The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: Starr Hill Brewery

Introducing Dairy Market: Charlottesville’s First Food Hall

dairy

“Charlottesville needs a food hall.”

It’s something I’ve heard often. And, there’s good sense to it. Food halls and public markets have exploded in recent years in other food-loving parts of the country, like New York, Napa Valley, Portland, and Atlanta. Why not us? The food-centric nature of a food hall seems a natural fit for a city like Charlottesville – passionate about food, but not fussy about it.

So, would a food hall work in Charlottesville? Next year we will find out.

In Spring 2020, Dairy Market will launch in the historic Monticello Dairy building on Grady Avenue, once home to businesses like McGrady’s Tavern, Three Notch’d Brewing, and Harvest Moon Catering. Renovation of the 1936 building is well underway, and once complete, the market will put side-by-side purveyors, chefs, and artisans in a single, open-market space, hosting up to fourteen stalls around communal dining areas. Employees of Dairy Market’s developer, Stony Point Design/Build, have traveled to dozens of food courts around the world and aim to bring to their hometown the best of what they’ve found. 

The site is an appropriate one. Designed by local architect Elmer Burruss, the Monticello Dairy building was not just a production facility of milk, butter, and cheese, but also a gathering place, known for its event space and ice cream parlor. Keeping intact much of the original construction, Dairy Market aims to revive the building’s historic use as a gathering place.

DairyCentralProject-35 (002)DairyCentralProject-45 (002)DairyCentralProject-47 (002)

Founding Merchants

What will the market hold? While not all tenants have been finalized, if the market’s Founding Merchants are any indication, expect a mix of local legends, rising stars, and a few imports. Stay tuned for news about additional merchants, including another addition that will go public next week. And, if you’re interested in running a stall yourself, email here.

Starr Hill Downtown
Starr Hill

Anchoring the food hall will be a giant of local brewing: Starr Hill Brewery. Before moving to Crozet in 2007, Starr Hill first opened in 1999 in, well, Starr Hill. Now, in a homecoming of sorts, the brewery will add its newest location at Dairy Market, Starr Hill Downtown, just around the corner from its original site. The massive 4,200 square foot space with an additional 1,000 square foot patio will be home to what Starr Hill is calling a “pilot brewery and taproom.” While the taproom will offer the brewery’s standard line of favorites brewed in Crozet, a 5-barrel onsite brewing system will also allow experimentation with small batch beers, and interactive customer feedback. As for grub with the beer, guests can enjoy food from any of the Dairy Market’s food stalls, so not everyone in your group needs to be in the mood for the same cuisine when you go out for a beer and a bite. Starr Hill Downtown will also revive the live music for which its original Charlottesville location was known. “We have been looking to find a great location in Downtown Charlottesville for many years,” says Starr Hill’s Duke Fox. “We are thrilled to partner with the Stony Point team to bring their vision of a local food hall to our home town.”

Angelic’s Kitchen
angelic

First a catering company and then a food truck, Angelic’s Kitchen will find a brick and mortar home at Dairy Market. Owner Angelic Jenkins is excited not just to have her own restaurant, but also to be part of history, she says. “This is a milestone for Charlottesville and it feels amazing to be a part of it,” says Jenkins, who made news last year when a crowd-fundraiser helped her replace a stolen generator in just hours.

In addition to the fried fish for which Angelic’s is known, the Dairy Market location will offer an expanded menu of barbecue chicken leg quarters, homemade macaroni and cheese, collard greens, candied yams, corn pudding and more. Jenkins envisions her place as more of Mom’s kitchen than Grandma’s kitchen. “When people think about soul food, they sometimes think about eating at their Grandma’s house, but for my customers it will be a more of a contemporary look, with that feeling of being in Mom’s kitchen,” says Jenkins. “I always think about when my son was in high school and he would come home with all his friends – and teenage boys are always hungry.  I would start cooking for everyone, and they would call me Mama Angelic.”

Take It Away
take it away

Famous for its house dressing, Take It Away sandwich shop has been a UVa tradition for nearly three decades. Yet, despite plenty of opportunities, it has never expanded in Charlottesville beyond its Corner location. What makes Dairy Market different? “I could see the potential to reach folks beyond our Corner district location,” says owner Thomas Bowe. “Even though we’ve been serving Charlottesville for 27 years now, a lot of folks still don’t know about us.” As for menu, Bowe says to expect something very similar to the original location’s menu: sandwiches built from all-natural ingredients, and, of course, house dressing. One addition for the new spot: hot sandwiches. Details to come on those, Bowe says.

Eleva Coffee
eleva

If you want to be the gathering place that Dairy Market’s developers envision, you need coffee. For that, the developers turned to Eleva, a new Brooklyn-based, farm-to-cup company committed to connecting coffee drinkers with the small farmers who produce world-class coffees. After fifteen years as a global coffee trader, owner Emilio Baltodano could no longer turn a blind eye to living conditions of some of the small farming communities that produced the premium coffee beans he sold. He was determined to open a business that could serve outstanding coffee while also radically improving the standard of living of the farming communities from which the beans are sourced.

