Local restaurants have been requesting for years that Visit Fort Wayne organize a summer edition of the popular Savor Fort Wayne event.
While summer can be a busy time for restaurants, there are some diners that are at the lake, on vacation or eating at the area's many festivals.
But this summer is different. (Yes, this might be the understatement of my lifetime.) And for the team at Visit Fort Wayne, a summer restaurant “week” seemed like a way to support the industry while it continues to grapple with the effects of COVID-19.
Savor Fort Wayne will take place Aug. 5 to 15.
New for this edition, restaurants have the option of making their menus available for carry-out. The option allows customers to participate even if they are not comfortable dining in, says Emily Stuck, program and event manager for Visit Fort Wayne.
“Restaurants are a vital cog in the tourism wheel,” she says. It was important for the team to find a way to support restaurants during the time.
About 50 restaurants were part of Savor Fort Wayne in January, and nearly 30 are participating in August.
Among them are RoKo's Kitchen @ HT2, Deusy's Sports Bar & Grille, Bahn Mi Barista and Eddie Merlot's.
Menus are available at visitfortwayne.com/savor. The list of participating restaurants also indicates if outdoor seating is available.
Planning for a typical Savor Fort Wayne takes about a year, with the Visit Fort Wayne team noting what was successful before, what wasn't and working with sponsors. But the summer Savor began in earnest in April as the Visit Fort Wayne team was locked down.
While there was a lot of uncertainty as planning began, restaurants the team talked to felt comfortable with an August timeline.
“It's really our hope that it will be a positive type of event with so many other things being canceled,” Stuck says.
Landing Beer Co. opens
Brendon Maxwell and Caleb France had hoped to open the doors to the Landing Beer Co. on Independence Day.
But the Fourth of July block party was postponed after Gov. Eric Holcomb announced Indiana would not move to Stage 5 of the reopening plan on that day, allowing eateries to operate at 100% capacity.
Though the state is still in Stage 4.5 with restaurants at 50% capacity, the Landing Beer Co. opened its doors Tuesday at 118 W. Columbia St.
The menu focuses on beer and barbecue with classics alongside vegetarian-friendly dishes. Entrees include pulled pork, brisket, smoked turkey breast and crispy smoked tofu. There are also sandwiches, such as crispy chicken, baked goat cheese and a burger. Plates include smoked chicken wings, malted-corn crusted walleye and smoked harissa cauliflower. Cole slaw, corn bread, broccoli salad, waffle fries and chorizo chili are among sides.
There were two beers on tap on opening day with room to expand to 12 taps.
The space features exposed brick, booth seating and terrazzo floors from 1914.
Hours are 4 to 9 p.m. Monday through Wednesday and 4 to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
Maxwell is a co-founder of Utopian Coffee, and France owns Cerulean in Winona Lake.
• Books & Brews has opened at 2892 E. Dupont Road. Books & Brews is a family-friendly restaurant that combines books in a used book store and beer in a taproom. Hours are 3 to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, noon to 9 p.m. Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday.
• Logan's Roadhouse has expanded its take-home options with family meals and ready-to-go grill kits. Family meals cost between $25 and $40 and include options such as chicken tenders, grilled chicken and ribs with two large sides.
Logan's Ready-to-Grill kits come with a seasoning blend for steaks and pork chops. Ranging from $5 to $15, options are a 6- or 12-ounce sirloin, 12-ounce New York strip, 12-ounce hand-cut ribeye, four pack of 6-ounce pork chops or a full rack of baby back ribs.
• The McDonald's at 6131 Stellhorn Road has been demolished, and a sign on the door before it closed indicated the restaurant would be rebuilt.
The Dish features restaurant news and food events and appears Wednesdays. Fax news items to 461-8893, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 461-8304 at least two weeks before event or desired publication.