Jan. 21, 6:30 p.m.
Sofitel New York, 45 W. 44th St.
If there’s anything as essential to French life as wine and cheese, it’s the traditional baguette. French Morning magazine asked its readers who makes the best in NYC, and the 12 finalists — from the likes of Epicerie Boulud, Breads Bakery, La Boulangerie and Almondine — will face off in a blind taste test. Attendees will sample all of the breads, accompanied by D’Artagnan charcuterie and a Savencia cheese buffet, Bonne Maman jam and wine. The jury will include a Michelin-starred chef, a dean at the French Culinary Institute, the author of “The Best Bread Ever” and other tough-to-please customers, so expect everything to be on point. —Eva Kis
Outsider Arts Fair
Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 18th St.
If you think the arts are for pretentious people with nothing better to do than ogle paintings, you might find yourself surprisingly smitten with “outside art,” aka pieces by self-taught artists that don’t interact with the frou-frou arts world that’s dictated by critics and curators. The Outsider Arts Fair pays homage to this rising counter-culture of art, with pieces that normal people can actually afford, and it takes place this weekend at Metrpolitan Pavilion.
New York Ceramics & Glass Fair
Bohemian National Hall, 321 E. 73rd St.
Unsurprisingly, but delightfully, NYC has an art festival for every interest. For those into ceramics, pottery, porcelain and glass, it’s time to get your geek on. The New York Ceramics & Glass Fair returns to the city for its 17th year this weekend with hundreds of 3-D pieces on display spanning three floors of the historic Bohemian National Hall. In addition to a feast for the eyes, there are also lectures and panels with leading artists, dealers and curators.
Winter Antiques Show
Park Avenue Armory, 643 Park Ave.
Unless you’re living with grandma’s castoffs, antiques might be a little off-budget for your apartment’s decor. But that doesn’t mean you can’t dream. Whether you’re looking to splurge on that one special piece or just drink in all of the gorgeous art, you can’t miss the 62nd annual Winter Antiques Show, which runs through January at the Park Avenue Armory. Proceeds benefit the East Side House Settlement, a community resource for the East Bronx.
Sarah Silverman and Friends
Jan. 22, 8 p.m.
BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, 30 Lafayette Ave., Brooklyn
Before Amy Schumer, your imaginary sassy best friend in the comedy world was Sarah Silverman–a cynical feminist who never met a line she wouldn’t pole-vault across. No stranger to film and TV, Silverman also continues to make live appearances like this one-night-only standup show presented by the New York Comedy Festival at BAM on Jan. 22. As the title suggests, showgoers can also expect surprise guests to make an appearance.
New York Hilton Midtown, 1335 Avenue of the Americas
Broadway fanatics can finally step away from online forums and share their love of theater in person at the first convention dedicated to the greats of the Great White Way. This weekend at BroadwayCon, fans will have the chance to meet their favorite stage stars, snag autographs and shop the marketplace. Highlights include a panel celebrating the 20th anniversary of “RENT” and a “Hamilton” meet-and-greet. And, yes, there might be a few singalongs.
Jan. 23, 1-4 p.m.
City Winery, 155 Varick St.
If pinot noir is your drink, you might know a few things about its diverse profile. But you can learn even more by sampling from more than a hundred batches this weekend at the fifth annual Pinot Days New York. Over 40 wineries from California, Oregon and New Zealand gather in New York City for a three-hour tasting that’s open to the public with tickets starting at $75. For $120, you’ll receive early entry and access to the VIP Diversity Seminar.
Cardboard Robot Battle Episode V
Jan. 23, 8 p.m.
Standard ToyKraft, 722 Metropolitan Ave., Brooklyn
It doesn’t get more Brooklyn than this: Performance art meets “Robot Wars” when Standard ToyKraft holds its fifth life-size puppet deathmatch this Friday. Nine lucky enthusiasts will dress up in handmade cardboard robot outfits and battle it out for the grand prize. Just in time for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” this show’s theme is “Episode V: Disney Buys the Franchise.” It’s a guaranteed hipster-nerd paradise, and we mean that in the best of ways.
Jan. 24, 4 p.m. VIP, 5 p.m. GA
William B. Seymour’s, 175 Broadway, Brooklyn
We’re not promising anything, but it’s totally possible you’ll find a new favorite way to eat pork than bacon this weekend at this culinary competition as five chefs, including Upland’s Justin Smilie, take on the challenge of creating up to six dishes from one whole hog. There’s also a Late Night Asian Speakeasy Dinner on Friday, where two previous Princes of Porc — Brad Farmerie (Public) and Francis Derby (The Cannibal) — along with three other chefs including Ivan Orkin (Ivan Ramen) will prepare a family-style feast with German wine pairings and a cocktail reception. —Eva Kis
Monday Night Magic
Through Feb. 15, 8 p.m.
The Players Theatre, 115 MacDougal St.
Like any performers, magicians need an audience to work on new acts and showcase their skills. One place to discover the latest tricks of the trade from both established artists and talented up-and-comers is at Monday Night Magic, the longest-running magic show in New York. Its current run, featuring three new magicians per night with acts ranging from sleight of hand to knife-throwing, started this week and lasts through Feb. 15 at the Players Theatre.
“St. Marks Is Dead” Book Talk
Jan. 27, 6:30 p.m.
Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Ave.
It doesn’t take a native to see that New York’s rapidly shedding its gritty skin in favor of chain stores, banks and Starbucks. Even the iconic three blocks of St. Mark’s aren’t exempt, as its storefronts change with the seasons. Ada Calhoun takes a look at the strip’s evolution in her new book, “St. Mark’s Is Dead.” She’s speaking and signing books at the Museum of the City of New York next Wednesday, joined by journalist and urban underground expert Luc Sante.