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The Journal Gazette

Wednesday, July 03, 2019 1:00 am

Chefs set to open casual restaurant

Kimberly Dupps Truesdell | For The Journal Gazette

After working under some of the city's best chefs and in some of the hottest kitchens, Cam Kaminski and Jake Koczergo are setting out on their own with a new downtown restaurant.

But the pair don't want their fine-dining experience to influence diners who will walk through the doors at 620 Calhoun St. and try Bistro Nota.

Work is underway at the space, which was once home to Central City Cafe and Deli 620. Gone is the imposing salad bar and counter seating. But the hardwood floors, modern lighting and tin ceiling still creates an inviting atmosphere.

Kaminski and Koczergo will offer French-American cuisine in a casual lunch setting. But the “French” is more about preparation than dishes – no escargot, the pair says jokingly.

They want to create “incredibly good food” that's simple using classic preparation methods. It will be familiar and comforting yet refined. A traditional pot roast with mashed potatoes will become a braised short rib with creamy polenta.

The menu will also feature soups, salads and sandwiches on bread made fresh in-house. There will also be a rotating list of entrees and a line of grab-and-go meals.

Nota @ Home will fill the dinner gap for busy downtown regulars who might not have time to cook but want a quality meal. It takes meal delivery kits one step further, they say.

While the pair hasn't been able to cook in the kitchen yet (they are still waiting on an inspection), there's already been quite a bit of buzz surrounding Bistro Nota. It's been surprising, they say, but they are excited to provide a unique dining experience downtown.

Koczergo says he looked at 620 Calhoun St. a couple years ago but, at the time, it wasn't the right fit. Now, with the Landing and Riverfront projects nearby and a revised approach, “it felt like downtown was the place go. ... It's the best fit for us.”

A tentative timeline has Bistro Nota opening in the early fall.

House bought

There has been a passing of the torch at iconic Auburn restaurant The Brown House.

Parker and Erica Klein announced they have purchased the restaurant effective Monday, as previous owners Marsha and Tom Armstrong have retired.

But the Kleins, both graduates of IPFW's hospitality management program, assure fans that they will not change the name or recipes of the restaurant, which opened in 1949.

“We cannot wait to work with the current employees and to see you for all your favorites ... including the best coney dogs around!” the Kleins wrote in a Facebook post.

Erica grew up in Auburn and graduated from DeKalb High School, and Parker is a native of Swayzee.

The menu at the Brown House includes cheeseburgers, tenderloins, ice cream and, of course, coney dogs.

Holiday happenings

Local restaurants will be observing the Fourth of July holiday, either through amended hours or specials.

• Ted's food truck rally will be today since Thursday is a holiday. Food trucks including Bravas, Flora & Lily and Who Cut The Cheese? will begin serving at 5 p.m. Live music will begin at 6 p.m.

• Guests at Pub at 1802 will have a clear view of the fireworks on the Fourth. The Spy Run Avenue spot will be serving up a hot dog bar from 7 to 11 p.m., and $12 domestic buckets will be available all day.

Bravas will be closed for a long weekend beginning Thursday. The restaurant at 3412 Fairfield Ave. will reopen Tuesday.

Zinnia's Bakehouse, 236 E. Wayne St., will be closed Thursday through Saturday. Because of the holiday, Zinnia's monthly beignet Saturday will be July 13.

• All Mad Anthony Brewing Co. locations will be open regular hours Thursday.

Hungry Howie's is celebrating Independence Day with a special offer. Customers can receive a medium one-topping pizza for 4 cents with the purchase of a large pizza at regular price. The deal is valid today through Sunday only for carry-out orders made online, in-store and by phone.

Hungry Howie's has locations at 4214 Crescent Ave. and 6380 W. Jefferson Blvd.

Parkview brunch

Parkview Regional Medical Center is expanding its dining options with a regular Sunday brunch.

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays, the public and hospital visitors can enjoy a buffet featuring build-your-own doughnuts; homemade pastries and eclairs; carving station with Ossian ham; omelet and pasta bar; French toast bake; breakfast meats; seasonal fresh fruit and yogurt bar; and breakfast potatoes.

The hospital's café has developed a reputation for offering quality food that is unexpected in a hospital setting.

The cost is $14.99 for ages 12 and older, $7.99 for ages 7 to 11 and free for ages 6 and younger. Beverages, pre-packaged items and bar-coded items are not included in the buffet price. A la carte pricing is also available.

Nick's birthday

It has been 30 years since Jean Anne Bailey bought Nick's Kitchen, the historic restaurant in Huntington.

To celebrate this week, there will be several specials – all a play on the 30th anniversary. Through Saturday, coffee will be 30 cents. For breakfast, diners can choose a half order of biscuits and gravy with one egg or two eggs, sausage and toast for $3.30. A mini tenderloin and chips will be available for $3.30, as well as pulled pork with chips.

Nick's Kitchen has been open for more than 100 years, and the original owner is credited with creating the Hoosier classic, the breadedpork tenderloin sandwich.

The Dish features restaurant news and food events and appears Wednesdays. Fax news items to 461-8893, email kdupps@jg.net or call 461-8304 at least two weeks before event or desired publication.