This week, we’re waving goodbye and wishing good luck to chef Scot Jones, who is leaving his post at the Mustard Seed Market in Bath Township and heading to the Los Angeles area, where he will be executive chef of a new vegan restaurant.
Jones, an Akron native, has been a chef in local restaurants for years, most notably when he was at the helm of rocker Chrissie Hynde’s VegiTerranean in Akron until it closed in late 2011.
Jones said the new restaurant, tentatively named Verte, will be in West Hollywood and will feature a plant-based menu. It is expected to open in early April.
“It’s important to me for the community to know where I am going and what I am doing,” he said. “It’s very exciting.”
Time for the Bake-Off
Entries are now being accepted in the 46th Pillsbury Bake-Off with a $1 million grand prize at stake.
For the first time in contest history, a public vote will determine all 100 finalists who get to compete Nov. 10 and 11 in Las Vegas.
There are three categories: Amazing Doable Dinners, Simple Sweets and Starters, and Quick Rise and Shine Breakfasts. Each has a different entry deadline and voting period.
To enter and to review rules, including entry deadlines and voting deadlines, visit www.pillsbury.com/bakeoff.
Ripper Owens is moving
There’s been some drama at Ripper Owens Tap House, 491 E. Waterloo Road, that’s been playing out on Facebook.
Owner Tim “Ripper” Owens has announced that he will be moving his business because he could not reach an agreement on a new lease with building owner Russ Mazzolla Jr.
Mazzolla is expected to open his own eatery in the spot, while a new location for Ripper Owens Tap House has not yet been announced. The transition will take place over the next month. Owens says he will take the name, menu and World Tour of Wings with him to the new place. Partnering with Owens in his new venture is Micah Posten.
New pub in Kent
Look for Bar 145 to open in Kent later this month at 100 E. Erie St.
A self-described gastropub, it will focus on food beyond traditional bar fare, including an extensive menu of burgers made with Niman Ranch beef, and dozens of cheeses and toppings. In fact, the bar takes its name from the temperature of a medium-rare burger.
Along with craft beer, Bar 145 will specialize in a wide selection of bourbons. There will be live music six nights a week.
Bar 145’s first location opened in Toledo in May 2011. The owner is Jeremy Fitzgerald, whose family is in the hospitality business, operating two hotels in Toledo and four bars in Put-In-Bay and Port Clinton.
Look for Bar 145 to open by mid-January.
Wine tasting in Kent
Riverside Wine Bar, 911 N. Mantua St., Kent, is hosting a tasting of Fess Parker wines from 3 to 5 p.m. on Saturday.
It’s $10, and includes five wines to sample along with cheese, bread, crackers, salami and other nibbles. A Fess Parker representative will be there to answer questions.
Chili pots will bubble
Akron is sponsoring its seventh annual Firefighters Chili Challenge from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday at Lock 3 on South Main Street downtown.
Firefighters issue an annual challenge to other city departments and local businesses to see who can create the best pot of chili. Five dollars buys four tickets that can be used for four cups of chili. Beer, soft drinks, water and coffee will be available for purchase.
Proceeds benefit the burn unit at Akron Children’s Hospital.
Movie on GMO crops
Miss Julie’s Kitchen, 1809 S. Main St., Akron, will show the movie Genetic Roulette from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Jan. 16.
The showing is part of the Akron Peace Project and is free. For more information about the film, visit www.geneticroulettemovie.com.
As a side note, Julie Wandling Costell, owner of Miss Julie’s, has closed her second location, Miss Julie’s Cafe at 446 E. Exchange St. near the University of Akron campus. The cafe opened in April, but Costell said she hasn’t had enough consistent business to keep it open.
• Zack Bruell Restaurants in Cleveland will hold its second annual restaurant week from Jan. 13 to 26. During that time, Bruell’s five restaurants — Parallax, Table 45, L’Albatros, Chinato and Cowell & Hubbard — will be offering three-course dinner menus for $30.
• Bob Evans restaurants are now offering a gluten-free menu as well as a new low-calorie menu.
And finally …
January is national Meat Month. Hungry? And Friday is national Hot Toddy Day, which is a holiday I can really warm up to.