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The Dish

  • Updates continue on Lima
    If you drive along Lima Road, it's hard to miss the changes to the restaurant scene.
  • Updates continue on Lima
    If you drive along Lima Road, it’s hard to miss the changes to the restaurant scene.As I wrote in a March column, LongHorn Steakhouse is opening a restaurant at 5050 Value Drive in front of Costco.
  • Vanilla Bean shifting to orders only
    In most cases, closing up shop is bad times.  But for Sandra Wharton and Debbie Smith, the move from retail to production is a good thing for their business, Vanilla Bean Unique
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Noodles.com

More than noodles at new restaurant

A new restaurant opened on the city’s southwest side Monday.

Noodles & Company, 4602 Illinois Road, is a chain restaurant with more than two dozen locations across the country.

The restaurant’s specialty, yes, is noodles, serving them up in a variety of styles: Asian, Mediterranean and American. You will also find a variety of macaroni and cheeses on the menu (a down-home style with cheddar and jack cheeses and a version with truffle oil and sautéed Portobello mushrooms) as well as Asian-style noodles (pad Thai and Japanese pan noodles) and Mediterranean pastas (pasta fresca and penne rosa).

The restaurant also offers soups, sandwiches and salads.

Find out more about Noodles & Company, including its full menu, at potentially the best Web address out there, Noodles.com.

Closing

I received an email from a reader last week inquiring about MJ’s Pizza, 3225 N. Anthony Blvd. He asked if the restaurant had closed, as the building appeared deserted.

When I drove past MJ’s, I noticed large trash receptacles outside full of debris, and the building was empty and dark.

I called the number listed on MJ’s still-functioning website and was greeted by a Tasty Pizza employee. The man told me MJ’s closed Dec. 1, and Tasty Pizza, 4302 Fairfield Ave., bought the number and is now taking care of MJ’s customers.

Restaurant change

Bearcreek Farms, 8339 N. Jay County Road 400 E. in Bryant is changing its dinner service. When it opens for the season in April, the restaurant, called The Homestead, will no longer serve walk-in customers. Instead, the restaurant will be reserved for people attending Bearcreek events, conventions and live theater performances, general manager Carla Loy says.

It is also changing the way it serves food. In the past, The Homestead offered family-style eating, off-menu dining and a grand buffet. Starting this year, it will feature a smaller potluck style of dining.

“It’s scaled down for our clientele, which are mainly seniors that want home-cooked meals that they normally wouldn’t fix for themselves,” Loy says.

Staples will include chicken and noodles, beef stew and chicken pot pie.

Fundraiser

The Allen County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals will have its sixth annual Chili Cook-off at 4 p.m. Sunday at Piere’s Entertainment Center, 5629 St. Joe Road. The fundraiser has a $7 cover for all-you-can-eat chili in three categories: bean, no bean and exotic.

To register your chili, call 486-1979, ext. 239. A $500 prize goes to the best overall chili, plus cash prices for the best in each category. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Allen County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Class

The Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S. Calhoun St., will conduct a class with The Olive Twist (stores in Auburn and Fort Wayne) from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday and 10 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday. The class, Olive Oil 101 and Simple Appetizer, has a five-item menu. Attendees at both sessions will learn recipes including hibiscus flower with goat cheese, feta cheese with herbs and olive oil and pound cake with orange whip and berries.

The class is $9. To register, call the conservatory at 427-6440 or go to BotanicalConservatory.org.

The Dish features restaurant news and food events and appears Wednesdays. Fax news items to 461-8893, email jyouhana@jg.net or call 461-8462. For more restaurant news, go to The Dish blog at www.journalgazette.net/thedish.

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