Weekly writers



Abode: Turning around a bad bathroom

Abode: Turning around a bad bathroom

Though it’s small, we expect a lot out of the bathroom. It’s a place where we go to escape, to groom, to pamper, and to well, you know. If you’re a renter, or living in a small space, you most likely only have the one bathroom to share. We can’t lock the door and ask […]

Abode: A nod to the past

Abode: A nod to the past

The 300-square-foot studio apartment where Sean Santiago lives is not easy to find. Hidden behind an iron gate and an urban, ivy filled garden, the space is a refuge for the local designer, writer and photographer. In it, he’s created a home that tells a story of who he is and what he likes.  Photo […]

Bigger, better, and wetter

Now open
The Farm Cville, the charming pint-sized market next door to The Bridge/Progressive Arts Initiative in Belmont, is bright-eyed and bushy-tailed every weekday morning by 7:30am in order to be your coffee-and-pastry pit-stop.

All souped up: The best in local stews

All souped up: The best in local stews

All souped up Few things take the chill off your bones like hot soup. And when you want to feed your hunger as well as your soul, there’s its heartier sibling, stew. These restaurants are ladling up some of the tastiest bowlfuls of warmth and comfort around. Petit Pois The French onion soup at Petit […]

Crozet eats

Crozet eats

With the Crozet Musical Festival September 30-October 2, we’re focusing our hungry appetites on our Albemarle neighbor. Here’s how to eat your way through Crozet—breakfast, lunch, dinner and beyond.—Christy Baker Breakfast: Southern Way Café (5382 Three Notch’d Rd., 823-9450) The Good Ole Boy Breakfast is just what you’d expect: two eggs cooked to order with […]

Small Bites

The Commonwealth’s Commonwealth Come Friday, Charlottesville will have its own skybar! It’s not the original one planned for the now-defunct Landmark Hotel, but Commonwealth Restaurant’s Skybar is a bar under the sky—and open as of September 23. With 16 beers on tap, a menu of upscale bar favorites blessed with Chef Alex George’s Caribbean/Latin American […]

Checking in with John Milliken Thompson

Checking in with John Milliken Thompson

What were you doing when we called? I was actually correcting a blog that I’ve been working on, a guest post about my novel for a book reviewer. They just want to know about my book. Aside from that stuff—how I wrote the book and why—the topic is usually sort of open.  Which of your […]

Here today, better tomorrow

Here today, better tomorrow

We all love the atmosphere and convenience of Charlottesville’s many great dining spots, but sometimes it’s hard to beat the ambiance of your kitchen table and the convenience of dining in your bathrobe. What’s more, some foods actually improve overnight. Here are five local dishes that taste even better with just a little age on […]

Small Bites

Up goes Tempo We’ve been keeping our eye on Tempo, the restaurant due to open by March in the former Ventana space, but typical of most openings, there was a delay. Last we’d heard, the space was ready, but owner Stuart Cunningham was still looking for his chef. Casting a wide net, Cunningham posted ads […]

Fill 'er up

Fill 'er up

While refueling your car seems to get more expensive by the day, refueling your body at a local gas station is easy on the wallet and tasty, too. Here’s the what and where on great Charlottesville gas station food: Peach and blackberry fillings ooze from under the flaky crust of the daily cobblers at Brown’s […]

Trying our patients

Trying our patients

Beginning with a 5am meetup, and the first patient on the move roughly two hours later, Martha Jefferson Hospital started the transition to its nearly $300 million new home on Pantops Mountain. Construction of the 176-bed hospital began in June 2008 and concluded roughly three years later. Hazel Jones (pictured), 90, was the last patient […]

Checking in with Tate Pray

Checking in with Tate Pray

"I just started a series of paintings. They’re shape paintings based on the negative space shapes of Sol LeWitt’s sculptures—they’re just shapes. Conceptually, I think I started cutting them out and putting them in my notebook maybe about a year ago. I’m basically just living with it to see if I want to move forward. I think it’s in keeping with what I’ve been doing, basically trying to find an avenue into painting through sculpture."

