The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: Bizou

Five Finds on Friday: Jeff Latchum

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come Jeff Latchum of wine importer Williams Corner Wine. If you’re shopping for wine and unsure what to buy, check the labels on the backs of the bottles. Find one that says “Williams Corner Wine,” and you know it will be good. This Sunday, Latchum, a natural wine expert, will be at Blenheim Vineyards Library Series to teach a natural wines class, showcasing some of the finest natural wines in the world. Just fifteen tickets will be sold. Call (434) 293-5366 for yours. Details on this and other Library Series events here. Latchum’s picks:

1) Jamón and Rancio Sec at MAS Tapas. “Yes I’m shilling for something we sell and writing my entire piece about wine. Catalan tradition of completely oxidized, non-fortified wine that pairs well with literally anything salty and savory, from jamón to seafood. Ask for Domaine de Rombeau.”

2) Shad Roe and German Riesling at Tastings. “Tucked away from the hoi polloi, have a glass or two from the dozens of open bottles or grab a bottle off the rack and enjoy it for a small corkage. Idiosyncratic and proud of it, also the best place to buy a special occasion or specific vintage wine. He might even still have shad roe to nibble on with a dry German Riesling (ask for Ulli Stein or Peter Lauer).”

3) Meatloaf and Champagne at Bizou. “An often overlooked list for thoughtfully chosen wines at a reasonable price, especially the Champagne and you should be drinking more Champagne! It will make you look (or at least feel) dreamy scarfing down a delicious plate of meatloaf.”

4) Ham Biscuits and Chenin Blanc from Foods of All Nations. “You’ll need a full case of wine, and Tom and Frankie can help. The Wine Store to explore! Make sure to start looking at the back label and becoming fluent with the importer. I am certain you will find kinship with a handful, as many are doing excellent work. It’s never been better to be a consumer of wine! While there, I suggest buying a MarieBette olive baguette, ham biscuits, and some fried chicken, for friends, or just you, the dog, and the case of wine. For ham biscuits and fried chicken I would suggest Chenin Blanc from Domaine aux Moines, Savennieres Sec 2015.”

5) Tuna Nicoise and Muscadet or Sauvignon Blanc at MarieBette Café and Bakery. “Five Finds has found and celebrated many wonderful things about MarieBette, but did you know that they have an affordable bistro wine selection to complement the long list of lovable superlatives? Jason, Patrick, and Will are the best, made all the more adorable with a glass of Muscadet or Sauvignon Blanc. My pairing for either is the Tuna Niçoise.”

Five Finds on Friday: Erin Scala

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Erin Scala, the sommelier,  New York Times acclaimed podcaster, and wine writer, who was once named one of Wine Enthusiast’s 40 Under 40 Tastemakers, and now runs her own wine shop: In Vino Veritas. A longtime student of wine, Scala was a great asset to Fleurie, Petit Pois, and other restaurants, but this is the first store full of Scala’s favorite hand-selected wines – a treasure trove for wine lovers. Plus, thanks to Scala’s industry contacts, the shop offers special tasting opportunities, like today’s with Portuguese winemaker Filipa Pato, from 4:30 – close. Subscribe to the shop’s newsletter to stay up to date. Scala’s picks:

1) Tomato Bisque at Milli Coffee Roasters. “Served with grilled toast points. This is my winter treat— it’s a super rich, heartwarming tomato soup.”

2) Kouign Amann at Bizou. “Each Sunday brunch service, Vincent makes just a few of these classic pastries from near his hometown in Brittany. You can find a few different versions around town (like the kouignette at MarieBette) but Vincent’s is closer to the large, rustic bread the dish’s inventor, Yves-René Scordia (Douarnenez), made in the late 1800s. The crispy, buttery, sweet edges are the perfect pairing with just about anything from Bizou’s value-priced bubbles list. Vincent says ‘it’s all about the butter.'”

3) Heirloom Tomatoes from Radical Roots Farm. “When the farmer’s market is active, I make a beeline to their tent and fill up a basket with delicious things to eat— but it’s always mostly tomatoes. With a little olive oil and sea salt, they are the best!”

4) Bread at Back 40. “Chef Tucker Yoder has a sourdough that’s been going for years. It’s especially awesome when he makes homemade butter to go with it.”

5) Sweet Tea Caramels from La Vache Mircrocreamery. “Warning: you can’t eat just one.”

Five Finds on Friday: Derek Mansfield

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Derek Mansfield of Tilman’s, the new spot that some are saying is just what the Downtown Mall needed, with eat-in or takeout sandwiches, cheese, wine, beer, and gourmet items. Mansfield’s favorite way to enjoy it is “sitting at the bar with The Big Board (our best cheese and charcuterie of the moment) and a glass of our Scaia Corvina in front of me.” Mansfield’s picks:

1)  Tacos de Lengua, Mexican Style at La Michoacana. “The most authentic taco place in town, and truly the only place I’ve had good lengua anywhere in the area. The whole menu is fantastic, but I have to say I go for three tacos (always one lengua) more often than anything else.”

2) A Dozen Oysters and a Glass of Chablis at Public Fish & Oyster. “Delicious, fresh shucked, interesting oysters that rotate regularly enough to keep the interest piqued. All this provided by an extremely knowledgeable and friendly staff in a San Francisco wharf-like atmosphere.  Unique and fantastic!”

3) Manhattan followed by the BBQ Platter at The Whiskey Jar. “Come for the bourbon, stay for the great local food, and stay longer for the entertainment. All in a warm welcoming environment. I bring the family, go with out of town guests, or just stop by for a drink and a chat with the awesome team there.”

4) Anything Savory at The Pie Chest. “Thank goodness for Rachel and The Pie Chest!  They have brought a great new concept to Charlottesville, and I love finding out what’s in the case. Pro tip: go early enough to not miss out because when it’s gone, it’s gone.”

5) Steak Bavette at Bizou. “Classic French bistro meal in a classy bistro setting. Great room, great buzz, phenomenal wine list, and a friendly team that’s happy to hang for a second at your table and have a chat about what’s happening in C’Ville.”