The On the Road culinary adventure series begins in Richmond on Sunday, April 21 and travels to Charlottesville for a jam-packed weekend of food events bouncing between the two cities via charter bus. On Sunday, Manakintowne Specialty Growers hosts an outdoor dinner with acclaimed chefs Walter Bundy (Lemaire), Lee Gregory (The Roosevelt), and Aaron Cross (Fossett’s at Keswick Hall) with wine pairings by Luca Paschina of Barboursville Vineyards. On Monday, April 22, Virginia wine pioneer and Monticello’s director of gardens and grounds Gabriele Rausse will lead a private tour of the estate. While on the tour, guests will harvest produce to be used in a special lunch cooked by chef Dean Maupin of C&O Restaurant. Dinner will be back in Richmond at The Jefferson Hotel, where Bundy will serve a tasting menu with wine pairings. On Tuesday, April 23 participants will take a private tour of Olli Salumeria (in Manakin, Virginia) led by artisan Oliviero Colmignoli to learn about his slow-cured craft of artisan salami made in Virginia. The total cost for the event is $750 per person, and a percentage of proceeds goes to the Thomas Jefferson Foundation at Monticello. Seating is limited to 20 people. Call (404) 380-1010 or e-mail OTRculinaryadventures@gmail.com to make reservations.
Coming and going
First, the bad news: Popular brunch spot Brasserie Montiel & Coffee House, on Commonwealth Drive, has closed its doors. The good news? You can still visit the owners’ second restaurant, Cocina del Sol, in Crozet. Plus, there are plenty of new eateries on the horizon.
The latest addition is Travinia Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar in The Shops at Stonefield. One of multiple East Coast locations, it features casual contemporary American-Italian cuisine at lunch and dinner.
Reduce, reuse, revive
Need a recharge before spring has sprung? Barefoot Bucha, a fermented tea produced by Nelson County residents Ethan and Kate Zuckerman, may be the ticket. Kombucha tea is considered to have healthful benefits for the digestive system with its probiotic content, amino acids, and active enzymes. The Zuckermans run the sustainable and low carbon footprint business with a “no waste model” and are the first in the mid-Atlantic to develop a fountain system that refills reusable bottles sold by the company. Their kombucha can be found on draft at Rebecca’s Natural Foods, Whole Foods, and Greenwood Gourmet. And, if you’d like to hear more details about the process of fermentation, join Ethan for a talk on Thursday, April 11 at Blenheim Vineyards. Visit blenheimvineyards.com/ events for more information.