Spencer van den Dool — who was chef at The Black Tulip in Midway, which closed last year — is at the new Tulip Bistro and Bar, 355 Romany Road.
Tulip is at the former site of AP Roots, which closed in March. General manager Jennifer Perkins said Tulip offers a light menu from 4 to 5 p.m., and the regular menu is served at 5 p.m. Featured are escargot, charcuterie, oysters on the half shell, and steak and fish specials.
Perkins said reservations are recommended. Hours are 4 to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and 4 to 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Call (859) 367-6687.
The flavor is Mexican now
The spot in Winchester at 120 April Way that has been Jazzman and Barton's now is Chester Hacienda.
One of the specialty dishes is chori pollo, grilled chicken breast topped with chorizo sausage and cheese. Chester's serves white and red salsas with its tortilla chips.
Hours are 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday. Call (859) 744-7771.
Café reopens for season
The Ginkgo Tree Café at Ashland, the Henry Clay Estate, is open for the season. Hours are 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. New this year is "Ginkgo to Go," which provides delivery service or pick-up from Greentree Tearoom, 521 West Short Street. Call (859) 455-9660. The takeout menu closely follows the café menu, which includes sandwiches, entree salads, desserts and soups. Call the café at (859) 221-5666.
Just for Derby Day
The Julep Cup, 111 Woodland Avenue, has reservations open for pre-Derby and post-Derby dining. The Derby menu includes Kentucky Ale beer cheese soup, Ale-8-One brown sugar-glazed country ham with biscuits, collard greens, corn pudding, lamb fries with cream gravy, and Shaker-style lemon pie.
The Julep Cup's Cinco de Mayo celebration will include homemade tamales and tres leches cake. Call (859) 226-0300.
Celebrating Cinco de Mayo
Live entertainment, margaritas and Mexican dinner specials will mark Cinco de Mayo at these restaurants on Wednesday.
■ Durango's, 2121 Richmond Road, will offer lunch and dinner specials from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. There will be live entertainment. Call (859) 268-0723.
■ Good Foods Market & Café, 455 Southland Drive, will serve a Mexican buffet from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. There will be enchiladas verde, flank steak fajitas and amaretto flan. Call (859) 278-1813 or go to www.goodfoods.coop.
■ Merrick Inn, 1074 Merrick Drive, will offer margarita and sangria drink specials, along with traditional Mexican cuisine. Entertainment includes a guest appearance by Miss Kentucky Latina Daniela Gaskie, and live music from 7 to 10 p.m. Call (859) 269-5417.
■ Winchell's, 348 Southland Drive, will serve posole stew, chicken enchiladas, pork tamales and tres leches cake. Call (859) 278-9424.
Making Mother's Day special
Many families gather around the restaurant table to honor Mom on Mother's Day, May 9. Here are places that are preparing special menus:
■ Good Foods Market & Café, 455 Southland Drive, will serve a brunch buffet from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., with strawberry cream French toast, vegan scramble, chicken and mushroom quiche, and baked banana and walnut oatmeal. Call (859) 278-1813.
■ Triangle Grille at the Hilton Lexington/Downtown, 369 West Vine Street, will serve a "Fit for a Queen brunch." Hours are 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. It includes a pasta bar, omelet station, roasted prime rib, and bourbon-glazed salmon. Cost is $28.95. Call (859) 281-3773 or go to www.trianglegrille.com.
■ Jean Farris Winery & Bistro, 6825 Old Richmond Road, will serve a three-course prix fixe brunch with wine pairings, and a four-course dinner. Call (859) 263-9463or go to www.jeanfarris.com.
■ The Melting Pot of Lexington, 152 Tiverton Way, offers a four-course fondue meal that includes a salad plus cheese, entree and chocolate dessert fondue. Call (859) 254-6358 or go to www.meltingpot.com.
■ Serafini, 243 West Broadway in Frankfort, will be open from noon to 6 p.m. featuring the regular menu plus seasonal specials. Call (502) 875-5599.
Treat your UK grad
May 8 is graduation day at the University of Kentucky, and Portofino is extending hours to accommodate family gatherings. Hours are noon to 11 p.m. On Mother's Day, the restaurant at 249 East Main Street will be open from noon to 9 p.m. Call (859) 253-9300 or go to www.portofinolexington.com.
Fresh from the fields
■ The strawberries are ripe at Boyd Orchards on Ky. 169 in Woodford County. The farm's Apple Blossom Café is open for the season with Friday night fish fries, Saturday back-yard grill-outs and Sunday chicken 'n' fixins. The café is open 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday. Call (859) 873-3097 or go to www.boydorchards.com.
■ Bluegrass Farmers' Market offers spring greens, lettuce, onions, asparagus, herbs, honey, beef, eggs and Derby Day mint. The market is open 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at 3450 Richmond Road. Go to www.localharvest.org/blog/29529.