The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: Micah LeMon

The Alley Light Auction: Bartender for a Night and Celebratory Feast


Here is your chance to experience The Alley Light like you never have before, while helping to feed the area’s hungry: The Charlottesville 29 Restaurant Auctions. Along with all of the other restaurants in The Charlottesville 29, The Alley Light has created a once-in-a-lifetime experience for whoever pledges the highest donation to The Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. Thanks to the generosity of The Alley Light, the entire winning bid goes directly to the food bank. And, thanks to the efficiency of the food bank, each dollar donated creates four meals for the area’s hungry.

The Alley Light signature experience for The Charlottesville 29 Restaurant Auctions:

The Alley Light Bartender for a Night and Celebratory Feast

Led by our area’s most accomplished bartending mentor, Micah LeMon, the bar of The Alley Light has become Charlottesville’s top training ground for aspiring bartenders. Now you can learn from the man who has launched the careers of so many others, and then apply your skills as bartender for one night at The Alley Light.

First, the winner will train under LeMon for one four hour shift (3 – 7 pm) to learn preparation, set-up, and service techniques. Then, the winner will return another evening to host a happy hour for eight of their friends at The Alley Light bar. During happy hour, from 5 – 6 pm, LeMon and the winner will make cocktails for the group, while chef Robin McDaniel sends out an array of some of her favorite dishes. Then, the winner and group will move to the lounge area for more special food and drink. Afterwards, the auction winner will take home an autographed copy of Lemon’s book The Imbible, along with staff gear made exclusively for the restaurant.

Note: The auction winner will schedule their training and happy hour on a mutually convenient Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.


Bidding for The Alley Light’s auction has ended. Winning bid: $2,200

Five Finds on Friday: Alex Import


Alex Import, in San Francisco for the Good Food Awards

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Alex Import, meat wizard at JM Stock Provisions, who is currently in San Francisco for the 2016 Good Food Awards, honoring the nation’s best food and drink products.  In 2015, JM Stock won for Best Charcuterie for their pate de campagne, and this year they are a finalist in the same category for their tasso ham. The winners will be announced tonight.  Stay tuned.  Meanwhile, Import’s picks:

1)  Spicy Miso Ramen at Mican.  “Nothing scratches the umami itch like this steamy bowl of anti-winter. I’m a sucker for noodles of any kind, and a rich, complex broth holds a special place in my heart. Love the homey atmosphere, and a concise but sagely selected list of sake offerings seals the deal.”

2)  Grapefruit Hibiscus Cider from Potter’s Craft Cider.  “This new gem really has me intrigued. Every aspect is magnetic. Soft, glassy texture; acute acid and dainty but confident flavors; coy bubbles, sexy hue, artistic package, and appealing price tag. Thank you to all at Potter’s for showing us the way.”

3)  Shaved Salad at Oakhart Social.  “A tough job selecting this out of the herd of nourishing selections of food and booze at Oakhart. Why this salad? Can’t put my finger on it — and to me that is more often than not the hallmark of something truly special. Love these guys.”

4)  Hot and Numbing Tofu Skins at Peter Chang’s.  “The allure of this dish is its mystique. Makes me question my ability to share.”

5)  Omakase at TEN.  “Given the nature of my work, I go out of my way to seek out water-dwelling proteins. Texture and nuance are fortified with simplicity on these plates, and a hearty list of all-too-quaffable cocktails finds me lingering after a meal here.”


Five Finds on Friday: Micah LeMon


On Fridays, we feature five food finds from local chefs and personalities. This week’s picks come from Micah LeMon, our area’s most devoted mixologist, who expertly oversees the bar at The Alley Light. LeMon also writes about booze for C-VILLE, and his cocktails have won notice from publications like The Local Palate. He’s so skilled that when we go to The Alley Light we just let him make whatever he wants.  LeMon’s picks:

1)  Pastrami and Provolone on an Everything with lettuce, mayo, and tomato at Bodo’s.  “Consistently the best sandwich I’ve ever had for around 5 bucks.”

2)  Seared Greek Halloumi Cheese with ouzo and tomatoes at Orzo.  “I love this dish so much.  It tastes like delicious pizza for grown ups.  That and and a bottle of Albarino and it’s going to be a good night.”

3)  Anything with Garlic Alioli at MAS. “It is the most rich, delicious dippy sauce. It also promises hours of garlic burps for the immediate future, which I like.”

4)  Wings and Beer at McGrady’s.  “Good wings, good beer, and good times.  Everyone needs a pub in their neighborhood, and McGrady’s is great one in mine.  I try to go once a week to catch up with friends over trivia.”

5)  Drinks, especially in the winter, at C&O.  “When the cold weather comes, I love catching a drink in the cozy, gnarled, bar downstairs.  It’s the kind of place where you want to go to sit, drink, and have hours-long conversation.”





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