The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: The Shebeen

Five Finds on Friday: Courtney Hildebrand

Courtney

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Courtney Hildebrand of The Catering Outfit, the full service caterer that recently launched pop-up lunches and dinners at its Carlton Road kitchen. Lunches are every Thursday, and the first dinner installment will be Saturday, August 18: Basque Seaside Dinner, with chef Tomas Rahal of Quality Pie. Details and reservations here. Meanwhile, The Catering Outfit’s sister restaurant, The Shebeen Pub and Braai, serves brunch every Saturday and Sunday, with house made Bloody Marys, acoustic music, and even outdoor patio seating on swings (yes swings). Hildebrand’s picks:

1) Mexican Street Corn at Junction. “In a town with lots of new street corn options, Melissa still has my favorite! It’s one of their shared plates so you can enjoy a small order by yourself or get a large to share with your friends. The chili-lime dressing is amazing.  Junction also has my favorite cocktails in town. I love to try anything Alec creates. My current favorite is Rum Communion with brown butter rum and notes of pineapple & lime. It’s hard to have just one of these yummy cocktails!”

2) Spicy Shrimp Dishes at The Local, Bang!, and The Shebeen Pub and Brai. “I am a sucker for a great shrimp dish. I have a three way tie for the best shrimp dish in town, as I will always order these if I am at one of these establishments. My picks are the Crispy Shrimp at The Local, the Firecracker Shrimp at Bang!, and the False Bay Crispies at The Shebeen Pub and Braai. They are all so tasty and it is just too hard to narrow it down to just one pick!”

3) Green Giant Roll at Now & Zen. “Now and Zen is one of my favorite spots to go to dinner with a small group of friends. Everything on the menu is mouthwatering, but the Green Giant Roll is always a pleasant surprise for friends who shy away from vegetarian dishes. This giant roll with sweet potato tempura, avocado & cream cheese stands up to any of their other signature big rolls.”

4) Vella Jack Cheese Fritters at Zocalo. “My sister and I love to go Zocalo for dinner when we can make time to have a night out together. We always start with the cheese fritters & raspberry-chili glaze, and then split the salmon dish for our entrée. The entire menu always sounds amazing, but we rarely stray from these picks on our sister dinner date. Zocalo also offers margarita flights which is always a good start to a night out!”

5) Big Baby Sake from North American Sake Brewery. “They have not quite opened their doors yet, but I have had a chance to try the new Big Baby Sake from the soon-to-be-open North American Sake Brewery. Andrew Centofante’s creation is one of the best sakes I have ever tried. I am excited for what he & Jeremy have in store once they open their doors next week.”

tco

Braised short rib sandwich, a recent pop-up lunch at The Catering Outfit

 

Five Finds on Friday: PK Kamath

ramath

Photo by Jen Fariello

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from PK Kamath, co-owner of Fry’s Spring Station and Ivy Provisions. Fry’s Spring Station has just launched DoGood Mondays, where each Monday the restaurant donates 10% of sales to a local school or non-profit. This Monday, it will be Hoos Heal 5K, benefiting the UVa Nursing School. Eat, drink, and be charitable. Meanwhile, for Sunday’s Concert for Charlottesville, Fry’s is hosting Dough for Charlottesville, a Starr Hill Brewery tap takeover where $1 from every Fry’d Dough will go to the Concert for Charlottesville fund. And, if you don’t have tickets, Fry’s is livestreaming the concert. Kamath’s picks:

1) Pork Rib Chop at The Ivy Inn. “The pork rib chop is my go-to, but the amuse bouche that magically appear at the table are also part of what takes this place from great to really special. Add Angelo and Farrell’s personal touch and well, it’s as good as it gets.”

2) Tuna Nori Roll at Bang! “Ok, here’s the thing. It has NOT been on their menu in a while. I’m bringing it up here, with the simple hope of someone at Bang seeing it, feeling terribly regretful for the mistake they have made (sarcasm!!) and putting it back on the menu (not sarcasm!!). In all seriousness, this is our go-to weekday date night spot. The menu is filled with great flavors and textures and the dressed vegetables/salads in most of the dishes are what makes it for me.”

3) Kibbeh Platter with Fire-roasted Red Pepper Sauce, Eggplant and Sesame Green Beans at Sticks. “The entire menu is delicious and it’s simple food, done right. Without question, my 11-year old daughter’s favorite restaurant, from even before she had a full set of teeth (hummus is amazing).”

4) Peri-peri Wings with a side of Peri-peri sauce at The Shebeen.. “Hot, spicy, meaty, spicy delectable goodness. Walter’s wings and an ice-cold Narragansett Lager put me in my happy place. I’m pretty sure my spirit animal is a chicken wing.”

5) Taiwanese-style Pork Chops with Scallion Pancakes at Cafe 88. “Although this place is very unsuspecting, Li is about as talented as it gets, and she cares about what she’s feeding her customers and it shows. Really damn good. Really, really damn good.”

Five Finds on Friday: Walter Slawski

Walter

On Fridays, we feature five food finds selected by local chefs and personalities.  Today’s picks come from Walter Slawski of The Shebeen and The Catering Outfit.  Slawski’s picks:

1)  “Newest addiction.”  Notorious P.I.G. at Ivy Provisions.  “A charcuterie-lover’s dream in some of the best baguette outside of Paris. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to write a sandwich menu.  It’s HARD!  PK Kamath at Ivy Provisions has crushed it with inventive deli sandwiches and a killer beer and wine selection.”

2)  “Classic.” Escargot at Petit Pois.  “Anything at Petit Pois!  I have found myself on a gorgeous fall day, three bottles of wine deep (not alone), ordering a third and fourth plate.  Restaurant folk don’t often get out for dinner.  Petit Pois’ super affordable, perfectly executed bistro offerings are about as good as a daytime meal gets.”

3) “Afghan.”   Lamb Curry at Afghan Grand Market.  “WOW.  A couple of months ago I ran into the Grand Market International to buy chick pea flour and za’atar.  They have a kitchen in the back complete with a ceramic flatbread oven and kebab range.  OK, I obviously don’t know the correct names for these pieces of equipment, but WOW.  The lamb curry is phenomenal as well as the mixed grill and all the sides.  I know because one of the sons ensured I tried eveything my first time in!”

4)  “Joe.”  Kenyan AA from Shenandoah Joe.  “It’s as close to the first cup of coffee I ever had as I can get.  Not to mention I just feel good every time I walk in to the Preston Avenue store.  Ask for yours with a side of Dave Fafara.  It’s well worth it.”

5)  “Beer.”  Trader Saison at Three Notch’d Brewing Company.  “First of all, so much gratitude to Devils Backbone for pioneering the Central Virginia beer scene.  The boys at Three Notch’d are making you proud.  The Trader Saison is out of this world.  Even unconditioned.  Even uncarbonated right out of the steel.  Derek and Co. keep it up!”