Food and drink: 2 dinners in white, taco fest, battle of bartenders, Chick-fil -A in Seaford, Newark’s Battle of the Bars

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The area will again see two versions of dinner in white.

The Seventh Annual Brandywine In White will be held on Saturday, August 24th beginning at 5:30 pm. At a location in the Wilmington-Brandywine Valley area.

Le Dîner en Blanc returns to Wilmington for the second time on September 14.

Last year’s picnic attracted more than 1,100 toTubman-Garrett Riverfront Park near the Biden train station in the city.

Both events operate under the format of the original En Blanc, which got its start in Paris. Rules vary a bit, but diners can’t bring plastic stuff and no liquor or beer is allowed. A catered picnic basket is offered for the Wilmington event. Dressing in white is mandatory.

The Wilmington event is listed on the Le Dîner en Blanc international website.

All locations are is kept secret until the hosts Email or text the location.

Click herefor tickets and information on the Brandywine event and click herefor tickets and info on the Wilmington Le Dîner en Blanc.

The annual Battle of the Bartenders event at the Courtyard at UD continues to help the Newark Police Department’s canine unit.

Chick-fil-A to open in Seaford

Chick-fil-A will open its first western Sussex County restaurant at22932 Sussex Hwy., Seaford.onAug. 22.

Operator Mike Vonhof worked for Target for more than 10 years. He eventually moved into education where he has worked in positions that included as Head of School.

When his son went to work for Chick-fil-A at Rehoboth Beach Vonhof began to explore opportunities with Chick-fil-A which led him to pursue becoming an operator. Becoming an operator is a difficult task, with less than 1 percent of applicants getting a store.

Unlike most franchise operations, operators are limited to one store and in some cases, a nearby mall location. Franchises cannot be sold or passed on to the next generation.

Vonhof family members will work in the restaurant

Chick-fil-A first opened in Delaware nearly 26 years ago at the Dover Mall in 1993. The new Chick-fil-A in Seaford becomes the 13thlocation in the state

Battle of the Bartenders raises more than $7,000

Ten local bars participated in the fund-raising event that has escaped the usual up and down cycle of Newark food-based fund-raisers. (See post below).

In addition to libations, the event featured food offerings from participating restaurants.

Taco Fest returns for year four

Moving into its fourth year is the Delaware Taco Festival

The festival is slated for Saturday, August 17, from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. at its new location, Tubman-Garrett Riverfront Park along the Christina River.

The festival will bring together more than 25 of the area’s restaurants and food purveyors to dish out a wide variety of tacos and specialty items. A portion of proceeds support the non-profit The Trauma Survivors Foundation.

For more information or tickets to the Delaware Taco Festival, visit: www.DelawareTacoFest.com.

This year’s festival will feature a Tequila expo area for light tastings.

Other attractions include Lucha Libre wrestling, hot pepper and taco-eating contests, a VIP misted party tent, and a kids fun zone. Traditional rock/pop bands, authentic mariachi bands, dance troupe DJ’s and other musical acts are planned.

All tacos and related items will work on a voucher system; vouchers can be purchased at various ticket stations throughout the event and then exchanged at all participating vendors. All beverage sellers, as well as additional food purveyors (ice cream, cakes, desserts, candies, etc.), will accept cash. Credit card machines will be very limited, though there will be some ATMs on site.

Proceeds from the Delaware Taco Festival will benefit the Delaware-based national non-profit The Trauma Survivors Foundation, founded in 2013 by longtime Delawarean and former volunteer Fire Fighter/EMT Dennis Carradin following his crisis response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December 2012.

Rhode Island meatball spot muscles out Frankie’s at Dover Downs

The Rhode island based-owners of Dover Downs plan to replace the long-running Frankie’s with a Delaware outpost for a former Providence restaurant.

Jerry Longo’s Meatballs & Martinis will open this fall at the casino-race track and meeting center.

The concept originated in the Federal Hill area in Providence, The restaurant has since closed.

In its heydey, Longos “Italian Soul Food” was visited by celebrities that include Billy Joel, Richard Jenkins, and recently retired New Englad Patriot Rob Gronkowski .

The menu will include pasta entrees, antipasto boards, freshly made traditional and specialty pizzas, and an extensive craft cocktail and wine selection, a Facebook post stated.

Frankie’s seemed to be loosely tied to Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack, but not to the point where it would get a cease and desist letter. It was owned by the casino.

Rhode Island-based Twin River, which has a lock on the Rhode Island gaming market, acquired the Delaware casino-track earlier this year and has been making changes as it works to improve the bottom line.

Crabby opening

As noted an earlier column, Two Claws has opened in the Governor’s Square Shopping Center in Bear off Route 40. The restaurant offers boiled and fried Cajun seafood selections.

Earlier, Robot Captain Crab Cajun Seafood and Bar at the former Soffrito location to the north on Capitol Trail east of Newark. The restaurant generated a lot of buzz for using robots to deliver food.

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