The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: Keswick Hall

Five Finds on Friday: Scott Meynig

Scott

The Charlottesville food community suffered a great loss this week. From Food and Beverage Director at Keswick Hall to Operations Manager for Pippin Hill and Red Pump Kitchen, Scott Meynig wore many hats over the years, but none he enjoyed more than father and husband in his family’s baking business. In celebration of Meynig’s life, Family Ties & Pies will be open for business at tomorrow’s City Market, as it is every Saturday.

Meynig’s passing leaves a pie-slice sized hole in the heart of the Charlottesville food community. In tribute to Meynig, today’s Five Finds on Friday are some of his favorites, as remembered by friends and family.

1) Breakfast Brioche from Family Ties & Pies. “My fondest memories of Scott and food always lead me back to Family Ties & Pies breakfast brioche. It always made me smile to see him snacking on one as Donna and I would join him and reminisce about the four years that we worked together in Fossett’s and Keswick Hall. He was one of the finest hospitality leaders that I have ever worked with, but more than that, he was a true friend.” – Craig Hartman 

2) Fall Wood-fired Pizzas at Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards. “Every year Scott was enthusiastic when we started our Fall wood-fired pizza offerings at Pippin Hill. He checked first thing on the shift for each week’s offering and raved about them all, from the simple Three Cheeses to Hen of the Woods Mushroom and Basil. For Scott, it marked a seasonal equinox moment.” – Dean Porter Andrews and Lynn Easton

3) Chipotle Chocolate Gelato at Splendora’s Gelato. “Anytime Scott walked through the door at Splendy’s, I knew he was going to go straight for the bottom right corner of the first case, where Chipotle Chocolate would be if we were offering it. He would always cluck his disappointment if we were out, but get a small or a medium of other flavors anyway. There was one day where I had a front of house shift but the Chipotle Chocolate was going to be made as soon as I was through. Of course, he came in an hour too early. So, I brought him a cup to Red Pump as soon as it came out of the machine. What a great laugh that was. I’m going to make some Chipotle Chocolate today.” – PK Ross

4) Guests and Staff at Keswick Hall. “Scott really seemed to have no favorite dishes, just favorite guests and staff. He rarely sat down for a meal but would gather with the cluster of Keswick employees over lunch or dinner, dishing out amazingly creative one-liners with a marksman’s precision. He spent a lot of time meeting with the staff, individually or in groups, constantly endeavoring either to enhance the scope of their professional abilities or to give intelligent counsel on their domestic squabbles. When Scott was running the banquet department I loved to throw him ‘ringers’ that would challenge him. Scott: ‘Did you really promise the bride that the groom could ride in on a white horse dressed in armor’? I would just reply that I was trying to up-sell the event. Scott: ‘The horse and armor are fine but where are we going to get a lance?’
Scott really enjoyed our weekly wine-trainings and it was the only time he really sat and relaxed. One week we were doing New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs and, as usual, I was coaxing the staff to come up with appropriate descriptors. Scott blurted out that he though they tasted like cat pee. That was a common remark, I stated. Scott replied that they all tasted like a cat’s pee and wondered if the cats were all from the same family? There was never a dull moment with Scott and sometimes those moments were long and arduous as he worked late into the night making sure that a particular rehearsal dinner ended correctly. And then, next morning, at the City Market he was there early, sometimes napping on the back of the car, but always ready to jump up to greet a friend or help his family sell their pies and ties.” – Richard Hewitt

5) Coconut Custard Pie from Family Ties & Pies. “Scott was an extraordinary team player, peacemaker and darn good all around nice guy in his life and in the culinary world. Loved by so many, he always was ready, willing and able to help in the kitchen of our business, Family Ties & Pies. I am at a loss of words but he was my best friend, the father of our amazing children, a lover of fine dining, mentor to countless young restaurant workers, and the ultimate peace and pie maker. We love and miss you.” – Lynette, Chelsea and Max Meynig

Pippin Hill welcomes the food community, friends, and family to a memorial service in celebration of Scott Meynig’s life, Tuesday October 8 at 5:30 pm. RSVP requested.

 

Jean-Georges to Join Keswick Hall

Keswick Hall

There are not many chefs in the world who we know by just their first names. Jean-Georges is one. And he is coming to the Charlottesville area.

Keswick Hall announced today that world-renowned chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten will oversee the property’s culinary operations when it reopens next year. The restaurant, Keswick Hall says, will be the focal point of the property’s extensive renovation. Best known for the New York restaurant bearing his name, the Alsatian born chef now oversees close to forty restaurants, and has become one of the most decorated chefs alive, with more than a dozen James Beard Foundation awards or nominations.  “I love creating inspiring new restaurant concepts and menus,” says Jean-Georges, “and am excited to be partnering with Keswick Hall to bring my vision for this beautiful luxury hotel to life.”

 

Five Finds on Friday: John Hoffman

hoffman

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from John Hoffman, Executive Chef of Keswick Hall. On New Year’s Eve, Keswick is offering several different ways to celebrate the new year, including a special tasting menu with a jazz trio; a gala with an eight-piece band, cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, and a champagne toast; and, even a bash for the kids while their parents celebrate. For details and reservations, call (434) 924-4346. Hoffman’s picks:

1) Funghi Pizza at Lampo. “Lampo is our ‘Happy Place’ as my wife says. From Chef Loren to all of the service staff, they make your experience feel welcoming. The Funghi pizza with Sharondale Farm mushrooms and the house made N’duja are my go-tos.”

2) Ol’ Dirty Biscuit at Ace Biscuit and BBQ. “We went to Ace on a recommendation and it instantly reminded us of being back in Charleston, SC.  The Ol’ Dirty Biscuit is our breakfast staple.”

3) Empanadas at The Bebedero. “When my wife and I are having trouble deciding on a dinner date, we always seem to agree on The Bebedero.  The drinks are great and the food seems to be bursting with freshness.  The empanadas or if you’re lucky enough to catch pozole as a special are some of our favorites.”

4) The Farm at Oakhurst Inn.On lazy Sundays mornings we like to roll into the little cottage known as the Oakhurst Inn for brunch.  The Farm is always seasoned perfectly and the pickled jalepenos add just enough kick to get you moving.”

5) Crunchy Spicy Tuna Roll at Now & Zen. “I met Toshi while working an event at Keswick. The next week we had to stop by with some friends to check it out. The big rolls are something we’d never seen before. Our favorite is the crunchy Spicy Tuna but anything with eel is a plus.”