Box’d Kitchen focuses on modern Mediterranean

Box’d Kitchen owner Curtis Woo says combining food styles, such as putting kimchi on pizza, comes naturally. Photo by Eze Amos Box’d Kitchen owner Curtis Woo says combining food styles, such as putting kimchi on pizza, comes naturally. Photo by Eze Amos

By Sam Padgett and Erin O’Hare

Box’d Kitchen, a restaurant that recently opened at 909 W. Main St. in the same block as Benny Deluca’s and Asian Express, eludes a concise description: Its Yelp page claims it serves Mediterranean food, but the decor looks Asian. And its name is reminiscent of a pizza joint, yet its staple is meat or veggies served on top of basmati rice and salad. Box’d Kitchen chef and owner Curtis Woo originally started the business under the name Over the Rice, but the name seemed to imply that his food was Asian…which it’s not quite.

“I don’t like calling my food ‘fusion,’” Woo says. “I am always combining foods. I don’t think twice when I put kimchi on pizza—it’s just natural.”

Woo prefers to refer to his food as modern. Ultimately, Box’d Kitchen doesn’t fill any particular culinary niche…it’s out of the box, so to speak.

Uber hungry

UberEATS, an on-demand food-delivery app supported by the Uber ride-hailing platform, has arrived in Charlottesville. So far, Christian’s Pizza, Citizen Bowl Shop, The Juice Laundry, Revolutionary Soup, Fig Bistro and a few other local eateries have signed up to participate. How it will ultimately differ from food delivery services already in place, such as GrubHub, remains to be seen, but the UberEATS press release claims the aim is “to get people the food they want, delivered faster.”

Fat Tuesday

Because we all can’t get to New Orleans for Carnival celebrations, a few downtown restaurants are bringing the party to Charlottesville. Though Mardi Gras isn’t officially until February 13, spots like The Bebedero, The Whiskey Jar, Brasserie Saison, Escafé, Citizen Burger Bar, Hamiltons’ at First & Main, Jack Brown’s Beer & Burger Joint, Rapture, Iron Paffles & Coffee and Paradox Pastry, among others, are offering Cajun and Creole food and drink specials through Mardi Gras night when, starting at 6pm, the Elby Brass band will lead a parade through the Downtown Mall.

Sweet everythings

Over at MarieBette Café & Bakery on Rose Hill Drive, February is for hot-chocolate-lovers. Every day of the month, the spot known for its French pastries and artfully-stenciled boule loaves, will serve a different flavor of hot chocolate. That’s 28 different flavors total, among them salted caramel, hazelnut, white chocolate cardamom, pistachio, raspberry, Moroccan spice, peanut butter…and a Love Elixir for Valentine’s Day.

All the feels

Valentine’s Day has come early for all you Blue Moonies out there: Blue Moon Diner will host a pop-up dinner from 5 to 8pm on February 14 at the Snowing in Space Space Lab at 705 W. Main St. The limited menu of $10 dishes includes pork barbecue sliders on a buttermilk biscuit with two sunny-side-up quail eggs and potato salad; andouille and chicken jambalaya with a biscuit; the diner’s classic Hogwaller hash; and a veggie scramble with a biscuit. Honky-tonk hero Jim Waive will play music starting at 6pm. But wait, there’s more: Starting March 3, Snowing in Space will host a Blue Moon pop-up from 9am to 1pm on the first Saturday of every month.