The Charlottesville 29

If there were just 29 restaurants in Charlottesville, what would be the ideal 29?

Five Finds on Friday: Eric Bein


Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Eric Bein, the Culinary Institute of America graduate who founded the Florida-based Station 400 Restaurants before relocating to Virginia in 2015 and starting first Jack’s Shop Farm and now Jack’s Shop Kitchen. The Ruckersville restaurant serves lunch, brunch, and dinner, and also an array of provisions to-go. Menus here. Bein’s picks:

1) Virgindia Pale Ale from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery.  “With the craft beer scene touting over-the-top IPAs, Hardywood shows true craftsmanship in this well balanced, citrusy IPA using Virginia hops.”

2) Pie in the Sky at Pie in the Sky. “Their namesake dish,  an Italian Grinder stuffed inside of a whole cheese pizza.  What else needs to be said?

3) Beef Brisket at BBQ Exchange. “The true measure of a great pit master, Chef Craig’s brisket, with its dark bark and pink-hued smoke ring, is a tender, succulent vehicle to slather on their signature sauces.”

4) Bavarian Sausage Platter at The Bavarian Chef. “Wiesswurst, Bauernwurst, Bratwurst… I’m not sure who Chef Jerome kidnapped from Germany, but these are expertly crafted sausages, most certainly to be washed down with a dry German pilsner.  Bring your appetite.”

5) Apple Donut from Donut Kitchen. “With a cult like following wherever they are, this food truck prepares their donuts fresh daily. The perfect ratio of dough and apple filling, tossed in cinnamon and sugar, it’s an ethereal experience.”



Shepherd’s Pie at Jack’s Shop Kitchen

Attend Bodo’s Breakfast of Champions

Blue Moon 8

More than once I’ve heard The Charlottesville 29 Restaurant Auctions described as a gift that keeps on giving. Indeed, even after the bids created more than 315,000 meals for the area’s hungry, benefits have continued.

The latest example is the generosity of the team who won the auction for Bodo’s Breakfast of Champions – an over-the-top brunch for forty guests with four current UVa coaches with national titles in their sports: Brian Boland (men’s tennis), Brian O’Connor (baseball), George Gelnovatch (men’s soccer), and Julie Myers (women’s lacrosse).

With a bid of $2,400, Charlottesville resident David Weiss and friends won the auction. But, instead of filling the guest list solely with their friends, they’ve decided to make ten slots available to the general public in exchange for a minimum $50 donation to the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. These donations will go on top of the one the winning group already made, meaning more money for the food bank and at least 2,000 more meals for the area’s hungry.

The brunch is Sunday, January 29, at 10 am at Weiss’ home. In addition to hobnobbing with NCAA champions, guests will enjoy a fabulous buffet of Bodo’s bagels, smoked salmon, spreads, and more, plus cider from Potter’s Craft Cider and organic juice from Lumi, including, of course, Wahoo Orange. Plus, acclaimed photographer Tom McGovern will be on hand to capture it all. Guests are even welcome to stay after the brunch to watch that day’s 1 pm televised men’s basketball game between UVa and defending national champions Villanova. A full day of champions.

The ten slots are available on a first-come, first-served basis and are sure to sell out fast. To book yours, email and state the amount of your donation, minimum $50. Good luck!

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