Virginia Living - Best of Virginia 2013
The second annual Best of Virginia, as voted for by over 25,000 of our readers. Find out about the best art events and the most luxurious hotels, the best bakeries and burger joints, and even the best places to fish and the best historic sites in all five regions of the state. For Virginia’s best in arts, culture and entertainment, food and drink, living and recreation, and shopping and services there is no better guide than Best of Virginia 2013!
Best of Virginia Journey 2013 of dining shopping and doing! to a won derland w w w.V i r g i n i a l i v i n g .c o m Best of VA 2013 $ 5. 9 5 NVR Brings Virginia Home NVR, Inc. is one of the nation’s Top 4 homebuilders and one of the largest in Virginia. We build 100% ENERGY STAR® Certified and third-party verified innovative home designs in over 100 communities in Virginia. But what we’re most proud of is that 98% of our homebuyers say they’d recommend NVHomes and Ryan Homes to friends and family. Learn more at RyanHomesVA.com Find the right home for any lifestyle • Condominiums • Townhomes • Resort-Style Living • Single-Family Homes • 55-and-Better Lifestyle Homes NVHomesVA.com Prices, offers and availability subject to change without notice. See a Sales and Marketing Representative for details. NVR ONE OF AMERICA’S LARGEST SHOE STORES IS FOUND IN RICHMOND With so much to explore in richmond, you’ll need a good pair of shoes. OVER 200 WELL-KNOWN BRAND NAMES FOR MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN The Ultimate Shoe trends. Experience Six decades. Countless Saxon, always the perfect ﬁt. SHORT OF PUMP TOWN CENTER LARGEST • 804.285.3473 | THE VILLAGE| ATFOR SPOTSYLVANIA TOWNE CENTRE • 540.736.8600 ONE AMERICA’S SHOE STORES MEN, WOMEN & CHILDREN | WWW.SAxONSHOES.COM SHORT PuMP TOWN CENTER 804.285.3473 | THE vILLAGE at SPOTSyLvANIA TOWNE CENTRE 540.736.8600 ThankYou, Virginia! “I already knew I had the best patients…it’s great to know they feel the same!” – Dr. Byron Poindexter Thank you, Virginia for voting Dr. Byron Poindexter Best Cosmetic Surgeon. Dr. Byron Poindexter is a plastic surgeon certiﬁed by The American Board of Plastic Surgery with over 15 years’ experience in cosmetic surgery. He has also been recognized in the Best Of list in Northern Virginia Magazine for plastic surgery since 2007. See full bio at www.austin-weston.com/poindexter/ To schedule a complimentary consultation about your cosmetic surgery concerns, please call (703) 893-6168 THE AUSTIN-WESTON CENTER FOR COSMETIC SURGERY 1825 Samuel Morse Drive • Reston, VA 20190 • 703-893-6168 • www.austin-weston.com more than 300 juried artists, 5 lively stages & non-stop family fun with free activities such as pumpkin painting & scarecrow making A E IN D r , Al rvenue on h 10am to 6pm October 5th, 2013 MT. V NoN D A, Va West End Antiques Mall Something for Every Taste. With over 250 booths and 53,000 sq. feet, we offer our customers a variety of antiques and collectibles including: furniture, glassware, jewelry, fine art, mirrors, lighting, pottery, porcelain, silver, carpets, textiles and more. • Open Seven Days a Week • 53,000 Square Feet • Layaway Available • Delivery Come join us for our Annual Spring Spectacular and Storewide Sale! Mother’s Day Weekend Saturday May 11th 10:00am - 6:00pm Sunday May 12th Noon - 6:00pm 2004 StApLES MiLL ROAD • RiChMOND, VA 23230 804.359.1600 • WWW.WEStENDANtiquEMALL.COM Your health comes ďŹ rst at the #1 Hospital in Virginia. It might be chest pains at 3 a.m. Or preparation for a bone marrow transplant. Maybe just a routine visit to your specialist. Hundreds of thousands of people have discovered just as many reasons why VCU Medical Center is the #1 hospital in Virginia. Those reasons include over 9,000 dedicated physicians, clinicians and support staff, as well as hundreds of tireless volunteers. To every one of us, the health and well-being of our patients remains our #1 concern, 24 hours a day. VCUhealth.org PRESIDENTS CIRCLE HOLLYWOOD CEMETERY LOTS, crypts, and CREMATION NICHES are also available in other areas of the cemetery. CREMATION NICHES at PUBLIC VISITING HOURS 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM daily year round Open until 6:00 PM during Daylight Savings Time HISTORICAL WALKING TOURS Monday through Saturday at 10:00 AM April through October CALL 648-8501 INFO@HOLLYWOODCEMETERY.ORG www.hollywoodcemetery.org For an appointment or e-mail us at RICHMOND’S TOP LOCALLY OWNED BUILDER FOR 2012 Find out why ! * Thank You Virginia Living Readers! DESIGN STUDIO PREVIEW NIGHT Join us! TUESDAYS AT 5:30 PM Come tour our 3,700 square foot Design Studio, meet the team, and learn about the building process. Space is limited. Please call a New Home Consultant from one of our communities to reserve your spot. The Berkeley The Lancaster The Kensington The Brookshire Grand TOUR ONE OF OUR FURNISHED MODEL HOMES! ★ Furnished Models Open for Tours! Chesterﬁeld ★ COLLINGTON NEW MODEL! CHARTER COLONY From the $340’s 804.305.4823 MILL ★ HARPERS From the $300’s 804.414.8896 RIVER DOWNS From the $480’s 804.641.1129 ROUNTREY From the $290’s 804.305.4823 FOX CREEK From the $350’s 804.641.3332 SAPPONY CREEK FARM From the $360’s 804.767.4584 Dinwiddie JORDAN ★ LAKE From the $220’s 804.302.5453 From the $240’s 804.302.5456 BRATTICE MILL From the $360’s 804.302.5456 ★ WELLINGTON FARMS NEW MODEL! From the $320’s 804.318.3512 New Kent COOKS MILL From the $260’s 804.398.0942 PATRIOT’S LANDING From the $280’s 804.641.1129 Henrico ★ BROOKCREEK CROSSING NEW MODEL! From the $270’s 804.318.3458 GREENBRIAR WOODS From the $220’s 804.277.4131 ★ TURNER FOREST From the $260’s 804.302.5219 COUNTRYSIDE GLEN From the mid $500’s 804.651.6297 OGLETHORPE PARK From the $330’s 804.318.3442 Powhatan ★ WESTERLEIGH ★ ASTON From the $320’s 804.621.0521 From the $300’s 804.302.5217 For more about communities, ﬂoor plans & more, call 804.794.3138 or visit us online at GoMSH.com * Based on Integra Residential Report - Top 10 Builders in Greater Richmond, ranked by number of new house closings in the twelve month period ending December 31, 2012. ** Model locations may change. Prices are subject to change. EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EDITOR’S LETTER W elcome to Best of Virginia 2013! Before I fill you in on what is inside this special issue, let me first say, wow. More than 25,000 of you voted in our readers’ survey in January and answered our call to tell us your favorite restaurants, wineries, shops, places to play and more throughout Virginia. We were bowled over by the response (and glad so many braved the survey’s many, many questions). On behalf of all of us at Virginia Living, thank you for sharing your ‘bests’ with us! Some of the more than 1,200 winners in the issue are repeat winners from last year, and some are new to our list, but all are businesses you chose ... the ones you frequent and the ones you believe in. I know when I discover a new restaurant or a great shop, I want to spread the word. And that is what we set out to do with Best of Virginia—spread the word about your favorite places, from the best spots for a bit of breakfast and a really good cup of coffee, to your go-to shops for, well, everything. You name the category, and chances are we have a suggestion for you. There is a lot to digest, I know, which is why, as much as I would love for you to sit down and read this issue cover to cover (what editor doesn’t wish for just such rapt attention?), I hope Best of Virginia will be a resource you will keep and turn to all year. You know, like that friend who always knows just where to send you when you’re in a pinch and need a recommendation. We put a special emphasis on food this year. Alongside information about our winners in this issue are stories about chefs and restaurants, specialty food purveyors, farmers’ markets and growers. Folks who are doing great things in the world of food— folks we think you would like to know about. We also called in a few favors and gathered recipes from some of the best chefs and restaurants around the state. The Virginia Diner in Wakefield gave us its amazing receipt for peanut pie, and Lucky restaurant in Roanoke shared its to-die-for buttermilk fried chicken. Ever wonder why the Lancaster Lemonade at the Tides Inn in Irvington packs such a punch? Check out the recipe. There are many more, including a not-to-miss bouillabaisse from L’Auberge Chez François in Great Falls and an inventive all-veg dish from the Clifton Inn in Charlottesville. We are grateful to our friends for contributing to the issue. We deliver this culinary tour of our state via a familiar tale. Recognize Alice of Lewis Carroll’s Wonderland fame on our cover? Our amazing art director, Sonda Andersson Pappan, teamed up with talented photographer Cade Martin again this year and created a fantastical and fun visual journey that sees Alice discovering some of the edible resources that make Virginia so special. I think you will enjoy Alice’s turn at high tea with the Mad Hatter in the Central region and the hunt breakfast she shares with the Queen of Hearts in the Northern region, as well as all of the other very-Virginia tableaux the duo created. Finally, thank you to all the team here at Virginia Living for your hard work pulling this issue together. Cheers! Erin Parkhurst, Editor Winchester • Front Royal Arlington • Alexandria• • •Woodbridge • • Harrisonburg Fredericksburg• Staunton Waynesboro • • Charlottesville •Buena Vista Tuckahoe • • Radford Roanoke • Lynchburg Chester Richmond • • Christiansburg Petersburg Newport News Hampton Norfolk Virginia Beach Bristol • Abingdon •Marion • Wytheville •Hillsville • • Martinsville Emporia • Danville • Portsmouth Chesapeake In identifying Virginia’s regions, we relied on the history, character and personality of each to determine our lines of demarcation. How do you think we did? Let us know with an email to Editor@CapeFear.com or write us at Letters to the Editor, Cape Fear Publishing, 109 East Cary Street, Richmond, Virginia, 23219 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 11 CONTENTS 14 central virginia arts, culture & entertainment 16 living & recreation 21 food & drink 25 shopping & services 33 40 eastern virginia living & recreation 49 food & drink 53 shopping & services 59 arts, culture & entertainment 42 66 northern virginia living & recreation 73 food & drink 77 shopping & services 85 92 southwest virginia living & recreation 97 food & drink 99 shopping & services 103 108 shenandoah valley living & recreation 113 food & drink 115 shopping & services 121 cover: Marchesa beaded net gown from Roan, Richmond. opposite page: 1950s pouf skirt dress from Halcyon, Richmond. Victorian-style boots from Bygones, Richmond. Bamboo riding crop from Horse Country, Warrenton. page 14: Black tailcoat, embellished, silk bowtie, Mad Hatter grey top hat and vintage hat pins all from Bygones, Richmond; Ruffle-trimmed shirt, Gunne Sax by Jessica McClintock cotton dress, black daisy enamel earrings and bracelet all from Halcyon, Richmond; Crochet gloves from Bygones, Richmond; Pip studio teapot, creamer, sugar, teacups and saucer from A Southern Season (opening in Richmond Fall 2014). George Washington teapot, James Madison luncheon plate and Thomas Jefferson teacup and saucer all from the Presidential China collection at the Museum Shop at Virginia Historical Society. Enamelware candlesticks in parchment check by MacKenzie-Childs; dixie donuts, richmond; Jean Jacques Bakery, richmond. page 40: Embellished vest, suit of cards suspenders from Bygones, Richmond; Bold Ikat Print table runner from Williams-Sonoma, Richmond. page 66: Castle Hill scarlet shadbelly coat, canary vest, shirt, stock tie, Virginia wool breeches, Le Chameau rubber boots and beaver top hat all from Horse Country, Warrenton; Laced high boots from Bygones, Richmond. page 108: Chalk-stripe pants, navy and white oxfords from Bygones, Richmond. Ruffle-trimmed yellow shirt from Halcyon, Richmond. tertainment arts, culture & entertainment 68 Published by Cape Fear Publishing Company 109 East Cary Street, Richmond, Virginia 23219 Telephone (804) 343-7539, Facsimile (804) 649-0306 VirginiaLiving.com Publisher John-Lawrence Smith EDITORIAL STAFF editor Erin Parkhurst Art Director Sonda Andersson Pappan associate editor Daryl Grove assistant editor Lisa Antonelli Bacon assistant Art Director Brandon Peck assistant editor Lindsey Leake editorial assistant Glennis Lofland editorial assistant Sherese Jones CONTRIBUTING photographers Cade Martin, Jay Paul CONTRIBUTING illustrator arts, culture & entertainment 94 Shane Rebenschied Editorial intern Jennifer Johnson art interns Megan Mullsteff, Tyler Newbold Advertising executives central virginia sales MANAGER Torrey Munford (804) 343-0782, TMunford@CapeFear.com (804) 622-2602, CRoberts@CapeFear.com eastern virginia (804) 622-2614, ThomasDurrer@CapeFear.com (804) 622-2605, BeverlyMontsinger@CapeFear.com Northern Virginia (804) 622-2603, HaleyBien@CapeFear.com western virginia (804) 622-2611, HeatherMcKinney@CapeFear.com Christiana Roberts Thomas Durrer Beverly Montsinger Haley Bien Heather McKinney arts, culture & entertainment 110 OFFICE STAFF OFFICE MANAGER Maria Harwood chief financial officer Tom Kozusko Creative Services director Kenny Kane Creative Services assistant Joseph Wharton circulation manager Kim Benson Web editor Daryl Grove COrpORATE SPONSORSHIPS Torrey Munford Groundskeeper Melwood Whitlock Activities & Morale Director Cutty Assistant Activities & Morale Director Rex Mail to our Editor at the above address. POSTMASTER Send address changes to VIRGINIA LIVING 109 East Cary St., Richmond, VA 23219 REPRINTS & REPRODUCTION PERMISSION Contact John-Lawrence Smith, Publisher, at (804) 343-7539 or JLSmith@CapeFear.com LEGALISMS Virginia Living is a registered trademark of Cape Fear Publishing Company, Inc. Copyright 2008, all rights reserved. Reproduction without written permission of the publisher is strictly prohibited. IDENTIFICATION STATEMENT VIRGINIA LIVING (USPS) ISSN 1534-9984 VirginiaLiving is published bimonthly by Cape Fear Publishing Company, 109 East Cary St., Richmond, VA 23219. Periodical postage permit 021-875 at Richmond, VA. t h e ca s t photography: cade martin illustration: shane rebenschied styling: neely barnwell dykshorn hair & makeup: dean Krapf of Lluminaire Salon alice: clara buchanan, mad hatter: joseph ward, queen of hearts: jo hyman. all of cima talent management. the rabbit: frank B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 13 cent ral Virgini a From their unique vantagepoint at the heart of the Commonwealth, Central Virginians are the beneficiaries of all the state’s edible assets as they course through the region—be they indigenous (like the delectable clams paired with piquant kimchee by Chef Lee Gregory at Richmond’s The Roosevelt), imported (like the black lime powder procured by Scott Cardwell of Lynchburg’s Bull Branch) or simply exquisite (like the artisan cheeses or cured meats at Feast! and the artful pastries produced by Jean-Jacques Bakery in Richmond). Perhaps best of all is the ease of acquisition of distinctly Virginia wines, like the inventive “3,” the product of three area wineries, or the Virginia Governor’s Cup-winning Octagon 2009 from Barboursville Vineyards. With an epicurian curiosity of historic proportion rooted in the Jeffersonian era, Central Virginians know how to leverage the advantages of being in the middle, and they celebrate them all. Photography by Cade Martin ♠ Illustration by Shane Rebenscheid ♠ Styling by Neely Barnwell Dykshorn ARTS, CULTURE & Entertainment Best Art Event First Fridays Art Walk Downtown Richmond FirstFridaysRichmond.com, 804-304-1554 Richmond’s burgeoning arts and cultural district—on Broad Street between Belvidere and 9th streets—teems with people the first Friday of each month when over 40 venues, including art galleries, restaurants and shops, open their doors to an eclectic crowd of art aficionados and first time visitors alike. second place: Arts in the Park, Richmond RichmondArtsInThePark.com, 804-353-8198 third place: Chihuly at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond VMFA.museum, 804-340-1400 Best Music Venue The National 708 E. Broad St., Richmond TheNationalVa.com, 804-612-1900 Old South, Meet New South Honoring the past in the present. Historically, Richmond has some “firsts” under its belt. It had the first legislature in the Western hemisphere and the first farmers’ market in Virginia (which is still in operation), and in June, Richmond will host the Southern Foodways Alliance’s first Summer Foodways Symposium. The University of Mississippi-based SFA has done symposia before; just not in summer. And it’s never done so much as a field trip to Richmond. So, of all the cities in the South, why Richmond? “This year, Southern Foodways Alliance is studying women and work for the year,” says Mary Beth Lasseter, associate director of the alliance, which is a part of the university’s Center for the Study of Southern Culture. “Richmond has a rich history of women in culinary fields, working outside the home in tearooms, that sort of thing.” Indeed, Richmond does seem suited to the “Women, Work and Food” theme. Highlights include oral histories from two lady oyster shuckers as well as from Richmond restaurant matriarch Stella Dikos, who spawned a generation of area restaurateurs and restaurants. There is also a film about the beloved Richmond institution, Sally Bell’s Kitchen, and lectures by authors of food-related books, like Psyche Williams-Forson’s Building Houses Out of Chicken Legs: Black Women, Food and Power. The warm-up to the three-day event, which begins June 20, is an artisan supper at Whiskey Jar in Charlottesville, featuring area cheese makers, cider makers and rabbit farmers, all women. The $375 price tag for the symposium includes meals and all events. Accommodations are up to attendees. (The Jefferson Hotel in downtown Richmond is offering a special rate.) But don’t delay. Tickets went on sale April 5 and, barely two weeks later, only five were left. Lasseter notes that the symposium isn’t the usual “see what Thomas Jefferson ate for breakfast” affair. While it does contain historical elements (what Virginia tour of any kind would sacrifice those?), it also focuses on the various international influences that are now part of the Southern culinary experience. Says Lasseter, “We honor the past while being cognizant of what’s going on in the present.” SouthernFoodways.org With an incredible sound system and great views of the stage from anywhere inside, this 1923 theater, revamped and reopened in 2008, looks as cool as it sounds. Seating is first come, first served, and shows are open to all ages. second place: Jefferson Theater, Charlottesville JeffersonTheater.com, 434-245-4980 third place: Brown’s Island, Richmond VentureRichmond.com, 804-788-6466 Best Overall Museum Virginia Museum of Fine Arts 200 N. Boulevard, Richmond VMFA.Museum, 804-340-1400 Thursday night jazz, scholarly lectures, worldclass exhibits ... There is always something happening at the VMFA. Since reopening in May 2010, the VMFA has brought in blockbuster traveling exhibitions featuring artists like Picasso and Chihuly, and expanded its own extensive collection of works. Fuel your artistic explorations with brunch, lunch and dinner at Best Cafe or the award-winning Amuse restaurant. second place: Science Museum of Virginia, Richmond SMV.org, 804-864-1400 third place: Children’s Museum of Richmond, Richmond C-MOR.org, 804-474-7000 16 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 p h o t o c o u r t e s y o f SF A EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Arts, Culture & Entertainment Best Food Festival Richmond Greek Festival 30 Malvern Ave., Richmond GreekFestival.com, 804-358-5996 Now in its 38th year, the Richmond Greek Festival is a Richmond tradition, and not just because of the baklava. Enjoy its delicious array of food and drink, shopping and Hellenic dancing performances. Grab a culinary guide to what you’re eating (and how to pronounce it), so you can finally order that gyro the right way. second place: Broad Appétit, Richmond BroadAppetit.com, 804-305-0601 third place: Lebanese Food Festival, Glen Allen StAnthonyMaroniteChurch.org/Festival, 804-346-1161 Best Mixologist Mattias Hagglund, Heritage 1627 W. Main St., Richmond HeritageRVA.com, 804-353-4060 “I like making fun drinks for fun people,” is what Richmond’s very own master mixologist Mattias Hagglund says about his tantalizing menu of colorful cocktails. His blend of modern mixology with classic technique has earned him notice in The New York Times, and his recipes have been featured in numerous publications. second place: Richard Ridge, Boylan Heights Gourmet Burger Bar, Charlottesville Boylan-Heights.com, 434-984-5707 third place: Anne Craft, MOSAIC, Richmond MOSAICEdibles.com, 804-288-7482 Most Creative Charitable Event Richmond SPCA Fur Ball 2519 Hermitage Road, Richmond The Roosevelt, Richmond Virginia Clams with Sausage and Kimchee 1 pound Virginia littleneck clams, rinsed and scrubbed 1 pound garlic sausage 4 ounces kimchee purée (hot or mild, your choice) 4 ounces roughly chopped kimchee 2 tablespoons butter 4 ounces white wine, chicken broth or water (your choice) toasted bread Heat a heavy-bottomed sauté pan over medium heat. Add butter and sausage. Once the sausage is nearly cooked, add the clams. Stir to coat the clams in the rendered fat. Add the broth to deglaze the pan. Cook for 2 minutes. Add the kimchee purée and chopped kimchee. Cover, and let steam until the clams pop open, generally 3 to 4 more minutes. Serve in a bowl with the broth and toasted bread. Serves one as an entrée or two as an appetizer. RooseveltRVA.com RichmondSPCA.org, 804-643-6785 Not your normal formal affair, pets are the highlight of the SPCA’s annual Fur Ball held each October. Benefiting the SPCA’s Cinderella Fund, which provides care for sick and injured homeless animals, festivities feature a cocktail reception, silent auction, dinner and, of course, the magnificent pet presentation down the Grand Staircase of the Jefferson Hotel. second place: Ukrop’s Monument Avenue Best Historic Museum 1015 E. Clay St., Richmond Valentine Richmond History Center RichmondHistoryCenter.com, 804-649-0711 As the only museum in Richmond devoted solely to preserving and telling the story of the city’s 400year history, the Valentine Richmond History Center’s mission is not limited by museum walls (although its costume collection and exhibitions are certainly fabulous). Sign up for a walking or bus tour to get a full picture of Richmond’s extensive history. second place: Virginia Historical Society, Richmond VAHistorical.org, 804-358-4901 third place: Museum of the Confederacy, Richmond MOC.org, 855-649-1861 10K Presented by MARTIN’S, Richmond SportsBackers.org, 804-285-9495 third place: Savor by Hospital Hospitality House, Richmond HHHRichmond.org, 804-828-6901 Best Movie Theater The Byrd Theatre 2908 W. Cary St., Richmond Best Performing Arts Company Richmond Ballet 407 E. Canal St., Richmond Best Special Event Venue 1312 Commerce St., Lynchburg Craddock Terry Hotel and Event Center CraddockTerryHotel.com, 434-455-1500 Small, Southern and steeped in history, Lynchburg is in the midst of a grand revitalization of the downtown and RiverWalk, and the beautiful Craddock Terry Hotel is among the cornerstones. Look for the big red shoe perched on the side of this warehouse-turned-hotel, a tribute to the building’s past life as the Craddock-Terry Shoe Factory. second place: Brown’s Island, Richmond VentureRichmond.com, 804-788-6466 third place: Chestnut Hill Bed & Breakfast, Orange ChestnutHillBnB.com, 540-661-0430 ByrdTheatre.com, 804-358-3056 A relic of the grand movie palaces of the Roaring ’20s, you can now see second-run movies for $2 at this state and national historic landmark in much the same style as its opening in 1928. We highly recommend going on Saturday, when the Mighty Wurlizter organ plays before evening shows. second place: Movieland at Boulevard Square, Richmond BowTieCinemas.com, 804-354-6099 third place: CinéBistro at Stony Point Fashion Park, Richmond CobbCineBistro.com, 804-864-0460 RichmondBallet.com, 804-344-0906 During Stoner Winslett’s 33 years as artistic director, she has transformed Richmond Ballet into one of the most innovative companies of its size, performing a wide range of classical and contemporary ballets each year from “Swan Lake” and “The Nutcracker” to “Ershter Vals.” second place: Virginia Repertory Theatre, Richmond VA-Rep.org, 804-282-2620 third place: The Richmond Symphony, Richmond RichmondSymphony.com, 804-788-4717 photo by john Murden B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 17 Hoffbauer Murals Take a virtual tour of the Hoffbauer murals and see the conservation progress at www.vahistorical.org/hoffbauer. Help us save the In 1913 French artist Charles Hoffbauer was commissioned to create a series of grand Civil War murals. A century has taken its toll. Flaking paint, dust, dirt, and grime cover the lessons of history found within these murals. Cleaning and conservation work has started, thanks to a Save Americaâ€™s Treasures grant awarded by a partnership between the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Park Service, Department of the Interior. The grant comes with a challenge to match it with your private support. Please rally around the VHS to preserve this national treasure. â€˘ To make a donation, please visit www.vahistorical.org/ hoffbauer or call 804-342-9681. www.vahistorical.org 428 N. Boulevard Richmond, Virginia A beautiful smile makes all the difference. At Dr. Baxter Perkinson & Associates, we’ll take care of all of your family’s dental needs under one roof. We even have specialists in orthodontics, periodontics and prosthodontics. We also offer the very latest in cosmetic dentistry – whitening, bonding, dental implants and sedation dentristy. For more information, call one of our 11 convenient offices today. www.VAdentist.com NEW PATIENT VISIT A welcome gift towards your new patient visit. 50% OFF New patients only. Discount does not apply to PPO Insurance Plans. Visit includes X-ray, Cleaning and Exam. Regular New Patient Visit $131 to $225 TEETH WHITENING A welcome gift towards your new patient teeth whitening visit. 50% OFF Zoom In-Office Teeth Whitening Reg. $500.00 Nite White at Home Whitening Reg. $200.00 Huguenot - Bon Air 1612 Huguenot Rd. 794-9789 2625 Anderson Hwy. 598-3000 Powhatan Ironbridge - Courthouse 6441 Ironbridge Rd. 743-8166 West End - Staples Mill 10212 Staples Mill Rd. 672-4900 Mechanicsville - Hanover 6353 Mechanicsville Tnpk. 730-3400 14253 Midlothian Tnpk. 379-1011 Midlothian - 288 12712 Jefferson Davis Hwy. 751-0300 Chester - Rt.1/Rt.10 Brandermill - Woodlake 6510 Harbour View Ct. 739-6500 West End - Short Pump 12390 Three Chopt Rd. 364-7010 10500 Atlee Station Rd. 550-3324 Atlee - Ashland Colonial Heights 209 Temple Ave. 526-4822 w e N o w a c c e p t t h e f o l l o w i N g i N s u r a N c e at a l l l o c at i o N s Metlife PDP • Cigna PPO • Delta Dental Premier • Ameritas • Assurant • Humana • Guardian UHC (United Healthcare) • Anthem • Aetna • Dominion Dental cosmetic Dentistry ~ orthoDontics ~ PerioDontics ~ Dental imPlants ~ seDation Dentistry ~ chilDren’s Dentistry E X PA N S I O N 2 0 1 3 • B R A N D ER M I LLWO O D S. C O M / E X PA N S I O N Redefine Refreshing There’s never been a better time to dive into retirement living. For 27 years, our community has been PICTURE YOURSELF HERE home to hundreds of wonderful seniors from all walks of life with one thing in common: the desire to enjoy their retirement on their own terms. And now, with our 2013 expansion just around the corner, our vision for an unparalleled retirement experience is becoming reality. An indoor swimming pool, Contact us today to see how you can reserve movie theater, bistro café, and all-new fitness center are just a few of our exciting new amenities. one of our 93 new apartments, which include four different floor plan options. www.brandermillwoods.com Call 804.744.0141 or visit us on the web at brandermillwoods.com/expansion. Redef ine Retirement CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Living & Recreation Most Welcoming Bed and Breakfast Chestnut Hill Bed & Breakfast 236 Caroline St., Orange ChestnutHillBnB.com, 540-661-0430 Built in 1860, Chestnut Hill has since been completely restored and updated with modern amenities. Each of the six guest rooms has its own private bathroom. Have breakfast in bed or in the formal dining room before touring the countryside, enjoy the evening wine and cheese before dinner, or escape with a book from the well-stocked library. second place: The Schooler House Bed & Breakfast, Fredericksburg TheSchoolerHouse.com, 540-374-5258 third place: Maury Place at Monument, Richmond MauryPlace.com, 804-353-2717 liv ing & recreation Best Resort for the Whole Family Wintergreen Resort Route 664, Wintergreen Moveable Feast Free Union Grass Farm keeps it fresh. “A lot of people have this candy-coated vision of what farming is,” says 27-year-old Erica Hellen, co-owner of the farm she and Joel Slezak, 28, started in 2010 on 13 acres of land belonging to Slezak’s mother and an additional 40 acres they lease from neighbors. “It’s tough sometimes,” confesses Hellen, on her way to pick up beef from one of the farm’s small herd of mostly British White cows that has just been processed. “The cows are playful, and we see them everyday, but meat production happens. We like to eat meat, so someone needs to raise it. We have to be OK with it.” Antibiotic and hormone free, the cows live outside on fresh grass and, like the thousands of chickens and ducks that Hellen and Slezak also raise, are moved constantly to new pasture via portable enclosures. The frequent moving means that the animals more evenly harvest the forage available in the pasture and do not deposit too much manure in one place. This roving brand of pasture farming maximizes the yield of the land and gives it a chance to regenerate—the idea that is at the heart of sustainable farming. “A lot of our neighbors ask us why we move the animals every day because it’s so much work,” laughs Hellen, “but that’s the point!” They sell their products from their own farm stand during the season, and at the Charlottesville City Market. Hellen and Slezak also supply top area restaurants, including Glass Haus Kitchen, whose chef, Ian Boden, recently tapped them to host a September 29 meeting of Outstanding in the Field—the “roving culinary adventure” whose trademark is a single line of long tables. The meal is supplied with meat and produce by the host farmer, but the food is the least of their worries. Says Hellen, “Our main stress is just finding 150 feet of flat space.” FreeUnionGrassFarm.com Best Place to Dance Off the Hookah 140 Virginia St., Richmond WintergreenResort.com, 434-325-2200 Sprawled across 11,000 acres on the Blue Ridge Mountains’ eastern slopes, Wintergreen Resort is a mountain retreat for all four seasons. A bustling ski resort in the winter becomes miles of hiking trails and cascading streams in the warmer months. There are also two golf courses, extensive tennis facilities and a full-service spa. second place: The Boar’s Head, Charlottesville BoarsHeadInn.com, 434-296-2181 third place: Keswick Hall, Keswick Keswick.com, 434-979-3440 OffTheHookah.com, 804-225-1918 With something different on all three floors, it’s impossible not to have a good time here. Grab tapas on the patio or relax with a hookah, then hit the floor for the exciting nightly line-up of live entertainment in every corner. Dress to impress. second place: Phase 2 Dining & Entertainment, Lynchburg Phase2Club.com, 434-846-3206 third place: The Tobacco Company Restaurant & Club, Richmond TheTobaccoCompany.com, 804-782-9555 Best Place to Fish Anglers Park 350 Northside Drive, Danville Best Tennis Club Pro 1709 BCC Drive, Lynchburg PlayDanvilleVa.com, 434-799-5215 While anglers successfully catch bass, crappie, catfish and brim year round on the Dan River, Angler’s Park is renowned for the annual striped bass run between April and May. River access includes a boat ramp and bank fishing, as well as a 9-mile riverwalk for when the fish just aren’t biting. second place: Pony Pasture, James River Park, Richmond Drew Robinson, Boonsboro Country Club BoonsboroCC.com, 434-384-3469 Internationally ranked tennis pro Drew Robinson knows a bit about competition: He played for the University of Richmond and has been named MidAtlantic Pro of the Year and Virginia Pro of the Year multiple times. As director of tennis at Boonsboro CC since 1985, he has coached thousands of Virginians. second place: Miguel Castro, Westwood Club, Richmond JamesRiverPark.org, 804-646-5733 third place: Briery Creek Lake, Briery Creek WestwoodClub.net, 804-282-3829 third place: Cris Robinson, Willow Oaks Country Club, Richmond WillowOaksCC.org, 804-320-3244 Wildlife Management Area, Farmville DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 third place tie: Motts Run Reservoir Recreation Area, Fredericksburg FredericksburgVa.gov, 540-786-8989 Most Luxurious Hotel The Jefferson Hotel 101 W. Franklin St., Richmond Best Retirement Community 1600 Westbrook Ave., Richmond Westminster Canterbury Richmond WCRichmond.org, 800-445-9904 Life at Westminster Canterbury is more like an extended vacation. There are lectures, films and performances at the November Theater; printmaking, clay sculpting, painting and weaving at the art studio; exercise at the Aquatic and Fitness Center; and several different dining options. They even plan excursions. It’s enough to make nonretirees jealous. second place: Brandermill Woods, Midlothian BrandermillWoods.com, 804-744-1173 third place: The Hermitage at Cedarfield, Richmond Hermitage-Cedarfield.com, 804-474-8800 JeffersonHotel.com, 804-788-8000 Breathtaking architecture. Opulent guestrooms. Heated indoor pool and full-service spa. Not one, but two award-winning restaurants. Need we say more? Recognized as Richmond’s grandest hotel since 1895, the Jefferson is frequently selected for weddings and meetings. Even locals will check in when they feel the need for a luxurious retreat. second place: Craddock Terry Hotel and Event Center, Lynchburg CraddockTerryHotel.com, 434-455-1500 third place: The Inn at Willow Grove, Orange InnAtWillowGrove.com, 540-317-1206 p h o t o B y B e yo n d t h e F l av o r EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Living & Recreation Most Challenging Golf Course The Federal Club 13030 Palmers Way, Glen Allen Best Hunting Preserve Orapax.com, 804-556-2261 Orapax Hunting Preserve 3831 River Road West, Goochland Most Fashionable Horse Show/Race The Foxfield Races Garth Road, Charlottesville TheFederalClub.com, 804-798-4996 The Federal Club’s unique course layout is designed to challenge the experienced clubswinger while helping the newcomer relax and learn. Managed for firmness and speed from the fairways to the approaches, the course is a par 72. The Federal Club also operates two private driving ranges to get in the swing before you play. second place: The Country Club of Virginia, Richmond FoxfieldRaces.com, 434-293-9501 Bring something to sip to the springtime steeplechase, where seersucker and sundresses are de rigueur. A Charlottesville tradition since its first run in 1978, the spring races attract close to 25,000 people each year. The fall races are more family-friendly, but just as festive. second place: Montpelier Hunt Races, Montpelier Station MontpelierRaces.org, 540-672-0027 third place: Deep Run Horse Show, Manakin-Sabot DeepRunHorseShow.com Open from September through April, Orapax Hunting Preserve is an upland hunting preserve specializing in birds. Offering field hunts for bobwhite quail, pheasants and chukar on its 700acre preserve, Orapax also hosts driven pheasant shoots. Bring your own retriever or borrow one of their faithful friends. second place: Amelia Wildlife Management TheCCV.org, 804-288-2891 third place: Kinloch Golf Club, Manakin-Sabot KinlochGolfClub.com, 804-784-8000 Best Hiking Trail Richmond Buttermilk Trail, James River Park JamesRiverPark.org, 804-646-5733 From the Boulevard Bridge to 22nd Street along Riverside Drive, this tight trail just off the banks of the James River proves you don’t have to go far to escape the urban bustle of Richmond. A popular path for hikers, mountain bikers and outdoor lovers, this trail is a bit of nature right in the heart of downtown Richmond. second place: Blackwater Creek Bikeway, Lynchburg Area, Amelia County DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 third place: Keswick Hunt Club, Keswick KeswickHuntClub.com, 434-296-9405 third place Tie: White Oak Mountain Wildlife Management Area, Pittsylvania County DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 Best Wine Trail Monticello Wine Trail Greater Charlottesville Area Best Outdoor Adventure Richmond MonticelloWineTrail.org Belle Isle, James River Park JamesRiverPark.org, 804-646-5733 Rock climbing, mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, hiking, the 54-acre island in the middle of the James River has everything you would expect from a mountain retreat, except that it’s in downtown Richmond. Belle Isle is also a popular place for lunch breaks or warm-weather lounging on the river rocks. second place: Maymont, Richmond Maymont.org, 804-358-7166 third place: Danville Zip Line and Low Ropes Challenge Course, Danville PlayDanvilleVa.com, 434-799-5215 Aptly named the “Birthplace of American Wine,” the Charlottesville area is where Thomas Jefferson planted some of America’s first vineyards over 200 years ago in the hopes that Virginia would produce wines comparable to Europe’s great vintages. The more than 25 wineries along this trail continue this tradition, creating wines that receive national and international acclaim. second place: Nelson 151, Albemarle and Nelson counties Nelson151.com, 434-263-7015 third place: Heart of Virginia Wine Trail, Goochland, Henrico, Louisa and Spotsylvania counties LynchburgVa.gov, 434-856-2489 third place: Belle Isle, James River Park, Richmond JamesRiverPark.org, 804-646-5733 Best Group Fitness HOVAWineTrail.com, 804-550-7516 SEAL Team Physical Training, Inc. 2111 Dabney Road, Richmond SEALTeamPT.com, 804-262-1894 Yelling doesn’t impress John McGuire, president of SEAL Team PT. Push-ups do. While his personalized group training fitness philosophy is a more positive approach than in-your-face boot camp, it is just as intense. Says McGuire: “You will be challenged, you will be sore, and you will feel better today than you did 10 years ago.” second place: Black Girls RUN!, Richmond BlackGirlsRUN.com third place: Next Level Fitness, LLC, Richmond Next-LevelFitness.com, 804-909-5060 Let’s Do Lunches! Richmond bloggers review lunch every week. “Work can become a routine where you fall into the habit of going to the same places every day,” says Adam Tabib, 31. Then “suddenly 10 years have passed,” says his friend and colleague Ethan Johnson, 40. So in February 2010, the two Markel insurance business intelligence analysts decided to begin meeting for a weekly lunch. They took turns picking places and whoever “repeated” by naming a place he’d already been, would be declared the loser. “Ethan lost,” says Tabib with a grin. But from that defeat came the idea for 52Lunches.com, the popular blog (currently ranked second out of 58 Richmond food blogs by Urbanspoon.com) where Tabib and Johnson review their weekly lunch. “Not keeping a list is how I lost,” Johnson explains. “And my wife said ‘you should blog where you go and write reviews.’ I mentioned it to Adam, and 15 minutes later he had the domain name registered.” Since September 2010, the two have been reviewing a new restaurant (almost) every week, usually somewhere near where they work in Richmond’s West End. Whoever picks the destination pays—“motivation not to go somewhere too expensive,” explains Johnson—and the other writes the review. The blog features a refreshing lack of food snobbery—reviewing the food that people eat every afternoon, as opposed to upscale offerings. And with 113 Richmond-area restaurants already down, the pair is being careful not to end the game by “repeating” again. “It’s collaborative at this point,” says Tabib. “Neither of us wants the other to lose.” 52Lunches.com Best Historic Site Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello 931 Thomas Jefferson Parkway, Charlottesville Monticello.org, 434-984-9800 The only house in the U.S. to be listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Thomas Jefferson’s architectural masterpiece on the 5,000-acre plantation that he called home has been open to the public for 90 years. Both home and gardens have been restored to their original appearance thanks to continuing research. second place: Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond HollywoodCemetery.org, 804-648-8501 third place: Virginia State Capitol, Richmond VirginiaCapitol.gov, 804-698-1788 p h o t o b y j ay p a u l B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 23 Had it with commercial? Tell us where to go! • Voted Best Air Charter Service in the Central Virginia region • We are in our 27th year • 14 handsome aircraft available for charter • Sterling safety record • ARG/US Platinum rated • Excellence in service and customer satisfaction • Available 24/7—Really! • No middleman, gimmicks or plastic card! Just great value and service direct. • Convenient East Coast locations —World Class Service Richmond • Washington Dulles • Norfolk charter@ﬂymartinair.com www.