Small Bites

 Know your farm, know your food The third annual “Meet Yer Eats” Farm Tour is Labor Day Monday, September 5 from 10am-4pm. This is your chance to visit three to five (that’s about all you’ll be likely to manage in a day, figuring in travel times) of 19 participating area farms. Buy a car pass […]

Small bites

Easy as ABC In the category of “News you may have missed last week,” Boylan Heights issued a “self-imposed” dry week after Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control concluded the restaurant had served underage patrons, according to media sources. ABC said the Corner burger joint could shut down for 30 days or pay a fine and shut […]

Small bites

New developments A change is gonna come to the Downtown Mudhouse. The java spot—best in town, according to readers—shut its doors for an estimated three weeks to give the space a makeover. Says Julia Minnerly of the Crozet shop, the red wall behind the bar will be removed to open things up. “A big goal,” […]

Olé olé!

Olé olé!

We’re no San Diego, but for a small town, we have quite a few choices for good Mexican. These dishes ought to spice up your week.—Megan Headley Line up early at the Al Pastor Taco booth at Saturday’s City Market for the namesake al pastor (BBQ) taco, which will start your morning off with a […]

Small Bites

New developments The local restaurant pool just keeps getting bigger, foodies. Welcome, Burger Oasis. The Woodbrook Shopping Center spot serves, as you’d expect, burgers and fries, plus tasty desserts like strawberry shortcake. Across the street, The Brick Oven in Rio Hill Shopping Center recently reopened its doors under new ownership and down the road in […]

Checking in with Thomas Dean

Checking in with Thomas Dean

What were you doing when we called? I was with a friend at this thrift store over in Waynesboro. A pretty decent thrift store, with a lot of old keyboards and T-shirts—not as picked over as the Charlottesville versions. You always gotta look.   When he’s not making album covers and posters for other bands, […]

Cheese, glorious cheese

Cheese, glorious cheese

It’s easy to go glassy-eyed from awe and confusion when nose-to-nose with Feast!’s cheese case, which is well-endowed with 75 choices. But since everyone who works there is passionate and knowledgeable about their product, rest assured that you’ll walk away with the best cheese your money can buy. Feast! Cheese Manager Ehren Siebert recommends using […]

Small bites

We’re no strangers to good barbeque. In fact, we dedicated an entire issue of C-VILLE to finding the best in town. Unfortunately, we overlooked a contender: Two J’s Smokehouse in Palmyra, from Joshua Ball, offers hickory- and fruitwood-smoked meats and homecooked sides (“everything but the French fries,” Ball says). Ball knows good ’cue. Before opening […]

We say 'tomato'

We say 'tomato'

For the love of ’maters Are tomatoes fruits or veggies? Do we even care when they’re ripe and ready for the eating? Their saucy side tides us over until the summer when their freshness commands our full attention. Lucky for us, these restaurants know just how to handle such juicy orbs.—Megan Headley   It’s not […]

Small bites

Price check As National Hot Dog Month comes to a close, the Downtown Hotdog Company is offering another reason to celebrate: lower prices. Gourmet dogs (the kind with lots of specialty toppings like peanut butter, mac-n-cheese or pineapple) are now $3.95 (veggie dogs, too!). Custom dogs start at $2.95. Throw in a side of tater […]

Free speech is the new black

Free speech is the new black

For this year’s photo contest, we called for local people, places and things. We got a lot of places, a solid pile of things—and not many people. Of the people we did get, an overwhelming portion were children, and while children have faired well in past contests (see winners for 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009), […]

Small Bites

New season for Monsoon At the end of 2009, we reported that Monsoon owner Lu-Mei Chang had sort of put her E. Market Street restaurant up for sale. By “sort of,” we mean that she said she’d be happy to sell it, but that she wasn’t hammering a “For Sale” sign in the front yard quite […]