Dining notes: Quick bite at Chuck Lager, Dinner en Blanc, Kenny’s checks out as Cajun fish boil checks in

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(Send your dining-related news to drainey@delawarebusinessnow.com)

Dîner en Blanc returns for second year

LeDîner en Blancreturns to Wilmington for its second year, on September 14.For this second edition. Last year’s inaugural picnic attracted over 1,100 to a site at Tubman-Garrett Riverfront Park. The site is kept secret until the event.

The event will be held at an undisclosed public space that will be revealed minutes prior to the commencement of the event.

“If you were at the event last year, you know to circle this date! It’s for those who like fine dining, champagne and dressing up”, says Michael Flagg, returning co-host of Le Dîner en Blanc– Wilmington. “It’s about the surprise of it. So, the anticipation is huge until they reach that destination and that is when the magic starts.”

Registration comes in three stages. Phase 1 is for members from the previous year; Phase 2 is for new members who are referred by Phase 1 attendees; Phase 3 is for people who signed up on the waiting list. People can sign-up now at wilmington.dinerenblanc.com/register.

The event has the following rules that are followed at similar events around the world:

  • Once confirmed, each guest’s participation becomes mandatory, regardless of weather conditions. This is a rain or shine event.
  • Dress code: elegant and white only. Originality is encouraged as long as it is stylish and tasteful.
  • Table setting:all white.
  • To ensure that the location secret is kept undisclosed until last minute, guests meet at assigned departure location and are escorted by aDîner en Blancvolunteer.
  • Guests are required to leave with all their belongings, leftovers and litter.

Guests bring

  • A table, two white chairs, white tablecloth.
  • A picnic basket comprising fine food and proper stemware and white dinnerware.
  • A catered picnic basket option, which can be picked up at the site, will be available for those who do not wish to pack their own. Guests wishing to do so must reserve online.
  • Champagne and/or wine. Beer and hard liquor are prohibited. The event offers a package of wine and champagne that can be picked up on site.

Asian restaurant in Bear to be replaced by Cajun fish boil dining spot

After a 12-year run Kenny’s Pan Asian restaurant in Governor’s Square Shopping Center is closing its doors with a Cajun seafood spot slotted to take its place.

Kenny’s announced on its Facebook page that the restaurant, which specialized in contemporary Asian fare, will close on June 26.

Kenny’s kept a low profile in the local dining scene but had a loyal following over the years.

Earliert this week, Two Claws announced it will open at the former Kenny’s location later in the year.

The restaurant will feature Cajun seafood boils from Louisiana that have been popularized in travel and food cable channels.

The Louisiana focus not unheard of in the area, although the fish boil is an interesting twist. The St. Georges Country Store has operated for years with a variety of Louisiana -stayle offerings. Nora Lee’s, a restaurant in old New Castle, has long featured New Orleans-style menu items.

Delaware saw a modest influx of Gulf Coast residents after Hurricane Katrina and the Delaware City refinery has been known to have visitors and workers from the Gulf Coast.

Cheese sandwich and soup

Quick bite at Chuck Lager

After its dinner debut, Chuck Lager America’s Tavern recently opened its doors for the lunch crowd at a new mixed-use complex at Pike Creek, across from the shopping center of the same name.

The restaurant comes with an interesting menu that includes gastropub and Italian fare – a bow to part-owner Fabio Viviani, who has interests in restaurants around the country. It also operates in an area that is not overloaded with restaurants.

As the name indicates, Chuck Lager has aspirations that go beyond one location. There was an earlier report of a location in Orlando during the long period between the announcement of the restaurant and its actual opening.

We tried the pasta bolognese and the grilled cheese brisket sandwich/tomato soup offerings Both were well-executed dishes. The salt could have been taken down a notch, but both dishes were tasty. Prices are reasonable, at least by Pike Creek-Hockessin standards.

Northern Delaware diners will wonder about the lack of bread with the pasta dish. It’s available at an extra charge. That might not sit well with diners used to getting their rolls at no extra charge, but it’s a boon for those of us watching calories or sugar intake.

The level of service at Chuck Lager is outstanding. Servers were attentive and managers stopped by to get feedback without the “I have to do this” rush you might see elsewhere.

The attentiveness alone makes the place a good spot for a business lunch, even as it goes through the opening jitters. – Doug and Sharon Rainey

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