Two occasions to party next week

It’s a busy time next week for restaurants celebrating Mardi Gras and Valentine’s Day. Make reservations early if you want to be assured of a seat at your favorite place. Mardi Gras parties will be Tuesday. Valentine’s celebrations will be on Thursday, unless otherwise noted.

Fat Tuesday

■ Tommy Walters, owner of Furlong’s Catering, is the person who will be  going to Louisiana to pick up all those thousands of pounds of crawfish that many of these Lexington restaurants will serve on Fat Tuesday. He’s also getting  andouille sausage, boudain, and oysters. If you need a large order while he’s there, call (859) 913-5611.

A la lucie, 159 North Limestone. Call (859) 252-5277 or go to Alalucie.com. The party begins at 5 p.m. and the menu includes gumbos, Creoles, etouffee, bananas Foster.
Bayou Bluegrass Catering at The Red Mile Clubhouse, 1200 Red Mile Road. Call (859) 233-0814 or go to Bayoubluegrass.com. Lunch buffet will be served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Cost is $16.50. Dinner seatings are at 5:30, 7 and 8:30 p.m. Cost is $29.50.
Bourbon n’ Toulouse, 829 Euclid Avenue. Call (859) 335-0300 or go to Bntlex.com. The party begins at 11 a.m. and the menu features alligator etouffee and King cake. Call by Monday for  take-out orders. Boiled crawfish cannot be pre-ordered. Crawfish boil starts at 6:30 p.m. Extra seating is at The Chevy Chase Inn and The Beer Trappe.  The Mojo Tones play at 6 p.m. followed by The Tall Boys at 9 p.m.
Gumbo Ya Ya Cajun Creole, 1080 South Broadway. Call (859) 252-9292 or go to Gumboyayaky.com. The menu features alligator sauce piquant, crawfish e’touffee, shrimp Creole, and free slices of King cake.

Meadowthorpe Cafe, 1415 Leestown Road. Call (859) 258-2222. Serving seafood gumbo, red beans and rice, and crawfish etouffee, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Ramsey’s Diners. Locations are at Ramseysdiners.com. Live crawfish will be served, as well as seafood gumbo, red beans and rice, freshly baked French bread, and King cake.
Willie’s Locally Known, 805 North Broadway. Call (859) 281-1116. Willie’s first Mardi Gras party will feature a crawfish boil, gumbo, and hot beignets with bourbon caramel sauce. The Baja Yetis will entertain at 7 p.m. followed by Zydeco and Cajun music at 9 p.m.
Winchell’s, 348 Southland Drive. Call (859) 278-9424 or go to Winchellsrestaurant.com. The Mardi Gras menu includes crawfish etouffee and King cake. On Valentine’s Day, beef tenderloin tips with crabmeat, and pan-seared scallops will be served.

Valentine’s Day

Abuelo’s Mexican Restaurant at Fayette Mall, 3395 Nicholasville Road. Call (859) 971-0922 or go to Abuelos.com. Valentine specials will run Thursday through Feb.17. Included are fajitas for two, plus free dessert, for $29.99; and a prime rib special.
Addie’s at The Woodford Inn, 140 Park Street, Versailles. Call (859) 873-5600 or go to Thewoodfordinn.com. Seatings are at 6 and 8 p.m. Four course meal, including wine, is $90 for two.
Alfalfa, 141 East Main Street. Call (859) 253-0014. Valentine’s dinner will be served from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday. A vegan entrée is available.
The Café at Barnes and Noble, 1932 Pavilion Way. Call (859) 543-8148or go to Barnesandnoble.com. On Wednesday and Valentine’s Day, the café will have specially wrapped Cheesecake Factory cupcakes and cheesecakes for two.
Casanova, 855 South Broadway. Call (859) 309-3313 or go to Casanovaky.com. A three-course menu is $45.
Equus Run Winery, 1280 Moores Mill Road in Midway. Call (859) 846-9463 or go to Equusrunvineyards.com.  Kisses & Calories — A Choco-holic Affair will be from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday. The Tim Talbert Trio will entertain from 1 to 3 p.m. Cost is $5.
J Morse on Vine Bistro, 102 West Vine Street, is serving a four-course Feb. 14-16. Entrees include  peppercorn crusted pork loin with black cherry reduction, pasta pomodoro with grilled chicken or shrimp, and ribeye au poivre. Cost is $80 a couple. Call (859) 368-9888 or go to Jmorseonvinebistro.com.

Minton’s 760, 760 North Limestone. Call (859) 948-1874or go to Mintonsat760.com. Seatings will be at 5:30, 7 and 8:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday.
Soundbar, 208 South Limestone. Call (859) 523-6338 or go to Soundbarlex.com. Soundbar’s A Red Affair on Valentine’s Day will benefit AVOL.
Stella’s Kentucky Deli, 143 Jefferson Street. Call (859) 255-3354 or go to Stellaskentuckydeli.com. A four-course meal will be $35 with seatings at 6 and 8:30 p.m. Vegetarian options available.
Thai Orchid Café, 1030 South Broadway. Call (859) 288-2170 or go to Thaiorchidcafe.net. A Thai tapas feast for two is $45 and will be served from 5 to 9:30 p.m.

 Special events

Akielo Temple No. 128, Daughters of the Nile, will hold its annual bean soup dinner at Oleika Shrine Center, 326 Southland Drive,  from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday. The menu includes brown or white beans, corn bread, dessert, and drink. Cost is $5. Carry-out is available. Call (859) 277-6869.
Holly Hill Inn and Thai Orchid Cafe will exchange chefs on Saturday. Toa Green and her mother, Suda Veerasethakul, who operate Thai Orchid, will cook their Thai specialties at Holly Hill, while  Nat Henton, executive chef at Woodford Reserve Distillery, (The food operation is run by Holly Hill Inn’s culinary team) will prepare menu items at Thai Orchid.
The dinner at Holly Hill, 426 North Winter Street in Midway, will be from 5:30 to 10 p.m. Call (859) 846-4732. Henton will prepare his favorite Thai dishes at Thai Orchid, 1030 South Broadway, from 5 to 10 p.m. Call (859) 288-2170.