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The Dish

  • Henry will hand over Green Frog on Friday
    Opened in 1933 as a place for the German Catholic neighborhood to get a beer after prohibition, the pub at Spring Street and Sherman Boulevard has always been the Green Frog Inn, owner Cindy Henry says.
  • TV chef heads to national contest
    If Ed Ribel knows one thing, it’s what he wants. He wants to win. “It would be huge,” he says.
  • 3rd annual Foodstock to gather trucks downtown
    July 26 is going to be a long day for John Maxwell. From 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., the man behind the Ragin' Cajun food truck will be serving jambalaya and crawfish pie, among other specialties.
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Ali Baba's to close today

I looked forward to my Friday night dinner plans all week -- we were going to Ali Babba's Grille (10812 Coldwater Road), where I would get some Turkish coffee and eat some killer kebobs, like Nani makes.

The small restaurant was so packed, it was a bit too much for the small staff to handle. As one of the servers apologized to a waiting couple, I overheard her say that the restaurant would close today.

When I questioned the closing, co-owner Rula Anas stopped by my table. Business was too slow, she said. Whenever the restaurant had been featured in the paper -- when I announced Ali Baba's opening in a Dish column in February of this year, say, or when restaurant critic Ryan DuVall raved about it in a Dining Out column earlier this month -- business flourished.

But shortly after the press, it was back to too-slow.

I can't fault the food, as Ali Baba's cuisine is amazing, but its location is strongly lacking: The restaurant is in a strip mall on Coldwater Road north of Dupont Road. The only way to get into its parking lot is via side streets before or after the strip, so it's easy to miss.

The owners plan to move back to North Carolina, leaving Fort Wayne down one killer Mediterranean restaurant.

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