The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: Tip Top Restaurant

Five Finds on Friday: Jeff Bloem

Jeff

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Jeff Bloem, founder of the area’s only local malt house, Murphy & Rude Malting Co., which makes specialty and base malts from grains harvested by small grain farmers across Virginia. Along with The Charlottesville 29, Murphy & Rude is the other collaborator on Reason Beer’s outstanding Collaboration 29, now available at Beer Run and Kardinal Hall, among locations. Murphy & Rude is also helping to fight Cystic Fibrosis with several upcoming fundraisers, where you can drink free beer, among other things. Details below. Bloem’s picks:

1) Pork Milanese at Tavola. “What makes this dish so list-worthy is that I don’t even think it’s because of the pork. Don’t get me wrong, the pork is incredible – locally sourced, perfectly seasoned, breaded, and sautéed – but it’s the balance of the background of Meyer lemon, capers, Roma tomatoes, and sautéed arugula that makes you ponder ordering another one. And so consistent.”

2) Grilled Radicchio Salad (add Salmon) with Allagash FV13 at Beer Run. “This one is my victory set — one of those quick and simple but arm twisting go-tos for good moods. The acidity of the Flanders-esque farmhouse ale is a delicious contrast to the bite and richness of the salad. No FV-13? Sub Collaboration 29. Collaboration 29 offseason? Grab a Belgian from the hallway to the back bar, middle shelf.  Remember, you did good.”

3) Four-egg white Greek omelet, no bread, home fries with black coffee at Tip Top. “Before I opened the malt house I worked from home for nearly seven years. I didn’t get out much. Kid drop-offs were my commute and I used this favorite to stretch it out a bit while I was ‘driving home.’ Nothing fancy, but man, hits the spot. Regardless of what you order, go big and leave a 40% tip. Those guys and gals are the hardest working staff in town.”

4) Fried Bologna Sandwich at Keevil & Keevil Grocery and Kitchen. “I grew up on these things and while Miracle Whip (don’t hate, I’m a Midwestern transplant) would take it up a notch, they nail it here. I’m not sure anything Harrison Keevil touches lacks a component of back-home authenticity, but this one really makes me smile as I inhale it in my car before even turning it on.”

5) Egg & Chorizo Burrito at Sunoco on 5th Street Extended.The back half of the Sunoco gas station on 5th Street Extended (across from Fifth St. Station development, next to Burger King, soon to go back to a Shell station) has long been utilized as a commercial kitchen for a small, often unknown, pop-up restaurant. This occasion is no different. I have no idea what the name of the Mexican place is that currently holds it down but it’s a gem.  Authentic, homemade, and cooked-to-order. There is La Michoacana and then there is this place.”

Murphy & Rude Cystic Fibrosis Fundraisers

All Out Before You (Brewer’s) Ball Out!
Saturday, June 1 at 4 p.m.
Orangetheory Fitness Charlottesville

Get an incredible workout (and watch Jeff kill himself to keep up with his wife), raise funds to Cure CF, and refresh afterwards with free pours of Collaboration 29, a collaboration IPA between Murphy & Rude Malting Co., Charlottesville 29, and Reason Beer.

Class Reservations: $25. To book: Call OTF Charlottesville at (434) 483-5757 or text event organizer Kelly Bloem at 703-919-0972 .

Ax Throwing
Three Notch’d Craft Kitchen & Brewery (IX Park)
Friday, June 7 from 4 to 7 p.m.

Join open play or team up for some friendly competition to throw axes to Cure CF! Hosted by Lynchburg-based PowerPlay, $5 buys you 5 throws and there will be free giveaways to keep you coming back for more. No advance reservations or RSVP needed.

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Five Finds on Friday: Carolyn Stromberg Leasure

carolyn with cheddar

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Carolyn Stromberg Leasure of Righteous Cheese, which was once a cheese and wine bar in Washington D.C. and now hosts cheese events here in Charlottesville. On Valentine’s Day is Righteous Cheese’s most popular class ever: Chocolate, Cheese & Baller Bubbly. Leasure and award-winning cheesemonger Sara Adduci will lead guests through four rare grower champagnes, cheeses, and a spread of local chocolates. 6:30 – 7:30 pm in Oakhart Social’s private dining room. Details and tickets. Leasure’s picks:

1) Cold Brew Latte (made with cashew milk & cold brew coffee) from The Juice Laundry. “I really appreciate good coffee, and I get to feel like I’m being healthy when I drink this. Unlike a lot of juice places, The Juice Laundry is 100% organic, which I appreciate. Their Cold Brew Latte is creamy and nutty with a hint of cinnamon and a great start to the day.”

