Roundup: Restaurant revival, women's resale, Combine Cafe and more

March 6, 2014
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Classically trained Chef Keith Brooks is cooking up plans for the former Eddie’s Corner Café space in downtown Noblesville.

His work-in-progress restaurant dubbed The Ville, expected to open in June at 101 N. 10th St., will offer American comfort food as well as a variety of healthy options. Brooks envisions a family-friendly, full-service eatery.

Brooks will handle culinary duties while his wife, Raquel Washington, manages the business.

Chef Keith BrooksChef Keith Brooks (Photo courtesy of Special Occasions Catering.)

Born and raised in Gary, the 44-year-old Brooks earned a culinary arts degree from Kendall College in Evanston, Ill., and then went to work for Emeril Lagasse at New Orleans’ famed Commander’s Palace restaurant. His other experience ranges from a stint at in the kitchen at Red Lobster to a job managing café accounts for Indianapolis-based Crystal Catering.

Since 2005, he has operated—and served as executive chef for—Noblesville-based Special Occasions Catering.

“I have aspired to be a chef since the age of 14,” Brooks told IBJ, and learned the ropes by working for other culinary entrepreneurs.

Eddie's Corner Cafe closed in July.

In other area retail news:

— Upscale women’s resale shop Clothes Mentor is planning a grand-opening celebration for its Fishers location on March 11. The store at 11670 Commercial Drive sells gently used brand-name clothing, shoes and accessories; it will be the third Clothes Mentor outlet in Indiana. Owners Mark and Kathy Canada also own a Plato’s Closet children’s resale store on Indianapolis’ east side.

Tucanos Brazilian Grill opens its Hamilton Town Center location March 10. Although wood-grilled meat is the star of churrasco cuisine (Tucanos serves15 different skewers, counting vegetables—and pineapple, of all things) the Colorado-based chain also touts its so-called Salad Festival, which it says includes "more than 70 freshly prepared hot and cold dishes." The 8,800-square-foot restaurant is located at 13225 Levinson Lane, near Noodles & Co. and Paradise Bakery. Lunch runs $15.95, dinner costs $22.95 and kids 6 and younger eat for free with a paying adult. Among the eatery's nine other locations: Fort Wayne.

— With its central Indiana debut about a month away, growing Tex-Mex chain Chuy’s is looking to hire about 140 team members for its location at Hamilton Town Center in Noblesville. Chuy’s is known for its eclectic décor, so local owner/operator Russell Burns is planning some hometown touches, including a “dog wall” featuring pictures of customers’ canines. The restaurant is slated to open April 8 at 14150 Town Center Blvd.

The Combine Café is under construction at Reynolds Farm Equipment’s new headquarters at 1451 E. 276th St. in Atlanta (within sight of U.S. 31). The breakfast-and-lunch spot will be open to the public beginning in mid-March, according to a teaser on the local company’s Facebook page. No word yet on the menu, but one commenter suggested green eggs and ham—an homage to Reynolds’ “We know green” tagline (itself a reference to equipment-maker John Deere’s signature color).

Blaze Pizza leased 2,400 square feet in Carmel at 12697 N. Pennsylvania St., near Meijer. The California-based chain, which opened a location on Indiana Avenue near IUPUI earlier this year, features a build-your-own pizza assembly line and quick-fire cooking process that delivers custom-made pies in two minutes or so. Chipotle Mexican Grill leased 2,240 square feet of space in the same retail strip.

— Local Italian eatery Mangia! closed its Carmel City Center location on March 1. The restaurant, which moved to the upscale mixed-use development from a nearby strip mall in 2011, had been in business for more than 16 years. (Hat tip to Current in Carmel, which reported the closure March 4.)

— Feel left out during Indianapolis' semi-annual "Devour Downtown" events? Take heart, suburbanites: Northside Nights runs through March 16 at more than 30 participating restaurants, including several north of 96th Street. Find the full list of restaurants and their three-course "value priced" menus (usually $30) here.

  • Address for Blaze and Chipotle
    Are these restaurants going in the same strip mall as Yogurtz, Toppers, Mark Pi, Subway, etc?
    • I don't think so
      It looks like the address is west of the Meijer and north of Carmel Drive.
    • Meijer
      I think the Blaze and Chipotle are going in a new building. They started stripping pavement out of the Meijer parking lot adjacent to the Panda Express building in the last few weeks.
      • Mangia! Closed
        Just what Carmel needs, another %#*! pizza place. Meanwhile Mangia! at Carmel City Center closed up shop and locked their doors in the middle of the night.

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      1. If what you stated is true, then this article is entirely inaccurate. "State sells bonds" is same as "State borrows money". Supposedly the company will "pay for them". But since we are paying the company, we are still paying for this road with borrowed money, even though the state has $2 billion in the bank.

      2. Andrew hit the nail on the head. AMTRAK provides terrible service and that is why the state has found a contractor to improve the service. More trips, on-time performance, better times, cleanliness and adequate or better restrooms. WI-FI and food service will also be provided. Transit from outlying areas will also be provided. I wouldn't take it the way it is but with the above services and marketing of the service,ridership will improve and more folks will explore Indy and may even want to move here.

      3. They could take the property using eminent domain and save money by not paying the church or building a soccer field and a new driveway. Ctrwd has monthly meetings open to all customers of the district. The meetings are listed and if the customers really cared that much they would show. Ctrwd works hard in every way they can to make sure the customer is put first. Overflows damage the surrounding environment and cost a lot of money every year. There have been many upgrades done through the years to help not send flow to Carmel. Even with the upgrades ctrwd cannot always keep up. I understand how a storage tank could be an eye sore, but has anyone thought to look at other lift stations or storage tanks. Most lift stations are right in the middle of neighborhoods. Some close to schools and soccer fields, and some right in back yards, or at least next to a back yard. We all have to work together to come up with a proper solution. The proposed solution by ctrwd is the best one offered so far.

      4. Fox has comments from several people that seem to have some inside information. I would refer to their website. Changed my whole opionion of this story.

      5. This place is great! I'm piggy backing and saying the Cobb salad is great. But the ribs are awesome. $6.49 for ribs and 2 sides?! They're delicious. If you work downtown, head over there.