ﬂymartinair.com 800-777-7401 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Food & Drink Best Caterer MOSAIC 5609 Patterson Ave., Suite D, Richmond MOSAICEdibles.com, 804-525-2190 Using local ingredients in its regionally focused, seasonal cuisine, MOSAIC can tackle any catering project, from the box-lunch meeting to the full banquet. But MOSAIC doesn’t just do the food. It takes the stress out of event planning by partnering with clients every step of the way, from planning and coordinating the custom menu to flowers and even photography. second place: A Sharper Palate, Richmond ASharperPalate.com, 804-553-0495 third place: Groovin’ Gourmets, Richmond GroovinGourmets.com, 804-868-8900 food & drink Best Bakery 804-282-4413 Westhampton Pastry Shop 5728 Patterson Ave., Richmond Best Steakhouse Shoemakers American Grille 1312 Commerce St., Lynchburg Best Dessert Menu ShoemakersDining.com, 434-455-1510 There are things to expect from any great steakhouse: perfectly seared steaks, bold red wine, perhaps a seafood appetizer or wedge salad. Shoemakers serves up all of the classics in what was once the largest shoe factory in America (and also a tobacco warehouse). Exposed brick interior walls and beams only add to the ambiance. second place: Buckhead’s Restaurant & Chop House, Richmond Buckheads.com, 804-750-2000 third place: Morton’s The Steakhouse, Richmond Mortons.com/Richmond, 804-648-1662 The Cheesecake Factory 11800 W. Broad St., Richmond TheCheesecakeFactory.com, 804-364-4300 Rich Black-Out cake. Fresh strawberry shortcake. Warm apple crisp. Lemoncello cream torte. As if its already decadent dessert menu wasn’t enough, the Cheesecake Factory also offers a large selection of its namesake: cheesecake. Fifty different kinds, to be exact. Now, just how to decide what to order … second place: Shyndigz, Richmond Shyndigz.com, 804-938-3449 third place: The Desserterie, Midlothian TheDesserterie.com, 804-639-9940 A Richmond institution since 1952, this full-service, family-owned bakery is the place Richmonders go for everything from birthday cakes to everyday treats. Baking just about anything and everything—breads, rolls, pies, cakes, wedding cakes, éclairs, cookies— everyone has their favorites. But everyone in the West End knows its doughnuts really are the best. second place: Jean-Jacques Bakery & Cafe, Richmond RichmondFrenchBakery.com, 804-355-0666 third place: Pearl’s Cupcake Shoppe, Richmond PearlsCupcakeShoppe.com, 804-285-2253 Best Burger Joint Burger Bach 10 S. Thompson St., Richmond The Savory Smell of Success BurgerBach.com, 804-359-1305 Pronounced like “batch” rather than the Baroque composer, this New Zealand-inspired gastro pub takes sustainability to a whole new level. Made from only “the best-tasting, most humanely-raised, grassfed Angus steer” from New Zealand, the burgers are out-of-this-world delicious and can be enjoyed completely guilt-free. second place: Carytown Burgers & Fries, Richmond CarytownBurgersAndFries.com, 804-358-5225 third place: Five Guys Burgers and Fries, multiple Richmond locations FiveGuys.com A tasty slice of New Zealand can now be found in Richmond. Husband-and-wife team Neil Smith and Nikki Price only opened Proper Pie Co. in November 2012, but Richmonders have been lining up to get their fill of sweet and savory pies since day one. The savory pies, hot and handheld, are a particular draw, because they’re unlike anything else in town. Maybe even in the hemisphere. Smith grew up in Whangarei, New Zealand, where savory pies are plentiful. He spent 10 years touring the world catering for musicians—from David Bowie to Nine Inch Nails—but couldn’t find a “proper” pie anywhere. Now Richmonders can find them every day in Church Hill. So what goes into these “proper” pies? “A lot of time. A lot of love. A lot of butter,” says Smith, who begins baking at 5 a.m. every morning. “Very simple ingredients really, because the emphasis is on the pastry. The fillings are really just a foil for the pastry, so they’re never overpowering.” The Church Hill neighborhood shop is small, but Smith and Price have made that a virtue by placing the kitchen directly behind the counter, so customers can see today’s pastry being made fresh before their eyes. “One of the things Neil and I have always liked is to sit at the counter where you can watch people work,” says Price, “though we didn’t really think about how much flour was going to be everywhere!” For customers who brave the line and dodge the flour, the reward is a savory pie with fillings like chicken and kumara (the New Zealand term for sweet potato) or pork chili verde, or maybe a slice of something sweet like the ever-popular Banoffee pie—made from bananas, cream and toffee. “I always say we’re trying to marry the Southern hemisphere with a little bit of the American South,” says Price, who is originally from Yorktown and met Smith at a Nine Inch Nails show in Richmond. Long may their delicious union of flavors continue. Facebook.com/ProperPieCo Best Pizzeria WaterStone Pizza 1309 Jefferson St., Lynchburg WaterStonePizza.com, 434-455-1515 A step above your average pizza joint. Each 10-inch WaterStone pizza is topped with housemade sauce, whole-milk mozzarella and fresh toppings before a whirl in the wood-burning oven. The result? Deliciously gooey cheese mingling with tangy tomato sauce and a crunchy crust you can only get from a fire-roasted pizza. second place: Bottoms Up Pizza, Richmond BottomsUpPizza.com, 804-644-4400 third place: Mary Angela’s Pizzeria, Richmond MaryAngelasPizza.com, 804-353-2333 p h oto b y K e n P e n n B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 25 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Food & Drink Sunday Champagne Brunch at The Jefferson Hotel 101 W. Franklin St., Richmond Best Sunday Brunch Best Overall Restaurant 1312 Commerce St., Lynchburg Shoemakers American Grille ShoemakersDining.com, 434-455-1510 What used to be the nation’s largest shoe factory at the turn of the century now creates the elegant atmosphere of Shoemakers American Grille. Once an old tobacco warehouse, tucked away along the banks of the James River, Shoemakers’ history adds another layer of atmosphere to good service and good food ... an altogether well-rounded experience. second place: Vintage Restaurant at the Inn at Best Barbeque Restaurant 1119 N. Boulevard, Richmond Buz and Ned’s Real Barbeque BuzAndNeds.com, 804-355-6055 Self-proclaimed as “Richmond’s Only Real Barbeque,” Buz and Ned’s has been smoking, glazing, saucing and chopping barbeque for more than 20 years, earning nods from the likes of (and beating!) Bobby Flay. Grab a stack of napkins, and pull up a chair at either of the two Richmond locations. second place: Alamo BBQ, Richmond AlamoBBQVa.com, 804-592-3138 third place: The Barbecue Exchange, Gordonsville BBQEx.com, 540-832-0227 third place tie: Q Barbeque, Richmond QBarbeque.com, 804-897-9007 JeffersonHotel.com, 804-649-4677 A truly Richmond experience, Sunday Champagne Brunch at the Jefferson has wowed Richmonders and visitors since 1986. Each week, the chef prepares an extensive menu featuring Virginia’s best seasonal ingredients. Served in the spacious Rotunda lobby among stately marble columns with the fabled staircase as a backdrop, the atmosphere is as exquisite as the food. second place: Millie’s, Richmond MilliesDiner.com, 804-643-5512 third place: Can Can Brasserie, Richmond CanCanBrasserie.com, 804-358-7274 Willow Grove, Orange InnAtWillowGrove.com, 540-317-1206 third place: Acacia mid-town, Richmond AcaciaRestaurant.com, 804-562-0138 Best Place for a Sandwich Coppola’s Deli 2900 W. Cary St., Richmond CoppolasDeli.com, 804-359-6969 Specializing in loaded sub sandwiches, Coppola’s Deli has been serving up authentic delicatessen fare in Richmond’s Carytown district for over 30 years. Order one of the specialties (with fun names like the Industrial) from the chalkboard menu above the display case full of Italian salads, antipasti and assorted meats and cheeses. second place: Chiocca’s, Richmond ChioccasDeli.com, 804-355-3228 third place: Garnett’s Cafe, Richmond GarnettsCafe.com, 804-367-7909 Best Breakfast Restaurant Joe’s Inn 205 N. Shields Ave., Richmond JoesInnRVA.com, 804-355-2282 Forget the exotic (and often expensive) Sunday brunch, sometimes bacon and eggs is just what you need. Delivering consistency and comfort, Joe’s Inn in Richmond has been cooking up large portions of basic breakfasts for more than 60 years. And you can order it any time of day or night. second place: Millie’s, Richmond MilliesDiner.com, 804-643-5512 third place: Market at Main, Lynchburg In Vino Veritas Vintner triple threat creates one of a kind vintages. Let’s say, for argument’s sake, that three is your lucky number. And let’s say you’re a winemaker who has two buddies who also are winemakers. And so you get this idea of mixing one of each of your wines with the others’, slapping a mutually acceptable label on it, and selling it for, say, $33.33. Would you then release it at 3:33 p.m. on March 3? Yes, you would. ‘3’ is a labor of love among three close friends who share an ardor for arbors ( grape arbors, that is). When they met a dozen or so years ago, Emily Pelton (winemaker at Veritas Winery in Afton, pictured above, center), Jake Busching (of Grace Estate Winery in Crozet, above left) and Mattieu Finot (of King Family Vineyards, also in Crozet, above right) were all novices in the Virginia wine industry. “We are all of the same age,” says 37-year-old Pelton, “and we became fast friends.” Working just “spittin’ distance from each other,” as Pelton puts it, the three made a habit of getting together over beers at Brew Mountain Brewery during harvest. “One day, Matthieu said, ‘We should make a wine together,’” Pelton recalls. And they did, in 2009, 2010, 2012 and now a fourth vintage, 2013. (The trio took off 2011 while Busching moved from Pollak Vineyards in Greenwood to Grace Estate.) Each year, each vintner contributes one-third of the juice (which is determined year to year). In past years, the red blend has mixed merlot, petit verdot and cabernet franc. This year’s creation is white, for which Pelton supplied two barrels of viognier; Finot, a barrel each of chardonnay and viognier; and Bushing, a barrel of chardonnay and one of petit manseng. But unlike the blend, the name never changes: It is always 3. The resulting wines are sold only at the wineries. The annual production run of 135 cases is divided evenly between the three, so it doesn’t matter what your lucky number is; if you wait too long to get yours, you’ll be out of luck. KingFamilyVineyards.com, GraceEstateWinery.com, VeritasWines.com 434-847-9040 Most Creative Chocolatier Gearharts Fine Chocolates 416 W. Main St., Charlottesville GearhartsChocolates.com, 434-972-9100 CIA-trained chef Tim Gearhart is the mastermind behind the chocolates of Gearharts Fine Chocolates. He blends Venezuelan Criollo Cacao with local sweet cream and butter to create the chocolate, and finishes each truffle and dipped candied fruit by hand. Vanilla bean brulée, brown butter caramel, mint julep and tequila lime are just a few of his creations. second place: For the Love of Chocolate, Richmond LovChoc.com, 804-359-5645 third place: Chocolates by Kelly, Richmond ChocolatesByKelly.com, 804-814-5496 photo by jack looney B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 27 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Food & Drink The Clifton Inn, Charlottesville Seasonal Garden Vegetable Medley with Black Cocoa Crumb and Nasturtium Yogurt Nasturtium Yogurt 4 ¼ cups milk, whole 1/3 cup non-fat milk powder ½ cup plain yogurt 2 cups nasturtium stems and leaves In a large bowl, place nasturtium stems and large leaves in whole milk, and place in the refrigerator overnight. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees. Remove nasturtium milk from the refrigerator, strain, and add milk powder. Heat milk mixture to 180 degrees, remove from heat and let cool to 115 degrees. Mix in yogurt. Let the mixture sit in warm space (around 100 degrees) for 7-9 hours. The longer it sits, the thicker and tangier it will be. Break up the baked cookie and grind up in a food processor until crumbly and resembles soil. Garden Medley 5 radishes 6 wild cherry tomatoes 3 small baby cucumbers 4 baby squash 6 nasturtium flowers and leaves 1 cup baby Swiss chard 1 cup baby kale Herbs for garnish 1 bunch garlic chive flowers 6 basil flowers 12 borage flowers 12 cucumber flowers 18 wood sorrel Slice the radishes very thin (on a mandolin) into a container of ice water. Thinly slice squash. Leave cherry tomatoes and cucumbers whole. Gently rub fur off cucumbers. Spoon some of the nasturtium yogurt onto large plates. Top with some of the black cocoa crumb. Arrange the tomatoes and cucumbers around the crumb and then begin plating the rest of the vegetables. Continue adding the leaves and herbs to the plates, arranging them whimsically. Finish with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and coarse flake salt. Serves 6 CliftonInn.net Black Cocoa Crumb ¾ cup all-purpose flour ½ cup sugar 7 ½ tablespoons butter 2 ¾ ground chicory root 2 ¾ tablespoons black cocoa powder Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine ingredients in a mixing bowl and knead until it becomes a crumbly dough. Spread the dough onto a sheet tray and bake in 350-degree oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until crispy. Best Locally Owned Coffee Shop Lamplighter Roasting Company 116 S. Addison St., Richmond Best Al Fresco Dining 1312 Commerce St., Lynchburg Shoemakers American Grille ShoemakersDining.com, 434-455-1510 The sleek, yet warm ambiance of the restructured tobacco warehouse-turned-shoe-factory extends onto the open-air courtyard, which is available for outdoor dining in the warmer months. Fine quality American fare, from seafood to steaks, becomes that much more enjoyable with a warm breeze off the James River. second place: The Boathouse at Rocketts Landing, Best Seafood Restaurant 1312 Commerce St., Lynchburg Shoemakers American Grille ShoemakersDining.com, 434-455-1510 Blackened grilled salmon, sesame seared ahi tuna, crab-stuffed trout. It’s okay, we’re drooling, too. The sophisticated Southern charm of Shoemakers American Grille in downtown Lynchburg sets the stage for some of the best seafood in Central Virginia. second place: The Hard Shell at Bellgrade, Midlothian TheHardShell.com, 804-464-1476 third place: The Water Grill, Richmond TheWaterGrill.com, 804-353-3411 LamplighterCoffee.com, 804-728-2292 Casual and quirky, Lamplighter is the quintessential neighborhood café. Enjoy your house-roasted coffee with a sandwich, salad or soup on the partially covered patio (which used to be an old gas station) or grab a bag of beans to brew at home. Better yet, have your order delivered by bicycle any day of the week. second place: Crossroads Coffee & Ice Cream, Richmond CrossroadsRVA.com, 804-231-2030 third place: Hyperion Espresso, Fredericksburg HyperionEspresso.com, 540-373-4882 Richmond BoathouseRVA.com, 804-622-2628 third place: Portico Restaurant & Bar, Richmond PorticoRichmond.com, 804-784-4800 Best Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurant Ipanema Cafe 917 W. Grace St., Richmond Best Ice Creamery 804-204-2387 Best Farmers’ Market SOJMarket.com Bev’s Homemade Ice Cream 2911 W. Cary St., Richmond South of the James Market New Kent Road and West 42nd Street, Richmond IpanemaVeg.com, 804-213-0190 With a fresh new look after renovations last year plus a brand new dinner menu, Ipanema Cafe continues to serve creative, colorful and completely vegetarian fare out of its quirky basement location on West Grace Street. Demanding carnivores will revel in the well-rounded selection of flavorful dishes. second place: Fresca on Addison, Richmond FrescaOnAddison.com, 804-359-8638 third place: Sammy T’s, Fredericksburg SammyTs.com, 540-371-2008 Facebook.com/BevsHomemadeIceCream, As the name says, all of the ice cream and desserts at Bev’s are homemade—and heavenly. With 13 regular flavors and a seductive assortment of daily selections and other seasonal specialties (Girl Scout cookie ice cream, anyone?), Bev’s has a flavor for any sweet tooth. second place: Gelati Celesti, Richmond GelatiIceCream.com, 804-346-0038 third place: Sweet Frog, Richmond SweetFrogYogurt.com, 804-213-3089 Saturday mornings from May to December, Forest Hill Park is packed with farmers and artisans selling locally grown produce and handmade items in this European-style market. (Don’t miss the doughnutmaking Amish family.) Not sure how to serve all those vegetables? Check out the Fresh Foods/Fresh Chefs cooking series to watch (and taste!) how the chef prepares the day’s produce. second place: Charlottesville City Market, Charlottesville CharlottesvilleCityMarket.com, 434-970-3371 third place: Lynchburg Community Market, Lynchburg The-Lynchburg-Va-Insider.com, 434-455-4489 photo courtesy clifton inn B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 29 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Food & Drink Best Sushi Cuisine Osaka Sushi & Steak 5023 Huguenot Road, Richmond Best Wine Shop Once Upon a Vine 4009 MacArthur Ave., Richmond Best Sports Bar Home Team Grill in the Fan 1630 W. Main St., Richmond OsakaSushiVa.com, 804-288-8801 There is nothing fishy about Osaka Sushi & Steak. The impeccably cut and assembled sushi, sashimi and hand rolls are simply superb. Alongside the delectable selection of sushi and sake, Osaka also serves other entrées, from salmon and steak to bowls of steaming noodles, all with a pan-Asian flair. second place: Sticky Rice, Richmond ILoveStickyRice.com, 804-358-7870 third place: Akida Japanese Restaurant, Richmond OnceUponAVine.us, 804-726-9463 Once Upon a Vine maintains an extensive selection of wines and beers from around the world, but it’s this shop’s community involvement that keeps customers loyal. From wine and beer tastings each Friday to summertime movie nights in the parking lot with neighboring merchants, there is always something going on. second place: J. Emerson, Inc., Fine Wines & Cheeses, Richmond JEmersonFineWine.com, 804-285-8011 third place: Total Wine & More, multiple Richmond locations TotalWine.com HomeTeamGrill.com, 804-254-7360 Your average local watering hole seems trifling compared to the great food and fun atmosphere at Home Team Grill in the Fan. A great space becomes better in warm weather, when the entire front wall opens up onto the patio. Complete with ample TVs to catch every game, any and all fan groups are welcome. second place: Big Al’s Sports Bar & Grill, Richmond BigAlsRichmond.com, 804-270-4454 third place: Champps Americana, Richmond Champps.com, 804-323-6053 804-359-8036 Best Overall Bar Can Can Brasserie 3120 W. Cary St., Richmond CanCanBrasserie.com, 804-358-7274 This Carytown hot spot morphs at night into a bar buzzing with the sophisticated energy reminiscent of a true Parisian eatery of late 19th-century France. In warm weather, grab a sidewalk table and dine like the boulevardiers. But the main action is at the elegant bar: Slurp oysters at one end, sip champagne and martinis at the other. second place: F.W. Sullivan’s, Richmond FWSullivans.com, 804-308-8576 third place: Boylan Heights Gourmet Burger Bar, Charlottesville Boylan-Heights.com, 434-984-5707 Best Local Microbrewery 2408 Ownby Lane, Richmond Hardywood Park Craft Brewery Hardywood.com, 804-420-2420 With a mission to deliver an ethereal experience with each one of their exceptionally crafted beers, lifelong friends Eric McKay and Patrick Murtaugh made a name for themselves when they opened Hardywood Park Craft Brewery just over a year ago. Try some of their brews at one of many Richmond bars, or stop by the brewery for tastings and tours. second place: Legend Brewing Co., Richmond LegendBrewing.com, 804-232-8871 third place: Jefferson Street Brewery, Lynchburg JeffersonStreetBrewery.com Most Creative Cocktail Menu Balliceaux Restaurant 203 N. Lombardy St., Richmond BalliceauxRVA.com, 804-355-3008 Using seasonal, local and sometimes unconventional ingredients, Balliceaux overlooks no detail on its colorful cocktail list. Many mixers are made in-house, from the ginger beer for the Dark & Stormy to the proprietary Orange Blossom grenadine, making things just that much more unique. It’s all in the details. second place: The Roosevelt, Richmond RooseveltRVA.com, 804-658-1935 third place: RA Bistro, Lynchburg RABistro.com, 434-845-1601 Eclectic Eatery Lynchburg’s Bull Branch offers a world of flavor. It’s quirky. It’s funky. It’s even been described as weird, but beyond that it’s tough to pin down Bull Branch, a smallish restaurant and bar tucked on a side street in downtown Lynchburg. “It looks like the inside of my head and every apartment I’ve ever lived in,” says Scott Cardwell, 52-year-old owner and chef of the dimly lit tchotchke-crammed space. “I imagine it as a combination of all those influences.” Cardwell lived in Boston and Manhattan, and spent several years in the Netherlands, before moving home to her family’s 500-acre farm in Campbell County and later opening Bull Branch in 2001. Part of the fun of eating at Bull Branch is trying to decipher the salvo of far-flung references in the eatery’s décor. “It’s kind of like a Rorschach test,” says Cardwell. “Some people say it looks like Chicago or the East Village, or like some place in Spain.” But that’s OK with the unconventional Cardwell, a former English professor and freelance writer who has become known for delivering food equally exotic and inventive as the interior of her restaurant. “I like international spices,” says Cardwell, “not just fire, like using caraway in a different way.” She describes the smoke and tang of powdered Persian black lime she will use in a dish for an upcoming locavore feast, and the lemongrass she incorporated into the margaritas at a Thai immersion dinner she once hosted. “We do serious cocktails too,” says Cardwell. “We throw as much attention to that as we do the food.” The menu changes frequently at Bull Branch, reflecting Cardwell’s constant culinary curiosity and devotion to keeping things fresh. “It’s an incredible intellectual and aesthetic problem to solve,” she explains, to have a basket of beautiful produce to pull together into something new and delicious. “I mean, that’s exciting.” 434-847-8477 Best Winery Barboursville Vineyards 17655 Winery Road, Barboursville BarboursvilleWine.net, 540-832-3824 With a vision “to redeem the gift of a gracious, generous ground, with vintages of vivid beauty,” Barboursville Vineyards continually receives national and international acclaim for its exquisite wines. Set in what was once Governor James Barbour’s plantation estate, complete with a house designed by Thomas Jefferson, Barboursville Vineyards is as beautiful as its vintages. second place: Veritas Vineyard & Winery, Afton VeritasWines.com, 540-456-8000 third place: King Family Vineyards, Crozet KingFamilyVineyards.com, 434-823-7800 photo by Karissa Addington B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 31 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Day Spa Glow Med Spa Multiple Richmond locations GlowMedSpa.net, 804-262-0330 Its massage team is known by clients as the “Dream Team.” Offering basic and advanced treatments like microdermabrasion and laser hair removal, Glow Med Spa takes the mystery out of most procedures with a very informative website, so you know exactly what to expect out of that Brazilian wax. second place: Red Door Day Spa & Hair Salon, Richmond RedDoorSpas.com, 804-360-1239 third place: Scents of Serenity Organic Spa, Glen Allen shopping & se rv ices ScentsOfSerenitySpa.com, 804-227-4498 Best Hair Salon Bombshell Brazilian Waxing & Skincare Studio 10 S. Crenshaw Ave., Richmond ILoveBombshell.com, 804-342-0051 Known for its, you guessed it, Brazilian waxing, Bombshell is a full-service salon with an extensive menu of waxing, hair care and nail treatments. From a simple blow-out at the “blow-out bar” to an exotic Moroccan oil mask conditioning treatment, its technicians are trained to cut all types of hair. second place: Mango Salon, multiple Richmond locations MangoSalon.com, 804-285-2800 third place: Imago A Salon For Hair, Richmond ImagoHair.com, 804-355-1040 Best Men’s Haircut Bombshell Brazilian Waxing & Skincare Studio 10 S. Crenshaw Ave., Richmond ILoveBombshell.com, 804-342-0051 Bombshell’s salon services are not limited to the female set: it has a full range of men’s services too. Men’s body waxing, nail care, and the four different levels of men’s haircut on offer mean guys can get a great cut at the right price. second place: Imago A Salon For Hair, Richmond TasteMakers Kate Collier and Eric Gertner are the arbiters of excellence at Feast! Farm to table may be the foodie buzzword right now, but it only works if you know where to find the best farms. Enter Kate Collier and Eric Gertner, who recognize good food when they taste it. For the past 11 years, the husband-and-wife team has been carefully curating meats, cheeses and other gourmet products from near and far, then serving their finds to customers at their Charlottesville specialty food shop and café, Feast! “I went to UVA and knew that in Charlottesville there was an open niche for artisan cheese and perfectly sliced cured meat,” says Collier. And she was right, as the line of people looking to peruse Collier and Gertner’s selection of approximately 75 cheeses and 60 meats regularly wends its way out the door. Collier, Gertner and their full-time staff of 12 select the best Virginia products, like chicken from Polyface Farms, prosciutto from S. Wallace Edwards & Sons and goat cheese from Caromont Farm, and then either sell the products to customers in-store— off the shelf or in gift baskets like the Virginia Feast in a Box—or serve them up at the Feast! café via a menu of soups, salads and sandwiches created by Chef Megan Kiernan. They even have a Feast! label for food they buy in bulk and repackage. “Feast! brands are things we think are phenomenal,” says Collier. “We buy from great producers, so customers know if it has the Feast! brand ... it’s our signature of approval.” But Feast! goes beyond the borders of the Commonwealth. “We also have some great products not from here,” says Collier. Sacrilege, we say! But we give her a chance to explain: “For our olive oil, we have a connection to an olive grove in Italy. There’s no olive oil in Virginia, so we’ve gone and found things that are farm to table. Not only local, but the best the world has to offer.” It’s not farm to table, it’s farm to Feast! to table, and that’s how you know it’s good. FeastVirginia.com ImagoHair.com, 804-355-1040 third place: Mango Salon, multiple Richmond locations MangoSalon.com, 804-285-2800 Best Florist Strange’s 12111 W. Broad St., Richmond Stranges.com, 804-360-2800 Blossoming well beyond the yard where Gideon A. Strange began selling his flowers in the early ’30s, Strange’s is now a gardener’s go-to with four facilities across Richmond. As one of the state’s largest greenhouse growers and one of the largest retail garden centers in the U.S., it carries anything that grows in the ground. second place: Coleman Brothers Flowers, Inc., Richmond ColemanFlowers.com, 804-262-8681 third place: Tom French Flowers, Richmond 804-278-9420 photo courtesy of Feast! B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 33 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Shopping Area/Mall Short Pump Town Center 11800 W. Broad St., Richmond Best Antiques West End Antique Mall 2004 Staples Mill Road, Richmond Best Sporting Goods Store 10150 Lakeridge Parkway, Ashland Green Top Hunting & Fishing GreenTopHuntFish.com, 804-550-2188 Green Top has been specializing in Virginia’s great outdoors since 1947. Local fishermen, hunters and recreational shooters know the iconic greenroofed store is the place to go not just for gear, but for information about Virginia’s waters and forests provided by the avid outdoors-loving men and women Green Top employs. Their blog even features weekly fishing and hunting updates. second place: Dick’s Sporting Goods, multiple Richmond locations DicksSportingGoods.com third place: Bass Pro Shops, Ashland BassPro.com, 804-496-4700 ShortPumpMall.com, 804-360-1700 What was once just the local well and watering hole en route between Richmond and Charlottesville has exploded into a fashion and dining destination. Nordstrom, Macy’s, Dick’s and Dillard’s are anchors, but there’s an abundance of stores and restaurants in this sprawling, open-air shopping mall that will keep you busy for hours. second place: Stony Point Fashion Park, Richmond ShopStonyPoint.com, 804-560-7467 third place: Carytown, Richmond CarytownRVA.com WestEndAntiqueMall.com, 804-359-1600 Whether searching for that specific piece to complete a look or browsing collectables for whatever catches your eye, readers agree for the second year that West End Antique Mall has it all. The 53,000-square-foot space has over 250 booths featuring everything from carpets and cabinets to fine art and furniture. second place: Alexander’s Antiques and Auctions, Richmond AlexandersAntiques.com, 804-674-4206 third place: Gates Antiques Ltd., Midlothian GatesAntiques.com, 804-794-8472 Best Air Charter Service Martinair, Inc. 5733 Huntsman Road, Richmond FlyMartinair.com, 804-777-7401 In the dehumanizing world of air travel today (body scan, anyone?), the perks of personalized air travel are awfully appealing. With Martinair, Inc., you can pick from a fleet that can fly you just about anywhere; a charter for four or more can even be comparable with commercial airline price-tags. And there’s no such thing as lost luggage. second place: Million Air, Richmond MillionAir-Richmond.com, 804-222-3700 third place: HeloAir, Inc., Richmond HeloAir.com, 804-226-3400 Most On-Schedule Home Builder Bel Arbor Builders 9842 Lori Road, Suite 201, Chesterfield BelArborBuilders.com, 804-751-9050 Specializing in large, luxury homes, Bel Arbor Builders prides itself in the maintenance-free houses it builds. Its trio of developers consider themselves your own personal builders, and help you bring your vision to reality. If you are not looking for big digs, Bel Arbor recently added smaller, luxury villa homes to its portfolio. second place: Main Street Homes, Midlothian Girl with a Cleaver Earring Tanya Cauthen’s Belmont Butchery is a foodie favorite in Richmond. Anyone who wears an earring in the shape of a meat cleaver and owns a butcher shop is not to be trifled with. Between shots on her iPhone of her husband, nieces and her late 17-year-old cat are images of a raw bone-in-steak, a whole pig’s head perched face forward on a cutting table, and the carcass—split in half lengthwise—of a massive Hungarian Mangalista lard hog (which she would later break down). “Do you see that?” she says excitedly, pointing at the 5-inch thick layer of fat encasing the corpulent pig. “It’s incredible!” It is this enthusiasm for good product that softens the copper-haired, take-no-guff Cauthen, a Swiss-trained chef with serious culinary chops (pun intended) who has been featured in Saveur and Bon Appétit magazines. The 43-year-old has opened and run some of Richmond’s top restaurants and co-owned a catering company in addition to running a cooking school and working as a freelance food and wine writer. Cauthen opened her shop in 2006, and today it remains the only independent butcher shop in Richmond. Though she is one of only four or five female butchers in the country, Cauthen’s is not a mission to break any glass ceiling; “My goal is just to feed people well,” she explains. Cauthen grew up with serious foodie parents. “I didn’t have peanut butter and jelly until I was in college,” she laughs. “I was more likely to have a lamb and watercress sandwich for lunch.” She says she and her sister would spend Saturdays with their father planning and cooking the evening meal from menus in Julia Child & Company. Says Cauthen, “We always did the menus exactly as they were written.” And Cauthen is still paying attention to that kind of detail. She sells cut-to-order meats and handcrafted sausages, pâtés and charcuterie, as well as cheese, wine, beer and other prepared foods. Despite her training, experience and the success of her shop, Cauthen won’t call herself a master butcher. “Because this is a craft, and an artisan craft, there are always new skills and techniques to learn. … I’ll never know everything.” BelmontButchery.com GoMSH.com, 804-794-3138 third place: Smith & Robertson, Charlottesville SmithAndRobertson.com, 434-971-7026 Best Pet Boarding Holiday Barn Pet Resorts 3800 Mountain Road, Glen Allen HolidayBarn.com, 804-672-7295 At Holiday Barn Pet Resorts, pets get to go on vacation too. Welcoming both dogs and cats, Holiday Barn has a variety of accommodation styles and play packages to choose from, even a daily swim in the pool (for dogs, of course). We just can’t guarantee Fido will want to come home. second place: DogServices, multiple Richmond locations DogServicesVa.com third place: Petite Pet Inn & Spa, Richmond PetitePetInn.com, 804-622-1556 ph o t o b y sara w o o d PrEParE Enrich EndurE Preparing the next generation of dynamic, creative thinkers from Kindergarten through 12th grade. To schedule a tour or receive more information, call 804.726.3300. www.collegiate-va.org 103 North Mooreland Road Richmond, VA 23229 Collegiate School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or national origin. EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Cycle Shop Agee’s Bicycles 7439 W. Broad St., Richmond Best Bridal Shop Bella Rosa Bridal 3979 Deep Rock Road, Richmond Best Interior Designer 804-784-8088 Agees.com, 804-672-3441 BellaRosaBridal.com, 804-855-1000 There are many places to buy a wedding dress, but brides agree that exceptional service is what they truly hope for. Specializing in wedding gowns, tuxedos, and bridesmaid’s, mother’s and flower girl’s dresses, Bella Rosa can outfit the whole party, but it’s the uniquely romantic “Bella Rosa” experience that seems to stand out. second place: David’s Bridal, Richmond DavidsBridal.com, 804-747-9920 third place: Tiffanys Bridal, Richmond TiffanysBridal.com, 804-273-6303 Carol Pipes, A.S.I.D., Carol Pipes Interior Design 12540 Patterson Ave., Richmond Agee’s Bicycles definitely knows its clientele. It should, since it has been serving Richmond for over 100 years. Begun in 1910 by Louis Agee, the business is still family owned and operated by Louis’ grandsons, who continue to help cyclists of all experience levels, from training wheels to professionals, in three locations across Richmond. second place: Carytown Bicycle Co., Richmond Three generations of her family work alongside Carol Pipes, who must be doing something right because she runs her interior design business solely by word of mouth. From high-end residential to service stations, boats to beginner homes, apartments to churches, she has worked on everything, even the Supreme Court of Virginia. second place: Kat Liebschwager, Kat Liebschwager Interiors, Richmond KatInteriors.com, 804-288-3350 third place: Ryland Woodard, Ryland Woodard Interior Design, Richmond RylandWoodard.com, 804-288-7943 CarytownBikes.com, 804-440-2453 third place: 3Sports, Richmond ThreeSports.com, 804-288-4000 Best Gift Shop Mongrel 2924 W. Cary St., Richmond Best Children’s Clothing Store Buttons and Bows 1517 N. Parham Road, Richmond MongrelRVA.com, 804-342-1272 It’s eclectic, it’s quirky, it’s offbeat, but when a store’s slogan is “cool stuff for all breeds of humans,” you know not to be surprised to find Sailor & Siren salt and pepper shakers next to dog tarot cards. That’s why you shop here, right? This crazy Carytown shop has such a variety of cards, journals, housewares, and other odds and ends, you’re sure to leave with the kind of stuff that won’t get re-gifted. second place: Tweed, Richmond TweedAtHome.com, 804-249-3900 third place: R.H. Ballard Art, Rug & Home, Washington RHBallard.com, 540-675-1411 ButtonsAndBowsKids.com, 804-285-0482 Carrying classic, but updated, children’s clothing, shoes and toys, Buttons and Bows has been pleasing Richmond parents for 26 years. A local favorite for christening attire and gifts, and special occasion clothing from flower girls to Holy Communion, it also features a shoe department that knows how to properly fit children’s growing feet. second place: Clover, Richmond CloverKids.com, 804-355-3517 third place: Whimsies, Charlottesville WhimsiesKids.com, 434-977-8767 Best Fine Jewelry Store Schwarzschild Jewelers Multiple Richmond locations Schwarzschild.com, 804-967-0800 Schwarzschild Jewelers has carried fine jewelry and time pieces since 1897. Representing 32 of the world’s finest Swiss watch and designer jewelry brands, this family-run, independent jeweler also has watchmakers and goldsmiths on the premises for custom design and repair. second place: Adolf Jewelers, Richmond AdolfJewelers.com, 804-285-3671 third place: Bowen Jewelry Company, Lynchburg BowenJewelry.com, 434-845-3495 Best Women’s Clothing Store Pink 3158 W. Cary St., Richmond Best Men’s Clothing Store Franco’s Fine Clothier 5321 Lakeside Ave., Richmond Francos.com, 804-264-2994 “Fit is everything,” says Italian-born and -trained tailor Franco Ambrogi. From suits and sportswear, to formalwear and shoes, Franco’s lets you pick out the perfect garment and leave the details to the experts and the on-site alterations. And it’s been in business for 30 years, so clearly, Franco’s philosophy works. second place: Peter•Blair, Richmond Peter-Blair.com, 804-288-8123 third place: R Coffee Ltd., Lynchburg Best Shoe Store Saxon Shoes 11800 W. Broad St., Suite 2750, Richmond PinkStore.com, 804-358-0884 This hip store on a Carytown corner is a fashionista’s paradise. With the belief that everyone has their own personal style to express, Pink collects pieces from top designers every season, and sells clothing that mixes seamlessly from one year to the next. second place: Levys, Richmond Facebook.com/LevysRichmond, 804-673-0177 third place: Talbots, multiple Richmond locations Talbots.com Store.SaxonShoes.com, 804-285-3473 Family owned and operated since 1953, Saxon Shoes carries over 200 well-known brands for men, women and children, and the knowledgeable staff can show you exactly how to care for those Cole Haans. Experienced Shopper Tip: check out the backroom for seasonal steals. second place: DSW, Richmond DSW.com, 804-290-4244 third place: The Shoe Box, Richmond 434-384-0518 804-288-2303 Best Independent Home Decor Store Ruth & Ollie 3108 W. Cary St., Richmond , Dinner at Home RuthAndOllie.com, 804-288-3360 After years spent moving around the country in corporate America, owners Mike and Kat Liebschwager decided to move to Richmond and create two homes; one to live in, and one from which to sell a carefully curated selection of home furnishings. The store is named after Mike and Kat’s grandmothers, Ruth and Ollie, and its vibe is distinctive. second place: Williams & Sherrill, Richmond WilliamsAndSherrill.com, 804-320-1730 third place: Fraîche, Richmond FraicheHome.net, 804-282-4282 third place tie: LaDifference, Richmond LaDiff.com, 804-648-6210 Charlottesville chef delivers delicious to your door. If it’s Friday and you receive an email from Ashley East, your weekend just became that much easier. No need to draw up next week’s meal plan, East, 33, has you covered through her home catering business, Dinner At Home. Every Friday night East emails her customers with the dishes she will be cooking the next week (how does fish with tomato-basil sauce and linguine with olive oil and parsley sound?), and all they have to do is hit ‘Reply’ with the number of meals they’d like to order (up to four, ready for pickup on Monday or Tuesday). Yes, harried parents and professionals, East has answered your prayers for healthy meals at the ready—no cooking or eating out required. And there is no obligation to order every week, explains East, who started the business 10 years ago. “Once a week, once a month, once a year, we’re happy to help when it’s needed.” She even sells gift cards. A bonafide multi-tasker, East also does large-scale catering, and recently purchased Charlottesville Cupcakes. She has a lot on her plate, but she is happy where she is: “I belong in the kitchen.” AshleysDinnerAtHome.com photo courtesy of Dinner at home Putting our best foot forward. Thank you for making what was once a bustling shoe factory now Virginia Living’s and Central Virginia’s Best Luxury Hotel and Best Special Event Venue. we’ve always believed in 434.455.1500 I www.craddockterryhotel.com I On the James River, Downtown Lynchburg, VA Featuring Shoemakers American Grille, Waterstone Pizza, and Jefferson Street Brewery. EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment CENTRAL VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Hospital Bon Secours St. Mary’s Hospital 5801 Bremo Road, Richmond Best Orthodontist Graham Gardner, D.D.S. 1206 Willow Lawn Drive, Richmond Best Lawyer 804-358-2328 Craig S. Cooley, Esquire 3000 Idlewood Ave., Richmond BonSecours.com, 804-281-8006 While the Bon Secours Catholic tradition may have started during the French Revolution, the care provided by Bon Secours today is certainly not old fashioned. With more than 1,000 physicians in its state-of-the-art St. Mary’s Hospital alone, Bon Secours continues the mission to provide compassionate healthcare to those in need. That is good help, indeed. second place: VCU Medical Center, Richmond GardnerGrins.com, 804-282-0505 He did his 8th-grade science fair project on orthodontics. Need we say more? Helping people achieve beautiful smiles is what makes him tick, but there’s more to Dr. Gardner than just braces. An avid outdoor enthusiast, his fun-loving personality extends to his colorful practice. Be sure to ask about his juggling skills. second place: Dale C. Rogers, D.D.S., Midlothian Operating out of a small office in downtown Richmond, this defense attorney has worked some very high-profile cases, including the D.C.