The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: TEN

Five Finds on Friday: Cheley Napoli

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Cheley Napoli of The Bebedero, which is among the participants in this weekend’s St. Patrick’s Day Downtown. During Saturday’s Shamrock Crawl, a green wristband earns you discounts and specials throughout the day at downtown restaurants and shops, including The Bebedero. Free with a suggested donation to PB&J Fund, wristbands are available at Citizen Burger Bar, Spring Street Boutique, and The Hip Joint. For Sunday’s Paint the Town Green, there will be more specials and discounts, decked out shops and restaurants, and children’s fun like balloons, chalk, and activity stations. Event details here. Napoli’s picks:

1) Wasabi Roll at TEN. “I love seafood, especially when it comes to sushi. The wasabi roll is always my go-to because I love tuna and spicy/hot foods. It’s the perfect amount of heat, especially when you pair it with a great cocktail to cool you off. This is one of my favorite places to visit regularly as the staff, ambiance, and food are always great.”

2) Pepper and Garlic Shrimp at Peter Chang’s. “Is my absolute favorite! The steamed snow peas, hot peppers, leeks, red bell peppers, and asparagus make it spicy, light, and earthy. I always feel good after that particular dish. I love the Nigori Cold Sake with it. Perfect combination.”

3) Vegetarian Omelette at Commonwealth Restaurant and Skybar. “Commonwealth is one of the best places to go to brunch. I love Chef Shanesy’s new brunch menu. The vegetarian omelette (with a side of bacon) is one of my favorite brunch dishes. I like vegetables, but I am by no means a vegetarian, so it’s a great balance. Pair that with a Bloody Mary and you have a well-balanced meal.”

4) Smoked Chicken Wings at The Whiskey Jar. “I love The Whiskey Jar because I am a hard-core bourbon fan. I love trying the different varieties and being able to get flights. They also just started barreling their own bourbons with Elijah Craig, which is super cool. Their wings are the best wings in Charlottesville hands down. It’s great place to just chill and feel comfort.”

5) Braised Lamb Shank at The Bebedero. “I am not trying to be biased but The Bebedero is the most beautiful, and passionately driven restaurant I have ever been a part of. From River’s art, incredible bartending, and beautifully crafted cocktails, to Chef Kelvino’s gorgeous and delicious plates it is a place unlike any other. My favorite things from here are the mezcals, one of my favorites being the Del Maguey Pechuga, and chef’s Lamb Shank. I love lamb, and he knocks it out of the park. So tender, it falls right off the bone. Yum. I also enjoy a scorpion shot every now and then. Feels like vacation whenever I am there.”

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St. Paddy's Day

Five Finds on Friday: Chrissy Smith

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Chrissy Smith, Wine Buyer at Beer Run, where you can enjoy any bottle of any wine from the store’s selection for just $7 corkage. A Certified Sherry Wine Specialist, Smith is planning an upcoming sherry seminar to help guests better understand a wine style she says is “underappreciated and misunderstood.” Follow Beer Run’s Facebook page for updates. Meanwhile, Smith also hosts a free wine tasting every Friday at Beer Run from 6 – 8 pm. Smith’s picks:

1) Margherita D.O.C. & Polpettine with any of the fabulous Italian reds at Lampo. “I’m not sure how many times Lampo has graced these lists, but I’m about to give them another notch on The Charlottesville 29 post. The talented crew there has created my personal perfect pizza — a crust that is just thin and doughy enough with the perfect amount of char and bite. My favorite combination is the Margherita D.O.C. and meatballs (you have to save that sauce for dipping the crust) with any of Andrew’s carefully-curated selections. Although, my preferred glass of red with this combo is anything of the Piedmontese persuasion. I’m a Margherita pizza lover in general, and since they offer two variations, my fiancé and I did a side-by-side comparison of the standard Margherita & the D.O.C., and while both are utterly delicious, the Mozzarella di Bufala adds a creamier, meltier, more flavorful sensation to the D.O.C. that steals my heart every time.”

2) Boquerones with/ an extra squeeze of fresh lemon, Pan de Casero, and a Manzanilla Sherry at MAS Tapas. “While there are many dishes I drool over at Mas, one of the simplest combinations are the boquerones (Cantabrian white anchovies marinated in olive oil, lemon, garlic) with a little squeeze of lemon, the slow-fermented, hearth-baked bread, and a Manzanilla sherry, especially of the En Rama or unfiltered variety. The sea air brininess & freshness of this sherry from the town of Sanlúcar de Barrameda make it a quintessential match to the fresh and powerful flavor of the marinated anchovies.”

3) Uni Nigiri & Chirashi Don with Junmai Daiginjo Sake at TEN Sushi. “Super fresh Uni (sea urchin) over perfectly prepared sushi rice is one of my favorite sushi pleasures, and TEN provides not only the highest quality fish in town, but also the best rice–a touch warm and just sweet & vinegary enough. The purity & freshness of a Junmai Daiginjo is a delightful counter to the creamy, ocean flavors of great Uni. But one cannot survive on Uni alone! And I love the variety in the Chirashi don, which is basically a bowl of chef’s choice sashimi over sushi rice, which is both filling and extremely delicious.”

4) Salmon Linguine with Sparkling Brut Rosé at Beer Run“While I have many go-to dishes at Beer Run, whenever I’m there once the dinner menu begins, you can almost always find me enjoying the Salmon Linguine. It’s a generous filet of perfectly-cooked Atlantic salmon with wilted spinach, garlic-compound butter, and capers over linguine. One of my favorite pairings is the Treveri Brut Rosé–an organic, Washington state sparkling rosé made in the Champagne Method from the Syrah grape–which cuts through while also enhancing the decadent flavors of the salmon and butter.”

5) Spinach & Mushroom Enchiladas with a Reposado Tequila, Cointreau Margarita with salt at Continental Divide.”I love the Continental Divide. If I could, I’d cozy up to the bar, eat comforting food, and chat with the amazing staff every night! If I absolutely had to choose one dish from my usual meal line-up (I like to make it a three-course deal), it would be the Spinach & Mushroom Enchiladas and a margarita with a reposado tequila, Cointreau, and a healthy salt rim. While this might be a sacrilegious treatment of enchiladas to some, I like to chop them up a bit with my fork and mix all the goodies together to ensure an even distribution of deliciousness in every bite.”

Five Finds on Friday: Kelsey Naylor

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Kelsey Naylor, sous chef of Timbercreek Market, which this week launched full-service dinner three nights a week. Naylor’s picks:

1) Radish Kimchi from Sussex Farm. “By far the best and most authentic kimchi in Virginia. You can find them at the city market every Saturday and they introduce a new type of kimchi every week.”

2) Blueberry Donuts from Spudnuts. “There is nothing better than one of their blueberry cake donuts with a cup of coffee in the morning.”

3) Oh Toro at TEN. “Fatty Tuna is one of my favorite things in the world and Ten definitely does it right.”

4) Crispy Beef at Taste of China. “Crispy Beef and Scallion Bubble Pancakes are by far my favorite, but I’ve never had anything there that I didn’t love.”

5)  Hellboy Pizza at Lampo. “The perfect pizza to go along with a Narragansett Tall Boy. It really doesn’t get any better than that.”