Rising Star Chef of the Year is among the more prestigious accolades at the annual James Beard Awards, and a Charlottesville chef is in the running. Ian Redshaw—a veteran of Tavola and L’etoile, co-owner of Prime 109, and now executive chef at Lampo —has been named a semifinalist in the category recognizing “a chef age 30 or younger who displays exceptional talent, character, and leadership ability, and who is likely to make a significant impact in years to come.” Past awardees include Bobby Flay, David Chang, and Michael Mina, so Redshaw would be in good company if he lands the top honor.
Horton hears a woo!
And the winner is: Horton Vineyards’ 2016 Petit Manseng. The Orange County (near Gordonsville) wine nabbed top honors in the 2019 Governor’s Cup competition, joining 11 others judged the year’s best in Virginia. Non-oenophiles can be forgiven for not knowing petit manseng, a grape grown primarily in southwestern France that acclimates well in Virginia. Aged in French oak, Horton’s winner is a hefty white, with notes of papaya, pineapple, apricot, and peach. Other area wines among the year’s top 12 include five by Michael Shaps Wineworks, two by King Family Vineyards, and one by Barboursville Vineyards.
A few miles south of Charlottesville, along a dusty, rutted gravel road, you’ll find Loving Cup Vineyard and Winery. It’s tough to get to but worth the effort, largely because of the skills of Karl Hambsch. Recently named Grower of the Year by the Virginia Vineyards Association, Hambsch is the first person in the Commonwealth to obtain organic certifications for both a vineyard and a winery. “Virginia’s wine industry continues to grow, break new ground and plant the innovative seeds for future success,” says Bettina Ring, Virginia’s secretary of agriculture and forestry. “Karl Hambsch exemplifies these traits.” The winery opened in 2012, and now cultivates five acres of grapes.
Charlottesville just got a little sweeter. Former Sweethaus co-owner Billy Koenig is back in business with Vivi’s Cakes and Candy. Koenig popped into the C-VILLE office a few days back to deliver samples by baker Rebecca Chambers, so we can vouch for Vivi’s cupcakes—two yums up! Koenig says Chambers will also be working her magic on special orders, including wedding cakes. The shop, named for Koenig’s daughter, is located at 2248 Ivy Rd.