-area sniper trials. Prudent, gracious and highly respected by fellow attorneys and judges alike, Craig S. Cooley is definitely the guy you want on your side, no objections. second place: Cary B. Bowen, Richmond BowenLawFirm.com, 804-379-1900 third place: David Cox, Lynchburg CoxLawGroup.com, 434-845-2600 VCUHealth.org, 804-828-9000 third place: Henrico Doctors’ Hospital, Richmond HCAVirginia.com, 804-289-4500 WBPerkinson.com, 804-739-6500 third place: Richard M. Marcus, D.D.S., M.S., Ashland WBPerkinson.com, 804-550-3324 Most Beloved Pediatrician 7000 Patterson Ave., Richmond Charles V. Terry, M.D., F.A.A.P. VAPeds.com, 804-282-9706 Among the “Best Doctors in America,” this Richmond “Top Doc” certainly has the credentials to be among the best. But with a family of his own, he also knows firsthand what concerns parents (and children) when it comes to their pediatricians: dedication to their child’s health and lots of smiles. second place: J. Mark Shreve, M.D., Richmond PedAssocRichmond.com, 804-282-4205 third place: G. Thomas Rowe, M.D., F.A.A.P., Richmond VAPeds.com, 804-282-9706 Best Dentist Best Outdoor Outfitter REI 2020 Old Brick Road, Glen Allen W. Baxter Perkinson Jr., D.D.S. 1612 Huguenot Road, Midlothian REI.com, 804-360-1381 WBPerkinson.com, 804-794-9789 Born in Petersburg, raised in Powhatan and Richmond and in practice for more than 40 years, Dr. Perkinson is certainly Richmond’s very own dentist. He earned his degree from VCU/MCV, and then went on to found Dr. Baxter Perkinson & Associates, which now has 10 practices across the Richmond area and more than 250 employees. second place: Karen S. McAndrew, D.M.D., M.S., Providing top-brand gear and clothing for outdoor enthusiasts, REI has everything for paddling the James to hiking the Appalachian Trail. But it doesn’t stop there— with its calendar full of classes and events, you can brush up on your outdoor skills before you hit the trail. second place: Bass Pro Shops, Ashland BassPro.com, 804-496-4700 third place: Blue Ridge Mountain Sports, multiple Richmond locations BRMS.com Richmond VAPros.net, 804-741-8689 third place: Dennis C. Wong, D.D.S., Ashland WBPerkinson.com, 804-739-6484 Best Kitchen Designer 12535 Patterson Ave., Richmond Best Cosmetic Surgeon Joe Niamtu III, M.D. 11319 Polo Place, Midlothian David Raber, Classic Kitchens of Virginia Best Independent School Collegiate School 103 N. Mooreland Road, Richmond ClassicKitchensOfVa.com, 804-784-5075 Specializing in the design and implementation of unique kitchens, David Raber strives to integrate high-quality workmanship and state-of-theart products with aesthetic form and function. Translation: from the Sub-Zero fridge and Wolf range to the customized cabinets, your dinner guests will be drooling, and not just over the food. second place: Carol Pipes, A.S.I.D., Carol Pipes Interior Design, Richmond LoveThatFace.com, 804-934-3223 Dr. Niamtu is internationally recognized as one of the leaders in his field. Surgeon, teacher and author, he also volunteers his services to several charities, including Operation Smile. In the operating room, all he does are faces, so you can feel confident in his highly specialized hands. second place: Nadia P. Blanchet, M.D., Richmond NadiaBlanchetMD.com, 804-320-8545 third place: Dr. Michael Godin, M.D., Richmond DrGodin.com, 804-285-8578 Collegiate-Va.org, 804-740-7077 This co-educational college preparatory school in Richmond is once again listed among the best in Virginia. Multi-million-dollar additions keep it up to date architecturally and technologically, but Collegiate’s strong sense of community and tradition make it stand out. second place: St. Catherine’s School, Richmond 804-784-8088 third place: Abigail F. Bishop, C.K.D., C.B.D., Katheryn Robertson, Ltd., Richmond KatherynRobertson.com, 804-353-6721 St.Catherines.org, 804-288-2804 third place: St. Christopher’s School, Richmond StChristophers.com, 804-282-3185 Best Dermatologist Georgia K. Seely, M.D. 5421 Patterson Ave., Richmond Sweet Treats, Sweet Spot DermVa.com, 804-285-2006 Classic candy store redux in Richmond. Walking into Richmond’s Sweet Spot is like walking into a creamsicle on a summer afternoon, with its bright orange walls and white shelves glittering with glass jars full of chocolate and candy. “It’s fun to watch first-timers come in. They just kind of stop in the front and look around,” says owner Chrissy Triano, 44, who, with her sister, Sarah Soloman, 36, opened the store in 2010. Tucked away from the hullabaloo of Short Pump in West Broad Village, Sweet Spot is the quintessential neighborhood candy store. It has become a hang-out for students who come after school for the board games (vintage Candyland among them), chocolate and candy, cane sugar sodas and Harry Potter Butterbeer. Sweet Spot is also involved in the community and hosts fundraisers, a children’s candy and book club, and candy bingo the first Friday of each month. They also cater weddings, graduations, proms, and even corporate events. From handmade chocolates to giant jawbreakers, they have just about any craving covered, but for Triano, the store is “all about the experience” and bringing people together. It seems it has succeeded at both. ShopSweetSpot.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 With specialties in both dermatology and internal medicine, Dr. Seely gets what goes on both inside the body and on the skin’s surface. A practitioner at Dermatology Associates of Virginia, she is part of a team with one goal in mind: to provide compassionate, high quality dermatological care for skin diseases in patients of all ages. second place: Eileen C. Kitces, M.D., Richmond RichmondDermLaser.com, 804-282-8510 third place: Jo Bohannon-Grant, M.D., Midlothian MidloDerm.com, 804-378-3048 ph o t o c o u rtes y o f sweet sp o t 39 eastern VIRGINI A We’re mad for Eastern Virginia’s salt-sprayed bounty. Whether it’s the seven distinct oyster flavors of the Chesapeake Bay region, one of the pies made with freshly picked berries at Westmoreland Berry Farm, crab and shrimp soup served under the glow of the silver screen at the Commodore Theatre in Portsmouth or anything—and we mean anything—created by Chef Travis Brust, who is not only executive chef at the Williamsburg Inn but was also crowned World Chef Champion at the first World Food Championships in late 2012, we are ready to dive right in. For dessert, we know we can’t go wrong with—or more Eastern Virginia than—peanut pie from the Virginia Diner. And we’ll wash it down with something equally tasty, like Marsh Mud iced coffee from Eastern Shore Coastal Roasting Co. in Willis Wharf or a Lancaster Lemonade at The Tides Inn, thank you very much. Photography by Cade Martin ♠ Illustration by Shane Rebenscheid ♠ Styling by Neely Barnwell Dykshorn ARTS, CULTURE & Entertainment Best Art Event Virginia MOCA Boardwalk Art Show Oceanfront Boardwalk between 19th and 33rd streets, Virginia Beach VirginiaMOCA.org, 757-425-0000 Produced by the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art, this four-day fine-art festival held each June traces its origins back to 1952. Today, more than 200,000 people attend, strolling along the boardwalk lined with the works of more than 1,000 established and emerging artists. second place: Stockley Gardens Arts Festival, Norfolk Hope-House.org, 757-625-6161 third place: An Occasion for the Arts, Williamsburg AOFTA.org Best Overall Museum Dinner and a Movie Portsmouth’s Commodore Theatre brings back the romance of the movies. “Movie theaters were at their biggest between 1945 and 1957,” says Norfolk native Fred Schoenfeld, 68, owner of the historic Commodore Theatre in downtown Portsmouth. Going to the movies was “an event,” he says. “It was the thing to do. You would get dressed up, grab your date and get out of the house to go to a movie.” If megamovie-plexes have taken a bit of the excitement out of seeing a movie, Schoenfeld is trying to bring that “movie-theater experience of old back into the 21st century” at the Commodore, the last of the original 11 theaters in Portsmouth. Schoenfeld bought the Commodore Theatre in 1987 and began an extensive renovation to update the then 42-year-old single-screen theater to accommodate a modern audience. Schoenfeld, who has worked in the technical side of the theater business since junior high, including a few years in AMC’s sound and technical departments after college, enlisted the help of George Lucas’ THX Group at Lucasfilm to design the sound and projection systems. But, “we needed a totally different concept to attract customers,” Schoenfeld says, “something to make the Commodore distinguishable.” So he stripped the first floor of the theater chairs, put in dining tables and turned an office into a kitchen equipped to serve dinner. Offering dinner and a movie has made the Commodore a destination. “We get people coming in from Charlottesville, from Virginia Beach, from Richmond, from D.C.,” says Schoenfeld. Guests are seated about an hour before the show to give time to place their orders, which is done via an on-table phone. The full dinner menu includes wine and beer and features items like crab and shrimp soup, fresh fish and chips, sandwiches on home-baked bread, and, of course, popcorn topped with real butter. Not hungry? There are 318 regular theater seats in the balcony. But Schoenfeld says it is the excitement of going out to a movie at the Commodore that makes the theater popular: “Some people don’t even care what is being shown on the screen: they just want to have the experience.” CommodoreTheatre.com 245 W. Olney Road, Norfolk Chrysler Museum of Art Chrysler.org, 757-664-6200 Closed in 2013 for a major expansion, the museum’s collection is on tour in the Chrysler Museum Roadshow. Displayed in various locations throughout Hampton Roads, including the museum’s two historic houses, you don’t have to worry about missing the art. The Glass Studio also remains open for demonstrations and classes. second place: Virginia Living Museum, Newport News TheVLM.org, 757-595-1900 third place: The Mariners’ Museum, Newport News MarinersMuseum.org, 757-596-2222 Best Special Event Venue CNU’s Ferguson Center for the Arts 1 Avenue of the Arts, Newport News FergusonCenter.org, 757-594-8752 Presenting concerts and performances by major artists and groups from Virginia and around the world, the Ferguson Center for the Arts is home to Christopher Newport University’s music, theater and dance departments and frequently hosts the Virginia Symphony Orchestra. The season runs from September to May. second place: Town Point Park, Norfolk FestEvents.org, 757-441-2345 third place: Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach SandlerCenter.org, 757-385-2555 42 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EASTERN VIRGINIA • Arts, Culture & Entertainment Best Food Festival 45 Cross St., Urbanna Urbanna Oyster Festival UrbannaOysterFestival.com, 804-758-0368 Raw or roasted? Fried or steamed or stewed? Fixed however you fancy, the oyster is the main event at this Urbanna tradition from the food court to the oyster shucking contest. For those not big on the bivalve, there are many other culinary delights and activities to enjoy at this fun fall festival. second place: Poquoson Seafood Festival, Poquoson PoquosonSeafoodFestival.com, 757-868-3588 third place: AT&T Bayou Boogaloo & Cajun Festival, Norfolk FestEvents.org, 757-441-2345 Most Creative Charitable Event Bay School Fine Art Auction 279 Main St., Mathews Best Movie Theater 1507 Colley Ave., Norfolk Naro Expanded Cinema NaroCinema.com, 757-625-6276 Built in 1936 as a smaller alternative to the large movie palaces of downtown Norfolk, the Naro Theater has remained an independent theater despite changing hands in 1977. Showcasing foreign, art and independent films, the Naro also hosts a film forum for the discerning cinephile. second place: CinéBistro at Peninsula Town Center, Hampton CobbCineBistro.com, 757-325-8896 third place: Movie Tavern, Williamsburg MovieTavern.com, 757-941-5362 third place tie: The Commodore Theatre, Portsmouth CommodoreTheatre.com, 757-393-6962 BaySchool-Arts.com, 804-725-1278 The Bay School keeps things fresh with a different theme each year for its largest fundraiser. Whether celebrating the “Roaring Twenties” or “Nature’s Art,” guests participate in both a silent auction featuring local artists and a live auction of everything from dining experiences to vacations. second place: March of Dimes Signature Chefs Auction, Chesapeake HRSigChef.com/virginia-beach, 757-361-0000 third place: Polar Plunge Winter Festival, Virginia Beach PolarPlunge.com, 804-346-5544 Best Music Venue The NorVa 317 Monticello Ave., Norfolk Best Mixologist Kip Mullin, Circa 1918 Kitchen + Bar 10367 Warwick Blvd., Newport News TheNorVa.com, 757-627-4547 Boasting an impressive sound system in an intimate setting with only a main dance floor and a wrap-around balcony, it is no wonder both bands and fans regard the NorVa as one of the best venues in Virginia. General admission with limited seating, shows are open to all ages. second place: CNU’s Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News FergusonCenter.org, 757-594-8752 third place: Farm Bureau Live, Virginia Beach FarmBureauFans.com, 757-368-3000 Circa1918.com, 757-599-1918 Kip Mullin can certainly mix your usual highball, but you might want to shake things up (literally) with one of the five signature cocktails he has created for Circa 1918. Keeping with the spirit of the restaurant, which likes to pay homage to history, each cocktail has a story Mullin will gladly share as you sip. second place: Erika Caylor, Terrapin Restaurant, Virginia Beach TerrapinVirginiaBeach.com, 757-321-6688 third place: Ben Stone, Rockafeller’s Restaurant, Virginia Beach Rockafellers.com, 757-422-5654 Best Performing Arts Company Virginia Opera 160 E. Virginia Beach Blvd., norfolk VAOpera.org, 866-673-7282 Named “The Official Opera Company of the Commonwealth of Virginia” by the Virginia General Assembly in 1994, this 38-year-old Norfolk company takes pride in recognizing new talent. Performing five main-stage productions at venues across Virginia, their season runs from late September through May. second place: Virginia Stage Company, Norfolk VAStage.com, 757-627-1234 third place: Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Norfolk VirginiaSymphony.org, 757-892-6366 The Tides Inn, Irvington Lancaster Lemonade 1 part vodka 1 part Limoncello ½ fresh lemon, squeezed Pour all ingredients into a tall glass over ice. Top with ginger ale and add lemon wheels and fresh lemon balm for garnish. Serves 1 TidesInn.com Best Historic Museum The Mariners’ Museum 100 Museum Drive, Newport News MarinersMuseum.org, 757-596-2222 Recently in the news for its conservation of the USS Monitor’s gun turret, the Mariners’ Museum is home to more than 32,000 maritime objects that tell the story of humankind’s relationship with the sea. Situated in an urban oasis surrounded by park land, it is one of the largest maritime museums in the world. second place: Fort Monroe’s Casemate Museum, Hampton VisitFortMonroe.com, 757-788-3391 third place: Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk Chrysler.org, 757-664-6200 O p p o s i t e pag e : p h oto co u r t e s y o f co m m o d o r e t h e at r e , t h i s pag e : p h oto s by m a r k at k i n s o n B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 43 Play one of Virginia’s Best Courses – Now Even Better Golf Digest named it a Top 10 in Virginia. Virginia Living recognized it as one of the Most Challenging Courses. You’ll call it simply spectacular golf. And now it’s even better. Perfectly designed by nature along the James and Chickahominy Rivers, the 18-hole Tom Fazio-designed championship course at Two Rivers Country Club in Williamsburg has just been perfectly renovated. Follow the par 72 course to a picturesque finish of 1,000 yards of dramatic river frontage. Now enjoy consistent playability on new heat-tolerant 007 bentgrass greens and bunkers. Beyond the course, our private country club offers activities and amenities for the entire family. Boaters find a safe haven in our private harbor. And couples begin their happily ever after with stunning waterfront weddings at sunset. Special golf membership incentives Call for details 2013 Best of Virginia Winner www.GovernorsLand.com For golf, marina or wedding inquiries contact Paula at (757) 258-4610 or Memberships@TwoRiversClub.com. BATTLEFIELDS ARE A BLAST BUT HERE YOU CAN FIRE YOUR OWN CANNONBALL Ready to declare real family time? Revolt against daily routine and find the fun at Kingsmill. Make your escape and demand—once and for all—“No vacation without relaxation.” Pursue your happiness! SUMMER SPLASH PACK AGE FROM $ 2 8 9/ROOM* Dive into cool fun in our river, pools and pond 800.832.5665 • Kingsmill.com/splash Includes lodging • 2 one-hour jet ski rentals UNLIMITED access to fishing, paddle boats, paddle boards, kayaks, jon boats Commemorative towels & more *Valid 5/4–9/2/13. Visit website for details. ©2013 Xanterra Kingsmill, LLC. All rights reserved. Lancaster County, Congratulations to all the Lancaster County Businesses! CARRIED AWAY CUISINE is a specialty foods retailer featuring hand made, natural prepared foods and baked goods. eir services include designer wedding cakes and catering. CAR WASH CAFÉ It’s always yummy at the Car Wash...it’s great! Best breakfast in town and for miles around. I dream of their delicious grits. Lunch is superb as well. Cute place, very clean, and super friendly service” CHESAPEAKE ACADEMY, an independent day school for children age 3 through grade 8, o ers a traditional, yet innovative curriculum, using Di erentiated Instruction which is enhanced by technology. Di erentiated Instruction helps students achieve maximum growth by o ering creative and challenging learning experiences in a student-centered learning environment. Every student uses MAC computers. Spanish o ered Pre K-8; Latin grade 6. Stationery, Invitations, great cards, eclectic home accessories. Crane, William Arthur, Kate Spade, Vera Wang wedding invitations. PAPETERIE has 20 year’s experience with weddings ... and 20% o wedding invitations ... ALWAYS! Papeterie@verizon.net or 804-435-1125. WHITE STONE EVENT CENTER and “SEVEN” MARTINI BAR “ is exquisite event space can host up to 125 guests. Also onsite is a fabulous martini bar and restaurant open Wednesday thru Saturday at 5pm.” First Saturday of every month from May to November you will nd IRVINGTON FARMERS MARKET. 9am to 1pm — rain or shine. Old-fashioned open-air market featuring local produce, fruit, herbs, owers, plants, meat, seafood, cheese, baked goods, art and handcrafted items, as well as live music and playground. Well behaved doggies are welcome. RAPPAHANNOCK WESTMINSTER-CANTERBURY is a church-related, continuing care retirement community committed to providing the highest quality living experience for senior adults. THE WILD BUNCH “Flowers excite three of the ve senses, sight, scent and touch; they are a living work of art. Weddings, fresh owers, plants and botanical gifts. “ “I am fortunate to have represented wonderful people in a beautiful place for the last thirty-eight years. is honor is as appreciated as it is unexpected.” — Mat Terry THE PEDESTAL provides interior design and custom decorating for residential and commercial clients. Product lines include furniture, ooring, wallpaper, window treatments, lamps, art and accessories. It unfolds with every mile you put behind you. e air is clean. e tra c, gone. Your shoulders relax. Salty air drifts in from the Bay. You’re in the Northern Neck now – where the living is enhanced at every turn with views of Chesapeake Bay, its rivers and creeks. 300 miles of shoreline and scenic back roads. e vibrant towns of Irvington, Kilmarnock, Lively and White Stone are lled with quaint shops and restaurants that greet you with re ned southern friendliness and charm. Virginia THE DANDELION YOUR “Clothing Counselors” in Irvington! 38 years strong-thanks to YOU! SANDPIPER RESTAURANT Established in 1982, e Sandpiper specializes in Quality: Fresh Seafood, Hand Cut Meats, Fabulous Spirits, Dedicated Sta , all in a Casual atmosphere! Virginia Living Readers know a good thing when they see it! Since its inception in 1981, Nancy Myers of INTERIOR INNOVATIONS, has served the Tidewater and Central Virginia and the Northern Neck. Her business has created thousands of Interior Design projects in all areas of residential and commercial design. “ ank you Northern Neck and Southern Virginia for your vote of con dence”. KILMARNOCK ANTIQUE GALLERY “Antiques, Oyster Plates, Persian Rugs, Tall Case Clocks and other quality antiques & Collectables; 22,000 sq ft, a destination for those that love antiques and quality” SPORTS CENTRE “Sports Centre o ers the best in uniforms, trophies, athletic gear and equipment. Let us go to bat for you!” CONNEMARA CORPORATION has been in business building custom homes in the Northern Neck and surrounding areas for twenty years. We have always prided ourselves with being on time and budget. LEE STEPHENS LAW, PLC “ e only law rm in Virginia devoted to the practice of conservation easements. Lawyers statewide know when they have a tough donation case, they rely on us.” NATE’S TRICK DOG CAFE is a wonderful little restaurant full of music and laughter and extraordinary food located in the quaint water town of Irvington, Virginia. SARA BROWN SALON strives to provide every guest with an excellent experience from the moment they enter the door until they leave. Leave the stress of the outside world and relax choosing from a variety of services o ered, hair, make-up, nails and massage today. TIDES INN is a waterfront resort with golf, spa, sailing and river-to-fork cuisine highlighting Virginia’s bounty along the Chesapeake Bay and Wine Trail. 800-843-3746. TidesInn.com Just far enough away –an hour from Richmond, two hours from Washington or Hampton Roads – for you to experience the road less traveled. We have it all here in Lancaster County. Situated in the heart of the Northern Neck, with superb museums and galleries, venues for live entertainment, thrilling outdoor life, and award-winning amenities, Lancaster is the “Best of ” of all the Northern Neck o ers. Lancaster by the Bay Chamber of Commerce • www.lancasterva.com • (804) 435-6092 29TH AnnuAl FAll STOCklEy GARdEnS ARTS FESTivAl CREATE HOPE. presents SATuRdAy & SundAy, MAy 18 & 19 Works From More Than 150 Artists • Live Music Delicious Food • Fun Children’s Activities For information, visit StockleyGardens.com. All proceeds benefit the Hope House Foundation. 698 Stockley Gardens, Norfolk, VA, 23507 in Historic Ghent www.Hope-House.org EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EASTERN REGION VIRGINIA ••Living Living & &Recreation Recreation Most Welcoming Bed and Breakfast The Inn at Tabbs Creek 384 Turpin Lane, Port Haywood InnAtTabbsCreek.com, 804-725-5136 Owners Greg and Lori say their Inn at Tabbs Creek is “not your grandma’s B&B.” Eco-friendly and certified Virginia Green lodging, the inn is just down the road from the small town of Mathews. Wake up to organic coffee, kayak or paddleboard the Mathews River, enjoy oysters off the private dock, or simply relax on the porch. second place: The Inn at Warner Hall, Gloucester WarnerHall.com, 804-695-9565 third place: Bay Tree Manor Bed & Breakfast, Seaford BTManor.com, 757-897-6062 liv ing & re cre ation Best Tennis Club Pro Mike Prokopik, Two Rivers Country Club 1400 Two Rivers Road, Williamsburg Best Retirement Community Most Luxurious Hotel Williamsburg Inn 136 E. Francis St., Williamsburg Atlantic Shores Retirement Community 1200 Atlantic Shores Drive, Virginia Beach GovernorsLand.com, 757-258-4610 AtlanticShoresLiving.com, 757-716-2000 ColonialWilliamsburg.com, 757-220-7978 Designed to host heads of state in the comfort and style of a country estate, the 75-year-old Williamsburg Inn treats every guest like royalty. Enjoy high tea overlooking the gardens or dine in the Regency Room. With opulent bedrooms and a host of amenities, you’ll feel like a Rockefeller, if only for the weekend. second place: Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront, Virginia Beach HiltonVB.com, 757-213-3000 third place: The Tides Inn, Irvington TidesInn.com, 804-438-5000 As an active member of the U.S. Professional Tennis Association, with a P1-level certification and more than 25 years of experience as a teaching professional, Prokopik puts his passion into practice as tennis club pro at Two Rivers Country Club. Teaching players of all levels from lessons to clinics, he also organizes summer camps and tournaments. second place: Hoy Correll, Williamsburg Inn Tennis Club, Williamsburg ColonialWilliamsburg.com, 757-220-7794 third place: Brian Hogge, James River Country Club, Newport News JamesRiverCountryClub.com, 757-595-9121 Residents don’t just feel like part of the community, they are the community at Atlantic Shores, the only self-governed, equity-ownership retirement community in the state. Situated on 100 wooded acres just minutes from golf courses, museums and shops, Atlantic Shores is best known for its award-winning cuisine, service and health care. second place: Westminster-Canterbury on Chesapeake Bay, Virginia Beach WCBay.com, 757-496-1100 third place: Rappahannock WestminsterCanterbury, Irvington EmbraceLifeAtRWC.org, 804-438-4000 Most Challenging Golf Course Kingsmill Resort 1010 Kingsmill Road, Williamsburg Best Resort for the Whole Family Great Wolf Lodge 549 E. Rochambeau Drive, Williamsburg Best Hiking Trail Noland Trail, Mariners’ Museum Park 100 Museum Drive, Newport News GreatWolf.com/Williamsburg, 757-229-9700 It’s 84 degrees all year round at the Great Wolf Lodge, perfect for playing in this 79,000-square-foot indoor waterpark, complete with steep slides for adventurous types and zero-depth entry areas for the little ones. Towel off for the many dry-land activities and for the nightly fireside story time in the Grand Lobby. second place: The Tides Inn, Irvington TidesInn.com, 804-438-5000 third place: Kingsmill Resort, Williamsburg Kingsmill.com, 757-253-1703 third place Tie: Virginia Beach Resort Hotel & Conference Center, Virginia Beach VirginiaBeachResort.com, 757-481-9000 MarinersMuseum.org/Park, 757-596-2222 Within the 550-acre urban oasis of the Mariners’ Museum Park, you will find absolute peace along the Noland Trail. Following the banks of Lake Maury, this 5-mile trail features 14 bridges, beautiful views of the lake, picnic areas and plenty of benches to stop and sit a bit. second place: First Landing State Park, Virginia Beach VirginiaStateParks.gov, 757-412-2300 third place: Newport News Park, Newport News NNParks.com Kingsmill.com, 757-253-1703 Three championship-caliber, 18-hole golf courses designed by Arnold Palmer, Pete Dye, Curtis Strange and Tom Clark, are the focal point of Kingsmill Resort. The River, The Plantation, and The Woods courses were all designed to follow the contours of the land along the James River, among gently rolling hills, and within hardwood forests. second place: Golden Horseshoe Golf Club, Williamsburg ColonialWilliamsburg.com, 757-220-7696 third place: Two Rivers Country Club, Williamsburg GovernorsLand.com, 757-258-4610 Take Your Pick Westmoreland Berry Farm wants you to pick the fruits of their labor. When Captain John Smith sailed past what would eventually become Westmoreland Berry Farm in the Northern Neck in 1608, he was showered with arrows fired by the Rappahannock tribe. Today, the Voorhees family owns the land and welcomes families to visit the farm’s 20-acre “pick- your-own” fields and fill containers with strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and more. “We enjoy seeing teenagers coming out, seeing that whole family atmosphere together,” says Kane Lloyd, farm manager since 2011. Not much of a picker? The farm’s Country Store offers ready-picked fruit as well as jams and preserves. Even better, the farm’s Eagle Cafe offers sundaes and pies, all made with berries fresh from the farm. And while the Rappahannock tribe were not keen to be discovered, Lloyd sees the farm as having the opposite problem. “We’re the best kept secret!” he says. WestmorelandBerryFarm.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 49 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EASTERN VIRGINIA • Living & Recreation Best Group Fitness Hampton Roads Black Girls RUN! Hampton Roads BlackGirlsRUN.com Created to combat the obesity epidemic among African-American women, Black Girls RUN! is on a nationwide mission to get girls running, and better health is not the only benefit. Its 1,085 members in the Hampton Roads chapter make for lots of running buddies, and with eight weekly group runs there’s no excuse to stay home. second place: Olive for Yoga, Deltaville Best Place to Fish 425 Water St., Yorktown York River Charters YorkRiver.net, 757-645-8397 If anyone knows the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries, it’s Captain Alan Alexander. A native of the fishing community of Croaker, he returned from service in the U.S. Navy to found York River Charters in 2011. With this kind of expert insight on your small boat experience, you’re sure to go where the fish are biting. second place: Lynnhaven Fishing Pier, Virginia Beach LynnhavenPier.com, 757-481-7071 third place: James River Bridge Fishing Pier, Newport News Newport-News.org, 757-247-0364 Best Hunting Preserve Blandfield Plantation Essex County BlandfieldPlantation.com Under the Wheat family’s stewardship since 1983, Blandfield Plantation has become a hunting destination with the restoration of the historical home, lands and habitats. Four-thousand acres of freshwater tidal marshes, farm fields and woodlands are home to various waterfowl species, quail and pheasant. Accommodations in the hunting lodge include a well-stocked bar and meals before a roaring fire. second place: Chickahominy Wildlife Management Area, Charles City DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 third place: Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge, Virginia Beach FWS.gov/BackBay/Hunting.html, 757-301-7329 OliveForYoga.com, 804-832-0079 third place: Inlet Fitness, multiple Virginia Beach locations InletFitness.com Best Place to Dance Lindy Revival 401 N. Boundary St., Williamsburg Best Wine Trail Chesapeake Bay Wine Trail King George, Lancaster, New Kent, Northumberland, Richmond and Westmoreland counties Lindy101.org, 757-328-8884 Most Fashionable Horse Show/Race Strawberry Hill Races New Kent This monthly dance in downtown Williamsburg brings back the swing-style of the 1940s Lindy Hop. Neither partner nor experience is required, but if you’re bashful about your two left feet, try their five-week beginner’s course (free lessons with perfect attendance!) to build your skills. second place: Peabody’s, Virginia Beach PeabodysVirginiaBeach.com, 757-422-6212 third place: Granby Theater, Norfolk GranbyTheater.com, 757-961-7208 ChesapeakeBayWineTrail.com Twelve wineries scattered from New Kent to King George exude the hospitality and charm of the Chesapeake Bay, allowing you to savor the setting and unique flavors of the region. Connected by scenic byways along miles of shoreline, this trail combines fine wine with the culture and history of the Virginia coastline. second place: Colonial Virginia Wine Trail, Henrico, James City and New Kent counties ColonialVirginiaWineTrail.com, 757-229-0999, ext. 120 third place: Eastern Shore Wine Trail, Eastern Shore EasternShoreWineTrail.com, 757-678-5588 StrawberryHillRaces.com A change of hands returns this historical horse race to the Richmond area after 12 years at Colonial Downs in New Kent. This year’s running will also be held in the fall, a nod to the race’s first run in November of 1895. Not to worry, Richmond’s “Rite of Spring” will return to its April date for 2014. second place: Virginia Derby, New Kent ColonialDowns.com, 804-966-7223 third place: Chincoteague Pony Swim, Chincoteague Chincoteague.com, 757-336-2776 Best Historic Site Colonial Williamsburg 101 Visitor Center Drive, Williamsburg ColonialWilliamsburg.com, 757-220-7645 Perpetually pre-Revolution, Colonial Williamsburg lets visitors step back to the 18th century and be a part of history. With re-enactors whose personalities match their period attire, you can chat with the Marquis de Lafayette before touring the Governor’s Palace. Take a carriage ride, visit the sawmill, or sample some circa-1776 tastes at a tavern. second place: Jamestown Settlement, Williamsburg Heaven on the Half Shell Savor the flavors of the seven oyster regions of the Chesapeake Bay. We love our trails in Virginia, be they hiking, historic or all about wine. But we’d like to propose a new one: the oyster-tasting trail. As any good ostreaphile will tell you, an oyster’s flavor comes from the body of water it was raised in, and the Chesapeake Bay region has seven distinct flavor regions. “An oyster is a filter feeder,” explains Mike Hutt, the 59-year-old executive director of the Virginia Marine Products Board. “So if it feeds in salty waters, it’s going to taste salty. If it goes upriver where there’s less salt, then you get an oyster with a completely different flavor.” Hutt was part of an eight-person panel that reached consensus on three flavor descriptors—saltiness, sweetness and buttery/creaminess—and defined the boundaries of the seven regions, now outlined in a brochure, “A Guide to the Flavors of Virginia Oysters.” Region #1 (Seaside) offers “initial bold saltiness,” #2 (Upper Bay Eastern Shore) balances “salt and sweet,” #3 (Lower Bay Eastern Shore) is both “salty and creamy,” #4 (Upper Bay Western Shore) offers “a light cream taste,” #5 (Middle Bay Western Shore) has an “easily distinguished cream,” #6 (Lower Bay Western Shore) leads to “a sweet finish” and #7 (Tidewater) is a “salty oyster with sweetness and a smooth finish.” Such diversity is only possible in the Chesapeake Bay. “We happen to be unique in that we have the bay, the rivers and the sea,” says Hutt. So grab a map, oyster lovers, and prepare to take a bite out of Virginia’s tastiest new trail. VirginiaOysters.org HistoryIsFun.org/Jamestown-Settlement.htm, 757-253-4838 third place: Fort Monroe, Hampton VisitFortMonroe.com, 757-637-7778 Best Outdoor Adventure Go Ape! 5537 Centerville Road, Williamsburg GoApe.com, 800-971-8271 Try to forget your fear of heights and channel your inner Tarzan at this unique adventure course: a series of zip lines, obstacles and rope swings set high in the trees. Encouraging everyone to live life adventurously, Go Ape! lets participants explore the great outdoors from a whole new vantage point: the trees. second place: Busch Gardens, Williamsburg BuschGardens.com/Va, 800-343-7946 third place: Chanco on the James, Spring Grove Chanco.org, 757-294-3126 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 51 EASTERN VIRGINIA • Food & Drink Best Barbecue Restaurant Pierce’s PITT Bar-B-Que Pierces.com, 757-565-2955 447 E. Rochambeau Drive, Williamsburg Prepare to drool: juicy pulled pork drenched in “Doc” Pierce’s Original Bar-B-Que Sauce, a rack of slow-cooked, marinated ribs, crispy sweet potato sticks, homemade carrot cake. Need we continue? A favorite of Colin Farrell, Al Roker, Willard Scott, Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, this Williamsburg joint has done barbecue right since 1971. second place: Smoke BBQ Restaurant & Bar, Newport News SmokeNN.com, 757-595-4320 third place: County Grill & Smokehouse, Yorktown CountyGrill.net, 757-591-0600 food & drink Most Creative Cocktail Menu Circa 1918 Kitchen + Bar Circa1918.com, 757-599-1918 10367 Warwick Blvd., Newport News Best Overall Restaurant Circa 1918 Kitchen + Bar Circa1918.com, 757-599-1918 10367 Warwick Blvd., Newport News Best Dessert Menu Circa 1918 Kitchen + Bar 10367 Warwick Blvd., Newport News Circa1918.com, 757-599-1918 This restaurant’s menu is always eclectic and ever-changing, with inventive dessert specials like chocolate beignets with honey gelato. But Circa 1918’s legendary dark cocoa cake is a menu staple. With some hazelnut gelato and peanut butter “powder” (we think that’s the secret ingredient), Circa 1918’s is singularly delicious. second place: The Trellis Restaurant, Williamsburg TheTrellis.com, 757-229-8610 third place: MAD about Chocolate, Williamsburg MADAboutChocolate.us, 757-645-2995 Envision Ava Gardner dressed up in red, carefully placed violet accents completing her brilliant look. Not the actress—we’re talking about Circa 1918’s Ava Gardner cocktail of Stoli vodka, berry compote, St. Germain liqueur and a hint of lime. The Don, the Rum Diaries and Lady Sings the Blues also come highly recommended. second place: Seven, White Stone WhiteStoneEventCenter.com, 804-435-2300 third place: Bardo Edibles + Elixirs, Norfolk BardoEats.com, 757-622-7362 Circa 1918 offers quite the contemporary American menu. Where else can you treat yourself to duck meatloaf, a grilled lamb burger topped with goat cheddar, mahi mahi wrapped in a banana leaf and flash-fried squid with a fennel, octopus and tomato salad? Don’t miss out on this coastal gem the next time you’re in town. second place: Terrapin Restaurant, Virginia Beach TerrapinVirginiaBeach.com, 757-321-6688 third place: Le Yaca French Restaurant, Williamsburg LeYacaWilliamsburg.com, 757-220-3616 Best Steakhouse Opus 9 Steakhouse 5143 Main St., Williamsburg Bringing Home the Gold Opus9Steakhouse.com, 757-645-4779 From the lime green, lounge-like main dining room to the refined charm of the Mozart Room, Opus 9 offers as many dining experiences as it does dining rooms. Beyond a wealth of juicy steaks— we recommend the Oscar 9—this Williamsburg chophouse’s other delicious entrées include Frenched Australian lamb chops and citrus-glazed Atlantic salmon. second place: Schlesinger’s at Port Warwick, Newport News SchlesingersSteaks.com, 757-599-4700 third place: Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Virginia Beach RuthsChris.com, 757-213-0747 Chef Travis Brust of the Williamsburg Inn takes top honors at the World Food Championships. Fortunately, not everything that happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Last November, Travis Brust, executive chef of the Williamsburg Inn in Colonial Williamsburg since 2011, brought home the title of World Chef Champion from the first World Food Championships, held in the expansive parking lot of Bally’s Las Vegas. “It was pretty intense,” the 31-year-old Brust says of his three days of fierce food competition in the blazing sun and neon lights of Sin City’s fabled strip. “When we got there and found our tent, we saw chefs Ben Vaughn and Jeff Henderson from the Food Network. We thought they were judges at first, but then we found out they were competitors.” Brust, an award-winning American Culinary Federation chef and New York native, confesses he thought he’d be eliminated on the first day. But, “for lack of a better term,” he says, “I kicked everyone’s butt!” Brust made it through the first round—completed in a heart-racing 30 minutes—by making a seared salmon fillet with fennel and apple slaw, vodka raspberry reduction and corn and leeks. When the field of 14 was culled to eight, Brust prepared—again in just 30 minutes— braised duck on a fresh herb biscuit hors d’oeuvre and Virginia honey and peanut encrusted duck breast entrée. (How could any chef stand a chance against Virginia’s finest, we ask?) But it was a dish fit for a queen—literally—that won Brust the title in the final round. He prepared a version of the dish served to Queen Elizabeth when she visited Colonial Williamsburg in 2007: fennel pollen dusted rockfish served with sautéed bitter greens, fresh oyster and pearl potato stew finished with a ginger citrus beurre blanc, accented with carrot cardamom gel. (Brust was a sous chef at the Inn at that time. “I wasn’t quite high enough on the food chain” to meet the queen in person, he says.) Brust says the VIP events and red carpet moments in Vegas following the win made him feel like a celebrity. What was the reaction he got when he returned home to Williamsburg? That, he says, was like “hitting a home run out of left field.” ColonialWilliamsburg.