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Side Dish

Culinary crumbs and gastronomic gossip

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Downtown option

There's a new downtown choice for breakfast or lunch: the Town Center Restaurant, on the impressively refurbished west-side ground floor of the City Auditorium (221 E. Kiowa St).

Easily accessible from the building's alley door (and with 17 free, off-street parking spots), Town Center is serving diner-style entres, sandwiches, salads, omelettes and more, along with a mean green chili. The restaurant which also has the City Auditorium's full liquor license and handles other events there serves from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Longtime local radio personality Chuck Baker, who most recently owned the East Side Diner with wife Sandy, has more plans for the Town Center. (It's being run by family members Sally Jo Bender and Charlie Baker.) They could include extra hours on Friday and Saturday nights, all the way to 4 a.m. for after-hours breakfast. Baker is also talking about having "Martinis and a Movie" on Friday nights, with classic old flicks in the Lon Chaney Theater.

J.C.'s grapes
This one needs to be quoted word-for-word:

"When people drink this wine, they are brought to the heights of Mount Tabor overlooking the Jordan River and the Sea of Galilee, and are able to envision Jesus walking through the vineyards of Galilee. They achieve a closer bond with their religion and a closer relationship to the nature of Israel and a deeper understanding of its significance to each person."

Those are the words of student Adam Haroz, who, with his father, founded Haroz Vintners. The Georgia company now imports wines from Israel's Galilee region, and bills them as "the first wines for Christian consumers."

Finally! It's about time someone started looking out for wine connoisseurs who want Jesus on their label.

Visit to learn more about The Grapes of Galilee wines.

Affordable food
If you're interested in making sure local families have access to affordable food even after the holiday season, Angel Food Ministries (AFM) can let you help. Through the national organization's local partner, Church for All Nations (6540 Templeton Gap Road), and two distribution sites, AFM offers $30 boxes of fresh and frozen foods that can feed a family of four for a week. Visit or call 591-1800 for more on contributing or ordering.

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