The Charlottesville 29

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

Category: Five Finds on Friday

Five Finds on Friday: Megan Adams

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Megan Adams, the local baker who makes made-to-order pies for purchase in Charlottesville. In this month’s rotation are pumpkin pie with a pretzel crust and streusel topping, eggnog custard, dark chocolate ganache and peppermint pie, and Spicy Vegetarian Shepherd’s pie. Place orders at meganchopsalot@gmail.com and follow along on Instagram at @meg_the_scallion. Adams’ picks:

1) Spicy Honey Garlic Karaage from Basan. “This is everything you could ever want in a chicken nugget. Basan marinates, double fries, and sauces to perfection these sweet-salty-spicy nuggets. They can be eaten any time of day, even for breakfast.”

2) Kabocha Squash Brioche Tart with Cream Cheese from Baker No Bakery. “Chris had this brioche on her menu more than once, and that just felt like Christmas all October long. The pastry was soft, yet sturdy enough to hold the weight of a squash purée and cream cheese filling. I had no idea what I had signed up for but once I knew I had to go back for seconds and thirds.”

3) Tofu Caramelized Onions Noodles from Vu Noodles. “This dish is my go-to almost every time I’m having a bad day. I grab my bag, sit in my car, whip out the chopsticks and go to town on that box of noodles. And every time, without fail, I find myself happier with every bite. The ginger soy sauce just drenches the noodles and tofu and makes for the best pick-me-up meal.”

4) Za’atar Croissant from Bowerbird Bakeshop. “I fervently believe there is not a single sandwich condiment that cannot be put on this croissant. Veggies, pork belly and American cheese, egg and kimchi. Shoot, you could even do up a fancy avocado toast on this baby because it can literally handle anything. 10/10.”

5) Smash Burger from Basan. “I’m sorry to admit that in the 12 years of food service work I’ve clocked, I hadn’t had a smash burger until . . . THIS YEAR. Oh man was I missing out. These smash burgers are a special menu item only brought out during pop ups, so if you know . . . you know. I had built my own with egg, Mama Bird’s Napa Kimchi, avocado, comeback sauce, onion, and American chees, but I could have eaten it entirely plain and still had a 420/10 experience. The crust on the burger from being smashed and so quickly seared is unlike any burger your dad can pull off of his grill. Sorry Dad.”

Five Finds on Friday: Chase Davidson

Twelve years ago today, this guy entered the world, which he has brightened every day since. Chase’s picks:

1) Lumpia from Little Manila and Manila Street. “I’ve been eating these for a long time. When I was younger, I used to look forward to Saturdays because we would always go to the market and Little Manila would have a tent set up there. It’s one of my favorite foods, and it goes perfectly with the sauce.”

2) Marinara D.O.C. from Lampo. “It’s been a tradition for a while that every year on my birthday, I get this pizza from Lampo. I don’t typically like really cheesy pizzas, so this one is perfect for me. Another tradition we had was every Friday in the pandemic my dad would go out and get this pizza for me.”

3) Pan Tomate at Little Star. “I could consume a lot of these.”

4) Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream at La Flor Michoacana. “My dad introduced this place to me. My sister wanted to go to Chap’s but I wanted to try this place, and I’m glad I did because it is some of the best ice cream that I have ever had.”

5) Mini Corn Dogs at Riverside Lunch. “Anytime I travel for a swim meet, my dad tries to find places close to the pool with mini corn dog nuggets because I enjoy them so much. I have gone to many places but none are better than the ones that Riverside has.”

Five Finds on Friday: Fernando Dizon

The Dizon family, on opening day, May 14, 2021.

Today’s the day! Manila Street is opening in Dairy Market. What a proud day for the families who live on Manila Street and great day for Charlottesville diners. To celebrate, today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Fernando Dizon, who owns Manila Street with his wife Jessie. Dizon’s picks:

1) Apple Galette from Bee Conscious Baking Company. “Patrick and Alexis just opened their new spot in Dairy Market and we couldn’t be happier for them. Also for our tummies because now we can get their goodies everyday. The Apple Galette is my favorite. Caramelized apples inside a perfectly crispy crust. Everything they make is delicious. Our boys love their cinnamon sugar donuts.”

2) Special Waffle at Milli Coffee Roasters. “This is our go -to spot for breakfast on Sundays. A Belgian waffle topped with brie, Granny Smith apple and honey. The waffle is always crunchy on the outside and soft in the middle. I really need to know how they make their batter.”

3) Gambas al’ Parilla at Mas. “This is our go-to date night spot. Sitting on the patio with a pitcher of sangria and some delicious tapas is our happy place. The grilled shrimp are a must. Served grilled shell on sprinkled with sea salt on a bed of aioli.”

4) Complete dinner for Two at Afghan Kabob Palace. “Over the last year we’ve ordered a lot of takeout. Afghan Kabob has always done a fantastic job. The food quality and the service is always consistent. The complete dinner for two is so much food you’ll have leftovers for lunch the next day. It comes with salad, two appetizers, two entrees and two kinds of dessert as well as a choice of coffee or tea. My favorite of the entrees is the Qabuli Palow- tender lamb with raisins and carrots on a bed of brown rice.”

5) Loose Goose Martini at Zocalo. “After trying all those good eats you can wash it all down with a Loose Goose at Zocalo, another favorite spot in C’ville. Hands down my favorite cocktail anywhere. I always order it with a jalapeño to add a little kick. Sipping on one of these at the bar or on the patio at Zocalo is a must try in C’ville.”

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