Palladio Receives James Beard Invite

by Charlottesville29


Chef Melissa Close-Hart. Photo by Jackson Smith.

The national spotlight continues to shine on Charlottesville area food.  Just a week after news broke that Parallel 38 will cook at New York City’s The Beard House this August comes news of another area restaurant being invited there: Palladio Restaurant at Barboursville Vineyards.

Of course, this type of attention is nothing new for Palladio, or its chef Melissa Close-Hart.  In her 14 years at the Italian fine dining destination, Close-Hart has won more national acclaim than any other area chef, with four James Beard nods as a semi-finalist for Best Chef in the Mid-Atlantic.  And, while it is special for a restaurant to receive even just one invitation to cook at The Beard House, this will be Palladio’s fifth appearance there.  Yes, fifth.  “It’s such an honor to be asked to bring the Palladio crew back to the Beard House,” said Close-Hart, who previously cooked there in 2002, 2004, 2007 and 2012.

Scheduled for February 24, 2015, Palladio’s dinner will be a multi-course affair, paired with Barboursville wines, that will celebrate Virginia’s bounty of wonderful produce, like Rappahannock River Oysters, Caromont Farm Cheese, and Border Springs Lamb.  “We have a talented team here,” Close-Hart said, “and I’m ecstatic to go to New York and showcase what we are accomplishing here in Virginia. We are still working on the menu, but I plan on focusing on Virginia products paired with Luca Paschina’s great wines! ”

Congratulations to Melissa and the rest of the Palladio team.