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 Best Bakery Sugar Plum Bakery 1353 Laskin Road, Virginia Beach SugarPlumBakery.org, 757-422-3913 Snow angel cake layered with white chocolate ganache, confetti twist donuts and spaghetti bread with sundried tomatoes, garlic, onion and basil are just a few of the unique cakes, sweets and breads Sugar Plum makes. But what makes this beach bakery truly special is its unwavering commitment to training and employing persons with disabilities. second place: Just Cupcakes, Virginia Beach JustCupcakes.net, 757-425-1010 third place: The Cake Man, Mathews Facebook.com/TheCakeManBakery, 804-725-7407 photo courtesy of Colonial Williamsburg EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EASTERN VIRGINIA • Food & Drink Best Sunday Brunch TradeWinds 2800 Shore Drive, Virginia Beach Best Place for a Sandwich The Cheese Shop: Merchants Square 410 w. Duke of Gloucester St., Williamsburg Best Farmers’ Market Williamsburg Farmers’ Market 402 W. Duke of Gloucester St., Williamsburg TradeWindsRestaurant.com, 757-481-9000 Leave the cereal and frozen breakfast sandwiches at home. Indulge in the TradeWinds’ raw bar, doughnut machine, chocolate fountain, and omelet, waffle, sushi and carving stations. If you plan to experience the bayside restaurant’s acclaimed Easter, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or Thanksgiving Day brunches, book your reservation now. second place: The Chamberlin, Hampton HistoricChamberlin.com, 757-637-7200 third place: Opus 9 Steakhouse, Williamsburg Opus9Steakhouse.com, 757-645-4779 CheeseShopWilliamsburg.com, 757-220-0298 Sure, The Cheese Shop is known for the grand selection of fine cheeses it has carried since 1971, but its made-to-order sandwiches rank right up there. The next time you’re in Williamsburg, drop by for hot smoked salmon on focaccia, chicken salad with applewood-smoked bacon or—you guessed it—the best grilled cheese you’ll ever eat. second place: TASTE, Virginia Beach TASTEUnlimited.com, 757-422-3399 third place: Leaping Lizard Cafe, Virginia Beach WilliamsburgFarmersMarket.com, 757-259-3768 It is the goal of many farmers’ markets to both encourage healthy eating and support local producers. But the Williamsburg Farmers’ Market takes its mission one step further by aiming to revive “the historic role of the Williamsburg town center as a place for markets.” The seasonal affair has been an integral part of the community since 2002. second place: Virginia Beach Farmers Market, Virginia Beach VBGov.com/FarmersMarket, 757-385-4388 third place: Irvington Farmers Market, Irvington IrvingtonVa.org, 804-480-0697 757-460-5327 Best Pizzeria YNot Pizza Multiple Virginia Beach locations Best Locally Owned Coffee Shop Aromas 431 Prince George St., Williamsburg Best Ice Creamery Gloucester Short Lane Ice Cream 6721 George Washington Memorial Highway, YNotPizza.com Twenty years ago, the DiSilvestro family opened their first location in Hampton Roads with the goal of providing authentic Italian fare in a familyfriendly atmosphere. Now with multiple locations throughout the area, they’ve achieved that vision five times over. Best of all, it’s a pizzeria with a conscience, creating tantalizing gluten-free and non-dairy pies in addition to the traditional. second place: Southwind Pizza, Mathews SouthwindPizza.com, 804-725-2766 third place: Cogan’s Pizza, Norfolk CogansPizza.com, 757-627-6428 AromasWorld.com, 757-221-6676 This inviting brick-front shop is dedicated to providing “warmth beyond the cup” for all of its customers, and it does so in a cozy, casual atmosphere. In addition to offering an impressive array of fine coffees and teas, Aromas also serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as assorted sweets and baked goods. second place: The Local, Irvington Facebook.com/TheLocalIrvington, 804-438-9356 third place: Cafe Stella, Norfolk ShortLaneIceCream.com, 804-695-2999 At Short Lane, what’s old is new again. The oldfashioned ice cream parlor, which opened in 2004, occupies what was once a country store and post office, built back in 1936. Whether you order a banana boat sundae or a soda float, Short Lane’s handmade ice cream adds another dimension to the expected. second place: Brown Dog Ice Cream, Cape Charles 757-695-3868 third place: Island Creamery, Chincoteague IslandCreamery.net, 757-336-6236 757-625-0461 Best Burger Joint Five Guys Burgers and Fries 1430 High St., Williamsburg Best in Show FiveGuys.com, 757-229-1213 Much of Five Guys’ appeal lies in its simplicity. There are peanut shells on the floor and nothing but burgers and dogs on the menu. It’s hard to top the fresh-cut fries cooked in peanut oil, though. No wonder the Virginia joint, founded in Arlington in 1986, is now a hit nationwide. second place: 80/20 Burger Bar, Norfolk 8020BurgerBar.com, 757-233-7900 third place: Dog-N-Burger Grille, Norfolk Marsh Mud cold-brewed coffee is Virginia’s best new product. “I’m rarely speechless,” confesses Kristin Willis, co-owner with her husband Jamie of the Eastern Shore Coastal Roasting Company in Willis Wharf. But when their Marsh Mud cold-brewed coffee won Best New Product overall at the Virginia Food and Beverage Expo last year, Willis says she was shocked: “I was like, what? Best overall?” Marsh Mud bested food and beverage entries from more than 50 other contestants. The Willises came up with the idea for Marsh Mud after their customers kept asking them how to make the cold-brewed coffee they served at their booth when they traveled to food shows and markets. Kristin says the couple, who started their wholesale coffee roasting business in 2006, asked themselves how they could package the coarsely ground coffee blend to make it “Eastern Shore easy.” That’s when they thought of measuring the roasted coffee into a 100 percent cotton muslin bag that could then be thrown into a pitcher of cool water and left to steep for about 12 hours. The result is a brew that is less acidic than heat-brewed coffee, and more concentrated too—watch out for the caffeine kick, it’s swift. Marsh Mud can be kept in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. The win led the micro-roaster to being picked up by the recently opened Glen’s Garden Market on S Street in D.C. as one of only four coffee roasters in the state whose blends will be carried in the store, which sells products exclusively from the Chesapeake Bay watershed. The roaster’s many blends, including Fog Cutter, Hog Island Surprise and Chincoteague Sunset are sold at dozens of bed and breakfast inns, boutiques, drugstores and even a meat market on the Eastern Shore. Though their company is definitely growing, “We’re not out to conquer the world,” explains 40-year-old Kristin, a former marine biologist. “After all this, the coffee has become the vessel for our message, which is small businesses staying local. “It’s a really tight community here. I credit the Shore for our success,” says Kristin. “We’ve had longevity because local customers and businesses have sustained us.” The Willises roast about 15,000 pounds of coffee a year and have a patent pending for Marsh Mud. This means, laughs the go-local Kristin (with more than a hint of schadenfreude), “If Starbuck’s wanted to grind coffee and put it in a bag for iced coffee, they couldn’t.” ESVAMTC.com 757-623-1667 Best Breakfast Restaurant Citrus 2265 W. Great Neck Road, Virginia Beach CitrusVB.com, 757-227-3333 It’s all about breakfast at Citrus, where everything—from the pancake batter to the hollandaise sauce to the sweet potato biscuits—is made from scratch using local ingredients. This beachtown retreat serves all kinds of palate pleasers that make getting out of bed worth the effort. Jumbo lump crab omelets, pumpkin pancakes and country chicken Benedict are but a few. second place: Doc Taylor’s, Virginia Beach DocTaylors.com, 757-425-1960 third place: Car Wash Cafe and Catering, Kilmarnock 804-435-0405 p h o t o b y J o h n H . S h e a l ly I I All Photography: Jim Goodrich - JPG Photo Events Stephen and Kevin Whitt would like to thank all our customers and the readers of Virginia Living Magazine who honored us with this “BEST OF VIRGINIA 2013” award. We would also like to express our gratitude to past and present employees, subcontractors and suppliers whose efforts made it possible. Our mission is to design and deliver the finest quality custom cabinet products in the market and make each client’s experience delightful and memorable. Whitt Corporation is owned and operated by Stephen and Kevin Whitt and specializes in the design, fabrication and installation of custom kitchens, baths, entertainment centers, offices, libraries, etc. Our clients come to us from both the new construction and remodeling markets. Since 1984, Whitt Corporation has offered comprehensive services beginning with the design concept, photo-realistic CAD drawings and assistance with selections, style, colors and other decorating needs. Our clients consistently tell us that they select us because of our: • Ability to integrate the style of the cabinetry with the rest of the house. • Ability to fuse art with function. • Responsiveness. • Ability to coordinate the project with other contractors and subcontractors. All products are constructed using select materials. Custom offerings include an unlimited array of door styles, wood species and finishes. Our extremely creative design and technical staffs are experienced in working with every major style, period, architectural element and material from contemporary to traditional. Please contact us if you have a project with which we can help. Whitt Corporation 4854-11 Longhill Rd (in the Olde Towne Square Shopping Center) Williamsburg, VA 23188 Open Monday through Friday 9 AM to 5 PM firstname.lastname@example.org 757 564 0231 EASTERN VIRGINIA • Food & Drink Most Creative Chocolatier MAD about Chocolate 204 Armistead Ave., Williamsburg Best Wine Shop C3 Vino 115 W. Washington St., Suffolk MADAboutChocolate.us, 757-645-2995 Chocoholics, hear this: When Marcel Desaulniers sold the Trellis Restaurant a few years back, it seemed his days in the food service industry were over. But last year, Desaulniers came out of semiretirement to open up a decidedly unique eatery— a chocolate cafe. Visit MAD about Chocolate for cake and a salad or beer and bread pudding, all done with a chocoholic’s tastes in mind. second place: The Royal Chocolate, Virginia Beach 757-539-0158 C3—think corks, cheese and charcuterie—may have only opened in August 2012, but its selection of wines from around the globe has already made it a success. There’s also a substantial collection of Virginia wines available. Fortified Friday night wine tastings contribute to the shop’s reputation as a foodie destination in downtown Suffolk. second place: Total Wine & More, Newport News Best Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurant Pasha Mezze 350 W. 22nd St., Norfolk TheRoyalChocolate.com, 757-557-6925 third place: Schakolad Chocolate Factory, Virginia Beach Schakolad.com, 757-486-3740 TotalWine.com, 757-249-2261 third place: Specials Wine Seller, Kilmarnock Facebook.com/SpecialsWineSeller, 804-436-9463 PashaMezze.com, 757-627-1318 When Pasha Mezze opened its doors 10 years ago, it sold Turkish home décor items and groceries, with few dine-in options available. The store’s emphasis on hospitality and healthy entrées was such a hit with locals that the multigenerational, familyowned business is now a thriving restaurant focused on Mediterranean and Anatolian cuisine. second place: Circa 1918 Kitchen + Bar, Best Al Fresco Dining Merroir 784 Locklies Creek Road, Topping Best Local Microbrewery 521 W. 25th St., Norfolk O’Connor Brewing Company OConnorBrewing.com, 757-623-2337 Beer is no stranger to a college campus, but few students actually brew their own ale. Norfolk native Kevin O’Connor is among these rare birds. After years of home brewing, he channeled his collegiate pastime to create O’Connor Brewing Company, now home to local favorites like Norfolk Canyon Pale Ale and Great Dismal Black IPA. second place: Smartmouth Brewing Co., Norfolk SmartmouthBrewing.com, 757-624-3939 third place: The St. George Brewing Company, Hampton StGeorgeBrewingCo.com, 757-865-2337 Facebook.com/Merroir, 804-758-2871 Quaint riverfront homes, an assortment of neatly docked boats sloshing in the breeze, the placid Rappahannock stretching as far as the eye can see. When the mealtime view is this captivating, it might just distract you from your roasted oysters, filet of rockfish or Barcat oyster chowder. Let go, and get lost in your surroundings. second place: 757 CrAvE at Marina Shores, Newport News Circa1918.com, 757-599-1918 third place: Food for Thought Restaurant, Williamsburg FoodForThoughtRestaurant.com, 757-645-4665 Virginia Beach Facebook.com/757CrAvE, 757-376-4361 third place: Al Fresco, Newport News AlFrescoItalianRestaurant.com, 757-873-0644 Best Caterer Carried Away Cuisine 10 N. Main St., Kilmarnock CarriedAwayCuisine.com, 804-435-9191 Who knew? What began as Pennsylvania Amish country’s first gourmet food stand became a leading caterer in the Northern Neck? After Carried Away’s Jackie Brown earned a reputation as “the cookie lady” in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, in the ’80s, she expanded into a full-service catering business and brought it to Kilmarnock in 2002. The rest, as they say, is history. second place: Sweetwater Cuisine, Virginia Beach SweetwaterCuisine.com, 757-403-7073 third place: Chef by Design Catering Company, Virginia Beach ChefByDesignCatering.com, 757-496-3900 third place tie: The Catering Company, Williamsburg WilliamsburgOccasions.com, 757-220-8011 Best Winery Best Sports Bar The Williamsburg Winery 5800 Wessex Hundred, Williamsburg Shorebreak Pizza & Taphouse 2941 Shore Drive, Virginia Beach ShoreBreakVB.com, 757-481-9393 Good times await at Shorebreak, where patrons are urged to eat, drink, watch and play. Catch the game with the guys, spend happy hour with the girls or treat the whole family to dinner. The restaurant is smoke-free, and there’s a game room for the kids. Game on! second place: Roger Brown’s Restaurant & Sports Bar, Portsmouth RogerBrowns.com, 757-399-5377 third place: The Zone, Rock and Sports Bar, Virginia Beach Facebook.com/TheZoneVa, 757-467-2329 WilliamsburgWinery.com, 757-229-0999 Records claim John Johnson was the first to plant grapevines on the site of the future Williamsburg Winery property, under the Twelfth Acte of 1619. Though the land has changed hands many times since the 17th century, it still produces some of the finest wine around. Try the Jamestown Cellars Settlers’ spiced wine for a taste of early America. second place: Mermaid Winery, Norfolk MermaidWinery.com, 757-233-4155 third place: New Kent Winery, New Kent NewKentWinery.com, 804-932-8240 Best Seafood Restaurant Merroir 784 Locklies Creek Road, Topping Best Overall Bar The Birch 1231 W. Olney Road, Norfolk Best Sushi Cuisine 757-416-3551 Sakura Japanese Restaurant 2029 Lynnhaven Parkway, Virginia Beach Facebook.com/SakuraJapaneseRestaurant, All-you-can-eat sushi? Sakura invites guests to literally fill up on its fresh, artfully presented classic and specialty rolls. And don’t let the restaurant’s strip mall location fool you. Bamboo, stone walls, dim lighting and a glowing fountain inside definitely add a sleek, exotic vibe. second place: Mizuno Japanese Restaurant, Virginia Beach MizunoSushi.com, 757-422-1200 third place: Bangkok Noi Thai Cuisine, Gloucester BangkokNoiThaiCuisine.com, 804-695-1177 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 TheBirchBar.com, 757-962-5400 No bland brews here; this quirky bar specializes in “craft, artisanal, European, crazy, hard-topronounce beer and cheese.” Whether you swing by the family-run establishment for Beer Education Wednesdays, Cheesemonger Thursdays or Pairing Menu Fridays, owners Ben Bublick and Malia Paasch will show you a great time. second place: Lynnhaven Pub, Virginia Beach Facebook.com/Merroir, 804-758-2871 The secret is out. Merroir, Rappahannock Oyster Co.’s casual riverfront tasting room, just might be home to the best oysters you’ll ever eat. Whether you order Olde Salts, Rappahannocks or Stingrays, which are briny, sweet and mild, respectively, you’ll start to be able to tell the difference after swallowing a few. second place: Berret’s Seafood Restaurant and Taphouse Grill, Williamsburg Berrets.com, 757-253-1847 third place: Sandpiper Restaurant, White Stone Facebook.com/SandpiperRestaurant, 804-435-6176 757-481-9720 third place: Nate’s Trick Dog Cafe, Irvington NatesTrickDogCafe.com, 804-438-6363 57 The Height of Luxury: the Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront VOTED MOST LUXURIOUS HOTEL IN VIRGINIA Come see for yourself why the Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront was voted the “Most Luxurious Hotel” and “Virginia’s Top Wedding Vendor” for 2013, as well as “Best Hotel in Virginia” and “Best Beach Hotel” in 2012. 3001 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA 23451 | HiltonVB.com | 757-213-3000 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EASTERN VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Bridal Shop Maya Couture Bridal Salon 12 Best Square, Norfolk MayaCouture.com, 757-461-1690 When she says she learned from the best, owner Maya Warburton is not being bashful. Beginning her fashion career in the NYC flagship bridal house for Vera Wang, she relocated to Virginia Beach to be her own boss. Carrying over 400 dresses on site, Maya can also create custom gowns. second place: All the Rage, Virginia Beach ATRVB.com, 757-491-1418 third place: Pure English Couture Bridal, Virginia Beach PureEnglishBridal.com, 757-631-9810 shopping & se rv ices Best Women’s Clothing Store The Dandelion 4372 Irvington Road, Irvington TheDandelion.com, 804-438-5194 Housed in a parsonage built during the steamboat era, this 38-year-old boutique has become a go-to for summer Saturday morning shopping on the Northern Neck. Vineyard Vines, Marimekko and Eileen Fisher are just a few names on the long list of designers and brands the shopping set will find inside. second place: Binns, Williamsburg BinnsOnline.com, 757-229-3391 third place: Nordstrom, Norfolk Shop.Nordstrom.com, 757-314-1111 Best Hair Salon Changes Hairstyling and City Spa 22 & 710 W. 21st St., Norfolk ChangesAreGood.com, 757-625-5300 It started as a children’s hair salon in 1983, but living up to its name, Changes has grown into a fullfledged salon and day spa. Cutting, styling, coloring, even hair restoration—Changes does just about everything, and they do it for the whole family. second place: Sara Brown Salon, Kilmarnock SaraBrownSalon.com, 804-435-0373 third place: Blow A Salon, Virginia Beach BlowASalon.com, 757-652-3120 third place tie: Gary Allen Hair and Skin Care Centre, Virginia Beach GaryAllenHairSalon.com, 757-425-1641 Bloody Good The mixer that saved a company. In 1993, the economy was in the tank. Frilly businesses and purveyors of nonessentials were floundering and, despite nearly 10 years in the business of peddling pricey comestibles, Blue Crab Bay Co. was on the verge of collapse. “We didn’t know if we were going to keep going or not,” says founder Pamela Barefoot. So Barefoot went for broke. “I thought, ‘What would my dream product be?’” she says from her Melfa office on the Eastern Shore. The answer came surprisingly easy: a special, proprietary Bloody Mary mix. But what would distinguish hers from the shelves and shelves of other Bloody Mary mixers? She looked no farther than her own stockroom for the answer. Many companies have their own version of Chesapeake Bay seasoning (Old Bay being one of the best known), and Blue Crab Bay is no exception. Blue Crab Bay’s Chesapeake Bay seasoning, which is used in many of the company’s products, has a not-so-secret ingredient that adds what Barefoot describes as “the subtle taste of celery.” (“We have to list all the ingredients on the label,” Barefoot adds.) And what marries nicely with Bloody Marys? Why, celery, of course. Then, to give it the flavor of the salt air one would expect from a bayside company, she added clam juice. The blending of the two flavors would give it Blue Crab Bay’s distinctive imprimatur. After mixing, boiling, tasting and repeating the process numerous times in her kitchen, Barefoot corked three different versions, grabbed some vodka and headed off to work to let the staff choose one. (Did we mention that Blue Crab Bay is a fun place to work?) After the voting was done, Barefoot gave it a name—Stingray Bloody Mary Mix— slapped labels on some bottles and got them in front of customers. The response was quick and warm. “Sales started climbing fast after that,” she says. Further fueling Stingray’s acceptance was the gold trophy it won for Outstanding Beverage at the 1994 International Fancy Food Show. Stingray “really put us on the map,” says Barefoot. Toasting Stingray’s upcoming 20th birthday, Blue Crab Bay has added another potential award winner to its shelves: Jalapeno-infused Margarita Mixer. This time, there’s no pressure to save the company. Just sit back, and watch sales climb. BlueCrabBay.com Best Men’s Haircut 222 W. 21st St., Norfolk Jake’s Place Barbering, Lounge, and Spa JakesPlaceGhent.com, 757-627-5253 Jake’s Place is the man’s answer to the salon and day spa. A division of Changes City Spa, it has locker rooms, a steam room, private grooming booths and, of course, a 42-inch plasma TV (set to ESPN). But it’s not all about sports. Jake’s Place provides complete men’s services including barbering, grooming, hand and foot detailing, massages and skin treatments. second place: Sport Clips, Williamsburg-New Town, Williamsburg HaircutMenWilliamsburgVa.com, 757-253-2547 third place: Duke’s Barbershop, Williamsburg DukesCut.com, 757-565-3853 p h o t o c o u r t e s y o f B l u e C r a b B ay C o . B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 59 BEST COSMETIC DENTIST 2013 Virginia Living BEST OF VIRGINIA THANK YOU... READY TO GET THE SMILE OF YOUR DREAMS? Request your free smile analysis from Norge Dental Center today. Call 757-941-5279, or visit williamsburgdds.com. “Over the years, the bonding on my teeth had cracked and yellowed. I knew it was time to get the work redone. Everything Dr. Johnston told me up-front is exactly what happened. I’d do it all over again. Sometimes people say, ‘You look di erent, but I can’t put my ﬁnger on it.’ I don’t think my smile can get any better.” —VIRGINIA DECAMP ...for writing an honest-to-goodness love note to your sweetheart ...for leaving the dishes in the sink so you could ride your bike before sunset ...for surprising your favorite bus driver with a box of cupcakes ...for giving the people around you 100 more reasons to smile, every day ... and yes, for voting Norge Dental 2013 Best Cosmetic Dentist NORGE DENTAL CENTE R | 7450 RICH MO ND ROA D | WILLIA MSB URG, VA 23188 | 757 941 5279 Download your free Time Machine at williamsburgdds.com/specialized-care-adults — Official Cosmetic Dentist for the Miss Virginia and Mrs Virginia Pageant — EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EASTERN VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Florist Jeff’s Flowers of Course, Inc. 300 Ed Wright Lane, Suite F, Newport News Best Shopping Area/Mall MacArthur Center 300 Monticello Ave., Norfolk Best Pet Boarding Care-A-Lot Pet Supply 1924 Diamond Springs Road, Virginia Beach JeffsFlowers.com, 757-827-5333 ShopMacArthur.com, 757-627-6000 MacArthur Center’s one million square feet of retail space means business. They have more than 140 stores, including 40 that are unique to the area like Nordstrom and Apple. Then grab a bite at any of its restaurants from fast food to fine dining. You’ll need the sustenance to get you through this much shopping. second place: Williamsburg Premium Outlets, Williamsburg PremiumOutlets.com/Williamsburg, 757-565-0702 third place: Peninsula Town Center, Hampton PeninsulaTownCenter.com, 757-838-1505 CareALotPetResorts.com, 757-457-9483 This Hampton Roads florist doesn’t limit its services to the area, delivering arrangements to countries all across the globe. It does custom orders too, but no worries if you don’t know what you want—Jeff's has designs already in mind. And the website can tell you the meaning behind those flowers; did you know that sunflowers symbolize loyalty and constancy, and that snapdragons protect their beholders from curses? Neither did we. second place: The Wild Bunch, Kilmarnock TheWildBunchFlowers.com, 804-435-1044 third place: Flowers From the Heart, Mathews FlowersInMathews.com, 804-725-3020 As “Camp Counselors,” the fully-trained, animaladoring staff at Care-A-Lot are in charge of making sure Fido has fun during his stay. All overnight animals are enrolled in doggie daycare, so they get plenty of exercise, and you can even upgrade with special packages like doggie manner sessions, extra treats or a going-home bubble bath. second place: Sandy Creek Pet Resort, North SandyCreekPetResort.com, 804-693-2311 third place: St. Francis Pet Resort & Rehabilitation Center, Williamsburg StFrancisPetResort.GodspeedAnimalCare.com, Best Independent Home Decor Store A. Dodson’s 2948 Bridge Road, Suffolk , 757-253-8199 Best Interior Designer Carol Ritz, Tidewater Interiors 13320 Warwick Blvd., Newport News ADodsons.com, 757-483-1344 This colorful country cottage is chock full of quirky odds and ends. Owner Allison Dodson Anderson offers an eclectic array of furniture, apparel, antiques, housewares and other gifts. It even features a housewares collection called “The South.” Now your coasters, dish towels, glasses and mugs can say “y’all” too. second place: The Pedestal, Kilmarnock Best Sporting Goods Store Dick’s Sporting Goods 701 Lynnhaven Parkway, Virginia Beach TidewaterInteriors.com, 757-872-8666 One of four designers with the small, familyowned design firm, Tidewater Interiors, Carol Ritz has worked projects as small as a single window to a 15,000-square-foot home, contemporary to traditional. Through Tidewater Interiors, whose in-house workroom is unique to the area, she works directly with the seamstresses on custom window treatments and pillows. second place: Nancy Myers, Interior Innovations, DicksSportingGoods.com, 757-463-4379 Spurned by a former employer who didn’t like his suggestions for expanding the bait-and-tackle store, 18-yearold Dick Stack decided he could do better. With $300 from his grandmother, he opened his own bait-and-tackle store in Binghampton, New York, in 1948, which exploded into the national sporting goods store it is today. second place: Bass Pro Shops, Hampton BassPro.com, 757-262-5200 third place: Sports Centre Ltd., Kilmarnock ThePedastal.net, 804-435-1783 third place: Tidewater Interiors, Newport News White Stone InteriorInnovationsVa.com, 804-435-1257 third place: Pam Deihl, The Pedestal, Kilmarnock ThePedestal.net, 804-435-1783 TidewaterInteriors.com, 757-872-8666 804-435-1211 Best Fine Jewelry Store Burkes Fine Jewelers 86 S. Main St., Kilmarnock Best Lawyer Peter G. Decker III 109 E. Main St., Suite 200, Norfolk BurkesJewelers.com, 804-435-1302 Second-generation and family run, Burkes Fine Jewelers carries its own copyrighted designs. Five collections—the Rivah Collection, Lady of the Bay, River Rocks, Bay Bangles and Northern Neck Knots— are a shout-out to the charm of the Northern Neck, and include sterling scallop-shell pendants and engagement rings fashioned with a fisherman’s knot. second place: The Precious Gem, Williamsburg ThePreciousGems.com, 757-220-1115 third place: Long Jewelers, Virginia Beach LongJewelers.net, 757-498-1186 PeteDecker.com, 757-622-3317 Pete Decker practices in all federal and state courts in the Hampton Roads area, but it is his commitment to the community that makes him stand out. An active philanthropist, when it comes to being a lawyer, “being able to help people in the community, that’s the greatest part of my job,” he says. second place: Matson C. Terry II, Irvington Irvington-Law.com, 804-438-5522 third place: Robert Lee Stephens Jr., Irvington LeeStephensLaw.com, 804-480-4090 Most On-Schedule Home Builder Breland & Sons 3530 Main St., Chincoteague Virginia Diner, Wakefield Virginia Diner Peanut Pie ½ pound crushed salted peanuts 1 cup sugar 3 whole eggs ½ cup flour 1½ cups Karo light corn syrup 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted 1 unbaked pie shell Mix eggs, flour and sugar. Then add syrup and peanuts. Add melted butter last. Pour into pie shell. Bake at 250 degrees for 1 ½ hours, or until center is firm. Serves 6 to 8 VADinerRestaurant.com Most Beloved Pediatrician Joseph A. Baust Jr., M.D. 895 Middle Ground Blvd., Suite 200, Newport News BrelandAndSons.com, 757-336-6915 It began in 1995, when Arne Breland moved his family from Brooklyn, New York, to 7-mile-long Chincoteague Island. If the Eastern Shore is small, “Chincoteague is smaller,” he says, and as the new guy in town, he faced competition. “You can’t trust many to renovate or rebuild your home,” but he started with small jobs and built from there. second place: Connemara Corporation, White Stone Facebook.com/PediatricsAtOysterPoint, 757-599-4090 Dr. Baust’s Pediatrics at Oyster Point practice gets Mom-points for its separate sick waiting room. A dedicated well waiting room means you and your little one don’t have to mingle with too many germs if you’re there just for a checkup (unless baby wants to press her nose against the glass fish tank). Their up-to-the-minute Facebook page lets parents know which bugs are going around. second place: Brian K. Butcher, M.D., Newport News 804-435-1551 third place: Sasser Construction, Portsmouth Facebook.com/PediatricsAtOysterPoint, 757-599-4090 third place: Bertrand Ross, M.D., Norfolk SasserHomes.com, 757-484–6075 photo courtesy of Virginia Diner CHKD.org, 757-668-7213 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 61 Thank you, Virginia. (We love you, too.) From everyone here at The Tides, we once again would like to thank our guests and Virginia Living readers for voting us a â€œBest of Virginiaâ€? resort in the Eastern region. We are proud to continue our tradition of being recognized in a variety of categories, including: Best Resort for Families and Most Luxurious Hotel. In honor of these awards, we invite you to join us for championship golf, marine-inspired spa treatments, expert sailing lessons, relaxing tours of the Wine Trail, and lots of fun exploration for kids with our Crab Net Kids program. To reserve a special Virginia Value for your Chesapeake Bay getaway at The Tides, call or visit our website today. 480 King Carter Drive | Irvington, VA 22480 | 800.843.3746 | 804.438.5000 | tidesinn.com EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EASTERN VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Day Spa Changes Hairstyling and City Spa 22 & 710 W. 21st St., Norfolk Best Children’s Clothing Store CarouselChildrens.com, 757-229-1710 The Carousel Children’s Boutique 420 Duke of Gloucester St., Williamsburg ChangesAreGood.com, 757-625-5300 Changes City Spa enhances its menu with a few seasonal specialties designed to target those specific seasonal skin problems, like Spring’s Flower Facial to give winter skin a boost. Facials, waxing, massages, manicures, pedicures, even a body treatment so extensive it’s named The Body Odyssey. In a hurry? Try an express facial or pedicure refresher. second place: The Spa at Kingsmill, Kingsmill Resort, Williamsburg Kingsmill.com/Spa, 757-253-8230 third place: The Spa at Tides Inn, Irvington TidesInn.com, 804-438-5000 Just over the cobblestone streets of Colonial Williamsburg lies the Carousel Children’s Boutique, where Marty Wilson and her mother Margaret offer traditional children’s clothing—baptism and Holy Communion dresses, ties and sailor suits, smocked dresses and Mary Janes—alongside playwear and casual clothes for infants, boys, girls and tweens up to size 16. second place: Sprout Children’s Boutique & Consignment, Virginia Beach SproutChildrensBoutique.com, 757-422-0644 third place: Connie’s Kids, Chesapeake ConniesKids.com, 757-547-5437 Best Air Charter Service Bay Aviation 2649 Greys Point Road, Topping Best Men’s Clothing Store R Bryant Ltd. 757-253-0055 429 Duke of Gloucester St., Williamsburg BayAviationOnline.com, 804-758-9500 The Northern Neck makes for a beautiful scenic drive, but consider what it looks like from the sky. Aside from flight lessons, Bay Aviation can give visitors a bird’s-eye view of the river and bay. Be sure to bring your history buff for a ride in their recently restored Fairchild PT-19, World War II’s primary trainer. second place: Tempus Jets, Newport News There is just something about the Southern gentleman. Tailored, yet relaxed, he is not afraid to show some color, or wear a white three-piece suit. R Bryant Ltd. and its in-house tailor have served the Southern gentleman for 31 years, carrying traditional apparel from casual to formal, all with that dueSouth flair for color, seersucker and sweet tea style. second place: Dan Ryan’s for Men, Virginia Beach DanRyansForMen.com, 757-425-0660 third place: Jos. A. Bank, Newport News JosBank.com, 757-596-0969 A Colorful Compendium Blending the best of Virginia. It was inevitable that noted Virginia chef and food writer Patrick Evans-Hylton would author another book. (He has penned six, including two food history books and a cookbook.) And it was inevitable that Massachusetts-based Storey Publishing’s popular state-by-state Dishing Up cookbook series, would get around to featuring Virginia. So it was just a matter of time before the two collided to create Dishing Up Virginia, 288 fullcolor pages of 145 Virginia-sourced recipes. The result is a colorful compendium of the best ways to put the Commonwealth’s indigenous bounty to use. Evans-Hylton went region by region, plumbing history, consulting other writers and asking friends (regionally speaking, the best in the business) for recipes. Williamsburg Inn Executive Chef Travis Brust turned in the recipe for the Inn’s signature sweet potato pancakes with Blanton’s single barrel bourbon-pecan butter. From Bill Justus, executive chef at The Boar’s Head in Charlottesville, comes a recipe for roasted rack of lamb with rosemary potato terrine and mint gremolata. And somehow Evans-Hylton wrangled the recipe for Miller & Rhoads’ Missouri Club sandwich, once a hit at that Richmond department store’s tearoom. Evans-Hylton doesn’t hamstring us with a timeline that begins with pot likker and rabbit stew in Jamestown and ends somewhere in the ’50s with icebox cake. While colonial tastes are well represented, most recipes are modern and global. “Virginia is the birthplace of American cuisine,” says Evans-Hylton, “and through my book I am hoping folks can see—and appreciate—not only the wonderful history of food and foodways, but their relevance today, and how they keep expanding.” PatrickEvansHylton.com TempusJets.com, 757-875-7779 third place: Jet Air Charter, Virginia Beach JetAirCharter.net, 757-858-1500 third place tie: Landmark Aviation, Norfolk LandmarkAviation.com, 757-857-3463 Best Cycle Shop Best Shoe Store Walk This Way 2120 William Styron Square South, Newport News Conte’s Bike & Fitness in Virginia Beach 1805 Laskin Road, Virginia Beach WalkThisWayShoes.com, 757-599-9255 ConteBikes.com, 757-491-1900 When Charles R. Conte Sr. opened the first Conte’s bicycle store in Newport News in 1957, his vision was simple: To provide a neighborhood store for bike service and repair. He made such a success of it that there are now four stores throughout Virginia, and the business is still family-owned. Though it has grown, this shop still doesn’t feel like a chain. second place: East Coast Bicycles, Norfolk EastCoastBicycles.com, 757-622-0446 third place: BikeBeat, Williamsburg BikeBeatOnline.com, 757-229-0096 Forget the big box shoe stores and their impersonal service. Walk This Way Shoes carries shoes you won’t find in run-of-the-mall stores. Hosting events throughout the year, including the “Shoetini” event every fall, this upscale ladies shoe boutique carries designers like Stuart Weitzman, Kate Spade, Corso Como and Jack Rogers. second place: Nordstrom, Norfolk Shop.Nordstrom.com, 757-314-1111 third place: The Shoe Attic, Williamsburg Shoe-Attic.com, 757-220-0757 Best Hospital Best Gift Shop Quirks of Art 1430 High St., Suite 709, Williamsburg Riverside Regional Medical Center 500 J. Clyde Morris Blvd., Newport News RiversideOnline.com/RRMC, 757-594-2000 Riverside Regional Medical Center operates on the cutting edge of medical research and technology with the late January opening of their brand new surgical pavilion, a $107 million, 250,000-square-foot expansion. A regional leader in emergency care, the Emergency Department and Trauma Center responds to a whopping 57,000 emergencies annually. second place: Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center, Williamsburg Sentara.com/Williamsburg, 757-984-6000 third place: Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, Norfolk Sentara.com, 757-388-3000 KinksAndQuirks.com, 757-645-4366 With a little bit of whimsy, Quirks of Art has kept Williamsburg awake since opening in 1997. A gallery for handcrafted art, much of which is one-of-a-kind, Quirks of Art represents the work of over 400 artisans from the U.S. and Canada in various mediums including glass, pottery, fibers, metal works, jewelry, wood and ceramics. second place: Papeterie, Kilmarnock PapeterieVA.com, 804-435-1125 third place: Simply Selma’s, Virginia Beach SimplySelmas.com, 757-428-2885 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 63 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment EASTERN VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Cosmetic Surgeon James H. Carraway, M.D., F.A.C.S. 5589 Greenwich Road, Suite 100, Virginia Beach Best Orthodontist Peter D. Wendell, D.D.S. 4097A Ironbound Road, Williamsburg EVMSHealthServices.org, 757-557-0300 WendellOrthodontics.com, 757-253-1200 In 29 years of practice, Dr. Wendell’s expertise has not gone unnoticed. A past president of the Tidewater Orthodontic Society and member of the National Dental Honorary Society, his work as associate clinical professor of orthodontics at MCV School of Dentistry earned him the honor of orthodontic faculty member of the year in 2007. second place: Beth L. Faber, D.D.S., M.S., P.C., Tappahannock BracesByDrBeth.com, 804-445-2045 third place: Vicki Ross, D.M.D., Newport News PeninsulaBraces.com, 757-249-4203 Nose jobs, implants, facelifts—all standards in the cosmetic surgery game. Dr. Carraway can do all of them as a physician professor in the EVMS Plastic Surgery Department, but he also specializes in reconstructive surgery, from children born with defects like cleft lip or webbed fingers to adults and children injured in accidents. second place: Michael F. Zwicklbauer, M.D., Mad About Chocolate, Williamsburg Dark Chocolate Truffle Heart For the Ganache: 8 ounces semisweet baking chocolate, coarsely chopped ¾ cup heavy whipping cream Place 8 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate in a small bowl. Bring ¾ cup heavy cream in a small saucepan to a boil over medium heat. Pour over chocolate. Set aside for 5 minutes, then whisk until smooth. Pour the mixture (called ganache) onto a nonstick baking sheet and use a rubber spatula to spread the ganache in a smooth, even layer to within about an inch of the inside edges of the pan. Place the ganache in the freezer for 15 minutes, or in the refrigerator for 30 minutes, until firm to the touch. Line a 10- to 12-inch dinner plate with parchment paper or waxed paper. Portion 12 heaping tablespoons of ganache onto the paper. Roll each portion of ganache into a ball. Return each to the paper-lined plate, and place in the freezer while preparing the cake batter. For the Chocolate Cocoa Cakes: 5 ounces unsalted butter cut into ½-ounce pieces 2 teaspoons butter, melted 2/3 cup all-purpose flour ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder 8 ounces semisweet baking chocolate, coarsely chopped 3 large eggs 2 large egg yolks ½ cup granulated sugar 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly coat the inside of each individual nonstick muffin cup with 2 teaspoons melted butter. Set aside. Sift together 2/3 cup allpurpose flour and ½ cup cocoa powder. Set aside. Melt semisweet chocolate and 5 ounces butter in the top half of a double boiler over medium-low heat. Use a rubber spatula to stir the chocolate and butter until completely melted and smooth, about 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. Place eggs, egg yolks and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle. Beat on a medium-high speed for 2 minutes until slightly frothy. Add the melted chocolate and butter and mix on low to combine, about 15 seconds. Continue mixing on low while gradually adding the sifted dry ingredients. Once all the dry ingredients have been added, stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and mix on medium to combine, about 15 seconds. Remove the bowl from the mixer and use a rubber spatula to finish mixing the batter until thoroughly combined. Portion 3 heaping tablespoons (about 2 ½ ounces) of the cake batter into each individual muffin cup. Place the muffin tin on the center rack of the preheated oven. Bake for 5 minutes. Remove the truffles from the freezer. Remove the muffin tin from the oven. Moving quickly, place a single frozen truffle in the center of each small cake, pressing each truffle about halfway down into the cakes. Immediately return the muffin tin to the center rack of the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted into the cake (not the truffle) comes out clean, about 17 to 18 minutes. Remove the cakes from the oven and cool at room temperature for 20 minutes. Remove cakes from muffin cups. Serve immediately while still warm. Serves 12 MadAboutChocolate.us F.A.C.S, Newport News PSCHR.com, 757-873-3500 third place: Peter Vonu, M.D., F.A.C.S., Newport News PSCHR.com, 757-873-3500 Best Independent School 739 Academy Lane, Newport News Hampton Roads Academy HRA.org, 757-884-9100 Hampton Roads Academy has the traditional expectations of a college preparatory school—100 percent college acceptance, small student-teacher ratio, lots of AP courses, sports teams and student-led organizations, and a curriculum that utilizes technology without leaving the arts behind. Upper School students also get to take finance courses, and kindergartners get lessons in technology. second place: Norfolk Academy, Norfolk NorfolkAcademy.org, 757-461-6236 third place: Chesapeake Academy, Irvington ChesapeakeAcademy.org, 804-438-5575 Best Dentist Brian P. Midgette, D.D.S., P.C. 3326 Taylor Road, Chesapeake MidgetteFamilyDentistry.com, 757-483-4700 Early acceptance into MCV School of Dentistry began Dr. Midgette’s dental education, but earning his D.D.S. and founding his own practice did not quench his desire to learn. Seeking hours of continuing education to further his knowledge, Dr. Midgette participates in several local dental study clubs and is a member of two national dental organizations. second place: Timothy K. Johnston, D.D.S., Williamsburg WilliamsburgDDS.com, 757-564-0804 third place: David Konikoff, D.D.S., Virginia Beach DKonikoffSmile.com, 800-764-5399 Best Kitchen Designer Stephen Whitt, Whitt Corporation 4854-11 Longhill Road, Williamsburg Best Outdoor Outfitter Bass Pro Shops 1972 Power Plant Parkway, Hampton WhittCorporation.com, 757-564-0231 Specializing in custom and semi-custom cabinetry and featuring manufacturers like Elmwood Kitchens and Kitchen Craft Cabinetry, the father-son team of Stephen and Kevin Whitt has been building beautiful kitchens in the Williamsburg area since 1984. They can tackle custom projects from bathrooms to home offices too. second place: Jon Derrick, Cape Henry Builders, BassPro.com, 757-262-5200 Virginia Beach 757-422-8613 third place: Stacey Briguera, Stacey Briguera Interior Design, Virginia Beach StaceyBrigueraInteriorDesign.com, 757-491-3488 Bass Pro Shops carries just about everything you’d want for fishing, hunting, camping, boating, outdoor cooking and more. The enormous store—105,000 square feet—features a 19,000-gallon aquarium, cascading waterfall and hundreds of wildlife mounts, not to mention a full archery range and rock climbing wall. But be careful; you could get lost in this place— not that you’d mind. second place: Wild River Outfitters, Virginia Beach WildRiverOutfitters.com, 757-431-8566 third place: Blue Ridge Mountain Sports, Virginia Beach BRMS.com, 757-422-2201 Best Antiques Kilmarnock Antique Gallery 144 School St., Kilmarnock Best Dermatologist George Harr, M.D. 1200 First Colonial Road, Suite 200, Virginia Beach Virginia-Antiques.com, 800-497-0083 Among the culinary delights from the Chesapeake Bay, the oyster reigns supreme. So it’s no surprise that Kilmarnock Antique Gallery on the Northern Neck is known for its antique collections of that special plate used to serve the bivalve. “Home of the Oyster Plate Lady,” the gallery’s owners Steve and Lynn Bonner have collected these dishes for decades. second place: Williamsburg Antique Mall, Williamsburg AntiquesWilliamsburg.com, 757-565-3422 third place: Barrett Street Auction Center & Antique Mall, Virginia Beach BarrettStreet.com, 757-463-8600 VBDerm.com, 757-481-4422 Dr. Harr joined Virginia Beach’s first dermatology practice, Dermatology Inc. of Virginia Beach, in 1985. A past president of the Tidewater Dermatology Society, Dr. Harr now has more than 27 years of experience in general medical and cosmetic dermatology, with a special interest in dermatologic manifestations of systemic disease. second place: Donna M. Corvette, M.D., Williamsburg DermatologyCenterOfWilliamsburg.com, 757-645-3787 third place: Susan E. Mackel, M.D., Newport News OPDerm.net, 757-873-0161 photo courtesy of Mad About Chocolate B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 65 Nort hern virgini a hunt country, with its green plains and rolling hills, has a romance all its own. Huntsmen still ride with toe-warming flasks sauced by nearby distilleries, and the lavish hunt breakfast, served afield on linen or from the tailgate of a mud-splattered truck, is still a much-enjoyed tradition. But today, the polyglot of influences that pour into NoVa’s big, bubbling melting pot mean that here, more than anywhere else in the state, you can find a flavor for every taste, an ethnicity for every interest. From the musings of Restaurant Eve’s Irish chef Cathal Armstrong and the European kitchen tools sold