The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: Blue Ridge Country Store

Five Finds on Friday: Kristen Suokko

Kristen Suokko

On Fridays, we feature five food finds selected by local chefs and personalities.  As we head into Thanksgiving week, today’s picks come from Kristen Suokko, Executive Director of Local Food Hub, the nonprofit devoted to our local food system that works with seventy small farms to distribute fresh produce and meats to schools, hospitals, retailers, restaurants, food banks, and more.  Suokko’s picks:

1)  Salad Bar at Blue Ridge Country Store.  “In fact, anything fresh and quick will do. Their salad bar and soups are the perfect grab-and-go lunch option, and I often stop by mid-afternoon to pick up fresh produce to cook for dinner that evening.”

2)  Prosciutto Panini Special at Feast!. S. Wallace Edwards prosciutto, pickled red onions, local apples, and Caromont Farm goat cheese on focaccia.  “Their specials change daily based on what is available from local farmers, and they never cease to have something spectacular.  My kids love The Elvis, made with Virginia peanut butter, candied bacon, and bananas on oatmeal crunch bread.”

3)  Double H Farm Pork Chop with Local Apple Cider Glaze and Delicata Squash at Hamiltons’ at First and Main.  “Chef Curtis Shaver is able to bring out the best flavors of every season, and does an excellent job at using the best of what is available in our area.”

4)  Winter Quiche at Greenwood Gourmet Grocery, with local bacon, eggs, and vegetables.  “Whenever I’m hiking in western Albemarle, or visiting some of our many vineyards or breweries, I always stop by Greenwood Gourmet Grocery in Crozet for a bite. All of their café food is prepared in-house daily. Their offerings are complex yet always remain true to the flavors of our region, like a fresh summer slaw made with cabbage, carrots, peppers, and onions, or the warm winter quiche. And, I never skip on dessert here, especially their homemade pies!”

5)  Winesap Apples from Dickie Brothers Orchard. “Local Food Hub works with a handful of orchardists in our area, all of whom have introduced us to unique and rare varieties over the years, like the tart Gold Rush, the sweet Pink Lady, the firm red-skinned Jonathan, and more.  Just last night, at our food awards and 5th birthday celebration, Dickie Brothers Orchard won our award for 2014 Partner Producer of the Year, Fruit.  You can pick up a local apple just about anywhere: Integral Yoga, Rebecca’s Natural Foods, paired with a hearty soup from Revolutionary Soup, or fresh from the Charlottesville City Market, just to name a few.”


Five Finds on Friday: Matt Boisvert


On Fridays, we feature five finds selected by local chefs and personalities.  Today’s picks come from Matt Boisvert, who is leaving his acting sous chef position at Tavola to re-unite with chef/owner Dean Maupin at C&O.  Years ago, Boisvert worked under Maupin for four years at Clifton Inn.  Boisvert’s picks:

1)  Falafel at Blue Ridge Country Store.  “They make it daily and it is shaped like a cookie, usually by the salad bar.  It’s the best in town, and usually my number one choice for lunch downtown.”

2)  Shrimp Tempura at Kabuto.  “It’s always very well prepared and different from regular tempura because they dredge the shrimp in tiny flakes so its extra crispy.  I always get a side of Japanese mayo.”

3)  Grilled Cheese Sandwich and Tomato Soup at C&O.  “I’ve been eating this tomato soup in one form or another for years, and nothing beats this and a Makers and ginger after a long day.”

4)  Pastry Basket for brunch at Hamiltons’.  “Curtis and his team are killing it lately and sometimes they fry Cronuts (croissant donuts) for the pastry basket.  Enough said.”

5)  Heaven Sandwich at BBQ Exchange.  “This sandwich is the real deal, and you can’t find better people than Craig, his wife, and his team to support.  Worth the drive!”