’s Farmers Market Walk and Cooking Demo (9-10 a.m.): Take a family-friendly guided tour of the Boulder County Farmers Market with chef Matt Collier of Seeds Library Café. After, Collier will demonstrate how to whip up a nutritious meal using the produce purchased during the tour. Boulder County Farmers Market, 13th St., Boulder, $8
Ratatouille (10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.): When the cooking demo’s over, head to the library and cozy up for a free showing of Ratatouille, the Disney animated film about a rat who aspires to be a chef in Paris. Register to attend here. Canyon Theater, Boulder Public Library, 1001 Arapahoe Ave., Boulder, Free (with registration)
Sparkling Wine Reception (6:15 p.m.): If you have tickets to see Jeremiah Tower: The Last Magnificent (or you attended the 4:00 p.m. Sour Grapes screening), you can pre-game at this reception with glasses of Scarpetta vino (from Frasca Food and Wine’s master sommelier and co-owner Bobby Stuckey) and bites such as cured salmon and bagels from Rosenberg’s Bagels and Delicatessen, charcuterie from Il Porcellino Salumi, and sweet treats from Lucky’s Bakehouse and Creamery. Canyon Theater, Boulder Public Library, 1001 Arapahoe Ave., Boulder
Jeremiah Tower: The Last Magnificent (7:15 p.m.): This gripping film, produced by Anthony Bourdain, chronicles the rise and fall of celebrity chef Jeremiah Tower, from his start at Berkeley’s Chez Panisse to his mysterious disappearance for almost two decades to his surprising return at New York City’s fabled Tavern on the Green. Following the movie, Tower will be interviewed by food journalist Amanda Faison, former food editor of 5280 Magazine. There will also be an open discussion with the audience. Canyon Theater, Boulder Public Library, 1001 Arapahoe Ave., Boulder
Sunday, October 1
Big Night by Day: Via Perla Luncheon (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.): Before watching Big Night (more details below), head to Via Perla for a family-style, five-course Italian luncheon ($26) with optional wine pairings ($41). Chef Anthony Hessel will serve timpano, the classic Calabrian dish of baked pasta with meatballs, salumi, and tomato ragu encased in dough, which is the pièce de resistance of the film. Via Perla, 901 Pearl St., Boulder
Big Night (1:30-3:35 p.m.): In this classic food film, Italian brothers Primo and Secondo didn’t realize running a restaurant in America would come at such a heavy price. Can they work together to save their restaurant? Chef Frank Bonanno of Bonanno Concepts will introduce the film. Muenzinger Auditorium, University of Colorado-Boulder, 1905 Colorado Ave.
Flatirons Food Film Festivan general admission tickets are $10 per film ($9 for seniors), or you can buy an all-access movie viewing and tasting pass for $65. Tickets can be purchased on EventBrite or at the door.