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The Dish

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    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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Eateries pair drinks at dinners

Because nothing washes down a toad in the hole better than a pint of Guinness, JK O’Donnell’s will serve a dinner of traditional dishes paired with ales this month.

JK O’Donnell’s is one of two local restaurants having themed dinners April 25.

•The event at JK O’Donnell’s, 121 W. Wayne St., starts at 6 p.m.

The menu includes a Scotch egg (hard-boiled egg wrapped in sausage and deep-fried); Guinness beef and barley soup; lamb pasty; toad in the hole (Irish sausage wrapped in bacon and baked in Yorkshire pudding and topped with cider gravy); and Craggaunowen chicken (stuffed with toasted walnuts, sautéed mushrooms, green apples and raisins, then finished with a mead reduction).

The dessert is bread pudding, topped with vanilla bean ice cream and caramel sauce.

Other ales include Harp and Smithwick’s.

The dinner is $35, which doesn’t include tax or gratuity.

Jeremy Kuntz from Diageo-Guinness USA will discuss beer history and terminology.

Reservations are required; call 420-5563.

•BakerStreet, 4820 N. Clinton St., will have a dinner with whiskey pairings, which starts about 6:45 p.m.

The menu includes baby back ribs; smoked wings; beef skewers with mushrooms; grilled swordfish over black beans and rice; roasted potatoes; bistro chips; coleslaw; cheese and fruit; and a pomegranate flambé with ice cream.

There will be six whiskeys, including Wild Turkey, Crown Royal and George Dickel.

The meal is $55, which is all-inclusive.

Dinner will be served on the patio, weather permitting.

Reservations are required; call 484-3300.

Chuck & Birdís plans spring wine dinner

Sample some locally sourced fare during a spring wine dinner Monday at Chuck & Bird’s, 4301 Fairfield Ave.

The menu will feature Great Lakes smoked trout pâté with crostini; rustic mushroom soup; LaGrange’s Gunthorp Farms pork chops with herb-wine butter; roasted rosemary potatoes; and brown-sugar carrots.

Dessert is a strawberry-rhubarb crisp with vanilla ice cream from Hartzler Dairy in Ohio.

The wines are from Raymond Vineyards in Napa Valley.

The dinner starts at 6:30 p.m.

The meal is $42, or $30 without wine, which doesn’t include tax or gratuity.

Reservations are required; call 387-5000.

Lobster ravioli on menu at Casa

It’s lobster ravioli time at Casa Ristoranti Italiano.

That’s just one of the new spring features, which are available through May.

The other entrées are a Philly cheese steak pizza and pollo Santa Lucia (Romano-crusted chicken breast with mozzarella, sautéed spinach and tomatoes).

The sandwich is a grilled chicken panini with bacon, feta, lettuce, tomato, sweet onions and cucumber sauce; it’s served with a side of mostaccioli and meat sauce.

The insalata Maria features chicken, sliced pears, Ossian bacon and Gorgonzola crumbles with a pear vinaigrette.

Prices are $7.29 to $13.99.

The gluten-free caramel cheesecake ($4.99) has an almond crust.

For more information, go to www.casarestaurants.net.

Belmont Beverage to conduct tasting

Belmont Beverage, 10311 Illinois Road in the Shoppes at Illinois Road, will have a tasting event from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday.

There will be about 100 wines, spirits and craft beers to sample, plus appetizers from Aboite Grill, artisan cheeses and coffee drinks.

Industry representatives will be there to answer questions.

The event is free. You must be 21 or older with valid ID to participate.

For information, call 387-5701.

Waynedale Bakery sells Easter treats

Waynedale Bakery is preparing plenty of Easter goodies through April 23.

They include Boston cream pie and pineapple upside-down cakes ($12 and $10), hot cross buns ($7.50 a dozen) and iced sugar cookies in the shape of bunnies or eggs ($8 a dozen).

Call 747-2992 to order.

Seeking Easter, Motherís Day menus

If your restaurant will have special menus or hours for Easter on April 24 or Mother’s Day on May 8, please let me know. I’ll run lists in future columns.

Peony Tea House plans Derby special

Grab your fancy hats for the annual Derby Day party at Peony Tea House, 503 W. Wayne St., on May 7.

The menu will feature non-alcoholic mint juleps, hot browns (the famous sandwiches from the Brown Hotel in Louisville) and chocolate pecan tarts.

The meal is $15.12, which is all-inclusive.

Reservations are required; call 426-4832.

The Dish features restaurant news and food events and appears every Wednesday. Fax news items to 461-8893, email sscarlett@jg.net or call 461-8313.

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