Valentine's Day is just around the corner, so you better start making plans. Need some ideas? We thought you would. Here are a few:
•Toscani Pizzeria, 120 W. Wayne St., is taking reservations for Feb. 14. The restaurant will be open until 10 p.m. Besides the regular menu, Toscani will offer three Valentine's Day specials: your choice of two pasta dinners and two glasses of wine for $25.99 (add $3 for lobster ravioli); or instead of wine, order a bottle of Prosecco with your pastas for $30.99; or order a medium specialty pizza and two premium beers for $15.99. Phone: 423-6706.
•The Barr Street Café at the Anthis Career Center, 1200 S. Barr St., is taking reservations for a special Valentine's meal to be served 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Feb. 12, 13 and 14. Presented by Chef Melissa Snider and her second-year culinary students, entrée choices include ham and goat cheese-stuffed chicken breast; pineapple grilled pork loin; tequila-lime sautéed shrimp; beef tournedos with béarnaise sauce; or prosciutto-wrapped scallops on pasta. The meal includes a choice of appetizer and dessert. Cost: $14.95 plus tax; cash or check only. Reservations: 467-1031.
•The Oyster Bar, 1830 S. Calhoun St., is offering “Three Days of Romance” Feb. 14, 15 and 16. Chef Scott Dickmeyer is creating a romantic Valentine menu. Service begins at 4 p.m. Reservations are recommended; call 744-9490.
•Bandido's restaurants are offering a Valentine's Day special through Feb. 16: fajitas for two, plus a 32-ounce pitcher of Bandido's original frozen margaritas and a fried ice cream to share for $25. Addresses: 8230 Glencarin Blvd. (just off Indiana 14); 6536 E. State Blvd. (Georgetown Square); 7510 Winchester Road; and 933 Northcrest Shopping Center.
•The Mastodon Grill Restaurant at the Holiday Inn IPFW is planning a special Valentine's menu 5-10 p.m. Feb. 14, 15 and 16. Couples may choose from one of three appetizers to share, then their own entrée and side, and a dessert to share along with a champagne toast. Entrée choices: surf and turf; stuffed chicken breast; seared salmon; or a grilled New York strip. Cost: $58 per couple plus tax and gratuity.
Also, if you want to make a night of it, the Holiday Inn is offering two packages that include a room at the hotel. To make reservations for dinner and/or one of the packages, call 482-3800. Packages and seating are limited.
•The Lucky Moose, 622 E. Dupont Road, is serving a Valentine's buffet 5-9 p.m. Feb. 14-15 featuring shrimp, crawfish, ribs, pecan chicken, Jamaican triggerfish, salad bar and a dessert crepe station for $16.95. Add prime rib and the buffet is $19.95. Reservations are recommended; call 490-5765.
•Richard's Bakery, 1130 N. Wells St., will have heart-shaped Valentine cookies and “I Love You” cakes available through Feb. 14. Call 424-4012 to place an order.
Mardi Gras bash
Columbia Street West, 135 W. Columbia St. on The Landing, is hosting a Mardi Gras party Saturday. Burlesque shows will be 6-8 p.m. There will be Abita beer samplings, New Orleans-style food samplings from Bourbon Street Hideaway, beads and Mardi Gras music.
If you want to celebrate Fat Tuesday, a.k.a. Mardi Gras — the day before Lent begins — you have some choices. It is Feb. 12.
•Bourbon Street Hideaway, 135 W. Columbia St. on The Landing, usually isn't open on Tuesdays, but it's making an exception for Fat Tuesday. Chef features will be available. Reservations: 422-7500.
•The celebration at Deer Park Irish Pub, 1530 Leesburg Road (across from the University of Saint Francis), begins at 6:30 p.m. The Ragin' Cajun Food Truck will be there, serving chicken and sausage jambalaya, blackened shrimp tacos with cilantro/lime sauce, soft-shell crab po-boys and more. Abita Bock and Magic Hat #9 ale will be served.
