EarthMatters to Close; Battle of the Bartenders at Webster Hall

• Vegetarians despair: After a hike in their rent, Lower East Side health food store and restaurant EarthMatters is closing on September 20. [EV Grieve]

• Williamsburg newcomer Extra Fancy has a new chef and a new dinner menu and will be offering brunch starting Labor Day weekend. The raw bar is still half-off daily from 5 p.m.–7 p.m. and 12 a.m.–3 a.m. [Grub Street]

• Help Fernet Branca elect the best bartender and drink for free while you’re at it: The Italian liqueur is hosting a battle of the barbacks at the East Village’s Webster Hall on Monday, September 28. Free with an online reservation. [Grub Street]

• New Yorkers can be less jealous of the heartland’s grotesque state-fair-style treats with the opening of Smush, a pop-up “deli for desserts,” which will be offering a “hot-cookie grilled cheese,” a sweet interpretation of the venerable sandwich. [Thrillist]

• West-side upscale diner The Highliner has a new happy hour: Cocktails are two for one weekdays from 3 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Cocktail popsicles are also on offer, if you need to survive the last weeks of summer heat. [Grub Street]

• If you’re a fan of both tennis and Southeast Asian cuisine, pay attention: The meatpacking district’s Spice Market is offering 20 percent off food for parties of four or fewer if you present a ticket stub from this year’s U.S. Open; offer is good throughout the tournament. [Grub Steet]

• If nothing in our Labor Day Grub guide caught your eye, here’s one more option: Brasserie Beaumarchais is celebrating with end-of-summer specials and cocktails from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. [Grub Street]

• Fort Greene’s No. 7 celebrates its fourth year in business with a three-course family-style dinner on Wednesday, September 5. $85 covers food and drink; e-mail katherine@no7sub.com to reserve. [Grub Street]

• In honor of Valencia, Spain’s yearly rice festival, Boqueria will offer a special Valencian-inspired rice dish during the first week of September (3-9). [Grub Street]

• Staying abreast of the trends, the International Culinary Center will offer a “farm to table” concentration; the six-week program will combine more traditional culinary education with experience at farms upstate. [Grub Street]

EarthMatters to Close; Battle of the Bartenders at Webster Hall