City Market returns, and more local food and drink news

The City Market, which runs from April through December, starts up again from 7am to noon Saturday, April 2, in the parking lot bordered by Water and South streets and First and Second streets. Photo: Ashley Twiggs The City Market, which runs from April through December, starts up again from 7am to noon Saturday, April 2, in the parking lot bordered by Water and South streets and First and Second streets. Photo: Ashley Twiggs

City Market returns, and other food and drink news

Spring has finally sprung, and on Saturdays in Charlottesville, that means only one thing: The City Market is back. Starting at 7am on April 2, more than 100 vendors will set up booths between Water and South streets near the Water Street parking garage downtown from now through December.

The producer-only market, which has been around since 1973, is made up of local farmers, food vendors and artisans selling everything from just-picked fruits and veggies to freshly roasted coffee and handmade jewelry.

Construction in the area has clogged up traffic for the last couple weeks, but rest assured the market will indeed operate regardless of the roadwork going on around it. For updates and a list of this year’s vendors, check outcharlottesvillecitymarket.com and the City Market’s Facebook page.

New lights at Blue Light

It’s been nearly four months since Blue Light Grill served its last meal. Owners Richard Ridge and Kelley Tripp bought the business last spring, and in December they closed the doors and began gutting the space, overhauling the menu and turning Blue Light into The Fitzroy.

Gone are the sleek, modern fixtures, cubby booth tables and blue accent lights. The room now features an exposed brick wall, dark-stained wood shelving, tufted booths and black and white subway-style tiling behind the expanded bar.

“We want to be a place where people can gather and know they’re going to see people they know. That was one of the things about Blue Light,” says Ridge. “It was around a long time and had a lot of iterations, but we saw from taking it over that this was a place people knew they could come together, meet people, mingle. We wanted to keep that same sort of feeling.”

Ridge says he and Tripp (who will run the kitchen) are still finalizing the menu, which will include “classic comfort food” like roast chicken, rib-eye and sandwiches such as a shrimp po’ boy and lobster roll, plus small plates. Ridge also promises the Blue Light seafood-loving crowd that The Fitzroy will indeed serve oysters, both raw and roasted. Ridge, who will manage the bar, says they will serve “cocktails rooted in the classics.”

We’ll keep you posted as the restaurant’s opening day gets closer, and, in the meantime, feel free to stop by for an application if you’re looking for a gig as a host, server, bartender or busser.

Tasty tidbits

29 is the magic number…Local food blogger Simon Davidson, who writes The Charlottesville 29, recently completed and posted his list of “the ideal 29” restaurants in town. Limited time onlyStarr Hill Brewery just released its Four Kings IPA pack, which includes three variants of the King Hop Imperial IPA plus the original. Bienvenido, Bebedero…The brainchild of the guys behind The Whiskey Jar, The Bebedero is now open for business, serving up classic Mexican food and housemade margaritas in the former Glass Haus Kitchen space. Trumped…Featured in the Washington Post two weeks ago, local sommelier and C-VILLE columnist Erin Scala wrote a piece explaining why she won’t put Trump Winery bottles on restaurant menus, despite the fact that the wines are pretty tasty.

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