The new owner of Chuck's Restaurant, Emily Anderson, is keeping the restaurant's long-standing tradition for philanthropy alive. Anderson bought the restaurant from the Bisignano family after Linda Bisignano lost her 25-year battle with cancer last November. Linda had run the restaurant that her parents opened in 1946 for almost 40 years and was known for her philanthropic work. One of the conditions she had sought in trying to sell the restaurant in her final months was that the new owner keep alive the restaurant's tradition of serving the poor, homeless, elderly, and disabled on Thanksgiving. When Anderson bought the restaurant in May of this year, she said that she intended to keep that tradition alive. But Anderson isn't stopping there. The former Saints Pub & Patio manager has set up a benefit for the Animal Rescue League of Iowa at Chuck's on September 6. Twenty percent of the sales from all dine-in and carry-out orders between 4:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. on that day will go to the ARL.
In other restaurant news, Full Court Press has announced that they will open a second Fong's Pizza location in Ankeny. It will be FCP's first restaurant or bar to open a second location and also the first to open in the Des Moines suburbs. The new Fong's will be the first business to open in Ankeny's new Prairie Trail development. The new location will seat approximately 150 and is expected to serve the same basic menu as the original Fong's Pizza with some new noodle dishes, new appetizers, and a weekend breakfast menu added. The Ankeny restaurant, located at 1450 Southwest Vintage Parkway, is expected to open next spring.
Finally, the Iowa Restaurant Association held their Mixology Championships on Wednesday at Americana Restaurant & Lounge in Des Moines. Eleven finalists from around Iowa competed to be the best "Mixologist" (bartender) in the state. Rex Schulze from Splash Seafood Bar & Grill finished first in the competition with Amanda Schreiber from Crème Cupcake taking second. Schulze's three drink creations included: the Bluegrass Horchata, the Mango Syllabub, and The Deathbed Confession. The latter won the People's Choice Award at the event. You can check out Schulze recreating his winning drink Thursday morning on the KCWI morning show Great Day by clicking here. The Deathbed Confession will soon be available on Splash's fall cocktail menu.