The Charlottesville 29

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

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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.”

Introducing Siren: Chef Laura Fonner Finally Has Her Own Place

A dream of award-winning chef Laura Fonner is finally coming true. This fall, the multi-time Food Network winner will open Siren in the former home to The Shebeen. Fonner was the longtime chef of Duner’s before joining Champion Hospitality Group last year, and launching a food truck. A partnership between Champion and Fonner, Siren will feature a seafood-focused menu of what Fonner calls an ever-changing mix of gourmet stoner food, with American and Mediterranean influences. “I am blending my two worlds together to create a unique and approachable menu,” said Fonner.

Check back for further details, but, for now, Fonner is particularly excited about the “red plate special,” a whole fish of the day that Fonner says is a chance to poke fun of herself, having suffered her only ever Food Network loss because she served her final dish on a red plate, instead of a white one.

“Having my own restaurant has been years in the making,” said Fonner, “and I can’t wait to share my passion for food with the community again, in a space that is unique and full of character.”

Redshaw Dinner Under the Stars: Raffle in Support of Allie’s Climb of Cotopaxi to Benefit Amputees

Photo by Cody Sowa.

Of the many ways Allie Redshaw’s life changed when she lost her right hand to a cooking accident, one of the biggest was the spark in her passion to help others with physical disabilities. Now, she’s even climbing a mountain to do it.

Next month, Allie is traveling to Ecuador with an Elite Team of climbers to summit Cotopaxi, a glacier-covered active volcano with elevations topping 19,000 feet. The extraordinary climb is all for a good cause: to support ROMP (Range of Motion Project), a global non-profit founded on the belief that every amputee deserves access to prosthetic care. “We are climbing to show the world what is possible with proper access to prosthetic care,” Allie said. “Every dollar donated for the climb goes directly to help amputees with limited resources get access to high-quality prosthetic care and follow-up services they need to be fully mobile again.”

You can help Allie’s cause while earning a chance for a once-of-a-lifetime dining experience. On August 31, Allie and her husband Ian, a James Beard semifinalist, will prepare a multi-course dinner cooked over a wood fire for up to eight guests, served under the stars on the scenic patio of Potter’s Craft Cider. The winner and their guests will have the entire Potter’s property to themselves for the evening. Paired with Potter’s ciders, the dinner will showcase the terroir of the Shenandoah, drawing on some of the Redshaws’ favorite producers, who are generously supporting Allie’s efforts, like Farm Virginia and Autumn Olive Farms.

To enter, just donate to Allie’s ROMP campaign, and send confirmation of your donation to The more you donate, the better your chance to win. A $10 donation earns one entry. A $50 entry earns ten entries. A $100 donation earns 25 entries. And, a $500 donation earns 200 entries. A winner will be selected at random and announced on August 23. Even if you cannot attend the dinner, donations are welcome!

August 23 Update: Thank you for all of the support and entries. The winner of the random drawing is Hannah Shepherd. While the raffle is complete, you may still support Allie’s campaign below.


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