The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: The Box

Five Finds on Friday: Brian Ashworth

Photo by Jen Fariello.

On Fridays, we feature five food finds selected by local chefs, personalities, or readers.  This week’s picks come from Brian Ashworth, the former Zocalo sous chef who is about to open Ace Biscuit & Barbecue.  Details here.  Ashworth’s picks:

1)  Deli Egg on an Everything Bagel at Bodo’s.

2)  Tom Yum Noodle Bowl with Beef Tongue at Pad Thai.

3)  Gyro at The Villa.

4)  Spicy Tuna Tartar at Zocalo.

5)  Korobuta Pork Belly Sandwich at The Box.

Five Finds on Friday: Harrison Keevil

Photo by Jen Fariello.

On Fridays, we feature five food finds selected by local chefs, personalities, or readers.  This week’s picks come from Harrison Keevil, chef of Brookville, which he co-owns with his wife Jennifer.  Keevil’s five picks:

1)  Heaven and Hell Sandwiches at BBQ Exchange.  I love Craig’s Q and when he put these on his menu I had to get them.  They are filled with my favorite ingredient, pork.  Just prepare yourself when about to eat both because they will put you on the couch and into a food coma.   (Heaven:  pulled pork, over-easy egg, melted cheddar cheese, “Sticky Love” bacon, baconnaise, lettuce and tomato on a house made roll.  Hell: habanero fried mac and cheese balls, tempura-batter fried ghost pepper bacon, pickled Thai dragon chiles, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, spicy chimichurri, and “Caution Hot” ghost pepper sauce on a house made hoagie roll.)

2)  Korobuta Pork Belly Sandwich at The BoxI fell in love with Banh Mi sandwiches when I lived in San Francisco.  When Pei took over the menu at The Box and created this adaptation of the Banh Mi , I went straight to get it.

3)  Earlysville Sandwich on French at Bellair Market. Just love this sandwich.  (Note:  This sandwich typically comes on sourdough, but Keevil prefers French instead.)

4)  Chef Tasting Menu at Clifton InnTucker and his crew do a great job and I love going to the Clifton Inn, which is actually where my wife and I met, and just put myself in their hands.  They never disappoint.

5)  Two Al Pastor Tacos and one Chicken Tamale at City Market.  It is how I start every Saturday at 7 am before I go buy the day’s menu items at the market for Brookville.

Five Finds on Friday: Bryan Szeliga

Every Friday, we feature five food finds selected by local chefs, personalities, or readers.  This week is Bryan Szeliga, Chef at Orzo Kitchen and Wine Bar.  Szeliga’s picks:

1)  Sushi at Seafood @ West MainI love the fact that they only serve sushi a couple of days a week when the fish is super fresh.  By only selling sushi when the fish is fresh, it shows to me a high level of respect for the fish.

2)  Methi Sauce at Royal Indian.  At Portland, OR’s Paley’s Place (where Szeliga previously worked), chef Vitaly [Paley] used to braise local lamb with hay from the farm.  Royal Indian’s version of Methi sauce reminds me of that culinary experience.  I love the grassy/hay flavor of fenugreek.  To me, it creates a connection to the food and the earth.   At Orzo, I buy fenugreek spice and methi herb from the Spice Diva and use it with Madeira to make our braised lamb.

3)  Gyro platter and chick peas at ArianaEver since the first time I tasted the food at Ariana I have been hooked.  Their flat bread is the best I have had.  I eat there at least once a week.  The gyro platter is great for lunch and at dinner I can’t get enough of their chick peas.

4)   Black Bean and Corn Relleno at Zocalo. This is a cool ‘upscale’ version of a typical crisp chili relleno. Their chilis are typically just the right heat but sometimes…watch out!

5)  Crispy Rock Shrimp Sandwich at The Box. – I really like the direction Chef Pei is going with the Box.  All of the sandwiches are good.  Most of the time I order the rock shrimp.  The firm texture of the shrimp with the crispy tempura with pickled vegetables and spicy mayo make for a perfect filling between bread.  Note: This was previously one of our picks on Two for Tuesday.  The sandwich seems to have a bit of a following.