2) Fried Chicken and Onion Rings at Mel’s Cafe. “We cook at home almost every night, but when we are too tired and want something fast, it’s often Mel’s fried chicken. Even with takeout, it stays crispy, the onion rings are the apex of the genre, and even the breast meat is juicy. Though, of course, the best way to eat it is at Mel’s, with chicken straight out of the fryer, while chatting with the folks behind the counter.”

3) Hot and Numbing Shredded Tofu Skins at Peter Chang’s. “I love to order tofu when dining out, since making it at home never turns out quite as good. The Hot and Numbing Shredded Tofu Skin almost has the texture of al dente pasta: thinly shredded, toothsome pieces of tofu skin seasoned with chili pepper, chili oil, sesame oil, fresh cilantro and a host of other spices and seasonings. While not the spiciest dish at Peter Chang’s (which means you can eat more!), it leaves a pleasant, buzzy tingling on your lips. Yum.”

4) Eggs and Pancake Special at Tip Top Restaurant. “With a two-year old toddler/tyrant living in our house, my chef-husband and I don’t get out often for dinner, but we take breakfast seriously. I am a bit particular (read: annoying) about my eggs, and prefer them over-medium, apparently the hardest way to cook them. The number of times my eggs are cooked properly – with firm whites and a soft yolk – at most restaurants is few, but the kitchen at Tip Top has never disappointed. Eggs are always perfect, and there’s nothing wrong with the pancakes and bacon (ordered extra-extra-crispy for me). The relaxed dining room is bustling but it doesn’t take too long for a table, they have crayons for my kid, and the staff is the perfect mix of gregarious, surly, and at the top of their game.”

5) Budino at Lampo. “I love absolutely everything at Lampo, and my standard order is the kale salad, a cheese and charcuterie board, and the Margherita DOC pizza. The perfect dish for me, though, is the chocolate budino. Chocolate and olive oil are one of my all-time favorite flavor combinations. The budino is silky and rich with a savory drizzle of olive oil, a salty, crunchy, caramel-y top, and nutty crushed hazelnuts, all of which come together for an ideal balance of flavors and textures.”

tofu

Hot and Numbing Shredded Tofu Skins

Five Finds on Friday: Stephanie DeVaux

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Photo by Tiffany Sun.

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from The Alley Light cook Stephanie DeVaux, who is also a private chef behind Holmes Dinner Club, which she calls an intimate, themed meal gathering “friends and strangers for an evening of food and drink – including a full hour of cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, followed by a coursed dinner with beverage pairing.” Interested in becoming a member? Visit here. And for her private chef and catering services, visit here. DeVaux’s picks:

1) Tamarind Margarita at Milan. “Though I’m generally attracted to a more bitter profile when ordering cocktails, the Tamarind Margarita at Milan remains my most marvelous exception. It’s a wonderful balance of sweet and sour and provides an ultra-refreshing respite to some of the heat from my favorite Indian dishes there.”

2) La Chicana Burger at The Bebedero. “I have a thing for burgers, and after a personal, multi-year-long journey of citywide consumption, I really do have to settle on the La Chicana Burger at The Bebedero as the top of my list. It just gives me everything I want in a burger: locally sourced beef from Timbercreek, just enough spiciness without being overwhelming, lots of fat (in the form of guacamole and a super creamy mayo), acidic pickled veg to balance it out, and a generous dose of cheese.”

3) Mr. Rech at The Alley Light. “I may be biased since I’ve also worked in Chef Robin’s kitchen, but the Mr. Rech objectively remains the best dessert I’ve ever eaten in Charlottesville. Two dacquoise cookies surround a hazelnut semifreddo and the entire thing is drenched in hot chocolate sauce. It is the most elevated ice cream sandwich in town, and hands down the most delicious.”

4) Reserve Wine Pairing at Fleurie. “Most people already know that Fleurie is French fare at its best, but what I find even more standout than their food alone is its added nuances alongside the perfectly paired beverage. The reserve wine pairing option with their tasting menu is nothing less than a transformative experience, which I think most wine pairing programs try to be, but few actually succeed. In this case, the wine is excellent and the food is excellent, but together they change so much in their depth and intensity in the most stunning ways.”

5) Two Poached Eggs with Home Fries and Toast at Tip Top Restaurant. “There are a seemingly unlimited number of amazing breakfasts in Charlottesville, but I never crave anything like I crave a classic diner-style breakfast, so Tip Top is a frequent stop on my weekly breakfast rotation. It’s exactly what you expect it to be, so it’s partly the casual consistency I love most, but it’s also the buzzing, no-nonsense atmosphere there on weekend mornings. I will unabashedly push my breakfast partner into getting the biscuits and sausage gravy (so I can steal a bite), but my tried-and-true is the classic: two poached eggs with home fries and toast with butter.”