The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: Mona Lisa

Five Finds on Friday: Patrick Evans


On Fridays, we feature five food finds from local chefs and personalities.  Today’s picks come from Patrick Evans, baker and co-owner of MarieBette, and creator of the bakery’s many delicious pastries, like, our favorite, the canele, as well as the brioche feuilletée, which has become a bit of a sensation since being dubbed a bronut, leading some even to call for a “national movement of bronuts.” Evans’ picks:

1)  Pizza with Pepperoni and Red Onions from Mona Lisa.  “This is a custom order pie usually, but sometimes they have it by the slice.”

2)  A dinner of Rosé from Blenheim Vineyards, a Sesame Baguette from MarieBette, and an entire wedge of Delice de Bourgogne from Trader Joe’s.  “Sometimes I’ll share some of the cheese with my daughter Betty, who we lovingly call ‘the cheese monster!'”

3)  Weekend Sandwich Special from JM Stock Provisions.  “Whatever it is, it’s gonna be good, and it’s usually on MarieBette Virginia Sourdough!”

4)  Burger Cooked “Red” with Fries and a Pickle at Citizen Burger Bar.  “They don’t do the traditional rare, medium rare, medium, well done here . . . but I realized that RED is the closest to medium rare, and it hits the spot.”

5)  Crispy Tofu Bento Box from Cafe 88.  “I once called to order this on the phone and Lee, the owner, responded by saying ‘OK Patrick, it’ll be ready soon!’ I didn’t know she knew my name, but this kind of small town familiarity is one of the great things about Charlottesville.”

Five Finds on Friday: Tim Burgess


On Fridays, we feature five finds selected by local chefs and personalities.  This week’s picks come from Tim Burgess, co-owner of Bang, Bizou, and The Space.  Be sure to check out Burgess’s great blog where he shares some of his favorite recipes, or follow along on Facebook or Twitter.  Also be on the lookout for pop-up dinners at The Space starting this fall, with food by Burgess and co-owner Vincent Derquenne.  We expect the duo may recreate some of the magic of their much-missed Metropolitain, which was a standard-bearer among Charlottesville restaurants.  Burgess’s picks:

1)  Tofu Steak at Now & Zen.  “Toshi is a master sushi chef who came back to the kitchen after a long hiatus.  Incredible value.  Oddly enough, I get the tofu steak every time I go.”

2)  Pastrami and Swiss on an Everything Bagel at Bodo’s.  “Am I exaggerating by saying we might have the world’s greatest high volume fast food restaurant (3) here in Cville?  Think about it.”

3)  Octopus at Orzo.  “Tommy Lasley is a talent.  His enthusiasm for cooking bleeds into his dishes.  Go during a weeknight when he’s cooking.  His bitter green ravioli with chicken sausage was awesome, but it’s his octopus, whichever way he does it, that is off the charts.”

4)  Da Vinci Sandwich at Mona Lisa (three-seed baton with genoa salami, sopresatta, provolone cheese, tomato, mixed greens, house dressing and sun-dried tomato pesto).  “I love Mona Lisa.  I can’t put my finger on it, but there is such a pleasant vibe in that place.  Great pizza, sandwiches, little freebies, and a pasta zip line, what’s not to love?”

5)  Belly Q at BBQ Exchange.  “You have to love what Craig is doing at the BBQ Exchange in Gordonsville.  The BBQ is great, the bacon stupid (in a good way), and then bacon brownies?  This is a guy who is talented and loving what he is doing.  It shows.  It’s already a destination BBQ place.”