St. Patrick's Day, March 17, is just around the corner. Here are some ways to celebrate:
•The Venice Restaurant has hosted a St. Patrick's Day party for 33 years. This year is no exception. The restaurant at 2242 Goshen Road will serve corned beef and cabbage dinners all day for $9.95 a person. Irish stew is $6.95.
The Venice starts serving at 11 a.m. and will serve all day and night. Green beer and Irish cocktails will be served. Shade Jonze and Shannon Persinger will sing and play favorite Irish songs, starting at 2 p.m.
The bagpipers will be there at 5 p.m. There is a $3 cover charge when the music starts. The annual Son of the Sod will be presented at 4 p.m.
•The Lucky Moose, 622 E. Dupont Road, is serving a St. Patrick's Day buffet for $9.95 all day. The menu includes corned beef and cabbage, Irish stew, and Guinness beer-battered fish and chips. Guinness beer is $3, green beer is $2 and Scrimshaw pilsner is $4.
•Henry's Restaurant, 536 W. Main St., isn't normally open for lunch. However, it will open at 11 a.m. March 17 and will serve Irish stew and corned beef and cabbage all day. This is a real treat; Henry's usually opens at 4 p.m.
•Dicky's 21 Taps, 2910 Maplecrest Road in Georgetown North, will have a St. Patrick's Day weekend party Saturday-Monday. Dicky's will have an Irish Tap Takeover featuring Irish-style beers. Irish stew, mashed potatoes, brats and sauerkraut will be served. Special beverages include Irish car bombs, Irish whiskey and green martinis.
Tour a real chocolate factory
The University of Saint Francis and Fort Wayne Youtheatre are collaborating on a production of “Willy Wonka” in March. They've also collaborated with DeBrand Fine Chocolates, 10105 Auburn Park Drive, for a special event.
A meet-and-greet and “Wonka Tour” is planned for 1-4 p.m. Sunday. Visitors will be able to tour the DeBrand “chocolate factory” and meet Willy Wonka and other play characters.
DeBrand staff members will lead tours as Oompa Loompas, and DeBrand cooks in each kitchen will make something different to taste, including chocolate centers, ice cream and melted chocolate, and offer whole chocolate samples. Guests can take photos and get autographs from “Willy Wonka” characters and purchase tickets for the play, which runs March 21-23 and 28-30. More information on the show is available at www.sf.edu/sf/art/events/theater.
Tickets for the meet-and-greet and Wonka Tour are $10 and can be purchased at www.meetandgreetwonkatour.eventbrite.com or at the door that day. Each guest will receive a voucher to redeem that day for $10 off a DeBrand purchase of $25 or more.
Mr. Coney gets a fresh look
If you stopped by Mr. Coney, 4525 Coldwater Road, last week and found it closed, don't despair. The eatery was closed for five days so the interior could be completely remodeled, said waitress Carolyn Walker. The restaurant opened in 1966 and used to be affiliated with the downtown Coney Island. They are no longer partners, but Mr. Coney still uses the same chili sauce recipe that Coney Island uses.
Both local Carlos O'Kelly's close
Both of Fort Wayne's Carlos O'Kelly's restaurants closed Monday. A sign on the door of the north restaurant said people with gift cards can use them at other Carlos O'Kelly's restaurants. Or, to get a refund, call 1-316-978-9509 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Taste of Waynedale
Kingston Residence once again is sponsoring the sixth annual Kingston's Taste of Waynedale 4:30-7 p.m. March 18. Because the event needed a bigger venue, this year it will be at Mount Calvary Lutheran Church, 1819 Reservation Road. The proceeds will go to Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana, Fort Wayne Trails and Waynedale Initiative.
Tickets are $15 each if paid in advance or $20 the day of the event. RSVP to 747-1523, cgarrison@kings tonhealthcare, or stop by Kingston, 7515 Winchester Road, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday to pick up tickets.
More than 20 local restaurants and businesses will offer samples of food or drink. In addition, guests can bid on silent auction items.
Yes, it's Lobster Madness time at Eddie Merlot's, 1502 Illinois Road S. The upscale eatery is offering several specialty seafood options during March and April: Lobster with Pappardelle Pasta in a buttery cream sauce ($26); house made Lobster Bisque ($8); and individual servings of Eddie Merlot's signature Lobster Macaroni & Cheese ($12). Every Friday now through April 18, Eddie Merlot's offers two 1.25 pound lobsters for $39.95. For reservations, call 459-2222 or go to www.eddiemerlots.com and click on Fort Wayne under locations.
The Lucky Moose, 622 E. Dupont Road, is serving some Lenten specials. All-you-can-eat catfish or tilapia, along with the salad bar, will be served anytime during Lent for $13.95. Three lunch specials will be served daily until 5 p.m., each for $7.77: three fish tacos, a tilapia burger with a side, or a dolphin sandwich with a side.
New Thai eatery
I'm a little late on this, but a new restaurant, Thai Diner, opened about three months ago at 5129 Illinois Road. It's open 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Phone: 434-9199.
The Stand is open
There may still be piles of snow wherever you look, but The Stand is open — a sure sign spring is on its way. The Stand is at 5200 Bluffton Road.
Deli 620 closed, seeks new location
Fans of Deli 620, formerly at 620 S. Calhoun St., take heart: Owner Lindi Miller closed the eatery Feb. 28 but is looking for a new location downtown.
She says she has four to five spots in mind.
Once she decides on a location, build out could take a couple of months.
Something happening at your eatery? Call Cindy Larson at 461-8284, fax 461-8817, email email@example.com or write Restaurant Notes, C/O The News-Sentinel, PO Box 102, Fort Wayne, IN 46801. This column is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinion of The News-Sentinel. To read other columns, go to www.news-sentinel.com/section/food.