at La Cuisine in Alexandria to the classic French cooking at L’Auberge Chez François in Great Falls, one can travel the world from the dining tables of NoVa’s vast and varied restaurant offerings. Here, you can find authentic, native cuisines from any spot on the globe, all in one place. Northern Virginia ... a food lover’s wonderland. ♠ Illustration ♠ Styling Photography by by Cade Cade Martin Martin ♠ Illustration by by Shane Shane Rebenscheid Rebenscheid ♠ Styling by by Neely Neely Barnwell Barnwell Dykshorn Dykshorn Photography ARTS, CULTURE & Entertainment Best Art Event Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival 12001 Market St., Reston NorthernVirginiaFineArtsFestival.org, 703-501-6289 The Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival, the region’s largest and longest-running event of its kind, celebrates its 22nd anniversary this year. The Greater Reston Arts Center produces the three-day affair, which draws a crowd of over 50,000 to enjoy artisan works in 16 different categories—from ceramics and 3D mixed media to photography and furniture. second place: Art on the Avenue, Alexandria ArtOnTheAvenue.org third place: MPAartfest presented by McLean Project for the Arts, McLean MPAArt.org, 703-790-1953 Best Overall Museum cheers! Centreville celebrates Virginia’s flourishing wine industry. The Vintage Virginia Wine Festival, held annually at Bull Run Regional Park in Centreville, celebrates its 32nd anniversary this year, and on June 1 and 2, wine lovers will gather to taste more than 350 different Old Dominion vintages. “It started very small,” says Dave Saunders, chief idea officer for Richmond-based marketing agency Madison+Main, the event’s promoters. The first festival featured just a handful of wineries, “kind of an afterthought,” says Saunders. But as the state’s wine industry prospered, so did the festival. (With hundreds of wineries and approximately 3,000 acres of vineyards, the Commonwealth is now the fifth largest wine producing state in the country.) The Fairfax County event will feature around 40 wineries this year, including Lazy Days and Horton. Patrons can mingle with winemakers, attend seminars on food and wine pairings, and attend cooking demonstrations by five-star chefs who will prepare multicourse meals over the three days of the event. And the 2013 festival introduces something new: food trucks. About 15 of these roving restaurants, including favorites Capital Chicken and Waffles, Curbside Cupcakes, and Simplicity, will serve up everything from barbecue to seafood to Vietnamese cuisine. Saunders calls the family-friendly festival “Virginia’s official picnic.” Activities for kids, teens and even designated drivers—who receive discounted admission and free soda—include moon bounces and live bands. “One thing I love is the diversity of the attendees,” Saunders says. “You have 21-year-olds trying wine for the first time, 30-somethings with kids in strollers, 40-somethings watching chef demonstrations and people in their 60s who’ve never been to the festival before. “If you leave hungry or without trying wine, that’s your fault,” laughs Saunders. In his eyes, there’s just no excuse not to have a great time. Says Saunders, “It’s Vintage Virginia … it just doesn’t get any better.” VintageVirginia.com Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum Stephen F. Udvar-Hazy Center 14390 Air and Space Museum Parkway, Chantilly AirAndSpace.SI.edu, 703-572-4118 Home to thousands of aviation and space artifacts, the 10-year-old Udvar-Hazy Center is the sister facility of the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. The 760,000-square-foot annex proudly displays storied aircraft, including Discovery, the space shuttle fleet’s longest-serving orbiter, and the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird, the fastest jet in the world. second place: Manassas Museum System, Manassas ManassasMuseum.org, 703-368-1873 third place: National Museum of the Marine Corps, Triangle USMCMuseum.com, 877-635-1775 The Filene Center at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts 1551 Trap Road, Vienna Best Special Event Venue WolfTrap.org, 703-255-1900 The Filene Center may be best known for its concerts, but the colossal amphitheater annually hosts close to 100 performances in just about every genre imaginable. This year’s lineup includes Golden Dragon Acrobats from China, “Rock of Ages” the musical and the Aspen Santa Fe Ballet. second place: Workhouse Arts Center, Lorton WorkhouseArts.org, 703-584-2900 third place: Hylton Performing Arts Center, Manassas HyltonCenter.org, 703-993-7550 68 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 p h o t o b y r o g e r g u p t a , o p p o s i t e p a g e p h o t o c o u r t e s y o f L’a u b e r g e C h e z F r a n Ç o i s NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Arts, Culture & Entertainment Best Historic Museum George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate, Museum & Gardens 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Alexandria Best Movie Theater Cobb Village 12 Cinemas 1600 Village Market Blvd. SE, Leesburg Most Creative Charitable Event Collectors Showcase 9601 Ox Road, Lorton CobbTheatres.com, 571-291-9462 WorkhouseArts.org, 703-584-2900 The annual Collectors Showcase at the penitentiary-turned-creative-haven Workhouse Arts Center is an event that artists and community members look forward to all year long. At the completion of the juried exhibit, in which the “Best in Show” winner is awarded a solo gallery exhibition, patrons enter a lottery to take home their favorite pieces. second place: McLean Project for the Arts Spring Benefit, McLean MPAArt.org, 703-790-1953 third place: The Campagna Center’s Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend & Parade, Alexandria CampagnaCenter.org, 703-549-0111 MountVernon.org, 703-780-2000 Having welcomed more than 80 million visitors since it opened to the public in 1860, Mount Vernon is the most popular historic estate in the nation. George Washington’s haunt hosts riveting tours each year, including the famed National Treasure Tour, which offers a behind-the-scenes look at where “National Treasure: Book of Secrets” was filmed. second place: Manassas Museum System, Manassas When’s the last time you enjoyed a martini at the movies? At Cobb, you can order anything from a Buffalo chicken sandwich to a Budweiser and enjoy it inside the theater, which offers D-BOX seats that move in sync with the action onscreen. Remember to hold that martini tight during the car chase scene. second place: Rave Fairfax Corner 14 + Xtreme, Fairfax RaveMotionPictures.com, 703-378-6550 third place: Angelika Film Center & Café at ManassasMuseum.org, 703-368-1873 third place: Gunston Hall, Mason Neck GunstonHall.org, 703-550-9220 third place tie: Workhouse Prison Museum at Lorton, Lorton WorkhouseMuseums.org, 703-495-0001 Mosaic, Fairfax AngelikaFilmCenter.com/Mosaic, 571-512-3301 Best Mixologist Todd Thrasher, PX 728 King St., Alexandria Facebook.com/BarPX Best Food Festival Taste of Reston 11900 Market St., Reston RestonTaste.com, 703-707-9045 Don’t let the carnival rides, live entertainment and Family Fun Zone! distract you from the abundance of food and drink at Taste of Reston, the region’s largest outdoor food festival. Restaurants and vendors will be offering plenty to sample, while chef demonstrations in the Wine ‘n Dine area are always crowd pleasers. second place: Chocolate Lovers Festival, Fairfax ChocolateFestival.net, 703-385-1661 third place: Taste of Arlington, Arlington TasteOfArlington.com, 703-664-1194 If you live in the D.C. area and enjoy cocktails, you’ve probably heard of Todd Thrasher, a local legend when it comes to mixing drinks. He’s known for swiftly fusing flavorful, if outlandish, ingredients together to create enticing and memorable elixirs. Many of his aptly named original creations come with a backstory. second place: Stefan Trummer, Trummer’s on Main, Clifton TrummersOnMain.com, 703-266-1623 third place: Barry McMahon, McMahon’s Irish Pub & Restaurant, Warrenton McMahonsIrishPub.com, 540-347-7200 third place tie: Dan Root, The Ice House Cafe, Herndon IceHouseCafe.com, 703-437-4500 Best Music Venue 1551 Trap Road, Vienna The Filene Center at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts WolfTrap.org, 703-255-1900 There’s just something about listening to live music in the warm summer air that calms the soul, so it’s no surprise this sprawling outdoor concert hall is such a big hit. With a 2013 schedule that includes the Temptations, the Four Tops, Josh Groban and—drumroll—Carly Rae Jepsen, the Filene Center’s calling, “maybe.” second place: The Birchmere, Alexandria Birchmere.com, 703-549-7500 third place: Jammin Java Music Club and Cafe, Vienna JamminJava.com, 703-255-1566 L’Auberge Chez FranÇois Great Falls Bouillabaisse Broth: ½ cup olive oil ½ cup each finely chopped onion, carrots, and leeks �/8 cup finely julienned celery 2 teaspoons minced shallots ½ cup chopped fresh tomatoes 2 tablespoons tomato paste ½ cup dry white wine 1 ½ cups fish stock 1 tablespoon sea salt (approximately) 1 bouquet garni consisting of ½ teaspoon fennel seed, ½ teaspoon anise seed, ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper, 1 bay leaf, 1 clove, pinch of thyme and 2 cloves garlic crushed, wrapped in a cheesecloth ½ teaspoon saffron Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven. Add the onions, leeks, celery and carrots and cook covered until tender, about 15 minutes, stirring often. Add the shallots, tomatoes, tomato paste, white wine, fish stock, salt and bouquet garni. Boil for approximately 25 minutes. Add the saffron and simmer 5 more minutes. Seafood: 6 mussels 4 little neck clams ¼ pound sea scallops single 1-pound Maine lobster ¼ pound raw shrimp (20-24 count) 4 ounces fish fillets (red snapper, sea bass, grouper) 4 oysters (optional) 2 teaspoons Pernod 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh fennel ½ teaspoon chopped garlic While the broth is cooking, prepare the seafood. Clean the mussels individually in cold water, scraping off any clinging barnacles or “beards.” Discard any half-open shells or any unusually heavy ones, which indicate internal grit. Rinse the clams, oysters and scallops in cold water. Using a sharp heavy knife, force the point of the blade through the top of the lobster head between the eyes. Then cut down through the center of the head and tail, splitting the lobster in half. Remove and discard the lobster head and the intestinal vein running down the center of the tail. Remove the claws and crack them with the blunt edge of the blade. Peel and devein the shrimp. Cut the fish fillets into 2- to 3-inch diagonal slices. Add the mussels and clams to the boiling broth and simmer 5 minutes. Then add the lobster, shrimp, scallops and fish. Continue boiling until all the shellfish are open, approximately 5-8 more minutes. Do not overcook. Remove from heat, adjust seasoning (more garlic or saffron according to taste), add Pernod and chopped fennel, and serve immediately in large warm soup platters. Garnish with garlic toasts. Best Performing Arts Company Better Said Than Done BetterSaidThanDone.com, 571-334-8652 Remember story time? Your favorite part of the school day (behind recess) when you’d listen intently as your teacher read aloud? Better Said Than Done knows that story time isn’t just for kids, so the troupe of professional storytellers performs captivating tales for live audiences across the region. second place: Manassas Ballet Theatre, Manassas ManassasBallet.org, 703-257-1811 third place: Signature Theatre, Arlington Signature-Theatre.org, 571-527-1860 Serves 6 LAubergeChezFrancois.com EXPERIENCE VIRGINIA’S BEST MOVIE THEATRES! MOVIES | IN-THEATRE DINING | DRINKS | CORPORATE AND PRIVATE EVENTS BEST MOVIE THEATRE – NORTHERN VIRGINIA COBB VILLAGE 12 CINEMAS – 1600 Village Market Blvd., SE, Leesburg, VA 20175 Family friendly entertainment for all ages. www.CobbTheatres.com www.CobbCineBistro.com BEST MOVIE THEATRE – CENTRAL VIRGINIA CINÉBISTRO AT STONY POINT FASHION PARK – 9200 Stony Point Parkway, Richmond, VA 23235 At this location no one under 21 will be admitted. Proper ID Required. BEST MOVIE THEATRE – HAMPTON ROADS CINÉBISTRO AND THE LANES AT PENINSULA TOWN CENTER – 4401 West Claiborne Sq., Hampton, VA 23666 Family friendly until 8PM (including movies beginning at 8pm and earlier). After 8PM, 21 and over. Proper ID Required. Children younger than 6 are not permitted in PG-13 and R rated movies starting at 6pm and later. WJPC Walker Jones, PC Walker Jones, PC, congratulates Jonathan P. Lienhard on his selection as one of the Top Three Lawyers for the Northern region in Virginia Living’s Best of Virginia. A member of the ﬁrm’s litigation team, Jonathan is dedicated to providing clients with sound judgment and strong advocacy. His wide ranging experiences as a commercial litigator, criminal defense lawyer, and in-house counsel provide him with a unique perspective in addressing each client’s legal issues and concerns. For over 35 years, Walker Jones, PC, has provided skilled and resourceful legal services in Fauquier County, Northern Virginia, and the Virginia Piedmont. Walker Jones, PC, practice areas also include: domestic relations, personal injury, wills, trusts and estates, business law, and real estate. For more information please go to www.walkerjoneslaw.com or call us at (540) 347-9223. WJPC EASTERN REGION • Arts & Culture & Entertainment NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Living Recreation Best Place to Dance Clarendon Ballroom 3185 Wilson Blvd., Arlington ClarendonBallroom.com, 703-469-2244 From its rooftop pavilion and bottom-floor lounge to its 80-foot-long bar and cavernous, pressed-tin ceiling, the Clarendon Ballroom is the historic Woolworth Building reborn. The nightclub and special event venue’s restored art deco grandeur brings a taste of Gatsby, not to mention jammin’ disc jockeys, to the neighborhood. second place: Workhouse Arts Center, Lorton WorkhouseArts.org, 703-584-2900 third place: Clarendon Grill, Arlington CGrill.com, 703-524-7455 liv ing & recreation Best Retirement Community Heritage Hunt 6921 Netherstone Court, Gainesville Best Wine Trail Loudoun County Best Hiking Trail Great Falls Park 9200 Old Dominion Drive, McLean DC’s Wine Country VisitLoudoun.org, 703-771-2170 It’s official: Loudoun has more wineries and tasting rooms than any other county in the Commonwealth. Once collectively known as the Loudoun Wine Trail, the county’s more than two-dozen wineries now form DC’s Wine Country. Sample popular Loudoun varieties like Chardonnay and Norton, as you travel through the region’s five distinct winery clusters. second place: Fauquier Wine Trail, Fauquier County VisitFauquier.com/Wineries.html, 540-422-8270 third place: Tuskie’s Wine Trail, Leesburg Tuskies.com/WineTrail, 703-771-9300 HeritageHunt.com, 703-743-4000 NPS.gov/GrFa, 703-285-2965 There’s hardly a shortage of hiking opportunities at Great Falls; the expansive park has 15 miles of exciting packed-dirt and gravel trails, five of which are also open to cyclists and horseback riders. From the elementary Mine Run Trail to the “treacherous” River Trail, all of the park’s paths offer scenic views. second place: W&OD Trail, Arlington to Purcellville NVRPA.org/park/w_od_railroad, 703-729-0596 third place: Burke Lake Park, Fairfax Station FairfaxCounty.gov/Parks/BurkeLakePark, 703-323-6600 Heritage Hunt was named Best Active Adult Community in the Country by the National Council on Senior Housing in 2001. The clubhouses, sweeping golf course, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, stone wall waterfall, grand ballroom and bustling social calendar make retirement seem like one long, glorious day at the country club. second place: Greenspring, Springfield EricksonLiving.com, 703-913-1200 third place: Leisureworld of Virginia, Lansdowne LWVa.org, 703-723-1501 Most Fashionable Horse Show/Race Virginia Gold Cup Races 90 Main St., Warrenton Most Luxurious Hotel 1700 Tysons Blvd., McLean Most Welcoming Bed and Breakfast Goodstone Inn & Restaurant 36205 Snake Hill Road, Middleburg The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner RitzCarlton.com, 703-506-4300 The name Ritz-Carlton has long been associated with luxury, but now, through Ritz-Carlton Environmental Action Conservation Teams (REACT), it’s also linked to green business practices. The brand’s hip Tysons Corner location pampers you and protects the earth by using a chlorine-free Saline Comfort Pool System and offering organic, local and all-natural foods. second place: Lansdowne Resort, Leesburg LansdowneResort.com, 703-729-8400 third place: Hotel Monaco Alexandria – A Kimpton Hotel, Alexandria Monaco-Alexandria.com, 703-549-6080 VAGoldCup.com, 540-347-2612 At this annual springtime event, presented by the Virginia Gold Cup Association, tailgating is as storied a tradition as the steeplechase itself. Drawing upwards of 50,000 spectators each year, the Cup encourages fans to participate in the Tailgate Contest, in which they dress up, decorate and mix drinks according to a chosen theme. second place: Upperville Colt & Horse Show, Upperville Upperville.com, 540-687-5740 third place: Middleburg Spring Races, Middleburg MiddleburgSpringRaces.com, 540-687-6545 Goodstone.com, 540-687-3333 Goodstone Inn offers a dash of English and French country charm in the backyard of our nation’s capital. The Middleburg retreat invites guests to personalize their stay by reserving one of 18 specially decorated rooms in six distinct residences, including the rugged Bull Barn, bucolic Dutch Cottage and stately Manor House. second place: Ashby Inn & Restaurant, Paris AshbyInn.com, 540-592-3900 third place: Middleburg Country Inn, Middleburg MiddleburgCountryInn.com, 800-262-6082 Pure Chocolate Woodbridge chocolatier’s dark delicacy. All his life, Ben Rasmussen detested dark chocolate— until 2009, that is. But when he finally braved a nibble, he discovered it is “very much like wine grapes, different cacao from different origins have wildly different flavors, and it was fascinating to taste these differences.” Having officially converted to “the dark side,” the 37-yearold says a friend suggested they take a stab at making their own chocolate. “I thought it was an absurd idea,” the Woodbridge native admits. Many kitchen experiments later, Rasmussen launched Potomac Chocolate in July 2010 and became the D.C. area’s first bean-to-bar chocolate maker. His inaugural bar, the Upala 70%, which is infused with earthy cacao from Upala, Costa Rica, and contains notes of raspberry and caramel, was both a finalist in the nationwide Good Food Awards and a Silver award recipient from the London-based Academy of Chocolate in 2011. The variety of dark chocolate Rasmussen makes has since expanded, but the size of the company has not. Potomac Chocolate remains a one-man operation run out of the workshop in Rasmussen’s Woodbridge home. Still, the awards keep coming. This year, his sea salt-encrusted Upala 70% Nib and Salt bar took home a Good Food Award, while his fruity San Martín 70% bar, flavored by cacao from San Martín, Peru, won him another Silver from the Academy of Chocolate. When it comes to making chocolate, Rasmussen keeps it simple. “In order to highlight the naturally-occurring flavors of the cacao, all of my chocolate is made using only cacao and sugar with no added flavors.” Of the chocolate uninitiated Rasmussen says, “I hope that they’ll have that same experience that I had when I first tried it—the ‘Wow, I had no idea that chocolate could be like this’ experience.” PotomacChocolate.com photo courtesy of potomac chocolate B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 73 EASTERN REGION • Arts & Culture & Entertainment NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Living Recreation Best Resort for the Whole Family Lansdowne Resort 44050 Woodridge Parkway, Leesburg Most Challenging Golf Course Robert Trent Jones Golf Club 1 Turtle Point Drive, Gainesville Best Tennis Club Pro LansdowneResort.com, 703-729-8400 Home to 296 guest rooms, a 12,000-square-foot spa, 50,000 square feet of meeting space, five restaurants, a five-pool aquatic complex, three tennis courts and 45 holes of golf, what’s not to love about a secluded resort that’s received the AAA Four-Diamond Award every year since it opened in 1991? second place: Hotel Monaco Alexandria – A Kimpton Hotel, Alexandria Monaco-Alexandria.com, 703-549-6080 third place: Marriott Ranch, Hume MarriottRanch.com, 540-364-2627 third place tie: Westfields Marriott Washington Dulles, Chantilly Marriott.com, 703-818-0300 RTJGC.com, 703-754-4050 Griff Lamkin, McLean Racquet & Health Club 1472 Chain Bridge Road, McLean Avid golfers know the name Robert Trent Jones Sr. well; the distinguished architect designed hundreds of golf courses worldwide during his lifetime. Yet there is only one course, anchored by Lake Manassas, that Jones declared his “masterpiece.” His legendary namesake club in Gainesville has hosted four Presidents Cups since its establishment in 1991. second place: Raspberry Falls Golf & Hunt Club, Leesburg McLeanRHClub.com, 703-356-3300 Griff Lamkin, who reigned as a top-ranked midAtlantic doubles player in 1971, has been a fixture of McLean Racquet & Health for 36 years. Since leaving his mark on the University of South Florida tennis team, the pro and club tennis director has spent most of his adult life coaching students ranging in age from five to 90. second place: Steve Gallagher, The Country Club of Fairfax, Fairfax CCFairfax.org, 703-273-3100 third place: John Dokken, Chestnut Forks Tennis & Fitness Club, Warrenton ChestnutForks.com, 540-347-0823 RaspberryFalls.com, 703-779-2555 third place: General’s Ridge Golf Course, Manassas Park GeneralsRidge.com, 703-335-0777 Best Historic Site Best Hunting Preserve Fauquier County G. Richard Thompson Wildlife Management Area DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 An amalgam of steep inclines, hardwood forest and major streams in northwestern Fauquier County, G. Richard Thompson is among the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries’ most popular wildlife management areas. Whether you prefer to hunt bears in November or trap coyotes in February, you’ll want to take advantage of the facility’s nearly 4,000 acres. second place: C.F. Phelps Wildlife Management Area, Fauquier County DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 third place: Shady Grove Kennel, Hunting Preserve and Sporting Clays, Remington Shady-Grove.com, 540-439-2683 George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate, Museum & Gardens 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Alexandria Best Outdoor Adventure Great Falls Park 9200 Old Dominion Drive, McLean MountVernon.org, 703-780-2000 George Washington died at Mount Vernon on Dec. 14, 1799. But the Alexandria estate, where nearly 500 of the property’s original 8,000 acres have been preserved, is also where our first president’s legacy lives on. Visitors can attend seasonal wreath-laying ceremonies at his tomb or explore the wonders of his mansion 365 days a year. second place: Manassas National Battlefield Park, Manassas NPS.gov/Mana, 703-361-1339 third place: Gunston Hall, Mason Neck GunstonHall.org, 703-550-9220 NPS.gov/GrFa, 703-285-2965 You might say Great Falls Park is an 800acre playground fit for a diverse group of outdoor enthusiasts, from thrill-seeking rock climbers and whitewater boaters to relaxing picnickers and fishermen. Home to the gushing Potomac, over 150 species of birds, miles of trails and impressive views, the McLean nature reserve attracts nearly 500,000 visitors annually. second place: Harpers Ferry Adventure Center, Purcellville HFAdventureCenter.com, 540-668-9007 third place: Adventure Links at Hemlock Overlook Regional Park, Clifton AdventureLinks.net, 800-877-0954 third place tie: Mount Vernon Trail, George Washington Memorial Parkway, Alexandria to Washington, D.C. NPS.gov/GWMP, 703-289-2500 Best Group Fitness Northern Virginia Best Place to Fish Burke Lake Park 7315 Ox Road, Fairfax Station Black Girls RUN! DC BlackGirlsRUN.com In an effort to fight obesity, Black Girls RUN! encourages African-American women to put away the junk food and hit the pavement in its approximately 70 running groups across the country—the D.C. chapter is among the largest in the nation. Grab your sneakers; the group leads 24 runs per week. second place: CycleLuv Indoor Cycling Studio, Leesburg CycleLuv.com, 703-431-0347 third place: Lifetime Fitness, Centreville LifetimeFitness.com, 703-266-6200 third place tie: Old Town Athletic Club, Warrenton OTACFitness.com, 540-349-2791 FairfaxCounty.gov/Parks/BurkeLakePark, 703-323-6600 Experienced anglers and amateur fishermen will find refuge at Burke Lake Park, where a glassy 218acre lake—stocked with largemouth bass, bluegill, sunfish, muskie, walleye, black crappie, catfish, and yellow and white perch—awaits. Four fishing bulkheads, a fishing pier and 5.25 miles of shoreline make for a great day on the water. second place: Leesylvania State Park, Woodbridge DCR.Virginia.gov/state_parks/lee.shtml, 703-730-8205 third place: Lake Brittle, Fauquier County DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 Red Truck Bakery, Warrenton Cranberry Orange Nut Bread 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 cup sugar 1 ½ teaspoons double-acting baking powder 1 teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon baking soda 1 stick (½ cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into bits 1 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest ¾ cup fresh orange juice 1 large egg 1 cup coarsely chopped cranberries 1/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts In a food processor or in a bowl with a pastry blender, blend together the flour, the sugar, the baking powder, the salt, the baking soda and the butter until the mixture resembles meal, then transfer the mixture to a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together the zest, the juice and the egg, add the mixture to the flour mixture and stir the batter until it is just combined. Stir in the cranberries and the walnuts and transfer the batter to a well-buttered 9- by 5-inch loaf pan. Bake the bread in the middle of a preheated 350 degree oven for 1 ¼ hours, or until a tester comes out clean. Let the bread cool in the pan for 15 minutes then turn it out onto a rack. Serves 6 RedTruckBakery.com ph o t o c o urte s y o f R ed truc k ba k er y EASTERN REGION • Arts& Culture NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Food Drink & Entertainment Best Barbecue Restaurant Dixie Bones BBQ 13440 Occoquan Road, Woodbridge DixieBones.com, 703-492-2205 Dixie Bones founder Nelson Head is a Southerner through and through. Take one bite of his downhome cookin’, and you’ll taste a family tradition that goes back generations. A Woodbridge fixture for nearly 20 years, the pit barbecue restaurant also caters from Baltimore to Richmond for parties of up to 5,000. second place: Willard’s BBQ, Chantilly DCBBQ.com, 703-488-9970 third place: The Q Company, Leesburg TheQCompany.com, 703-777-8767 food & drink Best Caterer Claire’s at the Depot 65 S. 3rd St., Warrenton ClairesRestaurant.com, 540-351-1616 Name an occasion, and chances are Claire’s has an elaborate, corresponding bill of fare. (They even have special menus available for tailgate, Halloween and cocktail parties.) If they don’t have the menu you’re looking for, they’re happy to customize one that fits your unique needs. Claire’s also goes the extra mile by booking rentals, entertainment and other things on your to-do list for your event. second place: Celebrations Catering, Sterling CelebrationsCatering.com, 703-450-6666 third place: Windows Catering Company, Alexandria Catering.com, 703-519-3500 Best Dessert Menu 11778 Fair Oaks, Fairfax The Cheesecake Factory TheCheesecakeFactory.com, 703-273-6600 The Cheesecake Factory may be known as a culinary conglomerate—the chain has 160-plus locations nationwide—but it had humble beginnings in Detroit. It was there, in the 1940s, that Evelyn Overton opened up a small shop starring her original cheesecake recipe. That and 49 other cheesecake flavors now make up a winning dessert menu. second place: Red Truck Bakery & Market, Warrenton RedTruckBakery.com, 540-347-2224 third place: Clyde’s Willow Creek Farm, Ashburn Clydes.com, 571-209-1200 Chef’s Choice Dinner is always a surprise at Restaurant Eve. Chef Cathal Armstrong left Dublin, Ireland, in 1990 to get out of the food business. Twenty-three years later, the 42-year-old Armstrong presides over a Northern Virginia food empire comprising six restaurants in Alexandria—Restaurant Eve, Eamonn’s: A Dublin Chipper, PX, The Majestic Café, Virtue Feed & Grain and Society Fair—and a second Eamonn’s in Arlington. The flagship establishment is Restaurant Eve, which Armstrong and wife Meshelle opened in 2004 and named after their now-14-year-old daughter. The most popular option at Restaurant Eve is the Chef’s Tasting Room, where Armstrong shows off his skills through prix fixe five-, seven- and nine-course tasting menus, ranging from charcuterie to shellfish to Randall Lineback ribeye steak with broccolini. The courses change daily, so diners often don’t know what’s coming until it arrives in front of them. “There are all these things and all these choices and it’s already Friday night and you don’t want to think about it,” is how Armstrong explains the popularity of the surprise menu. “We take the work part away from the guests. You close the book and leave it in our hands.” (Dietary requirements are taken into account, of course.) Armstrong has also embraced a healthier lifestyle, motivated by his involvement in the Chefs Move to School program in 2010. “Here I am sitting on the lawn of the White House, shaking hands with the first lady, and I felt like a hypocrite because I was preaching about healthy school lunches and here I was overweight!” Armstrong took up taekwondo, enlisting Master Jason Yoo of Yoo’s Authentic Martial Arts in Alexandria as his trainer. Training six days a week, the chef dropped nearly 40 pounds and in July 2012 was victorious in his age and weight class at the USA Taekwondo National Championships. The return to fitness has given Armstrong “a focus and a level of calmness and concentration that comes with being physically fit,” as well as “that physical stamina and ability to carry on cooking.” That’s bad news for Armstrong’s future taekwondo opponents, but good news for hungry Virginians. RestaurantEve.com Best Steakhouse Ray’s the Steaks 2300 Wilson Blvd., Arlington RaysTheSteaks.com, 703-841-7297 With an endless array of dry-aged-, butcher- and classic-cut steaks available in-house, Ray’s knows steak. Forget filet mignon, strip and porterhouse; at this meat-and-potatoes paradise, we recommend ordering the Blue Devil, hanger au poivre, Black and Blue New Yorker, Cajun rib-eye or the Cowboy. second place: Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Fairfax RuthsChris.com, 703-266-1004 third place: Morton’s The Steakhouse, Reston Mortons.com/Reston, 703-796-0128 photo courtesy of eat g ood food group B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 77 EASTERN REGION • Arts& Culture NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Food Drink & Entertainment Best Overall Restaurant Claire’s at the Depot 65 S. 3rd St., Warrenton ClairesRestaurant.com, 540-351-1616 It takes character, charm, superb service and a well-rounded menu to secure the title of Best Overall Restaurant, and Claire’s has got it all. Located in the renovated 19th-century Warrenton Depot train station, Claire Lamborne’s brainchild serves up a winning blend of Southwestern, Mediterranean, Southern Caribbean and contemporary American cuisine. second place: L’Auberge Chez François, Great Falls LAubergeChezFrancois.com, 703-759-3800 third place: Vinifera Wine Bar & Bistro, Reston ViniferaBistro.com, 703-234-3550 Dressed Up Dogs Best Pizzeria Fire Works Pizza 201 Harrison St. SE, Leesburg Haute Dogs and Fries blends farm to table with fast food. Lionel Holmes and Pamela Swanson knew they wanted to open a restaurant in 2010, they just didn’t know what kind. The two then-Morton’s The Steakhouse employees “both love fine dining,” says Holmes, but knew the 2010 economy was “sensitive.” At the other end of the spectrum, they weren’t keen on a fast food franchise, “with food sitting under a heat lamp,” either. So, Holmes says, they decided, “let’s not buy a manual, let’s start a concept from scratch.” The result was Haute Dogs and Fries in Purcellville, with a second location opening in Alexandria in 2012. These are no stadium or 7-Eleven dogs. Holmes and Swanson get their meat from Fields of Athenry farm in Purcellville—where Holmes says owner Elain Boland’s “philosophy and integrity are beyond reproach, and she produces incredible ground beef and lamb sausage”—and Lothar’s Gourmet Sausage in Hamilton, owned by Lothar Erbe, an artisan master butcher from Bavaria. The “haute” idea is all about the toppings. “It’s like haute couture,” explains Holmes. “We’re going to dress it up and accessorize the hot dogs,” with toppings like pineapple relish, banana peppers and bleu cheese. Neat idea, but the key is in the execution, and Holmes and Swanson have it down to a science. Everything is cooked fresh and fast in about three minutes, just long enough for customers to take in the bright red walls featuring photos of regular customers’ canine companions, or maybe watch a little ESPN or CNN on two strategically placed TVs. “Then, when your order’s ready, we shout your name,” says Holmes. The second location in Alexandria, essentially a replica of the Purcellville location, has been a big success, so Holmes and Swanson are already considering the next move. “We are eager to start scouring the market,” says Holmes. “We would be ecstatic to get into the city [D.C.] somewhere.” At which point, they may have to consider printing a manual of their own. HauteDogsAndFries.com FireWorksPizza.com, 703-779-8400 Fire Works not only prepares its pizza pies in a 700-degree, wood-fired oven, as its name suggests, it’s also devoted to supporting local farmers and brewers. So when you’re chowing down on a Virginia Luau, Sopranos or Black Sheep pizza, you can feel good knowing the meat and veggies on top are from nearby producers. second place: Tony’s N.Y. Pizza, Manassas TonysNewYorkPizza.com, 703-330-8909 third place: Tony’s NY Pizza, Fairfax TonysNYPizza.com, 703-502-0808 Most Creative Chocolatier MC2 Confections Leesburg MC2Confections.com, 571-246-6350 A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and former Surface Warfare Officer, MC2 owner Merideth Cohrs made a major career change in 2010 and is now a self-taught expert in crafting artisan chocolates. All of MC2’s confections—from strawberry sea salt bars to chai spice macadamia quinoa puffs— are made lovingly by hand daily. second place: Artisan Confections, Arlington ArtisanConfections.com, 703-524-0007 third place: Artfully Chocolate, Alexandria TheCocoaGallery.com, 703-635-7917 Best Bakery Red Truck Bakery & Market 22 Waterloo St., Warrenton Best Sunday Brunch 65 S. 3rd St., Warrenton Claire’s at the Depot ClairesRestaurant.com, 540-351-1616 When brunch begins with a basket of complimentary cranberry-orange scones, you know you’re in for a memorable meal. With noteworthy menu items like rainbow trout and gouda grits, cornmeal crusted Chesapeake oysters, yellowfin tuna wontons and blueberry cornmeal pancakes, Claire’s Sunday brunch stands alone. second place: Hunter’s Head Tavern, Upperville HuntersHeadTavern.com, 540-592-9020 third place: Artie’s, Fairfax GreatAmericanRestaurants.com/Arties, 703-273-7600 third place tie: Tuscarora Mill, Leesburg Tuskies.com, 703-771-9300 RedTruckBakery.com, 540-347-2224 Red Truck Bakery—named for the 1954 Ford farm truck that owner Brian Noyes purchased from Tommy Hilfiger himself—takes the cake in Northern Virginia, winning first place in more categories than any other business. Speaking of cake, the bakery’s bourbon, Shenandoah apple, double-chocolate moonshine, rum and Meyer lemon cakes are good examples of this bakery’s inventive approach to baked goods. second place: Simply Cakes by Alison LLC, Leesburg Best Place for a Sandwich 22 Waterloo St., Warrenton Red Truck Bakery & Market RedTruckBakery.com, 540-347-2224 Since Red Truck uses fresh local meat and produce, and also makes its own bread, sweet pickles and relish, you can bet that all of the Warrenton shop’s sandwich combos are singularly spectacular. Specialty and seasonal sandwiches—like pastrami and apricot mustard on a pretzel roll and homemade meatloaf on focaccia—keep the menu interesting. second place: South Street Under, Leesburg SouthStreetUnder.com, 703-771-9610 third place: The Italian Store, Arlington ItalianStore.com, 703-528-6266 SimplyCakesByAlison.com, 703-405-3388 third place: Mom’s Apple Pie, Leesburg MomsApplePieCo.com, 703-771-8590 p h o t o b y S co t t C r aw f o r d B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 79 Voted Best In Virginia for Home Décor 2012 & 2013. Thanks, Virginia ! Celebrating our 17th year as Northern Virginia’s most unique home furnishings showroom. From framed art, bronze sculpture, lamps & light ﬁxtures, furniture, door & cabinet hardware, bath accesories, mirrors, ﬂoor coverings, silk florals, water features, & a distinctive array of gift & decorative accesories for the home...it’s a showroom that’s like no other! 