|By G. Michael Dobbs|
SPRINGFIELD As promised after the success of the first Dine Around conducted this summer, the Springfield Business Improvement District (BID) will sponsor a second restaurant tour on Oct. 29.
The first Dine Around attracted around 400 diners who sampled the goods of nine downtown restaurants with 45-minute stops at each establishment. Organizers hope the same kind of turnout will take place this week. The cost is $35 person and tickets can be bought by either logging onto the BID's Web site (www.springfielddowntown.com) or by calling 787-1816. Registration will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the starting location.
The participating restaurants include the 350 Grill, Virtuosos, Currents, Caf Lebanon, Montenia's, McCaffrey's Public House, the Student Prince, Sitar and Shakagos. At each stop, participants will be served a free glass of wine or beer and samples from the menu.
For example, at the Student Prince, the offerings will be fried camembert cheese, knockwurst, cheese spaetzle and chicken paprika. At the Sitar, there will be vegetable samosa, vegetable pakora, chicken pakora and shahi sabz biryani.
Malkit Singh, the owner of the Sitar, said at a press conference on Friday the last Dine Around was " a really good time." He noted it drew "new faces" to his restaurant and that participants not only got to try different cuisines, but also were able to meet new people.
Mayor Domenic Sarno said there had been similar events in the past that utilized a bus. The advantage of this event is that people walk from restaurant to restaurant and see what downtown is like.
"If you haven't been to downtown Springfield, come on down," Sarno said. "It's clean and safe."