If you’ve ever eaten at the former Akron restaurants Iacomini’s, L’il Joe’s Pub or the present-day Papa Joe’s Iacomini’s, then you have taken part in an eight-decade Akron restaurant tradition.
The Iacomini family, to celebrate its 80 years of local restaurants, is hoping the community is willing to share memories leading up to its weeklong celebration later this month.
Maybe it was dinner with a prom date, a marriage proposal or another occasion that brought customers to the restaurants. The family is hoping to hear about them all.
Jeff Bruno, great-grandson of August Iacomini, his sister Kim McLaughlin and their mother Judy Amato, who own and operate Papa Joe’s, are hoping folks will stop by the restaurant and sign the memory book they are putting together.
It began in 1932 when August and Eletta Iacomini opened their first eatery in the dining room of their home at 321 W. Exchange St. August Iacomini had three sons, Joseph, Eddie and Leo. All three boys worked in the restaurant.
Bruno said his mother is the last surviving member of the Iacomini family who worked at the original location. Joseph, who was Bruno’s grandfather and Amato’s father, branched out with his son Gene in 1968 when they opened L’il Joe’s Pub in Bath Township, followed by a Hudson location in 1973. Joseph opened Papa Joe’s in Cuyahoga Falls in 1986, where the restaurant, 1561 Akron-Peninsula Road, has remained for the past 26 years. The original Iacomini’s on West Exchange closed in 1985.
The anniversary celebration will take place at Papa Joe’s Oct. 23-27, when Bruno said there will be a variety of specials for the week, including lobsters, a hat tip to his family’s original location that featured a tank of live lobsters near the entrance.
Customers also can leave messages and memories on Papa Joe’s Facebook page, or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Holmes County cookie tour
Dreaming of Chocolate Christmas is the theme for this year’s fifth annual Christmas Cookie Tour of Inns which takes place Dec. 2 and 3 at 12 historic inns and bed-and-breakfasts throughout Holmes County.
Tickets are on sale now, and typically go quickly.
The tour is hosted by the Amish Country Lodging Council and takes place from 1 to 6 p.m. both days. Tickets are $30. Each ticket includes a souvenir guide, which includes the cookie recipes from each inn, as well as self-guided tours and a cookie to sample at each property.
The festivities will conclude with a drawing for a $150 gift certificate for lodging at one of the participating inns.
Proceeds will be donated to Hospice of Holmes County and the Love Center Food Pantry. For tickets or information, visit www.christmascookietour.com or www.facebook.com/christmascookietour or call the Holmes County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau at 330-674-3975.
Since it began, the event has raised more than $30,000 for local charities.
Afternoon harvest tea is set
Tea & Thyme is offering a harvest tea at the Tudor House, 655 Latham Lane, New Franklin, from 2 to 4 p.m. Oct. 21.
The menu features pumpkin mushroom soup; spinach salad; pineapple and toasted coconut scones; carrot and cream muffins; turkey Waldorf salad puffs; petite cheese ball with leaf crisps; ham, Swiss and Vidalia rolls; caramel apple and peanut parfaits; dark chocolate almond brownies; and pumpkin squares, along with apple spice and Buckingham Palace garden teas.
Admission is $28. Reservations are required by Oct. 13, as space is limited.
To reserve a seat or group table, call Patti L. White at 330-701-5010, or visit www.teaandthyme.com.
New wines debut at Fishers
Jeffrey Fisher of Fishers Foods has released his latest Top 16 wine list along with the schedule for fall and winter tasting events at his Canton-area grocery stores. All tastings are from 4 to 8 p.m., and reservations are not required; samples are sold for a nominal fee, and most wines on the Top 16 list are offered for retail sale at discount prices.
The tastings will be Oct. 19 at Fishers, 5215 Fulton Drive, Jackson Township; Nov. 9 at 8100 Cleveland Ave. NW, North Canton; Nov. 16 at 4403 Cleveland Ave. NW, Plain Township; and Dec. 14 at the Fulton Drive location.
For more information, call 330-497-3003.
Wine dinner in Wooster
The Wooster Inn is sponsoring a winemaker’s dinner at 7 p.m. Oct. 19, with guest vintner Hunter Vogel.
Chef Ken Bogucki has created a five-course menu that includes grilled sea scallops and shrimp, with strawberries, apricots and pears; cocoa-coffee rubbed pork belly with grilled figs and cherry chutney; roasted duck and fennel sausage stuffed pepper with caramelized onion risotto; dry-rubbed grilled hanger steak; and bread pudding with chocolate ganache.
Each course is paired with one of Vogel’s wines.
The dinner is $65 plus tax and tip. Call 330-263-2660 for reservations, which are required.