> Oceano Bistro in Clayton is presenting a guest chef series benefiting various local charities. Each month, the visiting maestro will present a four or five course tasting menu, and a portion of the proceeds will go to the chef’s choice of charity, great idea!
> Ice Kitchen, a fusion tapas restaurant and vodka bar, is now open in Westport Plaza. The concept was created by Munsok So, owner of XES Nightclub and The Drunken Fish sushi restaurants. Ice Kitchen describes itself as a diverse culinary fusion of American, Mediterranean, Asian and Latin flavors.
> 33 Wine Shop and Tasting Bar in Lafayette Square recently launched a dinner series called ‘the Dorm Room.’ Using only a hotplate and a microwave, St. Louis’ top chefs will have to prepare top-notch meals with local ingredients. Session one is scheduled for June 22 with Chef Josh Galliano of Monarch Restaurant in Maplewood. Sounds interesting!
> Mango restaurant will be opening a spot in the old Mosaic location at 1101 Lucas Ave. Owners Jorge and Nora Calvo and partners Paul and Sherry Sawchack plan to transform the downtown spot’s interior with Peruvian accents. Natives of Peru, the Calvos will bring their usual culinary expertise to the downtown loft district, but promise some tasty new additions as well. Look for a late summer opening.
> POPtions, exclusively, is launching 10 new flavors of Bissinger’s ice cream! The gourmet popcorn emporium is located in The Village at Schneithorst’s in Ladue, so now you can get a double sugar high when you stop in for one of those 20 tempting daily popcorn concoctions.
> The Gateway Foundation has chosen another artist to complement its new Citygarden sculpture garden downtown: restaurateur Jim Fiala. Owner of The Crossing in Clayton, Acero in Maplewood and Liluma in the Central West End, Fiala will now run The Terrace View, a 3,000-square-foot indoor/outdoor restaurant at the northeast corner of Citygarden at 8th and Chestnut streets. Fiala plans a menu of Midwestern ingredients with a Mediterranean influence. He said appetizer and small-entree portions will be in the $10 to $15 price range, with a mid-July opening planned.