The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: Lemongrass

Five Finds on Friday: Kit Ashi

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Kit Ashi of Monsoon Siam, Monsoon Siam Togogo, and Urban Bowl, the downtown mall Thai/Vietnamese restaurant with a great weeknight deal on pho. Monday through Thursday night, Urban Bowl’s pho menu is just $7.99. Ashi’s picks:

1) Passion Fruit Cheesecake at The Alley Light by Chef Robin. “I like the softness and smoothness of the cream cheese, and the crust is perfect. The cream cheese is not too sweet, salty or sour. And, the lemon and orange zest on top goes well with the passion fruit aroma.”

2) Margarita Pizza at Lampo. “I love the thin pizza crust and the smoke from the charred dough. The sauce is perfect, too. I always have it with a spritz, which makes my lunch or dinner delightful. All of the chefs are so talented, and I can’t wait for their steakhouse to open.”

3) Lad Na at Thai Cuisine & Noodle House and Lemongrass. “This is a Thai’s dish. It is not a popular dish that people know here but it is one of my favorite dishes. I used to have it three time a week. We do not serve this at Monsoon Siam, but Thai Cuisine and Lemongrass are the places I go for it. It is wide noodles with bean gravy and Chinese broccoli. I love to order it with pork and add squid. The right way to eat it is to ask for the spice tray. Add one spoon of chili powder, three spoons of vinegar, mix it, and enjoy.”

4) Seafood Puttanesca at Bella’s. “I love seafood pasta in red sauce. The sauce here is not too thick, and its spicy and tart flavor goes really well with seafood. I can finish a family size by myself.”

5) Kao Mok Neua at Monsoon Siam. “It would be so wrong not to talk about this dish, my new favorite that I put on the menu. Meltingly tender braised beef in Thai southern style curry, rich in flavor and aroma. The sauce goes very well with jasmine rice stir fried in turmeric and curry powder. Crispy fried shallots add texture, while spicy mint sauce adds flavor contrast. It’s going to be the next best curry for Charlottesville.”

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Kao Mok Neua at Monsoon Siam

Five Finds on Friday: Andy Hannas

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Andy Hannas, cider maker at Potter’s Craft Cider, which has just launched a cider garden and tasting room next to Lampo. In addition to bottled ciders, the rural farm cidery’s downtown tasting room has six ciders on tap, offering guests access to small batch, seasonal, and experimental ciders. Enjoy a cider flight, a whole glass, or a growler to go. There is also a full calendar of events with co-host The Bridge, including live music and First Friday exhibits, like today’s reception for artist Bolanle Adeboye. Regular cider garden hours are Friday 4 – 9 pm and Saturday 12 – 9 pm. Hannas’ picks:

1) The Italian Stallion from Hunt Country Market & Deli. “Potter’s Craft Cider runs on cold cut sandwiches from here, and the Italian is the long running staff favorite. It’s also a great opportunity to pick up beer for after work, and check in and see how our cider is selling. When local tomatoes are in season, this sandwich gets even better.”

2) Brioche Feuilletée from MarieBette. “Laminated brioche dough with pastry cream filling (passion fruit is my favorite) and an iced coffee out on the sidewalk patio is the start to my ideal Saturday morning.”

3) Tonkotsu Ramen at Lemongrass. “Whether from Kokoro, Mican or their new home inside Lemongrass, the ramen by Yoshihiro and Yukiko Tauchi  has always been killer. Ramen is only available at Lemongrass on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5:00, so make sure to set a reminder on your calendar. Once summer hits and The Corner clears out, I plan on being there every weekend possible.”

4) Sushi at Tokyo Rose. “Perfectly cooked and seasoned rice at the optimum temperature is what sets good sushi apart from mediocre sushi for me. The rice and the maki rolls are always spot on here, but just as importantly, so is the service. I would eat dinner here every day if I could. As an added bonus, I love the history of punk shows in the basement.”

5) Brut from King Family Vineyards. “Honestly this should say ‘anything that Matthieu and his team are putting into a bottle out in Crozet.’ But, as a cider maker, I have a real love for sparkling wine. Not only is Matthieu making excellent wines, but he is also an incredibly generous source of knowledge. With help from him, Emily from Veritas, and Damien from Afton Mountain, we have been working on some really cool wine/cider hybrids that should start seeing the world this year.”

Two for Tuesdays: Nick Hine

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Note: This post is part of our guest series, The Corner, with assistance from digital media students at The University of Virginia. Today’s student contributor is Hajung Yoo.

Tuesdays during The Corner series feature two favorite Corner food items selected by a different University figure each week. Today’s picks come from Nick Hine, Chair of the University of Virginia Honor Committee.  A Fourth Year who once studied abroad in China, Nick looks back on his experiences on the Corner to share his picks:

1)  Sichuan Spicy Beef Noodle at Ginkgo Chinese.  “Whenever I’m feeling nostalgic – or one of my friends is feeling adventurous – I’ll head to Ginkgo for the authentic Sichuan food.  “The Sichuan Spicy Beef Noodle is my go-to.  It’s a noodle soup dish full of beef, bok choy, and numbing Sichuan peppercorns.”

2)  Beef Pho at Lemongrass. “I’m clearly a sucker for good Asian soup dishes. Lemongrass only serves pho from 9-5 on the weekend – I’ve never figured out why it’s not served all week, but I try to get it for lunch every Sunday. You get a plate full of herbs and sauces with every order, but the broth is incredibly flavorful on its own and the noodles are always perfectly done. It’s a great, underrated comfort food – even better once the temperature drops.”