Overheard on the restaurant scene… This week’s food news (September 2)

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This weekend marks the seventh annual Heritage Harvest Festival on the West Lawn of Monticello. The event celebrates America’s first foodie, Thomas Jefferson, with a grand preview of field-to-fork dinner from A Pimento Catering on Friday night, where guest speakers Steve Bender and Cary Fowler will discuss the preservation of the American garden and plant varieties. Get tickets at tickets.monticello.org for $129 per person or $240 per couple. The festival is open to the general public on Saturday, September 7 from 9am-6:30pm with chef demonstrations, an old timey seed swap, book signings, vendor sampling, and guest speakers throughout the day. Admission is $10 in advance and $15 at the door.

Willie Nelson plays a benefit concert for the Local Food Hub at the nTelos Wireless Pavilion on Sunday, September 15. Farm Aid, Best Of What’s Around, Blenheim Vineyards, Wisdom Oak Winery, and the Ballyshannon Farm are all sponsoring this event in support of area farms and a shared local food mission. E-mail emily@localfoodhub.org for tickets or go to localfoodhub.org/willie for full details.

Get over the Wednesday hump with a freshly ground, locally sourced burger at Glass Haus Kitchen, served fully loaded with French fries and a pint of beer for $12. The burger changes weekly, and chef Ian Boden will ensure it is far from your average burger. It’ll make you feel like the weekend is already here.

Roving farm dinner event company Hill & Holler is hosting its next dinner on Sunday, September 22, in support of Appalachian Voices at Grace Estate Winery. Guest chefs Jason Alley and Pete Evans of Pasture and Travis Milton of Comfort in Richmond will create a multi-course, family-style dinner with ingredients grown and raised by local farmers and inspired by the heritage foods of Virginia and Appalachian history. Hook & Bullet will entertain with its folk Americana music for the cocktail reception beginning at 5pm. Purchase your $100 ticket at hillandholler.org.

Now open! Taste of India, in the former Henry’s spot on the Downtown Mall below Vita Nova, had its opening day Wednesday, August 28, and the place was booming with business—and for good reason. The lunch buffet, at just under $9 ($9.78 with tax), features more than 25 choices from saag paneer (cheese and spinach) to chicken korma (chicken with cashews and cream). There’s a regular lunch and dinner menu too, with spiciness ranging from extra mild to extra hot.

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