206 East Market Street Leesburg, VA 20176 Open Tuesday - Saturday 10 to 6 (Closed Sundays & Mondays) Ample free parking on site 571-258-0880 | email@example.com | HomeSpecialtyStore.com EASTERN REGION • Arts& Culture NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Food Drink & Entertainment Best Breakfast Restaurant Red Truck Bakery & Market 22 Waterloo St., Warrenton Best Locally Owned Coffee Shop Red Truck Bakery & Market 22 Waterloo St., Warrenton Best Ice Creamery Carousel Frozen Treats 346 Waterloo St., Warrenton RedTruckBakery.com, 540-347-2224 Bacon and eggs seem blah when stacked up against Red Truck’s tomato and olive croissants, pecanencrusted sticky buns, country ham scones and cranberry-orange-walnut muffins. Now that the Fauquier County favorite ships nationwide and is set to open a second location in The Plains, there’s no excuse for anyone to miss out on the early-morning goodness. second place: First Watch, Fairfax RedTruckBakery.com, 540-347-2224 Red Truck Bakery, located in a renovated 1921 Esso gas station, claims it’s got the best hot coffee on the East Coast, and it seems our readers agree. The only thing better than the coffee is enjoying it alongside any of the shop’s myriad pies, tarts and cookies. second place: Grounds Central Station, Manassas CarouselFrozenTreats.com, 540-351-0004 It’s always summer at Carousel, where a line of eager customers is known to snake around the building on the hottest of days. Though the Warrenton shop has become famous for its softserve ice cream, thick shakes and fizzy floats since it opened in 1999, it has also garnered attention for its boardwalk fries and New York-style hot dogs. second place: The Dairy Godmother, Alexandria TheDairyGodmother.com, 703-683-7767 third place: Moo Thru, Remington MooThru.com, 540-439-6455 GroundsCentralStation.com, 571-379-7285 third place: Caffè Amouri, Vienna FirstWatch.com, 703-978-3421 third place: Virginia Kitchen, Herndon VAKitchen.com, 703-471-0808 CaffeAmouri.com, 703-938-1623 third place tie: St. Elmo’s Coffee Pub, Alexandria StElmosCoffeePub.com, 703-739-9268 Best Burger Joint Melt Gourmet Cheeseburgers 525 E. Market St., Suite J, Leesburg Best Al Fresco Dining Hunter’s Head Tavern 9048 John S. Mosby Highway, Upperville MeltGourmetCheeseburgers.com, 703-443-2105 Plenty of restaurants claim to have the best burgers in town, but Melt owners Steve and Debbie Hancotte have diversified well beyond beef, pounding patties made from lamb, crab, shrimp and tuna. Pair a create-your-own cheeseburger with Melt’s stout beer milkshake for the ultimate Melt-down. second place: Five Guys Burgers and Fries, multiple Fairfax locations FiveGuys.com third place: The Counter, Reston HuntersHeadTavern.com, 540-592-9020 This pastoral English pub (they’ve even got an authentic British red telephone booth out front) offers five different dining rooms, but why eat indoors when you can dine on the tavern’s sprawling patio? Outdoor patrons are greeted with a sign that reads “Good Food Served Here.” We promise it’s true. second place: Clyde’s of Reston, Reston Clydes.com, 703-787-6601 third place: L’Auberge Chez François, Great Falls LAubergeChezFrancois.com, 703-759-3800 TheCounterBurger.com, 703-796-1008 Philip Carter Winery: Colonial Cultivar Reviving a legacy. Two-hundred-fifty years ago, thenVirginia Lieutenant Governor Francis Fauquier made an official declaration: Charles Carter was “successfully cultivating a vineyard of European grapes both white and red.” For his trouble—and for cementing Virginia’s rightful place as the birthplace of the American wine industry—Carter received grant money from the Virginia legislature and a gold medal from a royal society in London applauding his innovation. Fast-forward to Memorial Day 2008: Philip Carter Strother slaps the first Philip Carter Winery labels on ready-for-sale bottles of wine. Five months earlier, Strother had bought the vineyard with the centuries-long provenance that, one way or another, had ties to his family for most of its existence. “It’s been in the family, tracing back to the founding of Virginia,” says Strother, a 43-year-old Richmond lawyer. After that, in a nutshell, “it went out of the family and came back into the family through the Strothers in 1929.” But back to history. By 1762, Carter had become quite the vintner, with thousands of vines between Fauquier County and the Eastern Shore. One day, in a heady moment, he packed off a dozen bottles of his wines to London’s Society of Encouragement of the Arts, Manufacture and Commerce (now the Royal Society of the Arts) for critique. Its response was to award him its gold medal. With just 16 acres under vine in Hume, Strother is more the gentleman farmer than his entrepreneurial ancestor. “It’s fair to say I’ve done every position,” he says from his Franklin Street law office in Richmond. “The vast majority is running the operation.” And while Carter must have turned quite a dime on his Virginia vines, Philip Carter Winery’s distribution is fairly limited, retailing primarily from the winery. But this is Virginia, after all, so, to Strother, it’s as much about history as anything else. In 2009, he sent two cases of his wines to the RSA in London for—in a repeat of history—evaluation. Alas, there is no gold medal. But last year, the RSA responded with a distinction that even gold can’t buy: It made Strother a fellow of the RSA. And once again, history had come full circle. PCWinery.com Best Seafood Restaurant Ford’s Fish Shack 44260 Ice Rink Plaza, Suite 101, Ashburn FordsFishShack.com, 571-918-4092 Serving “fresh-off-the-hook” seafood, Ford’s Fish Shack is a slice of coastal Maine in eastern Loudoun County—literally, from its Lobstah Cobb salad to its New England clam Chowdah. Choose from the shack’s enticing liquid desserts menu to finish off your meal with a Boston crème pie, strawberry shortcake or Tres Leches café martini. second place: Blue Ridge Seafood, Gainesville BlueRidgeSeafood.com, 703-754-9852 third place: PassionFish, Reston PassionFishReston.com, 703-230-3474 Best Sushi Cuisine Ariake Japanese Restaurant 12184 Glade Drive, Reston AriakeRestaurant.com, 703-391-9006 An exotic escape from Reston’s daily rush, Ariake offers a delightful miscellany of noodles, hot and cold appetizers, grilled meats and soups. Oh, and a remarkable sushi list. Forget the customary California roll; we recommend Ariake’s Super Dynamite roll with barbecued eel, avocado, crab and cream cheese. second place: Yama Japanese Restaurant, Vienna SushiYamaVa.com, 703-242-7703 third place: Hooked Seafood & Sushi, Sterling HookedOnSeafood.com, 703-421-0404 p h o t o b y p a t r i c i a ly o n s B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 81 EASTERN REGION • Arts& Culture NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Food Drink & Entertainment Best Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurant Sunflower Vegetarian Restaurant 2531 Chain Bridge Road, Vienna Best Winery Barrel Oak Winery 3623 Grove Lane, Delaplane Let the Good Times Roll … at Jackson’s Mighty Fine Food & Lucky Lounge in Reston. Jackson’s is a pretty happy place. As the patio bar erupts into a spontaneous singing of “Happy Birthday” on a warm spring night, the vibe is very “Cheers” circa 1984 meets Reston 2013. Shannon Farr, managing partner of the restaurant and bar, says she wants every guest to feel “like they came to someone’s home and had a great time.” And while Jackson’s slow-roasted French dip sandwich and lemon marshmallow meringue pie, or the lemon drop martini and pomegranate margarita served at the Lucky Lounge certainly make for a gastronomic good time, the restaurant’s atomic era ambiance is what kicks up the energy in this Reston Town Center hotspot. A vintage library card catalog has been transformed into a hostess stand and brightly colored mismatched retro light fixtures dangle from the ceiling. A maze of dark, polished wood booths dominates the floor, while chrome barstools look like they may have come from an old-school soda fountain. CrystalSunflower.com, 703-319-3888 Sunflower lives by the motto, “It’s Good to be Vegetarian,” and their enticing menu is convincing. The restaurant’s focus on healthy eating as the gateway to harmony has converted countless carnivores. When you’ve got lily flower soup, Hawaiian-style rice, colorful vegetable lo mein, eggplant medley and avocado and lemon pie, who needs meat? second place: Lotus Vegetarian, Chantilly LotusVegetarian.com, 703-378-6888 third place: Loving Hut, Falls Church LovingHut.us, 703-942-5622 BarrelOak.com, 540-364-6402 Barrel Oak Winery isn’t focused on wine. Run by husband and wife Brian and Sharon Roeder, the fiveyear-old business is primarily interested in fostering a sense of community among its patrons. Sure, they’ve got heaps of their internationally renowned wine on hand, but it’s Barrel Oak’s overflowing events calendar that makes this place mighty. second place: Breaux Vineyards, Purcellville BreauxVineyards.com, 540-668-6299 third place: Paradise Springs Winery, Clifton ParadiseSpringsWinery.com, 703-830-9463 third place tie: The Winery at La Grange, Haymarket WineryAtLaGrange.com, 703-753-9360 Best Farmers’ Market Reston Farmers Market 1609 Washington Plaza North, Reston RestonFarmersMarket.com, 703-318-9628 On Saturdays, May through November, Lake Anne Plaza becomes a bustle of people, produce and bluegrass music at the Reston Farmers Market. Market Masters John and Fran Lovaas work tirelessly each season to present a vast variety of vendors for the community to enjoy as they stroll through the market. From gourmet lamb chop purveyors to master gardeners, there’s something for everyone. second place: City of Falls Church Farmers Market, Falls Church FallsChurchVa.gov/FarmersMarket, 703-248-5077 third place: Leesburg Farmers Market, Leesburg Best Wine Shop Leesburg Vintner 29 S. King St., Leesburg Leesburg-Vintner.com, 703-777-3322 A downtown treasure since 1988 and winner of the 1997 Virginia Wine Retailer of the Year award, the Leesburg Vintner is committed to providing Northern Virginians with a top-rack selection of international and domestic wines, no matter the budget. The shop also doubles as a wine bar, with complimentary tastings on Saturday afternoons. second place: Oakton Wine Shop, Oakton 540-454-8089 OaktonWineShop.com, 703-255-5425 third place: The Opera House Gourmet, Manassas OperaHouseGourmet.com, 703-330-9636 Best Overall Bar Vinifera Wine Bar & Bistro 11750 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston Best Local Microbrewery LostRhino.com, 571-291-2083 ViniferaBistro.com, 703-234-3550 Elaborate menu, elegant ambience and complimentary valet parking aside, Vinifera’s wine list is enough to impress. With more than 300 international and domestic wines spread out over dozens of wine menus, a constant influx of rare, exotic selections and an expert sommelier on staff, this bar fully indulges in the vino experience. second place: Molly’s Irish Pub, Warrenton MollysIrishPub.com, 540-349-5300 third place: Jackson’s Mighty Fine Food & Lucky Lounge, Reston GreatAmericanRestaurants.com/Jacksons, 703-437-0800 Lost Rhino Brewing Company 21730 Red Rum Drive, Suite 142, Ashburn The range of Lost Rhino’s brews—which includes Ashburner Dunkel Lager, New River Pale Ale, My Imaginary Girlfriend, Face Plant IPA and Rye Wit, to name a few—is designed to mirror the distinct personalities of the five species of rhino. That also means there’s an original brew for everyone—even root beer for the non-drinkers among you. second place: Port City Brewing Company, Alexandria PortCityBrewing.com, 703-797-2739 third place: Corcoran Brewing Company, Waterford CorcoranBrewing.com, 540-882-9073 Most Creative Cocktail Menu PX 728 King St., Alexandria Best Sports Bar Facebook.com/BarPX Crystal City Sports Pub 529 23rd St. South, Arlington This Roaring ’20s-esque, self-proclaimed speakeasy isn’t just one of the greatest cocktail lounges in the Commonwealth; according to GQ magazine, it’s also the eighth best in America. PX invites you to rebel with class through its multitude of cocktails, like Cold Buttered Rum, Black Currant Fizz, Pear of Desire and Smoker’s Delight. second place: Trummer’s on Main, Clifton TrummersOnMain.com, 703-266-1623 third place: Restaurant Eve, Alexandria RestaurantEve.com, 703-706-0450 photo courtesy of Great American Restaurants CCSportsPub.com, 703-521-8215 Imagine a multilevel sports bar that’s open 365 days a year with a 10-foot and two eight-foot projection screens, more than two dozen 42-inch HDTVs, six 37-inch HDTVs and a cutting-edge sound booth. All that and a killer menu make Crystal City Sports Pub a sports fan’s paradise. second place: Glory Days Grill, Burke GloryDaysGrill.com, 703-866-1911 third place: The Greene Turtle Sports Bar & Grille, Fairfax TheGreeneTurtle.com, 703-934-5550 This mix of mid-century furnishings is a tribute to the late Bill Jackson, the inspiration behind the restaurant, a member of the Great American Restaurants group, which opened in 2008. Voted 1995 Chef of the Year by the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, Jackson was a GAR corporate executive chef whose original recipes, like a warm flourless chocolate waffle, became sensations at all of the brand’s Northern Virginia restaurants. After Jackson passed away in early 2008, the GAR team opened the restaurant to honor his 20 years of service. (He was a hockey fan, so the inverted chandeliers resemble the Stanley Cup.) A mural depicting Jackson in his chef’s coat along with members of his own family in a scene from the “The Little Rascals,” one of his favorites, hangs adjacent to the open kitchen. We bet Jackson would be proud. GreatAmericanRestaurants.com/ Jacksons B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 83 Thank You! Thank you for voting Dr. Kevin McGrath as one of the TOP OrThODOnTisTs in Northern Virginia! Here at Oakton Family Orthodontics, for the past thirty years we have dedicated ourselves to earn the reputation as one of Virginia’s leading orthodontic practices based on the exceptional quality of our results, innovative orthodontic care, and outstanding customer service. Experience matters! Based on the successful completion of over 15,000 orthodontic patients, Dr. McGrath knows what a significant difference in health and self-esteem a beautiful smile can make, which is why we strive to give each of our patients the beautiful, straight smile they deserve! Congratulations to Dr. McGrath having been chosen many times as one of the “Top Orthodontists” by his peers and patients by Washingtonian, Northern Virginia, Virginia Living, Washington Family, and Health and Beauty magazines. Oakton Family Orthodontics, P .C. • 2968-B Chain Bridge Rd., Oakton, VA 22124 • www.oaktonbraces.com • 703.938.1900 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Day Spa Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa 4210 Fairfax Corner West Ave., Fairfax RedDoorSpas.com, 703-968-2922 In business since 1910, Elizabeth Arden spas know a thing or two about pampering. Walk through the iconic red door and try a contouring marine cellulite treatment, ceramide anti-aging facial or milk and honey manicure, and relax knowing 103 years of experience are behind you. second place: Poplar Springs Inn Spa, Casanova PoplarSpringsInn.com, 540-788-4600 third place: Sugar House Day Spa & Salon, Alexandria SugarHouseDaySpa.com, 703-549-9940 shopping & se rv ices Best Interior Designer 806 N. Fairfax St., Alexandria Best Hair Salon Salon Emage Day Spa 51 E. Lee St., Warrenton Anna Kucera, Gracious Living by Design GraciousLivingByDesign.com, 703-688-3111 Owner and principal designer of Gracious Living by Design, Anna Kucera, holds a master of fine arts in interior design from George Washington University and has years of experience working in the luxury hotel industry. A turn through her Pinterest page reveals a custom-made canopy in a master bedroom so well-appointed you would never want to get out of bed, and a pair of Asian-inspired canvas panels painted for her customer by a local artist. second place: Natascha Folens, NF Interiors, Great Falls NFInteriors.com, 703-444-6642 third place: Barry Dixon, Barry Dixon Inc., Warrenton BarryDixon.com, 540-341-8501 Best Lawyer Jonathan P. Lienhard 31 Winchester St., Warrenton WalkerJonesLaw.com, 540-347-9223 Whether you’re in desperate need of a criminal lawyer or are simply looking into drafting a will, Jonathan Lienhard is your guy. The Notre Dame graduate and associate at Walker Jones, PC, the largest and one of the oldest law firms in Fauquier County, practices general and commercial litigation, wills, and business and criminal law. second place: Marie Washington, Warrenton MarieWashingtonLaw.com, 540-347-4172 third place: Cheryl K. Graham, Leesburg GrahamLawFirm.co, 703-443-9360 third place Tie: Scott W. Taylor, Vienna SmolenPlevy.com, 703-790-1900 SalonEmage.com, 540-341-4052 Salon Emage has been a full-service day spa for nearly a decade, but it originally opened as a hair salon in 2000. Offering a deep conditioning hair masque and Nioxin scalp therapy treatment, Emage knows how to tame your tresses. Best of all, customers can earn $20 gift certificates through the Style Rewards program. second place: The Secret Garden Salon, Warrenton TheSecretGardenSalon.com, 540-347-6618 third place: Bellini Salon Spa Medical Esthetics & Boutique, Vienna BelliniBeauty.com, 703-255-2555 Best Men’s Haircut 112 Pleasant St. SW, Vienna Bellini Salon Spa Medical Esthetics & Boutique BelliniBeauty.com, 703-255-2555 Hair appointments and spa days aren’t just for the ladies. At Bellini, men can get a haircut and stick around for the royal treatment via the Men’s Executive Retreat. The nearly four-hour experience includes a spa facial, deep tissue massage and the manliest of manicures and pedicures. second place: Grooming Lounge, McLean GroomingLounge.com, 703-288-0355 third place: Reflections of You, multiple Fairfax locations ROYSalon.com third place Tie: Siggi’s Sports Barber Shop, Warrenton How to Succeed in Business For more than 40 years cooks have counted on La Cuisine in Old Town Alexandria. If there is a secret to success in the competitive world of retail then Nancy Purves Pollard, owner of Alexandria’s La Cuisine, must have discovered it long ago. She opened her specialty kitchen store in 1970 and today, her brightlypainted storefront on Cameron Street, in the historic district of this boutique-crazy city, is still the area’s go-to shop for both amateur and professional cooks. “We moved into Old Town when it wasn’t pricey or chic. It made experimenting in retail more affordable than it is now,” says the 67-year-old. She attributes at least part of her success to owning the circa 1810 brick Georgian she and her husband, Robert—an attorney turned contractor—bought in 1970 and renovated. When you walk into her shop you are greeted with gleaming rows of Mauviel copper cookware and Sabatier knives—what Pollard describes as the “classic chef’s knife.” A marble mortar and pestle from Carrara, Italy, shares shelf space with Hammersong tin cookie cutters and specialty food items like orange flower essence from France and olive oil imported from Lucca in Tuscany. Pollard also carries hard-to-find items like quinine powder—a must for the home mixologist who wants to make his own tonic water. And it’s not just about the accoutrements at La Cuisine. Pollard and her staff, a tight-knit group who call themselves the Cuisinettes, demonstrate how to use the tools they sell. They teach classes on knife skills and cake decorating, and maintain a blog and website with information on topics like the care and feeding of tajines and the success and care of Hammersong cutters. (A particularly helpful set of tips is titled, “Dull Knives are a No No.”) How did Pollard and her staff come up with their playful moniker? “We always have dinners together,” explains Pollard. “We do tastings and we experiment. One night, I said, ‘You know, we really are a bunch of Cuisinettes,’ and the name just stuck.” LaCuisineUS.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 540-349-7999 Best Florist Flower Gallery of Manassas 8351 Sudley Road, Manassas FlowerGalleryManassas.com, 703-361-5186 Can’t decide on the perfect bouquet? Not to worry; with the Flower Gallery of Manassas’ Deal of the Day option, you name the occasion and seasoned florists will whip up a custom arrangement at a special price. Their bargains helped earn the 37-year-old company a nod as one of the Teleflora President’s Club’s “Top 50” florists in 2010. second place: Karin’s Florist, Vienna KarinsFlorist.com, 703-281-4141 third place: Mayflowers at Reston Town Center, Reston MayflowersReston.com, 703-709-1200 p h o t o c o u r t es y o f L a C u i s i n e 444 ManaSSaS national Battlefield Park W here S outhern V ictorieS t eSted n orthern r eSolVe O J n July 21, 1861, two armies clashed for the first time on the fields overlooking Bull Run. In August 1862, Union and Confederate armies converged for a second time on the plains of Manassas. oin us on these historic grounds and remember the people and events that helped shape our nationâ€™s history. Hike the historic landscape on your own or accompany one of our knowledgeable staff for a ranger led program. Thereâ€™s always something to do at Manassas National Battlefield Park! 703-361-1339 www.nps.gov/mana This ad graciously paid for by Eastern National, a proud partner of Manassas National Battlefield Park. EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Air Charter Service Metropolitan Aviation 10661 Frank Marshall Lane, Manassas Most On-Schedule Home Builder NVR, Inc. 11700 Plaza America Drive, Reston Best Shopping Area/Mall Tysons Corner Center 1961 Chain Bridge Road, McLean MetropolitanJets.com, 855-463-8538 They say getting there is half the fun. At Metropolitan Aviation, the other half lies in choosing your own flying machine from the company’s 11-jet fleet. Select from the heavy, 15-passenger Falcon 900, the twin turbo prop, five-passenger Cheyenne II or the mid jet, nine-passenger Hawker 800A, and you’ll jet set in luxury and comfort. second place: Chantilly Air, Manassas NVRInc.com, 703-956-4000 ShopTysons.com, 703-893-9400 Where can you visit the first Apple retail store in the world, the first Nordstrom store on the East Coast, the first L.L.Bean store outside of Maine and the flagship Spanx store? The answer: Tysons Corner Center, whose 300-plus shops and restaurants make it the sixth largest shopping center in America. second place: Fair Oaks Mall, Fairfax ShopFairOaksMall.com, 703-359-8300 third place: Tysons Galleria, McLean TysonsGalleria.com, 703-827-7730 NVR, Inc., the parent company of popular builders Ryan Homes, NVHomes, Fox Ridge Homes and Heartland Homes, has constructed more than 365,000 homes in 15 states. It gets a gold star for trying to minimize environmental impact and waste; NVR is the recipient of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2012 ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year Award. second place: Golden Rule Builders, Inc., Catlett ChantillyAir.com, 800-720-5387 third place: ProJet Aviation, Leesburg ProJetAviation.com, 703-889-8558 GoldenRuleBuilders.com, 540-788-3539 third place: B & L Builders, Inc., Warrenton BandLBuilders.com, 540-428-7062 Best Pet Boarding Paws Awhile Pet Motel 7353 Woodlawn Lane, Warrenton PawsAwhilePetMotel.com, 540-347-4855 Next time you book yourself a hotel room, make a reservation for your dog or cat, too; while you’re on vacation, your pet can holiday on Paws Awhile’s 24 acres. The 48-year-old motel, run by Orthodox Christian nuns Mother Eirene and Sister Elizabeth, has grooming and training options available in addition to pick-up and drop-off services. second place: Old Towne Pet Resort, Springfield OldTownePetResort.com, 703-455-9000 third place: Affectionate Pet Care, Fairfax AffectionatePetCare.com, 703-250-5233 third place Tie: Old Mill Boarding Kennel, Leesburg OldMillPets.com, 703-777-4183 Best Antiques Baileywyck Shoppes of Middleburg 21197 Saint Louis Road, Middleburg BaileywyckShoppes.com, 908-313-4441 Pride of Place Wildflour Caterers in Chantilly is about great food and great opportunities. “But I don’t want to talk about me,” protests Alberto Sangiorgio, general manager and executive chef of Chantilly’s Wildflour Catering when asked about his background in the restaurant and catering industry. “I want to talk about them!” Sangiorgio, 64, is eager to talk about his 51-member staff, 33 of whom are adults with intellectual challenges. Wildflour has employed adults with developmental disabilities since it was established in Fairfax in 1994 by Jim Rogan, founder of Lorton electronics company E-Tron Systems Inc., which also employs disabled workers, and Jean Wood, a special education teacher at Fairfax High School. Sangiorgio joined the not-for-profit company in 1998. “I started part-time,” says the European-trained chef in a heavy Northern Italian accent despite his more than 20 years in the U.S. “Then I fell in love with these kids.” Sangiorgio and his staff spend up to six months training each employee to do things like slice garlic or cut celery. “I don’t want speed,” he says. “I want them to be perfect. Speed comes after that.” Employees in the program also assist with deliveries and learn to perform other kitchen tasks. “Even some of their parents don’t think they can do as much as they can do,” says Sangiorgio. Once, he says, he overheard a young employee in the kitchen telling his visiting mother that he had to cut the potatoes in exactly the same size or they wouldn’t cook properly. Sangiorgio says the mother was surprised by her son’s knowledge. “You know how much this builds self-esteem?” asks Sangiorgio. “It’s tremendous.” Ranging in age from 20 to 60, Wildflour’s employees earn $7.25 per hour, receive paid sick leave and vacation and also have profit sharing opportunities. Several disabled employees have been with Wildflour for as many as 15 years. But for all this, “We don’t promote the disabilities, we promote the business,” says Sangiorgio. “If I approach you, I will approach you with the great food that we have.” WildflourCaterers.com If you’ve ever been antiquing, you know it’s a treasure hunt of sorts, an exhilarating search for vintage furniture, art, jewelry or nothing in particular. Baileywyck owners Lisa and Jim Vella have made that thrill their livelihood. Since 2006, the brother-sister duo has traveled near and far, scouring for the collectibles that stock their 4,000-square-foot showroom. second place: Old Lucketts Store, Leesburg LuckettStore.com, 703-779-0268 third place: Iron Horse Antiques, Manassas ManassasOnline.com/IronHorse, 703-335-6676 Best Sporting Goods Store Dick’s Sporting Goods 12501 Fair Lakes Circle, Fairfax DicksSportingGoods.com, 703-803-0300 The Fairfax branch of this national store has so much sporting gear that it needs two floors to contain it all. With items for nearly every sport from rock climbing to shooting, you’ll be glad for the pair of escalators that carry you to the second floor. second place: REI, Fairfax REI.com, 571-522-6568 third place: Blue Ridge Mountain Sports, Warrenton BRMS.com, 540-428-3136 third place Tie: Sports Authority, Vienna SportsAuthority.com, 703-827-2206 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 photo Courtesy of Wildflour Caterers 87 Catch the Wave to a Great Smile! William Crutchfield, D.D.S. Diplomate, American Board of Orthodontists 14012-E Sullyfield Circle. Chantilly,Virginia 20151. 703.263.0575 www.orthodonticsbycrutchfield.com EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Hail to the Chef Mike Stevenson keeps the Washington Redskins happy and healthy. The Washington Redskins are always looking for fresh talent, whether on the field or in the kitchen. In 2009, the team picked up 42-year-old Fredericksburg-based Chef Mike Stevenson after he wowed them in a tryout. “I was just called in to do a tasting for Redskins owner Daniel Snyder at a preseason game against the Patriots,” says the man they call Chef Mike, who was working at D.C.’s Capital Grille steakhouse at the time. Stevenson was hired after his chicken gumbo and spicy bison bean-less chili impressed, and he’s been the stadium chef ever since, serving up dishes like Kobe sirloin and, for midday games, creole-style brunches for Snyder and guests in the owner’s personal suite at FedExField. Stevenson’s influence can also be seen on the field—he is personal chef to four Redskins players: Trent Williams, Santana Moss, Fred Davis and DeAngelo Hall. “I try to use a regimen of lean proteins and vegetables,” says Stevenson, who served in the U.S. Navy from 1989 to 1993, and says cooking something nutritious and tasty for professional athletes requires imagination and innovation. “Ground bison instead of beef or steak, dry rubs, pan-seared, no gravies, and all the sauces are made from stock that I make myself ... I have to make it tasty, because otherwise these guys are going to be tempted to cheat at a fast food store!” Not that cooking for celebrities is anything new to Stevenson, who has created dishes for luminaries from Ludacris to Hillary Clinton. And there is still plenty left on this gastronomical go-getter’s to-do list. In February he published a cookbook, A Way to a Woman’s Heart, which is “designed to bring men and women to the table together,” and is currently “looking at quaint areas between Fredericksburg and Ashburn” to open a restaurant serving “farm to table food, home-cooked from scratch.” Now that’s what we call a spread offense. ChefMike.tv Best Outdoor Outfitter REI 11950 Grand Commons Ave., Fairfax Best Cosmetic Surgeon Rejuven8U.com, 703-726-1175 Michael J. Brown, M.D., P.L.L.C. 45155 Research Place, Suite 125, Ashburn Best Dermatologist John W. Brady Jr., M.D. 8650 Sudley Road, Suite 310, Manassas REI.com, 571-522-6568 JohnBradyMD.com, 703-369-3376 In July of 1938, a group of 23 mountain climbing friends founded REI, now the largest consumer cooperative in the country. For the past 75 years, the company has not only outfitted adventure seekers but also prioritized community involvement. Last year alone, REI awarded $3.9 million in grants to more than 260 nonprofit organizations nationwide. second place: Blue Ridge Mountain Sports, Michael J. Brown is the surgeon to see if your recent tummy tuck—or anything else cosmetic surgeryrelated—went awry. Practiced in revisionary surgery, which is a reconstructive specialty focused on correcting prior surgeries, Dr. Brown will put things in order. He also performs other aesthetic cosmetic procedures, from liposuction to rhinoplasty to brow lifts. second place: James H. French Jr., M.D., F.A.C.S., Whether you’re a teen with severe acne or an adult with skin lesions, Dr. Brady will see you now. A former U.S. Navy general medical officer and fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology, he has spent the last 36 years practicing general medical and surgical dermatology for patients of all ages at his Manassas office. second place: Joanne Simpson, M.D., Alexandria AlexandriaDerm.com, 703-212-7546 third place: Cuong (Chris) Ha, M.D., Gainesville PWDerm.com, 571-261-1234 third place Tie: Van T. Ha, M.D., Leesburg LoudounDerm.com, 703-723-7171 Warrenton BRMS.com, 540-428-3136 third place: Hudson Trail Outfitters, Fairfax HudsonTrail.com, 703-591-2950 third place Tie: L.L.Bean, McLean LLBean.com, 888-552-9876 Annandale CPSDocs.com, 703-560-2850 third place: Phillip J. Chang, M.D., Leesburg GoToBeauty.com, 703-729-5553 third place Tie: Byron D. Poindexter, M.D., Reston Austin-Weston.com, 703-893-6168 Most Beloved Pediatrician 20 Rock Pointe Lane, Warrenton Best Children’s Clothing Store 7945 Stonewall Shops Square, Gainesville Dharma & Leopold’s Children’s Chic Boutique DharmaAndLeopolds.com, 571-222-7817 Dharma & Leopold’s, a family-owned business named for mother Brenda’s chocolate lab and daughter Roxanne’s Bengal cat, has a whimsical selection of children’s clothing and accessories, including Holy Communion dresses and chic diaper bags. They also carry girls’ jewelry, toys and shoes. But check back often, because this Gainesville shop has new merchandise rolling in all the time. second place: The Tabby Cat, Oakton TabbyCatKids.com, 703-255-0812 third place: Pink & Brown, Alexandria PinkAndBrownBoutique.com, 703-684-1050 Best Independent School Highland School 597 Broadview Ave., Warrenton Joshua A. Jakum, M.D., F.A.A.P. PiedmontPediatrics.com, 540-347-9900 Dr. Jakum, who completed his internship and pediatric residency at the Brown University School of Medicine, is more than just a regionally acclaimed pediatrician. He maintains special interests in international adoption and breastfeeding support, and his enthusiasm for medical ethics helped him acquire his current position as chair of the Fauquier Hospital Bioethics Committee. second place: John D. Farrell Jr., M.D., F.A.A.P., South Riding SouthRidingPediatrics.com, 703-327-0075 third place: James R. Baugh, M.D., Fairfax VAPG.com, 703-573-2432 third place Tie: Frank J. Giancola, M.D., F.A.A.P., Manassas PediatriCare.com, 703-330-3939 HighlandSchool.org, 540-878-2700 Highland School urges its students to get creative. The school’s 183,300-square-foot Center for the Arts houses a 355-seat theater, 2-D and 3-D art rooms, photography and digital filmmaking labs, music rooms and more. From theater technology to ceramics to 3-D animation, these facilities certainly get good use. second place: Flint Hill School, Oakton FlintHill.org, 703-584-2300 third place: The Nysmith School for the Gifted, Herndon Nysmith.com, 703-713-3332 third place Tie : Wakefield School, The Plains WakefieldSchool.org, 540-253-7600 photo by DuHon Photography B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 89 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment NORTHERN VIRGINIA • Shopping & Services Best Cycle Shop Trail’s End Cycling Co 201 N. 23rd St., Purcellville Best Fine Jewelry Store Quinn’s Goldsmith Inc. 199 Union St., Occoquan Best Hospital Inova Fairfax Hospital 3300 Gallows Road, Falls Church TrailsEndCycling.com, 540-338-2773 Trail’s End Cycling Co, whose name comes from the store’s opportune location at the western end of the W&OD Trail, knows nothing ruins a ride more than an improperly fitted bike. Ergo, the shop has its own fit studio and offers pro fitting sessions by its expert staff to make sure your bike fits like a glove. second place: Spokes Etc., Vienna SpokesEtc.com, 703-281-2004 third place: Bicycle Outfitters, Leesburg BikeOutfitters.com, 703-777-6126 QuinnsGoldsmith.com, 703-494-1662 This neighborhood jeweler is also a traditional goldsmith that will make just about any piece of custom jewelry you can dream up. The shop’s four goldsmiths have more than 100 years of experience combined, so your design concept comes to life at the hands of true experts. How’s that for oneof-a-kind jewelry? second place: Maya Caroleena Jewelers, Ashburn MayaCaroleena.com, 703-723-9070 third place: Ketterman’s Jewelers, Leesburg Kettermans.com, 703-777-0033 Inova.org, 855-634-6682 U.S. News & World Report not only recently named Inova Fairfax Hospital as the best hospital in the Washington, D.C., area, but also ranked its gynecology and cardiology and heart surgery specialties among the top 50 in the nation. The 833-bed teaching facility is also home to Inova Children’s Hospital and Inova Heart and Vascular Institute. second place: Inova Fair Oaks Hospital, Fairfax Inova.org, 855-634-6682 third place: Reston Hospital Center, Reston RestonHospital.com, 703-689-9000 Best Bridal Shop Fabulous Frocks of Alexandria 1901B Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria Best Women’s Clothing Store Christine Fox 47 S. Third St., Warrenton Best Orthodontist FabulousFrocksOfAlexandria.com, 703-683-2306 If you’ve ever watched TLC’s “Say Yes to the Dress,” you know the toughest part about finding the wedding dress of your dreams can be tracking down one that fits your budget. With all of its gowns at 20-70 percent off the original retail price, Fabulous Frocks takes that problem out of the equation. second place: Blush Bridal Boutique, Gainesville BlushBridalBoutique.com, 703-753-8303 third place: Jeanette’s Bride ‘N Boutique, Manassas JeanettesBride.com, 703-369-1998 William E. Crutchfield II, D.D.S. 14012 Sullyfield Circle, Suite E, Chantilly ChristineFox.com, 540-347-3868 A former buyer for Neiman Marcus, Lord and Taylor, Gucci and Saks Fifth Avenue, Christine Fox knows fashion. In the early ’90s, the handbag savant was eager to introduce historic Old Town Warrenton to the world of high fashion and did so by opening her eponymous store, which carries exclusive fashions by “Project Runway” season one star Wendy Pepper. second place: Nordstrom, McLean Shop.Nordstrom.com, 703-761-1121 third place: Judy Ryan of Fairfax, Fairfax JudyRyanOfFairfax.com, 703-425-1855 OrthodonticsByCrutchfield.com, 703-263-0575 A Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics, Dr. Crutchfield has spent 25 years perfecting smiles for children, teens and adults. In addition to utilizing advanced tools and technology, Dr. Crutchfield’s practice, Orthodontics by Crutchfield, is decorated in a fun, beachy theme that puts patients at ease. second place: Kevin McGrath, D.D.S., Oakton OaktonBraces.com, 703-938-1900 third place: Emike U. Aliu, D.D.S., Vienna AvantiDentistry.com, 703-625-6229 Best Gift Shop Baileywyck Shoppes of Middleburg 21197 Saint Louis Road, Middleburg Best Independent Home Decor Store The Home Specialty Store 206 E. Market St., Leesburg , Best Dentist BaileywyckShoppes.com, 908-313-4441 Baileywyck is situated in the heart of Old Dominion horse country, so it’s only fitting that a portion of the store’s sales directly supports Golden Dreams Therapeutic Riding Center, a public charity serving children and adults with cognitive, physical and emotional disabilities. This makes for a shopping experience you can really feel good about. second place: The Things I Love, Manassas TheThingsILoveManassas.com, 703-335-7711 third place: Zazu, Ashburn ShopZazu.com, 703-858-9298 Farshad Farhoumand, D.D.S. 8150 Leesburg Pike, Suite 920, Vienna HomeSpecialtyStore.net, 571-258-0880 What do a pineapple trivet, fleur de lis bookends and a Harrison Gray wall clock have in common? They’re all among the bestselling items on The Home Specialty Store’s 8,900-square-foot showroom. Owners Wayne and Lynn Baker will help you navigate their collection of eclectic, yet refined collection of furnishings. second place: The Things I Love, Manassas TheThingsILoveManassas.com, 703-335-7711 third place: decorium, Alexandria decoriumhome.com, 703-739-4662 AvantiDentistry.com, 703-625-6229 Dr. Farhoumand isn’t just a dentist of many talents; he’s one of many tongues. The Iran native attended Italian and American schools while growing up in Ethiopia and is fluent in Farsi, Italian, French and Spanish. A graduate of Georgetown University’s School of Dentistry, Farhoumand can talk to anyone. second place: Quyen Dang, D.D.S., Fairfax OptimalDentalCenter.com, 703-226-2222 third place: D. Gordon Rye, D.D.S., Fairfax RyeSmilesForLife.com, 703-352-2010 Best Kitchen Designer P.O. Box 128, Orlean Debbie Burke, B and B Design/Build 540-341-8118 Best Men’s Clothing Store Highcliffe Clothiers 16 S. Madison St., Middleburg Best Shoe Store DSW Multiple Fairfax locations Though she does everything from fashioning cozy family rooms to helping you get the most out of your mudroom, Debbie Burke has specialized in kitchens— and baths—for the past 20 years. She’s not just an expert at remodeling existing kitchens; Burke also designs custom kitchens from scratch in new home construction. second place: April Case Underwood, Case Design/Remodeling, Inc., Falls Church CaseDesign.com, 703-241-2980 third place: Evelyn Nicely, Nicely Done Kitchens, Springfield NicelyDoneKitchens.com, 703-764-3748 HighcliffeClothiers.com, 540-687-5633 You don’t have to worry about the middleman at this Middleburg custom clothing shop; at Highcliffe, customers always interact directly with proprietor Mark Metzger. The past president and current vice president of the Custom Tailors and Designers Association, he brings 30 years of expertise in fitting and designing custom clothing to your shopping experience. second place: Nordstrom, McLean DSW.com Shoe addicts, beware! A trip to Designer Shoe Warehouse will only feed your dependency. Whether you need Nike sneaks for the gym, Marc by Marc Jacobs pumps for a night on the town or Gucci flip-flops for the boardwalk, you can surely find it among DSW’s wall-towall selection. Prepare to be there a while. second place: Nordstrom, McLean Shop.Nordstrom.com, 703-761-1121 third place: The Shoe Hive, Alexandria TheShoeHive.com, 703-548-7105 Shop.Nordstrom.com, 703-761-1121 third place: Jos. A. Bank, multiple Fairfax locations JosBank.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 91 Sout hwest Virgini a In Southwest Virginia, farm to table has been a way of life since long before the phrase became the rallying cry for healthy eating and supporting local agriculture. The Martinsville Uptown Farmers’ Market has been in business so long that its founding date has passed out of local memory (it was 1979), and the Roanoke Natural Foods Co-Op is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. It makes sense that the region’s agricultural abundance feeds food-forward thinking like that of Chef Jeff Farmer of Lucky in Roanoke, who sources product locally for his buttermilk fried chicken and braised kale, and Diane Flynt of Foggy Ridge Cider whose Dugspur orchards yield juice for her artisanal craft cider. Protecting this heritage are people like Tim Hensley of Urban Homestead in Bristol whose heirloom apple trees supply home orchardists dedicated to preserving varieties like Virginia Beauty, which are in danger of being lost to the tide of mass-market apple production. Fresh, local, bountiful. It all comes naturally in Southwest Virginia. ♠ Illustration ♠ Styling Photography by by Cade Cade Martin Martin ♠ Illustration by by Shane Shane Rebenscheid Rebenscheid ♠ Styling by by Neely Neely Barnwell Barnwell Dykshorn Dykshorn Photography ARTS, CULTURE & Entertainment Best Art Event Virginia Highlands Festival Downtown Abingdon Best Special Event Venue Roanoke Civic Center 710 Williamson Road, Roanoke Best Performing Arts Company Barter Theatre 127 W. Main St., Abingdon VAHighlandsFestival.org, 276-623-5266 Started in 1948 by Barter Theatre founder Robert Porterfield, the Virginia Highlands Festival will celebrate 65 years in August. The annual gathering brings Virginians of all ages and walks of life together in historic Abingdon for a week jam-packed with cultural events, from a classic film festival and antique market to kitchen tours and concerts. second place: Steppin’ Out, Blacksburg BlacksburgSteppinOut.com, 540-951-0454 third place: Art on the Lawn, Pearisburg GilesArtCouncil.org RoanokeCivicCenter.com, 540-853-5483 With a 2,151-seat performing arts theater, 10,500-seat coliseum, 14,000-square-foot exhibit hall and 46,000-square-foot special events center, it’s no surprise that this Roanoke fixture is a repeat Best of Virginia winner. The Avett Brothers, Bill Cosby and WWE Raw will perform there this year. second place: Rives Theatre, Martinsville BarterTheatre.com, 276-628-3991 What do Gregory Peck, Patricia Neal, Frances Fisher, Kevin Spacey and Wayne Knight have in common? They got their start at Barter, the 80-year-old State Theatre of Virginia. During the Depression, patrons would barter produce to gain admission to the theater, hence its name. Tennessee Williams is among the playwrights who accepted ham in lieu of royalties. second place: TheatreWorks Community Players, Martinsville TWCP.net, 276-632-2800 third place: Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, Roanoke RSO.com, 540-343-9127 RivesTheatre.com, 276-403-0872 third place: Jefferson Center, Roanoke JeffCenter.org, 866-345-2550 Best Music Venue Kirk Avenue Music Hall 22 Kirk Ave. SW, Roanoke Best Food Festival Blacksburg Fork and Cork First & Main shopping district, Blacksburg Best Movie Theater Lyric Theatre 135 College Ave., Blacksburg KirkAvenueMusic.com, 540-339-8647 Kirk Avenue is about music and music alone. Its cozy, casual, “no frills” setting—intended to make you feel like you’re sitting in the artist’s living room— lets you get lost in every performance. Whether you’re into blues or rock ‘n’ roll, enjoy seeing wellknown musicians or discovering new bands, you’ll dig this music hall. second place: Rives Theatre, Martinsville BlacksburgForkAndCork.com, 540-443-2008 Blacksburg Fork and Cork is, as its name suggests, largely a food and wine festival, overflowing with Virginia wines and cuisine from local restaurants. All the same, art and entertainment are also integral components of the annual event. Live performances, arts and crafts vendors, and a canned goods sculpture contest spice up the occasion. second place: Roanoke Greek Festival, Roanoke RoanokeGreekFestival.com, 540-362-3601 third place: Community School’s Strawberry Festival, Roanoke CommunitySchool.net, 540-563-5036 TheLyric.com, 540-951-4771 RivesTheatre.com, 276-403-0872 third place: Jefferson Center, Roanoke Setting foot in the Lyric Theatre is like being transported to another era. Once inside the theater, constructed in 1929 in a fantastic ArtDeco-meets-Spanish-Colonial-Revival style, you’ll wonder why you ever opted for the cookie-cutter multiplex experience. The Lyric is full of character, and perhaps too much so—some say the Blacksburg landmark is haunted. second place: The Grandin Theatre, Roanoke GrandinTheatre.com, 540-345-6177 third place: Abingdon Cinemall, Abingdon Cinemall.com, 276-623-2121 JeffCenter.org, 866-345-2550 Lucky, Roanoke Lucky Fried Chicken 1 whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces 4 tablespoons herbes de Provence 4 tablespoons smoked paprika a couple dashes of Tabasco 4 cups all purpose flour 4 cups buttermilk coarse black pepper kosher salt Make a brine of ¾ cups kosher salt and 1 gallon of water. Place chicken in the brine and refrigerate for 24 hours. In a mixing bowl, add 2 tablespoons herbes de Provence, 2 tablespoons smoked paprika, a couple dashes of Tabasco, 1 tablespoon coarse black pepper and a pinch of salt. Mix in the buttermilk, and cover chicken with mixture. Let set for at least 24 hours. Preheat fryer or cast iron skillet to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, add 2 tablespoons herbes de Provence, 2 tablespoons smoked paprika, 1 tablespoon coarse black pepper and 1 teaspoon salt. Mix herbs and spices together with the flour. Remove chicken from buttermilk, and toss in the flour mix, making sure to cover each piece with flour. Place in hot oil. Fry for about 10 minutes. When the chicken’s temperature is 170 degrees or above, it is done. Remove from fryer and drain. Serves 4 EatAtLucky.com 94 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 photo courtesy of lucky EASTERN REGION Arts Culture &Entertainment Entertainment SOUTHWEST SOUTHWESTERN VIRGINIA VIRGINIA •• Arts, • Arts Culture Culture & & Entertainment Best Overall Museum 110 Salem Ave. SE, Roanoke Taubman Museum of Art TaubmanMuseum.org, 540-342-5760 With its swooping architecture, the Taubman Museum of Art looks like it landed in downtown Roanoke from the distant future. Home to 2,050 pieces, ranging from 3,500-year-old Egyptian Ushabiti ceramic figures to contemporary Roanoke artists as well as works by Thomas Cowperthwaite Eakins and James Harold Jennings, the museum also hosts many traveling exhibitions every year. second place: Virginia Museum of Natural History, Martinsville