Weekly writers



Checking in with Jim Zarling

Checking in with Jim Zarling

What were you doing when we called? I was checking out baseball scores and sitting with my dog. I just got home from work. I have a part-time job at the University. I work for the transportation training academy, and we basically set up workshops for road crews, and we do construction and design classes, […]

Boyd tries for three-peat

Boyd tries for three-peat

  Last year, Albemarle County Supervisor Ken Boyd told C-VILLE that he had “all but come to the conclusion” that he would not run for reelection. It turns out that “but” was a fairly big one: Boyd announced last week that he planned to pursue a third term on the board. Earlier this year, Boyd […]

Don't fear the 'fu

Don't fear the 'fu

Tofu me once Hugely versatile, tofu adds texture to soup or dip, stir fry or po-boy. With 11 grams of protein per 100-calorie serving, it’s a vegetarian standard-bearer. Not to mention a tasty addition to any foodie’s repertoire.—Jenée Libby BBQ Exchange’s “Fu-Q” Chef Craig Hartman’s ‘cue masterpiece swims in spicy jerk marinade for seven days, […]

Small Bites

Rich history Ready folks? This story might get hectic. Back in 1971, Margarita and Nick Vlavianos opened Expresso International Restaurant on West Main. They followed that up with The Italian Villa, which they sold in 2004 to new owners, who renamed it The Villa five years later. Meanwhile, Margarita and Nick came out of retirement […]

“Jeffersonian” quest

“Jeffersonian” quest

Two decades before UVA welcomed its inaugural class, Thomas Jefferson wrote to Littleton Waller Tazewell, future Virginia governor, about his hopes for the University of Virginia. “What was useful two centuries ago is now become useless,” wrote Jefferson. “What is now deemed useful will in some of its parts become useless in another century.” And […]

Berry delicious

Berry delicious

The strawberry, in all her ripe and rosy glory, could quite easily rest on the laurels of her looks alone, but this pretty little berry has a heavenly smell, a delectable flavor and oodles of antioxidants and Vitamin C to boot. Nothing beats a fresh-picked strawberry still warm from the late spring sun, but several […]

Small Bites

Fresh idea Far too often, the fruits and veggies you see on the shelves of a chain supermarket are shipped in from miles beyond what’s reasonably considered “local.” But, Mark Seale (with partner Jim Epstein) is hoping to change that. Together, they’ve founded Culpeper-based Blue Ridge Produce Company, a wholesaling operation on a 450-acre farm […]

Painting the town red (and black and purple and green…)

“If you drive into a completely unknown city and there’s public art everywhere, you just know that the place is alive,” says photographer Ross McDermott. He should know—he recently spent a year driving through hundreds of American cities for a documentary project on American festivals. “You know that there are people with money who care […]

Small Bites

Now open Hungry tummies rejoice! As if this fair city wasn’t already overwhelming you with its many spots for good eats, three more were added to the mix last week. Here’s a breakdown. Carlton’s, in the former Asia Specialty (and even more former Bohéme) spot at 609 E. Market St., had a soft opening last […]

Stuffed silly

Stuffed silly

Even though partaking in a buffet sometimes means wearing elastic-waist pants and an adult-size bib in public, there’s something to be said for having so many choices under one roof. Here’s a refresher course for those who love to overindulge at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Dig in to the Wood Grill Buffet’ ample breakfast, lunch […]

Checking in with Dinah Gray

Checking in with Dinah Gray

What were you doing when we called? I had just finished teaching a Pilates class. I started practicing Pilates when I had a dance teacher in high school who used it as part of our technique class, so when I moved to Charlottesville I went ahead and got trained to teach it. It’s a little […]

We love cookie

We love cookie

Everyone loves cookies, but beneath this universal fact lay dozens of feuding factions. Chewy! Crispy! Chocolate chip! Oatmeal raisin! Thick! Thin! The rivalries abound, but fortunately, so do our town’s cookie choices. Here’re a dozen guaranteed to satisfy all sides of the Cookie Camp. Now, if only we could agree on what to dunk them […]

Small Bites

Pizza the action Just call us “Pie Town.” A new pizza joint—this time in Belmont—is slated to open this week. Called Belmont Pizza & Pub, Harry Horner’s new restaurant will have outdoor seating and —good news, Belmont-dwellers!—delivery to folks in the neighborhood and Downtown. The new pizza spot’s home is 221 Carlton Rd. in Kathy’s […]

Red Dirt Alert!

