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Food for Thought series. (Courtesy of Santa Fe Botanical Garden)

Food for Thought series. (Courtesy of Santa Fe Botanical Garden)

SANTA FE, N.M. — Chocolate and wine may be the perfect Valentine’s Day combination. Just in time, the Santa Fe Botanical Garden is kicking off its second annual Food for Thought monthly series. The first event, taking place today from 3-5 p.m., will feature a tasting and educational demonstration on the best chocolate and wine pairings. The “Love is in the Air” session will be at Hervé Wine Bar, 139 W. San Francisco St. Chocolatiers Melanie Boudar and Derek Lanter from Cacao Santa Fe’s The Art of Chocolate, and wine experts from Hervé will lead the presentation. Tickets are $80, or $70 for Botanical Garden members. The next events in the series will be March 28 and April 18. Locations are to be determined.

AZA performs Friday at 7.30 p.m. (Courtesy of Bruce Dunlap )

AZA performs Friday at 7.30 p.m. (Courtesy of Bruce Dunlap )

MUSICAL MELANGE: AZA’s musical style is difficult to pin down. With traditional music from Morocco’s high Atlas mountains at its center, the group also infuses other genres – jazz, folk, Latin, rock – that all fit together harmoniously. Co-founders of the California-based Moroccan fusion band will perform in Santa Fe Friday night. Vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Fattah Abbou, and guitarist and percussionist Mohamed Aoualou will join Moroccan-raised, New York-based musician Brahim Fribgane. The show at GiG Performance Space, 1808 2nd Street, starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $22 and can be purchased at www.gigsantafe.com or at the door when it opens 30 minutes prior to the start of the show.

WORTH INSPECTING: “A timely comedy.” That’s what the New Mexico School for the Arts is calling its upcoming production of Nikolai Gogol’s “The Inspector General.” Shows begin on Thursday. The 1836 Russian satire about the country’s government, also sometimes translated as “The Government Inspector,” is a tale about a small town full of corrupt leaders who are nervous about a forthcoming visit by an incognito inspector general. The officials end up mistaking a poor young traveler for the inspector, giving him a comfortable place to stay and trying to woo him with bribes. “The Inspector General” will be staged Thursdays-Saturdays until Feb. 23. The performances will be in NMSA’s rehearsal hall, 275 E. Alameda, starting at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10. Non-NMSA student admission is $5 and NMSA students get in free. Tickets can be purchased at www.nmschoolforthearts.org or at the door.

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