VMNH.net, 276-634-4141 third place: William King Museum, Abingdon WilliamKingMuseum.org, 276-628-5005 Best Historic Museum VMT.org, 540-342-5670 Virginia Museum of Transportation 303 Norfolk Ave. SW, Roanoke Most Creative Charitable Event 1920 Coopers Mountain Road, Martinsville Rooster Walk Music & Arts Festival RoosterWalk.com Martinsville High School grads Walker Shank and Edwin “the Rooster” Penn passed away in their 20s. Instead of mourning their deaths, their childhood friends founded Rooster Walk, held annually on Memorial Day weekend, to celebrate their lives. In four years, the event has raised $20,000 for the young men’s namesake scholarship fund at Martinsville High. second place: Dancing for the Arts, Martinsville PiedmontArts.org, 276-632-3221 third place: A Tisket, A Tasket, A Literary Basket, Abingdon WCPLTisket.com, 276-676-6383 third place tie: Bargain Fair, Martinsville CharityLeague.org, 276-732-9325 Where can you find the largest collection of diesel locomotives in the South? Why, the Virginia Museum of Transportation, of course! Though the 45,000-square-foot facility—which displays about 2,500 items—was originally dubbed the Roanoke Transportation Museum and focused on local rail heritage, its current collection now also includes automotive, transit and aviation artifacts. second place: Virginia Museum of Natural History, Martinsville VMNH.net, 276-634-4141 third place: Martinsville-Henry County Heritage Center & Museum, Martinsville MHCHistoricalSociety.org, 276-403-5361 Best Mixologist Rusty Spence, Chatmoss Country Club 550 Mount Olivet Road, Martinsville ChatmossCC.org, 276-638-2484 Veteran mixologist Rusty Spence can whip you up a Rusty Nail—or any other drink you desire—in no time. The admittedly easygoing gent has been at Chatmoss Country Club for 14 years and has been bartending on and off for 17. Spence recommends the Cosmopolitan and Uptown Margarita at the club’s Elmwood Bar. second place: Rachel Isley, The Bank Food and Drink, Pearisburg TheBankFoodAndDrink.com, 540-921-2981 third place: Melanie Holmes, The Tavern Restaurant, Abingdon AbingdonTavern.com, 276-628-1118 Back to Basics Martinsville’s no-frills farmers’ market keeps the focus on food. These days, farmers’ markets have become so trendy that practically every community has its own. In most of the state’s larger cities, if you shot a cannon through the city you’d hit at least four. Then there are the surrounding counties. As Dean Cline puts it, “Farmers’ markets are growing like crazy.” Cline, 77, market manager for the Martinsville Uptown Farmers’ Market, couldn’t be more right. Fed by the growth of the farmto-table trend, farmers’ markets dot city squares and rural street corners around the state, many of carnival-esque proportions and atmosphere. Artisans and face-painters mix with heirloom tomato growers and goat cheese producers. Shoppers ponder packages of tofu ice cream or pour over racks of hammered-wire candlesticks. Whatever happened to the real, authentic farmers’ markets? Where your granddaddy passed time chatting up the truck farmer while your grandma picked over his tomatoes or sniffed the cantaloupes to choose just the right ones? While the Martinsville Uptown Farmers’ Market might not be the over-the-top affair that today’s open air markets have become, it just might be the closest thing to the original variety farmers’ market that you can find these days. With only 16 vendor booths, it’s “a friendly, nostalgic environment that transports you back to a simpler time,” says Laura Bowles, executive director of the Martinsville Uptown Revitalization Association. And it’s more relaxed than busier farmers’ markets, where queues curl and shoppers reach over and squeeze past each other to get the plum pickings. Even hours are relaxed. Vendors who purchase booths for each Wednesday and Saturday from May through October “can come when they want,” says Cline. They can even sell on non-market days and offseason. “There’s a loyal customer base ... and they know when [vendors] will be there.” Last year’s big news was the installation of ceiling fans in the West Main Street facility. The market moved there about 10 years ago—after nearly a quarter century in its original home under a metal overhang at the town’s school bus parking lot. Time doesn’t move too quickly at the Martinsville Uptown market. But that’s the nice thing about it. MartinsvilleUptown.net p h oto co u r t e s y o f m a r t i n s v i l l e u p tow n fa r m e r s ’ m a r k e t B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 95 EASTERN REGION• • Arts Culture & Entertainment SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA Living & Recreation Most Welcoming Bed and Breakfast Inn at Riverbend 125 River Ridge Drive, Pearisburg InnAtRiverbend.com, 540-921-5211 Seeking a bit of rustic seclusion? The Inn at Riverbend’s seven named bedrooms—from the Palisades, Riverbend’s most-requested room with purple walls and a commanding four-poster bed, to the sunny, simple comfort of Angels Rest and the calming French blue decor of Cascade Falls—come with New River Valley views at no extra charge. second place: Nesselrod Bed & Breakfast, Radford Nesselrod.com, 540-731-4970 third place: The Virginia Home Inn, Fieldale TheVirginiaHomeInn.com, 276-673-7717 liv ing & re cre ation Best Retirement Community King’s Grant 350 King’s Way Road, Martinsville Most Challenging Golf Course Chatmoss Country Club 550 Mount Olivet Road, Martinsville Best Resort for the Whole Family Mountain Lake Lodge 115 Hotel Circle, Pembroke KingsGrant.cc, 276-634-1000 ChatmossCC.org, 276-638-2484 MtnLakeLodge.com, 540-626-7121 The newly renovated Mountain Lake Lodge is a 2,600-acre conservancy, home to 20-plus miles of mountain biking and hiking trails, “Dirty Dancing”themed weekends, the Aerial Adventure Course and Kids KAMP for the youngest guests. But despite multiple possibilities for outdoor adventure, the rooms are so cozy you might be tempted to stay inside. second place: Primland, Meadows of Dan Primland.com, 276-222-3800 third place: The Martha Washington Hotel & Spa, Abingdon TheMarthaWashingtonInn.com, 276-628-3161 Imagine eating a delicious meal in the Trellis Room, taking a cooking class, canoeing on the Smith River and then playing a round of water volleyball. No, this isn’t a vacation, it’s a slice of life at King’s Grant, a bustling Christian community that aims to make your golden years engaging. second place: Warm Hearth Village, Blacksburg Retire.org, 540-552-9176 third place: Brandon Oaks, Roanoke BrandonOaks.net, 540-776-2600 Celebrated designer Ellis Maples is the mastermind behind Chatmoss Country Club’s expansive and difficult golf course. Home to the Chatmoss Invitational Tournament, a pro shop, a practice putting green and range, Ladies’ Day (Thursdays) and a Junior Golf program, this Martinsville club has something for everyone to take a swing at. second place: Pete Dye River Course of Virginia Tech, Radford PeteDyeRiverCourse.com, 540-633-6732 third place: The Virginian Golf Club, Bristol TheVirginian.com, 276-645-6950 Best Tennis Club Pro Mike Weidl, Chatmoss Country Club 550 Mount Olivet Road, Martinsville Most Luxurious Hotel ChatmossCC.org, 276-632-1857 Best Hiking Trail Abingdon to Whitetop Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center 110 Shenandoah Ave., Roanoke HotelRoanoke.com, 540-985-5900 The Tudor-style Hotel Roanoke stands tall, reminiscent of a gingerbread palace from a childhood dream come to life. The restored 19th-century structure, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is as grand as can be, from the Regency Room and 63,000-square-foot Conference Center to the Palm Court and ballrooms. second place: The Martha Washington Hotel & Spa, Abingdon TheMarthaWashingtonInn.com, 276-628-3161 third place: Primland, Meadows of Dan Primland.com, 276-222-3800 Mike Weidl is a master of the court. He played for the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and won the USTA Men’s National Amateur Indoor Championship in singles and doubles in 1993. The decorated athlete, a former #1-ranked 25-and-over player in North Carolina, has been a USPTA certified P1 professional since 1996. second place: Bill Woods, Blacksburg Country Club, Blacksburg BlacksburgCC.com, 540-951-1601 third place: Bob Helton, The Virginian Golf Club, Bristol TheVirginian.com, 276-645-7900 third place tie: David Poole, Glenrochie Country Club, Abingdon GlenrochieCountryClub.com, 276-628-3059 Virginia Creeper Trail VACreeperTrail.com Rushing rapids, graceful waterfalls, enticing thickets, rustic bridges, towering flora and stellar mountaintop views. These are just a handful of scenes, all of which are so beautiful it’s “creepy.” Maintained by the City of Abingdon and Town of Damascus, the trail attracts nature enthusiasts from around the world. second place: Cascade Trail, George Washington and Jefferson National Forests, Pembroke FS.USDA.gov/GWJ, 540-265-5100 third place: Appalachian Trail, Southwest Virginia NPS.gov/Appa, 304-535-6278 Apple Whisperer Urban Homestead stumps for heirloom apples and home orcharding. “Around the early 1900s, apple varieties and home orcharding went into decline with the introduction of supermarkets,” explains Tim Hensley. Prior to that, “Folks would dry their apples, make apple pies, make cider, and each apple variety had a specific purpose.” At his Urban Homestead orchardry, Hensley is bringing back the craft of growing apples like Duchess of Oldenburg, Albemarle Pippin, Summer Rambo and more. The mission is to “propagate heirloom apple trees for the home orchardist,” says Hensley, 51, who operates the nursery on the two acres surrounding his home in the heart of Bristol. He maintains more than 100 varieties of heirloom apple trees, including Virginia Beauty and June Apple, and he ships trees to home orchardists all over the East Coast. Hensley has access to many hard-to-find trees (average supermarkets only carry about 15 types of apples). But cultivating apple trees and preserving heirloom varieties is not as simple as planting a seed: “You can’t take seeds and line them in a row and get the exact same tree ... you have to graft,” he explains, which means cutting a stem from a tree of the desired variety and physically joining it with a separate apple root system. The ends will then callous over and grow into a single tree. Not surprisingly, Hensley has become an apple expert. Ask him about any kind of heirloom apple and he can tell you its history. Just don’t ask about that supermarket staple called Red Delicious. OldVAApples.com photo courtesy of Urban Homestead B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 97 Living & Recreation • SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA Best Group Fitness Roanoke Athletic Club 4508 Starkey Road, Roanoke Best Place to Fish Claytor Lake State Park 6620 Ben H. Bolen Drive, Dublin Best Hunting Preserve Primland 2000 Busted Rock Road, Meadows of Dan CarilionFitness.com, 540-989-5758 Aquacise, Zumba and yoga, oh my! From Kempo Karate, BodyFLOW and X-treme Punch to Twinges in the Hinges, BodyATTACK and Golden Sculpt, if you can dream it, Roanoke Athletic Club’s got it on its group fitness calendar. The 79,000-square foot facility offers more than 125 group classes per week. second place: Blacksburg Health and Fitness at the DCR.Virginia.gov/State_Parks, 540-643-2500 Catfish, striped bass, walleye and muskie are among the sport fish you’ll find at this 472-acre state park, which stretches along three miles of picturesque Claytor Lake. Fish from the shore or rent a kayak, canoe, boat or jet ski to heighten the angling experience. second place: Hungry Mother State Park, Marion DCR.Virginia.gov/State_Parks, 276-781-7400 third place: New River Junction, Blacksburg NewRiverJunction.com, 540-639-6633 Primland.com, 276-222-3800 Never mind that Esquire named Primland’s sporting clays facility among the top 25 in the nation, this luxury resort provides a whopping 12,000 acres of hunting grounds teeming with managed wildlife. From semi-guided fair chase whitetail deer hunting during the winter months to wild turkey hunting in the spring, Primland is a year-round destination. second place: George Washington and Jefferson National Forests, Roanoke FS.USDA.gov/GWJ, 540-265-5100 third place: Turkeycock Mountain Wildlife Management Area, Martinsville DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 Weight Club, Blacksburg TheWeightClub.com, 540-951-2949 third place: Martinsville-Henry County Family YMCA, Martinsville MartinsvilleYMCA.com, 276-632-6427 Most Fashionable Horse Show/Race Roanoke Valley Horse Show 1001 Roanoke Blvd., Salem Best Historic Site Roanoke Star 2000 J.B. Fishburn Parkway, Roanoke RoanokeValleyHorseShow.com, 540-389-7847 A local tradition since 1972, not to mention the longest-running professional sporting event in the region, the Roanoke Valley Horse Show enjoys a Heritage Competition designation, the United States Equestrian Federation’s highest honor. The show hosts Jack Russell terrier races and a $50,000 Grand Prix in addition to roadster, hunter, saddlebred, racking, jumper and Western divisions. second place: Wise County Classic Horse Show, Wise WiseCountyChristianSchool.com, 276-328-3297 third place: Russell County Fair & Horse Show, Castlewood RussellCountyFair.com, 276-762-2261 Best Wine Trail Roanoke counties Mountain Road Wine Experience Carroll, Floyd, Patrick, Montgomery and RoanokeVa.gov, 540-853-2871 This Mill Mountain landmark is the star of the Roanoke skyline in more ways than one. First lit in 1949, the star has quietly watched over residents of the Roanoke Valley and attracted faraway tourists with its brilliant glow. Visitors can catch stellar views of the “Star City of the South” from the adjacent overlook. second place: Historic Smithfield Plantation, Blacksburg MountainRoadWineExperience.com, 540-745-2220 There’s a reason Mountain Road refers to itself as a “wine experience” rather than your average wine trail, and we have a feeling it’s got something to do with the Southwest’s crisp mountain air. The septet, consisting of five wineries, a cidery and a meadery, claims its tasting rooms are “infinitely cooler than the lowlands.” SmithfieldPlantation.org, 540-231-3947 third place: Abingdon Muster Grounds, Abingdon Abingdon.com, 276-525-1050 Best Outdoor Adventure Virginia Creeper Trail Abingdon to Whitetop long live the queen VACreeperTrail.com Hunter Apiaries breeds superbees. “The honeybee pollinates a third of our food supply,” says Karl Hunter, so beekeeping is essential to U.S. agriculture. Which is why Hunter and his wife, Beth, both in their 50s, run an eponymous apiary in Pulaski, supplying miteresistant, cold-tolerant queens to East Coast beekeepers. “In 1986, the Varroa mite was introduced in the U.S.” from unknown sources, says Hunter. The parasitic mite began attacking beehives and wiping out colonies, wreaking havoc on bees who had no defense against this new threat. “Bees want to do only two things,” explains Hunter, “swarm in the spring and survive the winter.” Getting through the winter is a struggle under normal circumstances, but if the Varroa mite attacks a colony, the bees have little chance for survival. “Before 1986, it was natural to lose roughly 10 percent of your hives each winter,” explains Hunter. After the mites arrived, that number jumped to 40 percent. Luckily, Hunter had a solution: breed mite-resistant, cold-tolerant bees. “Bees are interesting in that all their behavior is genetic,” explains Hunter. “They’re like little bio machines that respond to their programing.” A hive’s genetics run through the queen, so by carefully breeding them, beekeepers like Hunter are able to control the hives’ characteristics. By crossing a cold-tolerant breed of bee with a mite-resistant Italian breed of bee, Hunter creates queens that can resist these two threats. Hunter Apiaries sells their super queens to beekeepers up and down the East Coast, in particular to those in the Northeast who are looking for cold-tolerant queens. As a testament to their success, Hunter says that they lost just one hive this winter, which represents only 3 percent of their operation. “Beekeepers are the unsung heroes of agriculture,” says Hunter, but Hunter Apiaries just might be the unsung hero of the honeybee. HunterApiaries.com If you love the outdoors, you’ll appreciate all this 34-mile-long hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding trail has to offer. A former rail bed, the Virginia Creeper Trail—named for both the native plant that grows along the path and the steam engine that used to scale the Iron Mountains—climbs to breathtaking heights. second place: Cascade Trail, George Washington and Jefferson National Forests, Pembroke FS.USDA.gov/GWJ, 540-265-5100 third place: New River Junction, Blacksburg NewRiverJunction.com, 540-639-6633 Best Place to Dance 206 S. Locust St., Floyd The Floyd Country Store FloydCountryStore.com, 540-745-4563 Eclectic, down-home country store by day and foot-stompin’ dancing stage by night, the “home of the Friday Night Jamboree” is a fixture along Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail. On weekends year round, locals relish the infectious spirit of live, old-timey music and home-cooked fixin’s among family and friends. second place: Carter Family Fold, Hiltons CarterFamilyFold.org, 276-386-6054 third place: Corned Beef & Co., Roanoke CornedBeefAndCo.com, 540-342-3354 98 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 ph o t o c o u rtes y o f H u n ter A p i ar i es EASTERN REGION• • Arts Culture SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA Food & Drink & Entertainment Best Barbecue Restaurant Checkered Pig 1014 Liberty St., Martinsville CheckeredPig.com, 276-632-1161 In the spring of ‘97, Tommy Houston took a leap of faith in turning his thriving catering business into a barbecue restaurant. He needn’t have worried. Sixteen years later, Houston’s Checkered Pig— formerly Pigs R Us—is not only a local favorite; it’s become a national treasure following several appearances on the Food Network. second place: Due South BBQ, Christiansburg DueSouthBBQ.com, 540-381-2922 third place: Old Virginia Smokehouse, Pembroke OldVirginiaSmokehouse.com, 540-626-7788 food & drink Best Dessert Menu Anthony’s Desserts 284 W. Main St., Abingdon Facebook.com/Anthonys.Desserts, 276-623-1500 When a restaurant includes the word “dessert” in its title, you know it takes that course seriously. Offering a tantalizing menu sprinkled with dishes like Toll House pie, chocolate mocha truffles, milk chocolate strawberry tarts, graham cake and “Magic Bars,” owner and pastry chef Anthony Perkins never disappoints. second place: The Palisades Restaurant, Eggleston ThePalisadesRestaurant.com, 540-626-2828 third place: The Bank Food and Drink, Pearisburg TheBankFoodAndDrink.com, 540-921-2981 Best Steakhouse Frankie Rowland’s Steakhouse 104 S. Jefferson St., Roanoke FrankieRowlandsSteakhouse.com, 540-527-2333 One glance at Frankie Rowland’s menu—showcasing a 20-oz. Kansas City strip steak, live-baked Maine lobster, fried buttermilk-battered onions and molten chocolate cake—is enough to make your mouth water. Once you’ve decided what to eat, relax into the rich mahogany-and-leather décor and sample Frankie’s signature pineapple martini. second place: The Bank Food and Drink, Pearisburg Fermenter’s Fraternity Artisanal hard cider industry has its roots in Dugspur. Virginia’s artisanal hard cider industry is booming, with eight cideries in operation and an annual statewide cider week inaugurated in 2012. The seeds were quite literally planted in the tiny town of Dugspur in 1997, when Diane Flynt set up the orchard for Foggy Ridge Cider. By 2005, Flynt’s apples had been grown, selected and fermented, and she was ready to begin selling to the public. “We made 550 cases our first year and I wasn’t sure we could sell it all,” says Flynt. “But that first weekend we sold 50 or 60 cases and I immediately wished we’d made more.” Flynt attributes the growth of artisanal hard cider to “people getting more sophisticated about the difference between a mass market product and an artisanal product.” She recalls a customer and cider enthusiast she met at a tasting in Asheville, North Carolina, who had stopped drinking Angry Orchard hard cider, made by The Boston Beer Company, because he discovered it contained high fructose corn syrup. “People are just more aware [now] of what’s in the beverages they drink,” says Flynt. The roots of Flynt’s hard cider revolution have spread throughout the state, and she has worked closely with those that followed her path, like Albemarle Ciderworks of North Garden, which opened in 2009, and Castle Hill Cider, which opened in 2011. “We are a very close community,” Flynt says of Virginia’s artisanal apple fermenters, who share the mission of raising public awareness of their product. “We all collaborate as business people and I hope it stays that way. There is still plenty of room in the market for cider makers. We [Foggy Ridge] sell out of what we make every year.” In 2013, the eight cideries will collaborate for the second annual Virginia Cider Week, which takes place statewide from November 15 through 23 and will feature activities like cider tastings and workshops. The mission is clear: “We’re just getting cider in the mouths of more people,” says Flynt. For a list of cideries in Virginia, visit CiderWeekVa.com/Cider-Makers TheBankFoodAndDrink.com, 540-921-2981 third place: Bull & Bones Brewhaus & Grill, Blacksburg BullAndBones.com, 540-953-2855 Best Bakery Our Daily Bread Bakery & Café 1329 S. Main St., Blacksburg ODBB.com, 540-953-2815 Honey whole wheat, potato sourdough, olive rosemary, lemon poppy seed and raisin, challah, focaccia—name your favorite bread, and chances are Our Daily Bread’s got a freshly-baked loaf of it on hand. In addition to its hearty selection of breads, the café serves up breakfast, lunch, dinner, cakes, pastries and live jazz brunch on Saturdays. second place: Blackbird Bakery, Bristol BlackbirdBakeryBristol.com, 276-645-5754 third place: Rising Sun Breads, Martinsville RisingSunBreads.com, 276-632-2292 p h o t o co u r t e s y of F o g g y R i d g e C i d e r SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA • Food & Drink Best Overall Restaurant The Palisades Restaurant 168 Village St., Eggleston Best Place for a Sandwich Macado’s 922 University City Blvd., Blacksburg Best Ice Creamery 540-721-2045 Homestead Creamery 7254 Booker T. Washington Highway, Wirtz ThePalisadesRestaurant.com, 540-626-2828 It takes more than fine food to earn the title of Best Overall Restaurant, and the Palisades has got it. Aside from featuring live music and special events like the annual Celebrity Chef Tour, the restaurant occupies the old Pyne’s General Store building, creating an ambiance committed to keeping the region’s history alive. second place: The Bank Food and Drink, Pearisburg TheBankFoodAndDrink.com, 540-921-2981 third place: The Tavern Restaurant, Abingdon AbingdonTavern.com, 276-628-1118 Macados.net, 540-953-2700 Overflowing with playful, nostalgic décor—a giant King Kong replica, neon lights, a blushing Marilyn Monroe mannequin and an explosion of Virginia Tech sports memorabilia—Macado’s is your favorite neighborhood deli gone wild. With sandwiches named Annie Oakley, The Lone Ranger, Carpetbagger and Tippecanoe, you’ll have as much fun perusing the menu as you will eating. second place: Third Bay Cafe, Martinsville Though Homestead Creamery is prized for its milk—think chocolate, orange cream and strawberry flavored—and butter, it’s famous for its ice cream. The locally owned dairy processing plant, which opened its doors in 2001, crafts your favorite summer treat they say, “The Way Ice Cream Should Taste.” second place: Ice Cream Stop, Abingdon 276-676-0447 third place: Cold Stone Creamery, Christiansburg ColdStoneCreamery.com, 540-381-3232 276-666-8414 third place: Binding Time Cafe, Martinsville Binding-Time.com, 276-656-3800 Best Sunday Brunch 168 Village St., Eggleston The Palisades Restaurant ThePalisadesRestaurant.com, 540-626-2828 What better way to start your Sunday than with the Palisades’ honey-glazed ham, three-grain pancakes, veggie frittata, cinnamon rolls and scalloped pineapple? Keeping in line with its Southern roots, the Giles County gem also serves grits of the day. Did we mention there's also a dessert bar and mimosas galore? second place: Gillie’s, Blacksburg GilliesRestaurant.net, 540-961-2703 third place: The River and Rail Restaurant, Roanoke RiverAndRailRestaurant.com, 540-400-6830 Best Local Microbrewery Wolf Hills Brewing Co. 350 Park St., Abingdon Best Locally Owned Coffee Shop Mill Mountain Coffee and Tea 117 Campbell Ave. SE, Roanoke WolfHillsBrewing.com MillMountainCoffee.com, 540-342-9404 With the Mill Mountain star in its logo and several locations throughout the area, Mill Mountain Coffee and Tea is quintessentially Roanoke. Driven by the shop’s own mandate to “be the best,” the local chain serves up coffee that’s artfully roasted every day by trained “Roast Masters” dedicated to creating the perfect drink. second place: Binding Time Cafe, Martinsville Binding-Time.com, 276-656-3800 third place: Zazzy’z Coffee House, Abingdon Zazzyz.com, 276-698-3333 Dedicated to keeping the history and culture of southwestern Virginia alive, Wolf Hills’ name hails from a legend that pioneer Daniel Boone once spent the night near a wolf den in the backcountry that became Abingdon. Wolf Den Double IPA and Creeper Trail Amber Ale are two of many brews that salute the region’s past. second place: Bull & Bones Brewhaus & Grill, Blacksburg Best Caterer BullAndBones.com, 540-953-2855 third place: The River Company Restaurant & Brewery, Inc., Fairlawn TheRiverCompanyRestaurant.com, 540-633-3940 Ratatouille Catering 730 E. Church St., Martinsville Best Al Fresco Dining Fork in the Alley 2123 Crystal Spring Ave. SW, Roanoke RatatouilleCatering.com, 276-632-0327 Whether it’s preparing an elaborate rehearsal dinner for 100 or just a few weeknight meals for the family, Ratatouille Catering plans meals faster and better than you’ll ever have time to do. With an extensive menu of made-from-scratch dishes, the ladies at Ratatouille deliver healthy, homecooked meals freeing you from the hassle of planning, shopping and creating. second place: Blue Ridge Catering, Roanoke BlueRidgeCatering.net, 540-982-7700 third place: Professional Catering Inc., Blacksburg ProfessionalCateringInc.com, 540-961-9800 third place tie: Two Trees Catering, Meadows of Dan TwoTreesCatering.com, 540-558-9500 Best Breakfast Restaurant Gillie’s 153 College Ave., Blacksburg ForkInTheAlley.com, 540-982-3675 GilliesRestaurant.net, 540-961-2703 Didn’t think a vegetarian restaurant could offer an out-of-this-world breakfast menu? When you start your day with Gillie’s favorites like spicy molletes, banana walnut French toast, tofu scramble, poached egg Florentine or broiled grapefruit— complete with glazed brown sugar, nutmeg and cinnamon—bacon becomes a distant memory. second place: The Roanoker Restaurant, Roanoke TheRoanokerRestaurant.com, 540-344-7746 third place: River City Grill, Radford RiverCityGrillVa.com, 540-629-2130 Living up to its motto of being “Hard to Find [and] Impossible to Leave,” Fork in the Alley is a fun-loving pub located in an actual south Roanoke alley. The restaurant’s lone dessert offering—legendary brick oven s’mores—is reason enough to stick around. second place: Cabo Fish Taco, Blacksburg CaboFishTaco.com, 540-552-0950 third place: Harvest Table Restaurant, Meadowview MeadowviewFarmersGuild.com, 276-944-5142 third place tie: The Quarter, Roanoke TheQuarterRestaurant.com, 540-342-2990 Most Creative Chocolatier The Chocolate Spike 1560 S. Main St., Suite 118, Blacksburg Best Seafood Restaurant Poor Billy’s 201 N. Main St., Blacksburg Best Burger Joint Mike’s Grill 418 N. Main St., Blacksburg BigAlsSportsBar.com/Billy.html, 540-951-2200 With a moniker that belies its rich selection of first-class seafood, Poor Billy’s is a downtown Blacksburg favorite among Hokies and locals. Dishes like lobster leek risotto cakes, beer-battered shrimp, Rusty Nail salmon, Mandarin blue marlin and artichoke and smoked gouda crab dip redefine the seafood experience. second place: The Bank Food and Drink, Pearisburg TheBankFoodAndDrink.com, 540-921-2981 third place: Captain Tom’s Seafood, Martinsville ChocolateSpike.com, 540-552-4646 The Chocolate Spike—named for a quirky metal sculpture on owner Genie Ranck’s front steps— celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. But with unique delights like pomegranate-infused white chocolate, peanut butter caramel fudge and dark chocolate fudge with St. Maeve’s Stout, there’s always a reason to celebrate. second place: chocolatepaper, Roanoke ChocolatepaperRoanoke.com, 540-342-6061 third place: Baylee’s Best Chocolates, Roanoke BayleesBest.com, 540-776-0032 MikesGrillBlacksburg.com, 540-951-7391 Burger joints and pizza parlors are a dime a dozen, but a shop that specializes in both patties and pies is something special. From 100 percent chuck that’s ground daily on-site to hand-tossed dough, this Blacksburg eatery knows fresh when it comes to burgers and pizza. Barbecue sandwiches, calzones, toasted subs and salads top off the menu. second place: Burger Bar, Bristol BurgerBarBristol.com, 276-466-6200 third place: Fenderz Drive-In, Collinsville 276-666-0326 276-647-4555 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 101 Food & Drink • SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA Best Farmers’ Market Blacksburg Farmers’ Market 100 Draper Road SW, Blacksburg Best Wine Shop Vintage Cellar 1338 S. Main St., Blacksburg Best Winery Château Morrisette 287 Winery Road SW, Floyd BlacksburgFarmersMarket.com, 540-239-8290 If you’re ever in Blacksburg on a Saturday, make it a point to stop by the Blacksburg Farmers' Market, a year-round staple since the mid-1980s. Now held in Market Square Park, the affair brings the community together for locally grown produce, live music and annual tasting events. second place: Abingdon Farmers Market, Abingdon AbingdonFarmersMarket.com, 276-698-1434 third place: Historic Roanoke City Market, Roanoke DowntownRoanoke.org, 540-342-2028, ext. 15 VintageCellar.com, 540-953-2675 Need help picking out the perfect wine to go with that fancy dinner you’re preparing for the in-laws? Keith Roberts, proprietor of Vintage Cellar for 20 years, will help you look like a pro. He and his wine-savvy staff are dedicated to matching the beverage to the occasion. Shop for wine by grape or by region on Vintage Cellar’s website. second place: Mr. Bill’s Wine Cellar, Roanoke MrBillsCellar.com, 540-400-7771 third place: Katbird’s Wine & Gourmet, Abingdon Katbirds.com, 276-623-0001 TheDogs.com, 540-593-2865 Though Château Morrissette offers specialty wines like Sweet Mountain Laurel, Angel Chardonnay and Hokie Bird Red, it’s much more than a winery. With its breathtaking mountain views, Old World restaurant, gift shop and themed events (think Murder Mystery Theater and Mountain Adventure Weekend), the Floyd vineyard offers a unique rural escape. second place: Abingdon Vineyard & Winery, Abingdon AbingdonWinery.com, 276-623-1255 third place: Attimo Winery, Christiansburg AttimoWinery.com, 540-382-7619 Best Overall Bar Wild Magnolia 730 E. Church St., Suite 7A, Martinsville Best Sushi Cuisine Sake House 1560 S. Main St., Suite 116, Blacksburg Wild-Magnolia.com, 276-666-6666 SakeHouseRestaurant.com, 540-951-0068 In addition to offering patrons an exhaustive list of sushi rolls (Virginia Tech fans are sure to appreciate the famed Hokie Roll), Sake House keeps an exotic selection of—surprise!—sake. Specialty combinations, like a melon sake-tini with Midori melon liqueur, sake and a hint of soda, make traditional hot sake seem drab. second place: Osaka Japanese Steakhouse, Bristol Mag’s, as the locals call it, has a hefty menu featuring “eclectic Southern cuisine,” but the restaurant’s nightlife and drink specials are what earn it the title of Best Overall Bar. From Two Dollar Tini Tuesdays and Wednesday night karaoke to weekend DJs and Sunday Night Live, it’s always a party at Wild Magnolia. second place: Chatmoss Country Club, Martinsville ChatmossCC.org, 276-638-2484 third place: The Bank Food and Drink, Pearisburg TheBankFoodAndDrink.com, 540-921-2981 276-669-8788 third place : Wasabi’s, Roanoke WasabiRoanoke.com, 540-904-6254 Best Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurant Gillie’s 153 College Ave., Blacksburg Best Pizzeria 276-628-8101 Bella’s Pizza and Subs 872 E. Main St., Abingdon Culinary Collaboration A chef-and-architect duo create a classic French brasserie in Salem. Bricks and mortar meet mortar and pestle in husband-and-wife team Scott Switzer, 40, and Ashley Tayloe-Switzer, 38. He’s a chef and she’s an architect, and the product of their union is the Blue Apron Restaurant and Red Rooster Bar in Salem, where both the menu and the design conjure leisurely dinners in quaint spots overlooking the Seine. Scott, who trained at the Culinary Institute of America and spent five years cooking at Roanoke’s Metro!, and Ashley, a graduate of Virginia Tech, opened the restaurant and bar in 2010. “We wanted it to feel like it’s been there forever, like a perfect broken-in baseball cap,” explains Scott. During the renovation of their 130-yearold building on East Main Street, the couple retained the original wobbly floorboards, stained with years of use, and added a large crystal chandelier that hangs from the tall, coffered ceiling. The lines are clean, the bricks are bare, and the feel is intimate and timeless. Scott says the source of the design for the upscale yet relaxed restaurant was the menu. Seasonally inspired, it changes every six to eight weeks. It can include crisp duck confit with an apple-port reduction, or a spinach and radicchio salad with grapefruit vinaigrette. The couple eats a late dinner in their restaurant at least once a month just to get a feel for the experience, from the lighting and music to the sound of the people and quality of the food. “It’s really intimate,” says Scott, “You look out the door and you could be anywhere.” BlueApronRedRooster.com GilliesRestaurant.net, 540-961-2703 What started out as a small-town ice cream shop in 1974 is now Blacksburg’s top spot for vegetarian and seafood cuisine, not to mention for local art and late-night music. Featuring flavorful entrées like the Sonoma veggie melt, tofu Reuben, seitan mushroom burger, Basin Street Alfredo and BBQ shrimp pizza, Gillie’s is a vegetarian’s paradise. second place: Local Roots – A Farm To Table Restaurant, Roanoke LocalRootsRestaurant.com, 540-206-2610 third place: Harvest Table Restaurant, Meadowview MeadowviewFarmersGuild.com, 276-944-5142 third place TIE: The Palisades Restaurant, Eggleston ThePalisadesRestaurant.com, 540-626-2828 Bella’s was founded with the aim of creating the world’s best pizza and subs using original, western New York recipes. We’re not sure how Bella’s fares on a global scale, but with its endless combinations of pizza toppings, salads and specialty subs, it’s definitely among the best pizzerias in the Commonwealth. second place: Sal’s Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria, Blacksburg SalsRestaurants.com, 540-953-4040 third place: Elizabeth’s Pizza, Martinsville 276-632-1366 Most Creative Cocktail Menu The Bank Food and Drink 101 N. Main St., Pearisburg Best Sports Bar TheBankFoodAndDrink.com, 540-921-2981 The only thing more intriguing than the Bank Food and Drink’s cocktail menu, sporting funky drink names like Jailbreak, Tipsy Side of Zen, “Hello, Goodbye” and Easy Ryeder 2.0, is the building’s history. The Romanesque structure was once a private residence in the mid-1800s and went on to change hands among the Bank of Giles and the First National Banks of Pearisburg and Christiansburg, hence its name. second place: Lucky Restaurant, Roanoke EatAtLucky.com, 540-982-1249 third place: Local Roots – A Farm To Table Restaurant, Roanoke LocalRootsRestaurant.com, 540-206-2610 third place tie: Wild Magnolia, Martinsville Wild-Magnolia.com, 276-666-6666 Bull & Bones Brewhaus & Grill 1470 S. Main St., Suite 120, Blacksburg BullAndBones.com, 540-953-2855 This Blacksburg hot spot stars two atmospheres in one; there’s a casual dining room on one side and a bustling sports bar—complete with seven Diamond pool tables and masses of HDTVs—on the other. A polished, 10-barrel brewery separates the two. Did we mention you can also catch the game on the patio? second place: Big Al’s Grille & Sports Bar, Blacksburg BigAlsSportsBar.com, 540-951-3300 third place: Buffalo Wild Wings, multiple Roanoke locations BuffaloWildWings.com third place tie: Sharkey’s Wing & Rib Joint, Radford SharkeysWingAndRibJoint.com, 540-267-3434 102 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 photo by Maria Levitov EASTERN REGION Arts Culture & SOUTHWEST SOUTHWESTERN VIRGINIA VIRGINIA •• Shopping • Shopping & Services & Entertainment Services Best Day Spa The Martha Washington Hotel & Spa 150 W. Main St., Abingdon MarthaWashingtonInn.com, 276-628-3161 The Martha Washington may be housed in a historic home circa 1837, but the spa and amenities are all modern. A full menu of treatments includes eight kinds of massages and facials, aromatherapy and body treatments. The spa also has an indoor pool and outdoor whirlpools, complete with waterfalls to coax the kinks from those shoulders. second place: Reflections Day Spa, Martinsville ReflectionsDaySpaVa.com, 276-632-2222 third place: polished by claire v., Blacksburg and Roanoke locations PolishedByCV.com shopping & se rv ices Best Lawyer 540-921-1703 James A. Hartley 503 Mountain Lake Ave., P.O. Box 511, Pearisburg Part of the two-man firm Hartley & Chidester, P.C., James A. Hartley has been representing clients in Pearisburg since 1993. Specializing in commercial and family law, criminal, personal injury, real estate, workers compensation and estate administration, Hartley has your legal needs covered. second place: Philip G. Gardner, Martinsville GGBSLawFirm.com, 276-638-2455 third place: Charles M. Aaron, Martinsville 276-638-3866 Best Hair Salon Reflections Day Spa 730 E. Church St., Martinsville ReflectionsDaySpaVa.com, 276-632-2222 Offering keratin treatments, Morroccan oil, and natural and eco-friendly products like Neuma Beauty, the stylists at Reflections can certainly cut, style and color. Stylists are also trained in the INOA treatment from L’Oreal, an odorless permanent color that contains no ammonia and leaves hair smooth and velvety. second place: Tivon Salon and Spa, Blacksburg TivonSalonSpa.com, 540-953-5000 third place: Meredith’s Salon, Christiansburg MeredithsSalon.com, 540-381-3050 Try This at Home Blacksburg cooking school can help you conquer culinary fear. Are you afraid of the kitchen? Roya Gharavi, owner and president of the Gourmet Pantry & Cooking School in Blacksburg can help you banish your fear. “We want to convey that cooking isn’t meant to be a chore, but should be fun and enjoyable,” the Iran native says. Gharavi, 50, has worked in the food industry for more than three decades, opening her first restaurant in Virginia Beach when she was just 21. She has also owned a number of Blacksburg restaurants, including downtown favorite Champs Sportsbar & Cafe. Looking for a change of pace and a place to sell upscale cookware and gourmet food products, Gharavi sold Champs and opened the Gourmet Pantry in 2000. The shop quickly outgrew its space, and when Gharavi relocated down the street in 2006, she added the cooking school. Gourmet Pantry’s kitchen, gleaming with Viking appliances and a massive granite island, takes center stage in the middle of the store. Gharavi teaches most of the classes, which cover just about every topic from knife skills and Cuban cuisine to cooking for one and making rubs and marinades. Classes are kept small—with no more than 14 students who range in age from 11 to 70-plus. The cost for classes is anywhere from $35 to $55. Gharavi hopes her students come away feeling empowered, and laughs as she notes that her students aren’t the only ones who benefit from her instruction. “It’s funny, I have lots of husbands thanking me for making their wives such good cooks.” Gharavi has created a seasonal series called Taste of Virginia, where she invites some of her Virginia vendors to hold demonstrations, tastings and talks at the store. The shop also offers complimentary wine and cheese tastings on Saturday afternoons and participates in community events, like the annual Blacksburg Fork and Cork food, wine and art festival. “We are proud to have established such a firm place in the community,” says Gharavi. “After being in business for over 12 years and [coming] through some very tough economic times, we are honored that many of our customers tell us that they can’t imagine Blacksburg without Gourmet Pantry.” GourmetPantryOnline.com Best Men’s Haircut Jacks 412 S. Jefferson St., Roanoke JacksBarberShop.net, 540-344-5225 Bringing back the traditional barbershop experience, Jacks is the well-groomed man’s paradise. Its classic cuts include a scalp and neck massage plus a hot towel and neck shave. Jacks means business with its manicure and pedicure, as well as its classic shave, facials and massages. There are no frou-frou treatments here, and Jacks also hosts private parties for groomsmen or birthdays. second place: Salon on the Square, Glade Spring 276-429-2111 third place: Sport Clips, Blacksburg HaircutMenBlacksburgVa.com, 540-552-4897 p h oto co u r t e s y o f G o u r m e t Pa n t ry B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 103 EASTERN REGION• • Arts Culture & Entertainment SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA Shopping & Services Best Florist Simply the Best, Flowers & Gifts 105 Broad St., Martinsville Best Pet Boarding Doe Creek Kennels Doe Creek Farm Road, Pembroke Best Shopping Area/Mall Valley View Mall 4802 Valley View Blvd. NW, Roanoke SimplyTheBestFlowers.com, 276-666-2378 Combined, the Davis family has been in the flower business for 150 years. They deliver to Martinsville and the surrounding area, and offer online ordering. Under the website’s Flowers link, you’ll find a handy About Flowers page with answers to care questions like how often to water (not as much as you think). Stop by the shop for more custom designs. second place: Best Wishes Flowers & Gifts, DoeCreekKennels.com, 540-293-4521 At Doe Creek Kennels, large, private rooms have twin beds, pillows and fleece bedding, and a view of the 400-acre farm. Grooming