Red Dirt Alert!

  Don’t get mad—get even. After West Main Street parking lot owners Gabe Silverman and Allan Cadgene lost a highly publicized dust-up to Maya restaurant co-owner Peter Castiglione, the pair agreed to pave the pothole-plagued lot. Silverman and Cadgene contracted Digs, Inc. to do the job, which began in March and should conclude by June […]

Checking in with Nancy Bass

Checking in with Nancy Bass

Tell us about your day job. My husband and I are farmers, and he does most of the work. I paint a lot of farm animals, including our cattle, so that’s kind of my specialty. At this point I’m really a full-time artist, which is what I’ve always wanted to be since I was little. […]

Small Bites

Nice is pie For Christopher Herring, “only” is a very important word. As the general manager points out, new pizza restaurant Slice is the only ’za spot in town to use Boar’s Head meats and cheeses, the only totally eco-friendly pie operation (everything they use, down to the forks, is biodegradable) and the only locally […]

Go egging

Go egging

Elemental, elegant, and earthy all at once, eggs star in local meals from breakfast to dinner, in dishes from humble to worldly. Here’re a few notable examples. Bluegrass Grill Regulars rave about Bluegrass Grill’s The Duke, an over-the-top version of Eggs Benedict: an English muffin piled high with bacon and turkey sausage, poached eggs and […]

Small Bites

Java University? Local brewru (see what we did there?) and Mudhouse Director of Operations Dan Pabst took his coffee smarts to the street last week, opening up a “coffee education popup” near the Saturday City Market. Pabst says the idea was borne out of at-home lessons he’d been giving his friends on brewing a great […]

Red dirt alert!

Red dirt alert!

  Recent construction on the Cavalier Marching Band’s new rehearsal hall (foreground) has caused a few headaches for Rugby Road drivers. Culbreth Road, a popular shortcut between University Avenue and Rugby Road, was closed to through traffic for five weeks between February and March, which led to a lot of U-turns in the nearby Zeta […]

Checking in with Marianne Kubik

Checking in with Marianne Kubik

What are you working on right now? It’s a been a pretty busy season for me. At UVA, we opened The Beaux’ Stratagem a few weekends ago, and I did the longest fight I’ve ever done on stage, a crazy, Errol Flynn–esque swashbuckling sword fight. The show is set in the 18th century, so I […]

On the fry

On the fry

  It’s hard to refuse a french fry, but some are more irresistible than others. These nine places meet (and exceed) our high fry standards. The humble potato has never had a higher calling. Basil Mediterranean Bistro (1): This Corner spot with a novel-length menu offers fries that are crispy, generously salted and dangerously delicious dipped […]

Small bites

Benvenuto! As you read this, Carmello’s—an Emmet Street staple for nearly 20 years—is settling into its new spot on Fontaine Avenue in the former Ludwig’s Schnitzelhouse space. Owner Bill Hedges relocated the Italian restaurant last month and told us the new space would be “bigger and better.” Speaking of bigger and better, we wonder if […]

Checking in with Sean Samoheyl

Checking in with Sean Samoheyl

What were you doing when we called? I was napping with my daughter and trying to get her to go to sleep by singing her songs. The last one was Yo La Tengo. “By the Time It Gets Dark” is a song she likes. I do a lot of really long ballads, and if I […]

Red dirt alert

Red dirt alert

  We’ve noticed a little more commotion than usual on East Rio Road, where development of the Albemarle Housing Improvement Program’s (AHIP) Treesdale Park is accelerating along the notoriously congested two-lane road. Last November, Pinnacle Construction and Development Corp. broke ground on the affordable housing project, which AHIP estimates will serve nearly 900 working families […]

Training food

Training food

  It’s the eve of the Charlottesville Marathon. The last training run is through, the shoes are broken in and the high-tech running togs laid out. All that’s left to do is carbo-load to power you through the hilly course. The ideal pre-race dinner is abundant, easy on the wallet and perfectly carbolicious. Any of […]

Future by design

Future by design

Welcome to C-VILLE’s Design Annual, where each year we address the latest in local design. This year’s issue is a little different in that much that’s been designed here hasn’t, in fact, been built. Instead, we talked to outstanding students in UVA’s architecture school who are looking to solve today’s problems—from global warming to boring […]