•The Lucky Moose, 622 E. Dupont Road, is serving an all-you-can-eat buffet 5-9 p.m. Feb. 12. On the menu: royal red shrimp, crawfish, catfish, jambalaya, bread pudding and salad bar for $13.
•It wouldn't be Fat Tuesday with out a paczki, would it? Richard's Bakery, 1130 N. Wells St., will sell paczki (a Polish pastry) 6 a.m.-1 p.m. Feb. 12. The bakery at 1130 N. Wells St. will offering apple, strawberry, red raspberry and Bavarian cream paczki rolled in powdered sugar. Call 424-4012 to order.
Taste of chocolate
Lincolnshire Church of the Brethren, 6404 S. Calhoun St., is hosting a Taste of Chocolate on Saturday, with two sittings, 5-6:30 p.m. and 7-8:30 p.m. Feast on candy, cake, cheesecake, ice cream and a fruit bar; wash it down with coffee while you listen to live music and check out the silent auction. Cost: $9 adults; $5 ages 4-10; free ages 3 and younger. This is a fundraiser for the church's youth ministry. All the chocolate is donated.
Toscani Pizzeria, 120 W. Wayne St., is offering the following Saturday and Sunday lunch specials in February, good for one, two, three or four people. Order a two-topping pizza-for-one and a mini salad for $6.99; a medium two-topping pizza and two mini salads for $11.99; a large two-topping pizza and three mini salads for $15.99; or an extra large two-topping pizza and four mini salads for $19.99. Not valid with other specials; good until 4 p.m. each day. Parking is free.
The culinary program at Ivy Tech Community College-Northeast will open its weekly, student-managed deli Wednesday. The deli is named in memory of Chef Bob Kelty, who passed away in August 2011.
The Bakery Merchandising course creates and manages a deli each semester on the Coliseum campus, 3800 N. Anthony Blvd., in the Anthony Commons. Wednesday's menu will feature a grilled ham and cheese panini with the choice of soup or salad, as well as bakery and pastry items, including a signature cookie to celebrate Ivy Tech's 50th anniversary.
Kelty's Kafé is open 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Wednesdays through the end of April.
The Special Cuisines class at Ivy Tech Community College-Northeast is presenting a Special Cuisine Dinner Series. Thursday is opening night, with an Italian buffet featuring appetizers, soups, salads, entrees and desserts. Cost is $20 per person, cash or check only.
Reservations are taken for times between 5-6:30 p.m. and must be made 24 hours in advance. Call 480-2002. The dinners are served on Ivy Tech's Coliseum campus, 3800 N. Anthony Blvd., in the Hospitality Room (enter door 24 on the north side).
To see the complete dinner schedule, go to www.IvyTech.edu/northeast/dinners.
Dinner with Friends
Chef Laura Wilson at La Dolce Vita, 112 N. Main St., Roanoke, is hosting a Dinner with Friends at 6:30 p.m. Friday. On the menu: lush winter salad with pears and pomegranate seeds; Carolyn's southwestern stew; the Boulder's cornbread; and warm apple pie with ice cream. Cost: $35. Call or text 341-4300 or email email@example.com for reservations
Sapporo is open
This item previously appeared online.
A new restaurant featuring Asian cuisine opened last week. Sapporo Japanese Restaurant opened at 6150 Lima Road. Sapporo has another restaurant in Indianapolis. The hibachi-style restaurant is set up so diners sit around grills and watch their food being prepared. The restaurant also serves sushi.
Hours: 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Friday; noon-10:30 p.m. Saturday; and noon-9:30 p.m. Sunday. Phone: 739-6064.
Friends too, 3720 W. Jefferson Blvd., is now Nikos Friends too. It is owned by Ana and Nikos Hatzigeorgiou.
Something happening at your eatery? Call Larson at 461-8284, fax 461-8817, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or write Restaurant Notes, C/O The News-Sentinel, PO Box 102, Fort Wayne, IN 46801. This column is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinion of The News-Sentinel. To read other columns, go to www.news-sentinel.com/section/LARSON.