Five Finds on Friday: Amber Cohen

by Charlottesville29


Photo by Bethany Bandera.

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Amber Cohen, the former chef of Continental Divide and sous chef of Hamiltons’, who will be Melissa Close-Hart’s sous chef at Junction, set to open this summer.  “I have had a professional crush on Melissa since I met her when I first moved to town,” says Cohen, who has cooked in Charlottesville for 14 years. “I feel like I got asked to prom in a John Hughes flick.”  On March 15, Cohen will join Close-Hart for a special Junction preview dinner, benefiting the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank and The International School of Charlottesville.  Check back here Monday at 10 am for an announcement on how to get tickets, which will be sure to go fast.  Cohen’s picks:

1) Canelés at MarieBette Cafe and Bakery.  “I am seduced into stopping and getting those decadent, evil, irresistible mini canelés every time I drive by MarieBette.”

2) Red Hot Blues at Continental Divide.  “It’s been a short two months since I gave up my kitchen residency at the Divide and I have already started missing and daydreaming (and sometimes actual night dreaming) of the Blues. Accompanied, of course, by a margarita.”

3) Prosciutto Pizza at Lampo.  “I’ve always felt that pizza is a perfect food, in this case, made somehow more sublime by cured meat and lightly dressed arugula.”

4) Pork Star Taco at Brazos Tacos.  “Perhaps just the words ‘pork belly’ make me giddy, but I have to have it on every visit.”

5) Absolutely Anything at Café 88.  “Their crispy tofu is perfectly seasoned, their veggies are never overcooked, the wonderful chicken is as advertised in the name (wonderful), and I would happily marry the hot sour soup.”