> Mark your calendars, because the second annual Clayton Restaurant Week is coming up fast. From Monday, Jan. 24, through Sunday, Jan. 30, 19 of Clayton’s finest restaurants are offering a special three-course dinner for a fixed price of $25 per person. Diners also have the option of adding ‘extra credit’ donations to their bills to support KidSmart, which provides area students in need with school supplies. More info at claytonrestaurantweek.net.
> LoRusso’s is looking for pasta recipes for its annual Pasta Bowl to benefit Operation Food Search. Submit your favorite to firstname.lastname@example.org, drop it in the snail mail box or bring it by the restaurant in person. The top three, as selected by LoRusso’s staff, will be served up at a family-style dinner at the restaurant at 6:30 p.m., Monday, Jan. 31, and voted on by diners. The winner will be placed on the LoRusso’s menu for one year, and every time it’s ordered, $2 goes to the Operation Food Search coffers. For reservations, call 647-6222, ext. 1, or email@example.com. The Pasta Bowl event has raised more than $50,000 for the cause so far.
> A big congratulations to Mike Shannon’s Steaks and Seafood downtown, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary this month. Restaurant management estimates that more than 750,000 steaks have cleared the kitchen since they bowed in 1986. That’s a lot of meat!
> Not sure about the geography here, but congrats are in order nonetheless to Pi. The restaurant group’s Pi on the Spot food truck was named one of the top 10 food trucks in the South in the January issue of Southern Living. In other food truck news, Chef BRIAN HARDESTY of Terrene will be hitting the road and joining in the mobile food frenzy soon with his Guerilla Street Food rig. Hardesty is shooting for an April 15 opening, er, roll out. The truck will be serving up grilled Filipino-influenced fare using local ingredients.
> Mount Pleasant Winery in Augusta is once again partnering with Bissinger’s Chocolatier to present its popular port class. Sample fine dessert wine paired with chocolates on Saturday, Jan. 29, and Sunday, Feb. 20, from 1 to 3 p.m. each day. Details at mountpleasant.com.
> Make plans to attend the Art, Wine, Music open house event at Longview Farm House, 13525 Clayton Road, Friday, Jan. 28, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Highlights will include works on display from local artists, catering by Villa Farotto and music by the Town & Country Symphony Jazz Quartet. Proceeds go toward beautification of the Longview Farm House. Tickets can be ordered at 587-2804
> Dierdorf & Hart’s Steakhouse, 323 West Port Plaza, is temporarily closed for some renovations. The re-opening date is tentatively set for Feb. 11.
> For those of you following the Fiala Food Chef Wars saga at home, Chef IAN VEST of The Crossing prevailed in the final round, besting (though barely) Chef NICK COX of The Terrace View Wednesday, Jan. 12, at Acero. Vest will take on the boss, Jim Fiala himself, Feb. 23, again at Acero. Call 644-1790 for info and reservations.