Miami's Best Eats and Drinks This Weekend: Countdown to Thanksgiving Edition

Hard to believe, but Thanksgiving is less than two weeks away, which means you best get on with the menu planning and setting up the spare bedroom for all of your relatives up North who come down to spend the holiday in Miami.

If you're starting to panic about what to serve and how the hell to cook a turkey, don't worry. This weekend there are a bunch of free cooking seminars, decorating events, and tastings where you can learn how to make the perfect stuffing, create a gorgeous autumn centerpiece (no paper turkeys from Party City), or sample delicious food to your heart's content.

Crate & Barrel Thanksgiving Decorating Classes

Have you ever watched Martha Stewart with bitterness in your heart, knowing that you could never fold a napkin to look like a swan, or set a perfect table (why, oh, why are there so many spoons)? Don't blame Martha for your shortcomings; get your un-domesticated ass to Crate & Barrel at the Falls on Saturday, November 16, from 1 to 4 p.m.

There, you'll learn how to set a Thanksgiving table, make a thankfulness tree, create floral centerpieces, and carve a turkey, as well as get introduced to dozens of gadgets that will make your Turkey Day a little easier. Don't know what a thankfulness tree is? We bet Martha does!

Savor the Season

Take a break from floral arrangements and menu planning, put on your fancy duds, and enjoy Savor the Season. Brickell World Plaza's annual event features choirs singing holiday favorites, live entertainment for dancing, and dozens of Brickell's best restaurants serving delicious food and wine. There's also a countdown to the lighting of the signature 40-foot holiday wreath. Tickets cost $100 and include all food and drink. Purchase tickets at savortheseason.com. Enter code SAVOR2013 to receive 25 percent off your purchase.

A Taste of Thanksgiving at Whole Foods Market North Miami and Aventura

Whole Foods Market celebrates A Taste of Thanksgiving this weekend with samples throughout the store. Try some hot apple cider, maybe a slice of pumpkin pie, and a little holiday wine; then pre-order a complete holiday meal from the store and -- bam! -- your holiday cooking woes are behind you. Grab another sample of Chardonnay. You've just successfully planned your Thanksgiving dinner, and you deserve it!

WFM North Miami - Saturday, November 16, from 1 to 3 p.m.

WFM Aventura - Sunday, November 17, from noon to 2 p.m.

Choose Your Sides at Williams-Sonoma

This weekend, the famous chef's store is asking you to take sides -- as in Brussels sprouts and stuffing. Let's face it -- most people like Thanksgiving side dishes better than the turkey. In fact, we're thinking of making an all-side meal and pardoning the bird like the White House does. Each Williams-Sonoma location might demonstrate a different side dish, but count on stuffing and mashed potatoes. The Falls store's employees informed us they've been cooking all week. Can't you just smell the nutmeg and bay leaves? Times and dates vary by store:

Lincoln Road, South Beach - Sunday, November 17, 11 a.m. to noon

The Village of Merrick Park - Sunday, November 17, noon to 1 p.m.

The Falls - Sunday, November 17, noon to 1 p.m. and Monday, November 18, 7 to 8 p.m.

Follow Laine Doss on Twitter @LaineDoss and Facebook.

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