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J. Alexander’s, first restaurant at The Summit, is now open

The filet at J. Alexander’s, which is now open at The Summit at Fritz Farm.
The filet at J. Alexander’s, which is now open at The Summit at Fritz Farm. J. Alexander’s

J. Alexander’s restaurant has opened at 4081 Finn Way at The Summit at Fritz Farm.

The new restaurant features hand-cut steaks, prime rib and fresh seafood, as well as “interesting salads,” sandwiches, wood-fired pizzas and desserts.

J. Alexander’s covers 8,100 square feet, with seating for more than 220 guests. Operating hours are 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

▪  How many flash-fired artisanal little pizzas can Lexington eat?

The city is about to find out.

Blaze Pizza opened its first Lexington store at 341 South Limestone in 2015. Now it’s planning to open two additional locations in Lexington this spring: one in Hamburg at 2305 Sir Barton Way, and another at The Summit at Fritz Farm at 4049 Finn Way, Suite 110.

▪ The Mousetrap, 3323 Tates Creek Road, will remain open after the recent death of owner John Kennan.

Chef and manager Chris Cox said that Kennan’s estate was being settled, but the shop “will definitely stay open, regardless.”

And the store will still stock its pimento cheese, which has become something of an obsession among its customers.

▪  James Beard Award-winning chef Virginia Willis will be this year’s featured chef in “The Mansion” at Churchill Downs for the Kentucky Derby. “The Mansion” features the most expensive seats at the Kentucky Derby, to be held on May 6.

Willis is the author of “Lighten Up, Y’all,” “Bon Appétit, Y’all,” “Okra: A Savor the South Cookbook” and “Grits” by Short Stack Editions. “Lighten Up, Y’all: Classic Southern Recipes Made Healthy and Wholesome” received a 2016 James Beard Foundation Award of Excellence in the Focus on Health category, and was a finalist for best American cookbook by the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

Willis and WGBH are developing a series called “Secrets of the Southern Table: A Food Lover’s Tour of the Global South” to air nationally on public television stations.

Some of Willis’ recipes will later be posted for those of us who cannot afford a $13,000 ticket to Derby high-roller and celebrity paradise.

▪  Athenian Grill is branching out into the refrigerated dip aisle with some of its Greek specialties. Kroger is stocking Athenian Grill-branded dips including Spicy Feta, Tzatziki and Hummus.

▪  Long John Silver’s said in a press release that it sold 32.9 million hush puppies during Lent in 2016.

“That would allow every person in Commonwealth Stadium to have more than 539 hush puppies — each!” the release trilled.

That would probably depend on the University of Kentucky football team record and the opposing team and who’s doing the counting, but still: That is a lot of deep-fried corn meal.

▪  Best food-related article of the week on the Web has to be Eater’s history of bologna, with an accompanying short story that quotes Kentucky writers Ronni Lundy and Silas House.

My family’s obsession has always been with spiced luncheon meat, preferably Armour’s.

Today, you would order up 10 pounds of that stuff on the internet with no sweat. But my parents were the kind of people who believed in rotary phones and secret sources, preferably hours away, to obtain 10 pounds of that precious, and inexplicably non-spicy, meat-ish product.

First, there were the years when they bought from a grocery store in Garrett in Floyd County. In later years, they switched to a tiny store in Martin, also in Floyd County, secretively carrying out the wrapped log of luncheon meat like two seniors having negotiated a crack buy.

But take a look at the article at Bit.ly/2mtkrFO. It includes a call for bologna to become an artisanal trend. We’re already on board.

Cheryl Truman: 859-231-3202, @CherylTruman

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