Ed Ribel is used to having an audience.
The chef for more than a dozen years is the host of "It's Supper Time," a cooking show on public access, and owns the catering company Calling A Chef.
Now, he's taking his act to the street with his latest venture – a food truck appropriately called Street Chef.
"I really wanted to have my own restaurant and the bank said 'no-go,' so we're doing the truck," he says, adding: "I love what I do, and I'm very passionate."
The truck will feature a menu of Italian favorites, including a meatball marinara appetizer, Italian beef sandwich, pizza by the slice and cannoli.
Ribel is kicking off his season with an event April 4 at The Rescue Mission, 301 W. Superior St. He will serve the homeless at noon before going to Parkview Field, 1301 Ewing St., in the afternoon before the Fort Wayne TinCaps game that evening.
•As the weather warms (maybe … ever?), more mobile units will be out. I've spotted Rig-A-Tony's at One Summit Square, and Bravas promises a new dog this week. Ragin' Cajun, which was at Deer Park for St. Patrick's Day, hopes to be on the streets next week.
Red Rok not for sale
If you are a fan of fried macaroni and cheese and brisket, don't fret. The partners of Red Rok BBQ & Bourbon Saloon are adamant that the downtown restaurant is not for sale, and it's not closing.
They might be moving – if the building at 123 W. Columbia St. sells.
In a follow-up call, managing partner Chris Wilson said that the restaurant is looking for a bigger location. The partners hope to find a building in a higher-traffic area, Wilson said, adding, "We don't know (whether we'll move) north or southwest or which way."
The restaurant will continue to be open while the building is listed.
"We're going to continue serving great barbecue to the great people of Fort Wayne for a long time," he says.
IPFW gets healthy
Students, faculty and staff will be competing for bragging rights today in the Mastodon Main Meal Makeover as part of the 25th annual IPFW Health Fair.
The contestants are charged with making over a recipe to improve its nutritional profile. Students will be cooking from 10 a.m. to noon, and the faculty and staff event is from 12:30 to 2 p.m. Some of the recipes include Parmesan Crusted Tilapia and Chili Wraps.
The public is invited to watch in the Walb Union Ballroom on the IPFW campus, 2101 Coliseum Blvd. E. The fair is from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and includes health screenings.
For more information, call 481-0264, email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.ipfw.edu/health.
Fine food, wine
Joseph Decuis in Roanoke is partnering with Conner Prairie Interactive History Park in Fishers to offer an elegant evening for adults that features artisan food paired with fine wines.
On April 10, Conner Prairie will open the Chinese House, which was Eli Lilly's summer home and features Chinese décor and artifacts.
Joseph Decuis' executive chef, Aaron Butts, sommelier Carmen McGee and owners Pete and Alice Eshelman will guide guests through a variety of courses featuring their own farm-raised wagyu beef, prepared in a variety of ways.
Along with the meal, McGee will share how to pair fine wines with the offerings.
If you want to make the trip down, the event is from 6:30 to 10 p.m. April 10. Tickets cost $150; call 317-776-6006 or go to ConnerPrairie.org.
•Dicky's 21 Taps, 2910 Maplecrest Road, is changing its weekly special lineup to reflect the offerings of its sister restaurant, Lucky Moose. Tuesday will be 50-cent-wing night; Friday features all-you-can-eat fish for $13.95; and Saturday is Rib Fest, with a full slab of ribs and soup and salad bar for $15.95.
•Firehouse Tea and Coffee Café is moving. The shop had been at 1245 E. State Blvd. since it opened in 2010 but is going east. Owners hope to be open at 2322 Hobson Road next month.
•Several area dining establishments have closed: Menchie's Frozen Yogurt, 6404 W. Jefferson Blvd.; Hibachi Grill Supreme Buffet, 5507 Coldwater Road; and Noodle Bowl, 10350 Coldwater Road.