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Thirsty Thursdays return - on site and on Zoom - at CityGate Grille

Four themed cocktail-making classes will be held in August

CityGate Grille, the USDA Prime steakhouse located on the CityGate campus in Northwest Naperville, will host a weekly series of cocktail-making virtual & on-site classes each Thursday in August. The weekly themed classes were developed and will be led by Bar Manager Pierce Lueders, who held two “Quarantine Cocktails” classes in May when restaurant dining rooms and patios were closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

While guests have been enjoying visits to CityGate Grille and its expansive Patio since late May, the response to the at-home, DIY classes was strong, drawing an average of 45 registrations to each Zoom class, several with whole households participating.

“With most people working from home, this class helped transition from the work day to the relaxing evening,” said Lueders. And I think that’s why they were so popular the first time around. People need a clear ‘clock out time’ when working from home and this 5 o’clock class is the perfect reminder that it is time to relax.”

Lueders added the on-site option for up to 10 socially distanced guests since Illinois now allows guests to drink and dine indoors within limitations.

Lueders’ themes for the August series, in which guests will learn to make three cocktails per class, are:

  • Fruit Forward, exploring the use of fresh summer fruits to brighten and boost flavor on Aug. 6

  • Cocktails in Pop Culture, which will dive into cocktails popularized in film on Aug. 13

  • Hopes for Tailgating will offer options to toast your favorite team, whether they’re playing or not, and will cover making bulk mixes for serving groups on Aug. 20

  • KISS: Keep it Simple, Silly, will feature three-ingredient cocktails, impressive despite their simplicity, on Aug. 27

Ingredients needed to make each of the 12 cocktails in the series will be packaged in kits Zoom participants will pick up from CityGate Grille each week, and will be provided to on-site guests. The cost is $45 for each class and three-drink kit; a 20 percent discount is available to those signing up for the full series at $144.

Each Thirsty Thursday class requires advance registration at Discounted series sign up also is available at the site.

Registrants must certify they are 21 years or older, and an ID will be required at kit pickup.

CityGate Grille is located at 2020 Calamos Ct., on the CityGate campus near Rte. 59 and Ferry Rd. in Naperville. Thirsty Thursday registration currently is open, and will close for each class at 5 p.m. on the Wednesday before the class. Kit pickup will be each Thursday between 11:30 a.m. and 4 p.m.


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