156 Carlton Rd. Suite 203 . Charlottesville, VA . (434) 984-2337
The full article on Beer Run is here. Short report below.
Why Beer Run?
Beer Run — a beer bar, shop and eatery– is Charlottesville’s quintessential family restaurant. It is run by family, feels like family, and welcomes families. With an ever-changing menu of expertly selected draft beers, and good food that pairs well with the beer, it has that je ne sais quoi that makes it an irresistably comfortable place to be. In Beer Run, Josh Hunt and his step-brother John Woodriff have created Charlottesville’s most difficult restaurant to leave.
What to Order
We have been to Beer Run so often that we have discovered a few secrets to eating well.
First, we enjoy the sandwiches best on whole wheat or as a wrap, instead of the house bread. Don’t get us wrong. The house bread — a focaccia-style bread made from beer — is actually quite good. It goes well with the cheese plate, for example. And, many people we know love it for sandwiches. But, our own tastes find it too bulky for sandwiches. Neither the whole wheat or wrap options appear on the menu, but both are available upon request.
Second, the soups are excellent. Although they are not prominently featured on the menu, Beer Run serves two or three soups each day. We think they stand up to the best in town, even at restaurants exclusively focused on soup.
Third, desserts are hidden gems, listed on a chalk board above the bar. Most of them are made by the very talented pastry chef Elicia Hernandez, who is Chef Franco’s sister, and who also works at HotCakes.
Finally, one of our favorite items at Beer Run is not on the menu at all, but is available on request: a BLT. Again, we like this best on whole wheat.
Here are some more of our picks, along with the owners’ and chef’s picks, and appearances in Five Finds on Friday, where chefs and personalities have named a Beer Run dish one of the best in town.
- Breakfast Tacos (Saturday morning)
- Conchi’s Biscuit Basket (Sunday Brunch)
- Claim Your Steak and Eggs (Sunday Brunch only) Hangar steak topped with gorgonzola and marsala/green peppercorn compound butter, with two local eggs over-easy and a side of organic cornmeal grits with a dab of house pesto
- Chicken Philly on a Sun-dried Tomato Wrap, Pressed, All-Natural Sauteed Chicken, Sauteed Bell Peppers and Red Onions, Chipotle Ranch and Pepper-Jack Cheese
- Rock Barn Bratwurst on a Sun-dried Tomato Wrap
- Roast Beef Reubenesque on Whole Wheat, Pressed, Roast beef, spicy slaw, spinach, swiss cheese & chipotle ranch
- Bison Burger, All-natural Madison County bison burger, grilled, topped with Swiss cheese and served on an all-natural pretzel bun with lettuce, organic red onion, house-made chipotle ranch
- Dubliner Sandwich (March special we wait for all year) All-natural house-corned beef brisket with homemade colcannon and melted swiss
Owners Hunt and Woodriff named:
- Egg BLT (Breakfast menu)
- Rock Barn Bratwurst, Rock Barn bratwurst in an all-natural pretzel roll with house vinegar coleslaw & house mustard
- Allagash Fish Tacos, (Sunday brunch) Allagash beer battered catfish filets on freshly made house corn tortillas, house pico de gallo and creamy chipotle sauce
- Tres Colores Fish and Chips, Corn-chip-encrusted fried spicy catfish fillet topped with fresh house-made pico de gallo and chipotle ranch. Served with organic house-roasted frites
- Seared Scallops with Local Oyster Mushrooms and Soy-Ginger Butter, Fresh sea scallops, pan-seared with Sharondale Farm oyster mushrooms, fresh ginger, garlic, shallot, rice wine and wasabi and topped with house-made soy-ginger butter sauce. Served with sautéed spinach and local sweet potato & parsnip mashers
Chef Franco named the Tres Colores Fish and Chips and the Seared Scallops, as well as:
- All-Natural Grilled Hangar Steak with Bacon-Blue Cheese Compound Butter, All-natural hangar steak, grilled to order, topped with a bacon-blue cheese compound butter & served with organic brown rice & sautéed vegetable medley
Five Finds on Friday Picks
- Rock Barn Bratwurst — Ben Thompson (Rock Barn), Tucker Yoder (formerly, Clifton Inn)
- Lasagna — Jason Oliver (Devil’s Backbone)
- Autumn Omelet — Diane Flynt (Foggy Ridge Cider)
- Tres Colores Fish and Chips — Hunter Smith (Champion Brewing Co.)
- Muffaleta — Ian Redshaw (Lampo, formerly Tavola and L’Etoile)
- Bison Burger — Mike Yager (formerly Glass Haus Kitchen)
- The Dubliner — Ellen Searcy (reader)
- Duchesse De Bourgogne — Tristan Wraight (Oakhart Social)
- Turkey Trot — David Morgan (Tavern & Grocery)
- Nachos — Robbie O’Cain (Starr Hill Brewery), Liberty Kalergis (MAS Tapas); Morgan Hurt and Gabe Garcia (Kitchen Catering & Events)
- Saturday Morning Randall – Charlie Toder (Kardinal Hall)
- Avocado Toast – Kathryn Matthews (IRON Paffles & Coffee)