The close relationships Baltodano has cultivated with farmers during his fifteen years in the business are a win-win. Customers benefit from single origin coffees from the best small farms Baltodano has found, in top regions of Ethiopia, Guatemala, and Nicaragua. Farmers benefit, meanwhile, from the duty Baltodano feels to help the communities of the farmers with whom he has become close — through direct trade coffee and infrastructure projects. “I just got back from Guatemala and Nicaragua, where we were refurbishing schools for local children,” says Balodano. “It’s the relationships we have with our farming communities that motivates everything we do.”

With just one other Eleva location in Brooklyn, Baltodano saw Charlottesville as the ideal next place to pursue his dual-vision of making great coffee and helping its farmers. “College towns really respond to Eleva’s great tasting coffee and social impact focus,” says Baltodano. “We hope that Charlottesville, which is home to a great mix of students and locals, will respond to Eleva’s uplifting message of bringing communities together through amazing coffee.”

While Eleva is serious about its coffee, it is not overly so. “We’re not about measuring grams to nth degree,” says Baltodano, who encourages baristas to have fun and experiment. One barrista creation, for example, – homemade blueberry lavender latte – has become a favorite of regulars.

DairyCentralProject-45 (002)

Five Finds on Friday: Kate Ellwood

Ellwood

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Kate Ellwood, GM of Citizen Burger Bar, who juggles a full-time restaurant job with being a mother to her daughter Avery. “Family is a big part of my life and what keeps me grounded in this industry,” says Ellwood. “My husband and my daughter are what keep me going. Avery is growing up in the restaurant world, and it’s so fun sharing this special lifestyle with her. She lights up my life.” Ellwood’s picks:

1) A.M. Biscuit at Beer Run. “My go-to day off spot. A place that feels like home. My daughter loves the basket of toys they keep on hand, and the kids’ menu is pretty awesome. The A.M Biscuit has been my breakfast staple for years. It’s a house baked cheddar scallion biscuit with scrambled eggs and your choice of cheese (the Gouda is amazing), and I always top it with bacon. They have a great selection of dark beers and, with the new addition of the back bar, there’s always a large selection of brews to choose from.”

2) Iced Mocha at Splendora’s. “I know it’s going to be a great day when it starts with a cup of coffee from Splendora’s. Most days I’m here twice a day. Coffee in the morning and an iced coffee in the afternoon. I had the iced mocha recently and it was out of this world. Of course the gelato is something special. I love when PK does the beerlato. From the bright yellow building on the way in and the friendly staff, I would challenge someone to leave there without a smile on their face.”

3) White Pizza at Vita Nova. “Favorite pizza spot on the mall. There’s never a long line and the staff is super-friendly and efficient. We order their pizza for our employee meetings, and our staff is hooked. They have this delicious white sauce, cheese pizza that is, hands down, the best slice of pizza I’ve experienced. It tastes like you’re eating pasta on a pizza.”

4) Hand Pie w/ Scrambled Egg, Yukon Potato, Cheddar, and Gravy at The Pie Chest. “I’ve always been a huge fan of the sweet pies, the dark chocolate cream pie especially. I would eat it for breakfast at least once a week. Then I discovered the breakfast hand pies and that was a game changer. The Yukon potato, cheddar, gravy, & egg is my fave! Super delicious. It always brightens my day to see Tina and Rachel in the shop. Great people, great pies.”

5) Double Bass Chocolate Stout from Starr Hill Brewery. “My favorite brewery in town, since the beginning. I love visiting the tap room in Crozet on my days off. It’s a short drive, and a nice escape. Their Double Bass Double Chocolate Stout is my favorite seasonal beer. They do this fun seasonal Box of Chocolates 12 pack. It’s released in November, and I’ll be drinking those for the next few months.”

Five Finds on Friday: Robbie O’Cain

Robbie

On Fridays, we feature five finds selected by local chefs and personalities.  It’s Virginia Beer Month, and yesterday was National IPA Day, so today’s picks come from Robbie O’Cain, the new Brewmaster at Starr Hill Brewery, who has revamped the brewery’s flagship IPA: Northern Lights.  O’Cain’s picks:

1)  Torta Milanesa at La Michoacana.  “Street Mexican food is normally associated with tacos and burritos but I think the best of all the dishes is the Torta, and La Michoacana is the tops.”

2)  Boquerones Con Ajo at MAS Tapas.  “Mas does anchovies better than anywhere else I have been.”

3)  Nachos at Beer Run.  “Great place, great people, great beer selection and great nachos. Tip: Get meat and beans. One time we ordered two back to back and the waitress was impressed. She hadn’t had anyone do that before.”

4)  Fried Chicken at Mel’s Cafe.  “Great soul food in the Starr Hill neighborhood. It was also where I took my girlfriend on our first date so it holds sentimental value as well.”

5)  King of Hop Grapefruit at Starr Hill Brewery. We did a very limited run of this beer and it was one of the best beers we have ever made. It was everyone’s shift beer at the brewery for the couple weeks we had it. Be on the lookout for it at the tap room for Virginia Craft Beer Month.”