tidbits what's cooking at Central Kentucky Restaurants

There's something new at The Gift Box's new location: a tea room

swthompson@herald-leader.com,by sharon ThompsonOctober 7, 2010 

For 24 years, The Gift Box has provided shoppers with a variety of items that are ideal for giving or for decorating a home. Now it includes a place to meet friends for tea.

The store, formerly in Regency Centre, now is at 3330 Partner Place in Keithshire Plaza, behind the Parent-Teacher store.

The Gift Box Tea Room serves lunch from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The menu includes soups, sandwiches, salads, quiche, hot Brown, and homemade desserts and breads.

Wilma and Don Cracraft own the tea room, and Jamie and David Wilson own the gift shop. Jan Fowler, who started Candleberry Tea Room in Frankfort, is "getting this up and running, and we're using her recipes," Jamie Wilson said.

The Gift Box's Christmas open house will be 1 to 5 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Call (859) 278-2399.

Food $2.50, drinks 25 cents

Al's Bar, 601 North Limestone, is celebrating the last weekend of the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.

"The first 25 people to attend our Bluegrass brunch will receive the brunch buffet for $2.50. The next 25 people who attend will receive 25-cent cocktails," co-owner Les Miller said.

Live bluegrass music will be provided by the Karly Dawn and Little Sarie Band.

The buffet will be served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Music starts at 11:15 a.m. Call (859) 252-9104 or go to Alsbarlexington.com.

Playing sports in The Cellar

If you're looking for a fun place to watch sporting events, stop by The Cellar Bar and Grill. It's on the lower level at The Signature Club, 3256 Lansdowne Drive.

"We have 30 flat-screen TVs and a 150-seat patio," Heather Trump said.

It's operated by the same people who run The Shamrock bars at 154 Patchen Drive and 4750 Hartland Parkway. The menu includes burgers, sandwiches, steaks and pastas. Hours are 11 a.m. to 2:30 a.m. daily. Call (859) 317-8301.

Lounging at Quirk Café

Quirk Café, 131 Main Street in Midway, has opened Tavern 815, a refurbished lounge downstairs.

"It has beautiful stone walls, brick floors and tongue-in-groove wood, and the lighting is amazing," owner Sarah Vandegrift said.

Mark McJessy, formerly with Azur, is the new chef. One of McJessy's specialties is smoked salmon served on a potato cake with goat cheese and capers, topped with a balsamic reduction, for $10.95.

Lunch is served from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Dinner is served Thursday through Saturday beginning at 5:30 p.m. The lounge opens at 4:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Call (859) 846-4688 or go to Quirkcafemidway.com.

A jump on St. Patrick's Day

The Sister Cities Irish committee will hold its eighth annual Halfway to St. Patrick's Day at O'Neills Irish Pub from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Sunday.

"This year, we honor the 25th anniversary of twinning with County Kildare in Ireland. Special guests will be County Kildare mayor and delegation," Mary Parlanti said.

She will prepare lamb stew and Irish breads. Cost is $10 at the door and includes entertainment by Mayme Hamby on the piano, McTeggart Irish Dancers, and Liam's Fancy Irish.

O'Neills is at 2051 Richmond Road. Call (859) 266-4488 or go to Oneillslex.com.

Dinner menu is new at Rossi's

Rossi's executive chef, Robert Myers, has created a new dinner menu. Specialties include Spanish sea scallops, sage-crusted chicken, char-grilled barbecue pork tenderloin, and Italian drunken noodles. Rossi's wine and martini list has also been updated with new drinks and many wines from around the world. The restaurant is at 1060 Chinoe Road. Call (859) 335-8788 or go to Rossis-restaurant.com.

Barrel House rolls out tasting room

The Tasting Room & Gift Shop is open at Barrel House Distilling Co., a small-batch distiller at 1200 Manchester Street. Hours are noon to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Call (859) 259-0159 or go to Barrelhousedistillery.com.

Farmers market report

Bluegrass Farmers Market will have homegrown tomatoes, peppers, squash, green beans, potatoes, apples, greens, eggs, jams, baked goods, herbs, berries, mums, pumpkins, gourds and fall decorations. The market is at 3450 Richmond Road, in the parking lot of Pedal the Planet and Fast Signs. Hours are 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and 3 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday. Go to Localharvest.org/blog/29529.

Reach Sharon Thompson at (859) 231-3321 or 1-800-950-6397, Ext. 3321.

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