and daycare are available for daytime pet guests who also get plenty of exercise, and overnight guests get an extra romp in the evenings before bed. second place: VCA Highlands Animal Hospital, Abingdon VCAHospitals.com/Highlands-Va, 276-628-4115 third place: Flying Fur! Daycare and Dog Training, Newport FlyingFurDogs.com, 540-544-9663 ValleyViewMall.com, 540-563-4440 Anchored by Sears, Macy’s, Belk and JCPenny, Valley View Mall features two levels of stores and restaurants, including Yankee Candle and Bare Minerals. Catch a movie at Regal Cinemas after a long day of shopping, or check out “The District,” an open-air shopping area just off of the mall building, for more dining, boutiques and Plow & Hearth. second place: New River Valley Mall, Christiansburg ShopNewRiverValleyMall.com, 540-381-0005 third place: Downtown Blacksburg, Blacksburg DowntownBlacksburg.com, 540-951-0454 Blacksburg BestWishesFlowers.com, 540-953-2715 third place: The Jade Tree, Abingdon 276-628-4231 Best Interior Designer 1085 Spruce St., Martinsville Best Sporting Goods Store Dick’s Sporting Goods 500 New River Road, Christiansburg Best Bridal Shop Lou Harris, Lou Harris Inc. LouHarrisInteriors.com, 276-632-1881 Since beginning her design company in 1973, Lou Harris has traveled all over the country to work on projects as diverse as houses, corporate headquarters and country clubs. “We’re not a regular decorating business,” she says, “we’re a lot more involved than that.” Harris does consultation and drafting to custom-created window and floor coverings, textiles and furniture. second place: Sean Doherty, Doherty Interior Chantilly Lace Bridals, Formals & Tuxedos ChantillyLaceBridals.com, 540-951-5361 Representing lines by Mori Lee Bridal, Maggie Sottero Bridal and Casablanca Bridal, which creates custom, made-to-order gowns, Chantilly Lace Bridals can outfit the entire party with dresses for bridesmaids and mothers and tuxedo rentals, offering in-house alterations as well as gown preservation for after the wedding. You can even submit wedding-related questions through the website’s Ask Lacie page. second place: David’s Bridal, Roanoke DavidsBridal.com, 540-563-5800 third place: AmRhein’s Brides & Formals, Roanoke AmRheins.com, 540-989-7100 922 University City Blvd., Blacksburg DicksSportingGoods.com, 540-381-0102 Begun as a basic bait-and-tackle store in New York in 1948, founder Dick Stack’s son Ed Stack and his siblings grew the company into more than 500 stores across the nation. Today, they carry sporting goods equipment, apparel and footwear for everything from working out to camping, kayaking and fishing. Dick’s is the serious recreationalist’s go-to store. second place: Mahoney’s of Abingdon, Abingdon MahoneySports.com, 276-628-6249 third place: Mountain Sports Ltd., Bristol MountainSportsLtd.com, 276-466-8988 Design, Roanoke DohertyInteriorDesign.com, 540-520-8587 third place: Edith-Anne Duncan, Designs by Duncan, Blacksburg DesignsByDuncan.com, 540-357-2121 Best Cycle Shop East Coasters Bike Shop 1301 N. Main St., Blacksburg Best Gift Shop Best Air Charter Service Martinair, Inc. 22 Waypoint Drive, Roanoke EastCoasters.com, 540-951-2369 When bikes arrive at stores, they do so in boxes, and many stores simply assemble and call them “built.” Not so at East Coasters Bike Shop. Staff follow a 51-point checklist during assembly, honing in on details and double-checking so bikes are built better and need fewer repairs—which they do as well, just in case you need it. second place: Cardinal Bicycle, Roanoke CardinalBicycle.com, 540-344-2453 third place: Bike Barn of Blacksburg, Blacksburg BikeBarnBlacksburg.com, 540-443-9960 Janice Cain Stationery 316 Brown St., Martinsville JaniceCainStationery.com, 276-638-3282 Janice Cain Stationery started out as a paper company 30 years ago. Today, the former papery is a full-service gift shop that sells everything from coffee table books to gourmet foods and decorative pillows. Janice Cain also specializes in personalization and performs monogramming on site. second place: On a Whim, Blacksburg FlyMartinair.com, 800-777-7401 Martinair, Inc. says it can fly just about anywhere you need to go, anytime you need to leave. Really. With a 24-hour dispatch service and a fleet of 13 private jets, you have the flexibility to make your own itinerary and to arrive only a few minutes before your flight (bye-bye TSA). Pets are welcome on board too. 540-552-3160 third place: chocolatepaper, Roanoke ChocolatepaperRoanoke.com, 540-342-6061 Most On-Schedule Home Builder Lucas Home Builders, LLC 650 Lucas Road, Newport 540-599-1056 Riverfront Restaurant, Chilhowie Chef Blackstone’s Steak Oscar ¼ pound lump crab ¼ cup cream cheese 2 tablespoons sour cream 2 tablespoons Duke’s mayo 3/8 tablespoon Old Bay 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice ½ teaspoon parsley pinch cracked black pepper 2 teaspoons pecorino romano cheese, grated dash Texas Pete Mix all ingredients, then gently fold in crab. 4 4-ounce tenderloin steaks sea salt cracked pepper olive oil Roll steaks in olive oil, sea salt and cracked pepper. Grill to desired doneness. Top steak with crab. Broil until slightly carmelized, approximately 2 minutes. Serves 4 276-646-2233 Lucas Home Builders specializes in new home construction. Owner Shannon Lucas is a certified green professional, and he must be doing something right: his small company has been building in the Roanoke area on referral only (no need to advertise) since 2004. second place: Hill-Thomas Builders, Ltd., Eggleston Hill-Thomas.com, 540-921-0002 third place: Progress Street Builders, Blacksburg ProgressStreet.com, 540-552-1812 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 105 Shopping & Services • SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA Natural Growth Roanoke Natural Foods Co-Op gets more local as it grows. If you think co-ops are run by disorganized, tie-dyed hippies who eat nothing but dry lentil beans, then you need to visit the Roanoke Natural Foods Co-Op. Sure, it began with a couple selling cornmeal and whole-wheat flour from their basement in 1971, but only because “there was a vacuum in Roanoke Valley for that sort of product,” says General Manager Bruce Phlegar. Forty-two years on from its basement beginnings, Roanoke Natural Food Co-Op has an 11,000 square-foot store in Grandin Village, where shelves are filled with tasty favorites like Annie Chun’s Organic Pot stickers and Country Choice Organic Chocolate Sandwich Cookies—and business is booming. Phlegar, 58, has been a member since 1979 and general manager since 1997. He describes Roanoke Natural Foods Co-Op’s business model as a “consumer cooperative,” meaning it is a for-profit organization in which owners, or members, buy up to 8 shares in the business for $25 each (totaling $200) and get a say in the goings-on of the store. Owners receive monthly specials and a patronage rebate, with anywhere from 20 to 100 percent of the profit generated by owners (who make up approximately half of the customer base) being distributed back to them. Business is so good at Roanoke Natural Foods Co-Op that they are expanding operations. “We took a leap of faith,” says Phlegar, of the second location, which opened at Center in the Square in downtown Roanoke in April, and the new 25-acre urban farm, Heritage Point, which began operation in October 2012. Heritage Point is located six miles from downtown, and will see the co-op go hyper-local, by providing goods directly to its two stores. Heritage Point brand Lettuce Blend and Baby Lettuce hit the shelves in April, while a chicken coop with a brood of 100 hens will soon provide Heritage Point-branded free-range eggs. Phlegar credits this success to the business model. “People are invested in the co-op,” he says, “and not just in the $200 sense.” Seems a little cooperation goes a long way in Roanoke Valley. RoanokeNaturalFoods.com Best Men’s Clothing Store Davidsons 412 S. Jefferson St., Roanoke DavidsonsClothing.com, 540-343-3734 At the turn of the century, 18-year-old Joe Davidson emigrated from Lithuania with dreams of working in the clothing industry. Little did he know, the fine gentleman’s clothier he opened in 1910 would remain a Roanoke fixture for 103 years and counting. Davidsons is still family owned and customers keep coming. second place: Draper & Ferrell Clothiers, Martinsville DFClothiers.com, 276-638-3985 third place: Kegley & Co., Abingdon 276-628-1108 ' Best Independent Home Decor Store Black Dog Salvage 902 13th St. SW, Roanoke BlackDogSalvage.com, 540-343-6200 Black Dog has become the go-to place for architectural antiques, commercial salvage and modern society’s other cast offs. Their 40,000-square-foot store is filled with wrought iron, antique tile, period lighting, mantels, hardware, doors, windows, stained glass and other interesting finds rescued from old buildings for reuse in others. Black Dog has been doing green for more than 40 years. second place: Cranberry Lane, Bristol CranberryLaneHome.com, 276-669-9899 third place: magnolia, Abingdon MagnoliaFurnishings.com, 276-206-8134 Best Fine Jewelry Store Fink’s Jewelers 3545 Electric Road, Roanoke Best Women’s Clothing Store Pieces Boutique 107B E. Church St., Martinsville Best Children’s Clothing Store Sprout Consignment 123 Charwood Drive, Abingdon Finks.com, 540-342-2991 Shop.PiecesFashion.com, 276-806-7469 Most boutiques often carry quirky, sophisticated pieces you won’t see in a mall department store. But at Pieces Boutique, owner Ashley Simpson goes the extra mile to hunt for clothing and accessories— from retro crop tops to hand-painted clutches—that her customers can’t find anywhere else. The shop receives new arrivals weekly, so there’s always a fresh selection of one-of-a-kind pieces. second place: Forget-Me-Not, Abingdon ForgetMeNotAbingdon.com, 276-628-2700 third place: Urban Gypsy, Roanoke Urban-Gypsy.org, 540-400-8552 Facebook.com/SproutConsignment, 276-206-8941 Kids grow up fast and outgrow their clothes even faster, so quality consignment stores are a budget-friendly godsend for many parents and their sprouting offspring. Established in May 2011, Sprout Consignment sells maternity wear in addition to large toys, baby equipment and children’s clothing for newborns through size 14. second place: Our Little Cherubs Boutique, Roanoke OurLittleCherubsBoutique.com, 540-725-7777 third place: Once Upon a Child, Christiansburg OnceUponAChildRoanoke.com, 540-382-5045 third place Tie: Toad’ly Kids, Roanoke Facebook.com/ToadlyKids, 540-774-7282 Back in 1930 Nathan Fink established Fink’s Jewelers, a member of the American Gem Society, in Roanoke. Eighty-three years later, third generation Finks continue the family tradition in 16 locations throughout Virginia and North Carolina. The company’s Electric Road flagship store carries the largest diamond and designer jewelry inventory in the area. second place: Goodman Jewelers, Abingdon GoodmanJewelers.biz, 276-673-3110 third place: Capone’s Fine Jewelry and Design Studio, Blacksburg CaponesJewelry.com, 540-953-1000 Best Orthodontist Edward P. Snyder, D.D.S. 101 Cleveland Ave., Suite 6, Martinsville Best Shoe Store Yarid’s 4714A Starkey Road, Roanoke Most Beloved Pediatrician 1802 Braeburn Drive, Salem Luthur A. Beazley III, M.D., F.A.A.P. LGPhysicians.com, 540-772-3580 Whether your little one has the chicken pox, a high fever or strep throat, Dr. Beazley can make her better. The board-certified pediatrician, who completed his residency at the Bowman Gray School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, is a veteran at treating sick children and consoling concerned parents. second place: David W. Seamon, M.D., Martinsville DoctorSnyder.com, 276-632-4144 Yarids.com, 540-266-7750 Terrified of going to the orthodontist? It’s hard to be when you’re in the hands of one as experienced as Dr. Snyder. A board-certified orthodontist who opened his own practice in 1987, he’s also a fellow of the International College of Dentists, American College of Dentists and the Pierre Fauchard Academy. second place: David C. Jones, D.D.S., Martinsville Yarid’s has evolved considerably since its 1918 founding in Lewisburg, West Virginia, and the family business now lies in the hands of sisters and thirdgeneration owners Emilie and Katherine. The two have rebranded the department store as a luxury boutique chain specializing in footwear, handbags and accessories for both men and women. second place: Shoozies, Bristol 276-638-8888 third place: Franklin Wheelock, D.D.S., M.S., M.D., Roanoke WheelockOrtho.com, 540-989-5621 ShopAtShoozies.com, 276-644-3275 third place: Southern Shoe Connection, Abingdon 276-698-3188 276-632-9714 third place: Christopher Stapleton, M.D., Blacksburg NRVPediatrics.com, 540-552-7272 106 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 a b o v e p h o t o c o u r t e s y o f R o a n o a k e N a t u r a l F o o d s c o - o p, o p p o s i t e p h o t o c o u r t e s y o f b r u n o ’ s g a s t r o t r u c k EASTERN REGION• • Arts Culture & Entertainment SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA Shopping & Services Best Antiques Black Dog Salvage 902 13th St. SW, Roanoke Best Outdoor Outfitter 201 Cascade Drive, Pembroke Tangent Outfitters and Cascade Cafe TangentOutfitters.com, 540-626-4567 Tangent Outfitters doesn’t just sell the supplies that you need to explore the outdoors; it takes you along for the ride. Tangent is a supply shop and café that spawned from a New River guide service, which continues today. The company hosts a variety of daytime and overnight adventures, including stand-up paddleboarding, tubing and fishing. second place: New River Outdoor Co., Pembroke NewRiverOutdoorCo.com, 540-921-7438 third place: Blue Ridge Mountain Sports, Blacksburg BRMS.com, 540-953-7060 third place tie: Mountain Sports, Ltd., Bristol MountainSportsLtd.com, 276-466-8988 Best Cosmetic Surgeon 112 Abington Place, Abingdon Roger E. Emory, M.D., F.A.C.S. PlSurgery.com, 276-623-4500 Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, Dr. Emory is invested in his field beyond the operating room walls. He was appointed assistant clinical professor of surgery at George Washington University in 1996 and has since written a number of peer-reviewed journal articles in addition to creating and producing an award-winning motion picture about plastic surgery. second place: Philip E. Grubbs, M.D., F.A.C.S., Blacksburg PhilipGrubbs.com, 540-951-8885 third place: Enrique A. Silberblatt, M.D., F.A.C.S., Roanoke Silberblatt.com, 540-994-7408 BlackDogSalvage.com, 540-343-6200 It seems we’re not the only ones interested in Black Dog Salvage: its reality TV show, “Salvage Dawgs,” premiered in November on the DIY network, with more episodes coming in June. The inspiration is the store, now in its 13th year: a 40,000-square-foot warehouse for reclaiming, repurposing and reselling architectural, commercial and industrial elements. second place: Hidden Memories Antiques and Art, Abingdon HiddenMemoriesAntiquesAndArt.com, 276-628-5377 third place: Antiques on Main, Christiansburg 540-381-0539 third place Tie: Zephyr Antiques, Abingdon 276-628-6115 Best Hospital 540-981-7000 Best Kitchen Designer 1701 S. Main St., Blacksburg Best Dentist Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital 1906 Belleview Ave., Roanoke Richard T. Anuszkiewicz, Ewing Cabinet Company RTA2Z.com, 540-951-0544 A graduate of Virginia Tech’s residential design program, Richard Anuszkiewicz (pronounced Annaskev-ich) joined the Ewing Cabinet Company design team in 2010 and was recently promoted to executive designer and showroom director. The Pittsburgh native is also one of the National Kitchen and Bath Association’s “30 Under 30” professionals—did we mention he’s only 24? second place: Tim Martin, Martin Plaza Furniture Outlet, Martinsville FM-A.com, 276-632-1010 third place: Mary Jane Miller, Along Came Mary Interior Design, LLC, Bristol AlongCameMary.net, 276-669-1933 Mark A. Crabtree, D.D.S. 407 Starling Ave., Martinsville MartinsvilleSmiles.com, 276-632-9266 Aside from tending to patients at his dental practice, Martinsville Smiles, the former Martinsville mayor and past president of the Virginia Board of Dentistry presides over the Piedmont Virginia Dental Health Foundation. Crabtree is a founder of the nonprofit, which provides dental care for needy residents in the Martinsville-Henry County area. second place: Richard L. Anthony, D.D.S., Blacksburg CarilionClinic.org/CRMH/Roanoke-Va-Hospital, At 100,000 square feet, the newly expanded Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital is one of the largest hospitals in Virginia. It’s also home to one of the Commonwealth’s largest emergency departments, which comprises the region’s only Level I trauma center, the Chest Pain Center, a pediatric emergency room and a noteworthy forensic nursing program. second place: Johnston Memorial Hospital, Abingdon MSHA.com, 276-258-1000 third place: LewisGale Medical Center, Salem LewisGale.com, 540-776-4000 RichardLAnthonyDDS.com, 540-552-8870 third place: Michael D. Doty, D.D.S., Abingdon AbingdonDentist.com, 276-628-6251 third place Tie: Justin Tebbenkamp, D.D.S., Blacksburg BlacksburgDentist.com, 540-961-3279 Best Dermatologist 276-632-6496 Judith Szulecki, M.D. 209 Cleveland Ave., Martinsville Best Independent School Carlisle School 300 Carlisle Road, Axton After graduating from the New Jersey College of Medicine and Dentistry and completing her residency at Virginia Commonwealth University, Judith Szulecki began practicing general dermatology in 1973. What’s even more impressive than her 40 years of experience is the fact that she still sees 45 to 50 patients a day—and she would be happy to see you too. second place: Daniel S. Hurd, D.O., F.A.O.C.D., Blacksburg NewRiverDermatology.com, 540-953-2210 third place: Chad Johnston, D.O., F.A.A.D., Blacksburg RiverRidgeDerm.com, 540-951-3376 CarlisleSchool.org, 276-632-7288 The Commonwealth is home to 67 schools that offer various International Baccalaureate programs. But as an educator of students in preschool through 12th grade, Carlisle School is the only one of Virginia’s IB World Schools to offer the Primary Years, Middle Years and Diploma programs. Now that’s what we call a global-minded curriculum. second place: Faith Christian School, Roanoke FaithChristian-School.com, 540-769-5200 third place: Community School, Roanoke CommunitySchool.net, 540-563-5036 Meals on Wheels Bruno’s Gastro Truck rolls. Food trucks have been the hottest thing in dressed-down cuisine for some time now, and there are plenty of them out there today. But Bruno’s Gastro Truck just may be the Mack Daddy of all food trucks. “It’s a full out kitchen,” says Tiffany Silva, whose husband is the Bruno of meals-on-wheels renown. Based in Smith Mountain Lake, the tricked out 22-foot truck has a full four-burner stove and oven, a flat top, a grill and two double fryers. And, oh, did I forget to mention the 13,000 watt generator? While most food truckers do a lot of prep in a real, bricks-and-mortar kitchen, then load it for transport (and pray that the refrigeration holds up), the Silvas and their staff of two to three prepare gastronomic feats and feasts in the gastro truck on location (you can find them in Roanoke, Lynchburg, Blacksburg and of course, Smith Mountain Lake) making the whole operation more efficient. Their mobile gourmet kitchen also permits them to do some whiz-bang dishes that lesser trucks just can’t handle, like crème brulées and braised meats—a notch up from standard food truck fare. “The whole thing about the truck is to do really good food,” says Tiffany. BrunosGastroTruck.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 107 Shenandoah VALLEY “the big valley” is virginia’s breadbasket, with farms, orchards, breweries and wineries as far as the eye can see, and the Shenandoah River near-bursting with bass. But simply producing an abundance of food is only half the battle—it’s what you do with it that counts! The Shenandoah region is home to sophisticated cities doing mouthwatering things with local ingredients, such as Chef Ryan Zale at the Local Chop & Grill House in Harrisonburg, a city that’s also home to the craft beer skills of the Three Brothers Brewing Co.; not to mention the farm-totable destination that is Staunton, where restaurants like Zynodoa are leading the way. In Winchester, three generations of the Marker family not only grow apples, peaches and more at Marker-Miller Orchards, they create homemade cider and baked pies, while in Timberville, the Beachy family gives pastry a Texas twist with their Ole’ Time Fried Pies. For all this and more, we never pass up an opportunity to eat, drink and explore in the Valley. Photography by Cade Martin ♠ Illustration by Shane Rebenscheid ♠ Styling by Neely Barnwell Dykshorn ARTS, CULTURE & Entertainment Best Art Event Virginia Fall Foliage Festival Art Show 122 S. Wayne Ave., Waynesboro SVACArt.com, 540-466-0850 Autumn in Waynesboro is a sight to behold, but the idyllic valley town becomes even more beautiful when its streets turn into an outdoor art gallery at the Virginia Fall Foliage Festival Art Show. Annually, about 20,000 visitors attend the juried exhibition, featuring jewelry, paintings, sculptures, pottery and more by artists from around the country. second place: Art in the Park at Gypsy Hill, Staunton SAArtCenter.org, 540-885-2028 third place: First Fridays Downtown, Harrisonburg ValleyArts.org, 540-801-8779 Best Overall Museum 901 Amherst St., Winchester Museum of the Shenandoah Valley ShenandoahMuseum.org, 888-556-5799 The Glen Burnie Historic House, with its six acres of gardens, and the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley have merged to create a unique trifecta preserving the art, culture and history of the region. Planning a self-guided tour? Don’t miss out on its R. Lee Taylor Miniatures Gallery, 14 formal gardens or the Shenandoah Valley Gallery. second place: Frontier Culture Museum, Staunton FrontierMuseum.org, 540-332-7850 third place: Explore More Discovery Museum, Harrisonburg IExploreMore.com, 540-442-8900 Blues, Brews and a Bowlful of Chili Kicking up the heat this fall in Waynesboro. If sampling chili and sipping a microbrew while listening to the syncopating sounds of the blues sounds like your recipe for an enjoyable evening, look no further than Waynesboro’s September event, the Virginia Chili, Blues n’ Brews Festival. Held in downtown Waynesboro, the festival has grown from its humbler beginnings just seven years ago. “This year we have three major headliners,” says event organizer Terry Short, 40. “In past years we’ve only had one major headliner.” This year’s lineup features local talent alongside Grammy-nominated artists Big Bill Morganfield from Muddy Waters, Ana Popovic and Devon Allman. As for the brews, the festival has a growing list of mega and microbrews on tap for this year, 16 and counting (and all are just $3). “We literally get beer connoisseurs who come just for the beer,” says Short. In fact, he says, “some people come just for the beer, some people come just for the blues, and some people come just for the chili.” And about that chili. Twelve contestants cook up 400 gallons of chili in the People’s Choice Chili Cook-off. Festival-goers sample each contestant’s chili, and vote for their favorite. “It’s basically a buffet system,” explains Short. Ticket holders may sample as much as they like. This year’s event is scheduled for September 21, and with the growing list of breweries, the chili cook-off and the Grammy-nominated headliners, the festival expects to surpass last year’s 4,000-person attendance. And the festival isn’t just for fun: Benefitting Waynesboro’s Virginia Main Street Association, all proceeds go to revitalizing the downtown area. “Keeping doors open,” explains Short. And that’s something to feel good about. VirginiaChili.com Best Performing Arts Company American Shakespeare Center 13 W. Beverley St., Staunton AmericanShakespeareCenter.com, 540-885-5588 Forget “Hamlet” as you knew it in high school; the American Shakespeare Center’s troupe brings revered works to life in traditional Elizabethan fashion. Performances are held in the Blackfriars Playhouse, the only re-creation of Shakespeare’s indoor theater in the world, where the lights are always left on to encourage actor-audience interaction. second place: Wayside Theatre, Middletown WaysideTheatre.org, 540-869-1776 third place: Shenandoah Academy of Dance, Buena Vista ShenandoahAcademyOfDance.com, 540-570-0848 110 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Arts, Arts Culture Culture & & Entertainment Entertainment Best Special Event Venue Diamond V Farm 1817 Mountain View Church Road, Blue Ridge Most Creative Charitable Event 614 S. Main St., Woodstock Regulus Group Woodstock Turkey Trot Regulus-Group.com/Events, 540-459-2142 In Woodstock, Thanksgiving is synonymous with food, family and the Regulus Group’s annual Turkey Trot. The event, featuring both 5K and 10K races, has been held the Saturday before Thanksgiving since 2010. The young, yet wildly popular competition benefits a different local charity each year. There’s also a “Teeny K” race for little ones. second place: Deck the Halls, Lexington ProjectHorizon.org, 540-463-7861 third place: Dancing with the Stars of the ‘Burg, Harrisonburg HRDayCare.org, 540-434-5268 Best Mixologist 1 Mill St., Staunton Julie Mace, Mill Street Grill MillStreetGrill.com, 540-886-0656 Love hangouts where the bartender knows your name? Then you’ll enjoy Mill Street Grill, where Julie Mace has been mixing drinks and making conversation for 17 years. “I think if you work at a place that long, you develop a rapport with the customers,” says the expert mixologist, who is as personable as she is talented. second place: Mortye Johnson, Bistro on Main, Lexington Bistro-Lexington.com, 540-464-4888 third place: Chevvone “Chevy” Bray, Byer’s Street Bistro, Staunton ByersStreetBistro.com, 540-887-6100 third place tie: Susan Weeks, The Bard’s Nest, Staunton TheBardsNest.com, 540-448-3175 DiamondVFarm.com, 540-537-3912 Have you always dreamed of a country wedding? Diamond V Farm’s vintage barn and majestic views of the Peaks of Otter can help you make your most romantic childhood fantasies come true. If only finding the perfect partner were so easy ... second place: Stonewall Jackson Hotel, Staunton StonewallJacksonHotel.com, 540-885-4848 third place: Blackfriars Playhouse, Staunton AmericanShakespeareCenter.com, 540-851-1733 Best Music Venue Clementine 153 S. Main St., Harrisonburg ClementineCafe.com, 540-801-8881 Bringing a bit of edgy, urban flair to charming downtown Harrisonburg, Clementine is all about food, music and art. Beyond booking captivating performers and serving up everything from risotto fritters to tortilla-crusted catfish, the local hangout hosts community events appropriate for all ages, including game nights and art shows. second place: WTA’s Gateway, Waynesboro WayneTheatre.org, 540-943-9999 third place: Forbes Center for the Performing Arts at James Madison University, Harrisonburg JMU.edu/JMUArts, 540-568–7000 Best Historic Museum 1290 Richmond Ave., Staunton Frontier Culture Museum FrontierMuseum.org, 540-332-7850 Engineered to make you feel like you’ve gone back in time, this museum tells the story of native and early immigrant Americans through an array of outdoor exhibits. Where else can you tour a 1600s English farm, 1700s West African farm and 1850s American schoolhouse in one place? Living history demonstrations complete the experience. second place: Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum, Staunton WoodrowWilson.org, 540-885-0897 third place: Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, Winchester ShenandoahMuseum.org, 888-556-5799 Best Food Festival Virginia Chili, Blues n’ Brews Festival 301 W. Main St., Waynesboro VirginiaChili.com, 540-447-6350 What could be more pleasurable than taking part in a chili cook-off and sampling microbrews, all while live blues music plays in the background and the warm September sun warms your back? The answer: Doing so while benefitting Waynesboro Downtown Development Inc. Pepper in exhibitors and artisans, and you’ve got one spicy festival. second place: Rocktown Beer & Music Festival, Harrisonburg Teatime in Troutville Tea tavern attracts locals and far-flung travelers. Move over, Starbucks; tearooms are on the rise. “Teas are becoming the new coffee because of the health benefits,” says Kim Arney, 54, owner of White Oak Tea Tavern in Troutville. Black, green, white, herbal or oolong, each type of tea has its own salutary effects, including reducing the risk of heart disease and lowering blood pressure. With that in mind, more people are ditching cookie-cutter coffee shops and indulging in the tearoom experience. And White Oak owner Arney is ready for them. The historic Cloyd House, a log cabin constructed circa 1783 and home to the simple, rustic shop, is a fitting setting for a quiet tea break. The menu is, according to Arney, “small and perfect ... famous for our two chicken salads and baked breads.” And though the cozy space (with only five tables) is part of its charm, its primary draw is the loose tea that Arney blends herself. “Once a tea drinker tastes a fine, loose tea, they will never be satisfied with a tea bag again,” says the Botetourt County native, who bought the tearoom when her catering business grew so much that it kept her more and more away from home. The tea business beckoned, not only as a respite, but as a vocation. “After much prayer, I felt there was quite a ministry within the tea business,” she says. Arney acquires leaves from tea estates in China, Japan, Canada and England, fuses them with a variety of ingredients, including rose hips, ginger and dried fruit, and packages them onsite. Blends like maple blackberry, vanilla grenadine and peach apricot white tea draw customers from as far away as the United Kingdom. Tea lovers “go out of their way to visit,” she says. “ We have become a destination restaurant but have a very loyal following from locals,” Arney says. And if you’re just passing through? Be prepared stay awhile. “We have good tea,” she says. “If we get you once, we keep you.” WhiteOakTeas.com RocktownFestival.com, 540-432-8922 third place: Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival, Winchester TheBloom.com, 540-662-3863 Best Movie Theater Zeus Digital Theaters 120 Osage Lane, Waynesboro ZeusTheaters.com, 540-416-0536 Zeus is best known for ruling Mount Olympus so it follows that his namesake movie theater zapped its competition this year. Want to feel like a movie god? Rent out one of Zeus’ eight auditoriums for a private screening and they will show any film you command. second place: Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, Winchester Drafthouse.com/Winchester, 540-313-4060 third place: Visulite Cinema, Staunton VisuliteCinemas.com, 540-885-9966 photo courtesy katie robbins B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 111 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Living & Recreation Most Welcoming Bed and Breakfast Iris Inn 191 Chinquapin Drive, Waynesboro IrisInn.com, 540-943-1991 Perched atop a mountain overlooking the Shenandoah Valley, Iris Inn has airy rooms and cabins designed to bring people close to nature. The three-story stone fireplace in the Great Room is perfect for relaxing after a day spent touring Virginia’s wine country, fly fishing the South River or simply enjoying the calm of the mountains. second place: Fort Lewis Lodge, Millboro FortLewisLodge.com, 540-925-2314 third place: Frederick House, Staunton FrederickHouse.com, 540-885-4220 liv ing & recreation Most Luxurious Hotel 24 S. Market St., Staunton Stonewall Jackson Hotel Best Retirement Community Kendal at Lexington 160 Kendal Drive, Lexington Best Place to Dance The Artful Dodger 47 Court Square, Harrisonburg StonewallJacksonHotel.com, 540-885-4848 Restored to its original splendor with a $21.1 million renovation in 2005, the Stonewall Jackson Hotel takes Southern hospitality to heart with 124 plush and pet-friendly rooms. Located in downtown Staunton at the gateway to the Blue Ridge, the hotel is in walking distance to shops, restaurants and galleries, and is right next door to the Blackfriars Playhouse. second place: The George Washington, a Wyndham Grand Hotel, Winchester WyndhamGeorgeWashington.com, 540-678-4700 third place: The Homestead, Hot Springs TheHomestead.com, 800-838-1766 KALex.Kendal.org, 800-976-8303 Meet friends for lunch after a painting class in the shadow of the mountains of the Shenandoah Valley. Take a daily Tai Chi class, or jog down the road for an event at one of several nearby universities. This is what everyday life is like at Kendal at Lexington, a continuing-care community that promotes the history, culture and natural beauty of Lexington. second place: Sunnyside Retirement Community, Harrisonburg Sunnyside.cc, 540-568-8411 third place: Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community, Harrisonburg VMRC.org, 540-438-4225 ArtfulDodgerLounge.com, 540-432-1179 This coffeehouse and cocktail lounge keeps things cool and casual with a varied lineup of live music Wednesday through Sunday nights. Benefit concerts and salsa nights frequently shake up the schedule. An extensive menu features dishes like Bombay Chicken Salad, and breakfast is served all day and night. second place: Sweet Caroline’s, Winchester SweetCarolines.net, 540-723-8805 third place: Blue Nile – Downstairs, Harrisonburg BlueNileVa.com/Downstairs/About, 540-432-6453 Best Resort for the Whole Family Massanutten Resort 1822 Resort Drive, McGaheysville Most Challenging Golf Course Packsaddle Ridge Golf Club 3067 Packsaddle Trail, Keezletown Best Hiking Trail Appalachian Trail Shenandoah Valley Packsaddle.net, 540-269-8188 MassResort.com, 540-289-9441 Hit the slopes in the morning then catch a wave in the afternoon—no joke. Alongside hiking and fly fishing at this Blue Ridge resort, Massanutten also has a year-round waterpark complete with “The Pipeline” for surfing. second place: The Homestead, Hot Springs TheHomestead.com, 800-838-1766 third place: Bryce Resort, Basye BryceResort.com, 540-856-2121 Given four-and-a-half stars by Golf Digest in 2008 and 2009, this 18-hole public golf course has sweeping views of the Shenandoah Valley from both the course and the clubhouse, which features a pro shop and the Packsaddle Grill. The par 72 course plays 7,024 yards at the longest tee zone. second place: Lexington Golf & Country Club, Lexington LexingtonGolfAndCountryClub.com, 540-463-4141 third place: Rock Harbor Golf Course, Winchester RockHarborGolf.com, 540-722-7111 NPS.gov/Appa, 304-535-6278 Stretching from Georgia to Maine, the 2,184-mile Appalachian Trail follows the Blue Ridge Mountains along the Eastern seaboard, passing through 14 states, including Virginia. Hiking the entirety takes the better part of a year, but most choose to hike it in sections. second place: Chessie Nature Trail, Lexington LexingtonVirginia.com third place: Shenandoah National Park Trails, Shenandoah Valley NPS.gov/Shen A Barrel of Laughs Three Brothers Brewing Co. in Harrisonburg enjoys sweet success in the suds business. An April post on Three Brothers Brewing Co.’s Facebook page said that one of their 600-gallon tanks had burst and that free beer was flowing for anyone willing to come down and get it. For Harrisonburg’s only craft brewery, opened on North Main Street by hometown boys Adam (30), Tyler (27) and Jason (23) Shiflett just last December, this seemed like pretty bad news. “That was an April Fool’s joke,” explains Adam, a former Naval submarine officer. “Everybody likes to have a little fun, right?” And why shouldn’t these guys have some fun? After all, they’re having a Cinderella moment. After rolling out their first brew last December, they were selling at capacity in just a few months and are now ready to double their production to 4,000 barrels per year. Three Brothers’ beer is also now on tap in nearly all of Harrisonburg’s several dozen independent restaurants, and is being distributed to about 30 restaurants in the Richmond area. In addition to the buzz about their beer (Adam says his current favorite is Great Outdoors, a Virginia Pale Ale), the trio is being lauded for their ecofriendly practices. “You kind of owe it to the community to do everything you can,” he explains. Adam says the craft beer community has offered support and advice as they get Three Brothers up and running pointing to O’Connor’s Brewing in Norfolk and Devil’s Backbone in Lexington in particular. Yes, the Shifletts have a lot to smile about. ThreeBrosBrew.com ph o t o b y e lisa b e th Bi x b y B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 113 Living & Recreation • SHENANDOAH VALLEY Best Outdoor Adventure Shenandoah Valley Shenandoah National Park NPS.gov/Shen, 540-999-3500 Possibly best known for the popular hike up Old Rag Mountain, Shenandoah National Park's more than 500 miles of trails includes cascading waterfalls, rock scrambles to mountaintop vistas and Limberlost Trail for those with limited mobility. Hiking, biking, fishing and horseback riding are permitted, and nearly all 196,000 acres are open to backcountry camping. second place: Appalachian Trail, Shenandoah Valley The Homestead, Hot Springs Atlantic Salmon Confit with Yellow Lentils Salmon Confit: 4 salmon steaks 2 vanilla beans, split 1 quart extra virgin olive oil Preheat oven to approximately 125 degrees. Place olive oil in a medium pan together with the vanilla and salmon fillets. The olive oil should cover the fish entirely. Place in the oven and cook slowly for 30-40 minutes. Reserve. Lentils: 8 ounces smoked bacon, diced small 1 pound yellow lentils, parboiled 3 ounces carrots, diced small 3 ounces celery, diced small 3 ounces onion, diced small 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 1 tablespoon chopped parsley ½ cup chicken broth 1 teaspoon ground cumin sea salt freshly ground pepper Preheat a non-stick frying pan. Add the bacon and cook until crisp. Drain extra oil from pan, and add the onions, carrots and celery. Sauté until translucent, then add the lentils, cumin, chicken stock, butter and parsley. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes and season to taste. Reserve. NPS.gov/Appa, 304-535-6278 third place: Frontier Culture Museum, Staunton FrontierMuseum.org, 540-332-7850 Best Hunting Preserve Shenandoah Valley White Balsamic Dressing: ½ cup white balsamic vinegar, reduced to 1/8 cup 1 cup vanilla olive oil from cooking the salmon 1 tablespoon chives, chopped fine 1 tablespoon shallots, chopped fine 1 tablespoon honey sea salt freshly cracked pepper Whisk together the honey and reduced vinegar in a medium mixing bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil forming an emulsion. Add remaining ingredients and season to taste. Reserve. Arrange lentils in equal portions in the middle of four plates. Drain the extra oil from the salmon and place the fillets on top of the lentils. Drizzle the dressing over the salmon and garnish with a few sprigs of herbs. Serves 4 TheHomestead.com The George Washington & Jefferson National Forests FS.USDA.gov/GWJ, 540-265-5100 These two forests combined are the largest public land blocks in the eastern U.S., with more than 1.8 million acres of primarily Appalachian hardwood and mixed pine-hardwood forests spread across Virginia, West Virginia and Kentucky. Twenty-three designated “Wilderness” areas protect the land and animals, but game hunting is permitted in specific areas. second place: Green Valley Hunter’s Paradise, Millboro GreenValleyHuntersParadise.com, 540-996-4134 third place: Goshen-Little North Mountain Wildlife Best Historic Site Management Area, Shenandoah Valley DGIF.Virginia.gov, 804-367-1000 Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum 20 N. Coalter St., Staunton Best Wine Trail Shenandoah Valley Shenandoah Valley Wine Trail ShenandoahValleyWineTrail.com Tucked between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Alleghany Mountains lies the Shenandoah Valley. Between tastings and tours of the 14 wineries featured on this wine trail, take in the history, culture and natural beauty of the valley with stops at Civil War battlefields, caverns, hiking trails, historic homes, antebellum plantations, inns and restaurants. second place: Shenandoah County Wine Trail, Shenandoah County ShenandoahTravel.org, 888-367-3965 third place: Blue Ridge Whiskey Wine Loop, Shenandoah Valley DiscoverShenandoah.com/Whiskey-Wine-Loop, WoodrowWilson.org, 540-885-0897 Most Fashionable Horse Show/Race Bonnie Blue National Horse Show 487 Maury River Road, Lexington HorseCenter.org, 540-464-2950 A museum dedicated to preserving the history of the 28th president of the United States, the birthplace and childhood home of Woodrow Wilson is conserved, while the library continues to collect and preserve the raw materials of history and promote Wilson’s ideals. second place: Lee Chapel & Museum, Lexington LeeChapel.WLU.edu, 540-458-8768 third place: Virginia Museum of the Civil War, New Market Battlefield State Historical Park, New Market www2.VMI.edu/Museum/NM, 866-515-1864 A United States Equestrian Federation-rated horse show, this May event celebrates its 27th anniversary this year. Organized by the Virginia Horse Center and held in the Anderson Coliseum, a 600-acre competition facility, the show features classes for Saddlebreds, Hackneys and Friesian horses spanning three days. second place: Elkton Horse Show, Elkton ElktonHistoricalSociety.com, 540-578-3046 third place: Blue Ridge Hunt Point-to-Point, Boyce BlueRidgeHunt.org, 540-837-1820 Best Tennis Club Pro 540-843-0584 Chad Reed, Augusta Health Lifetime Fitness 107 Medical Center Circle, Fishersville Best Group Fitness Gold’s Gym 485 South St., Front Royal Best Place to Fish Fort Lewis Lodge 603 Old Plantation Way, Millboro AugustaHealth.com/Lifetime-Fitness, 540-932-5280 A Professional Tennis Registry National Tester and Certified Teaching Professional, Chad Reed also has a specialized certification in wheelchair tennis. Teaching and coaching since 1995, Reed plans Special Olympics and wheelchair tennis programs alongside the junior and adult tennis programs at Augusta Health Lifetime Fitness. second place: Bev Coffman, Augusta Health Lifetime Fitness, Fishersville AugustaHealth.com/Lifetime-Fitness, 540-932-5280 third place: Robyn Russell, Staunton-Augusta Family YMCA, Staunton SAYMCA.org, 540-885-2553 third place tie: Jim Scott, Jim Scott Tennis, Winchester JimScottTennis.com, 540-667-5737 GoldsGym.com/FrontRoyalVa, 540-636-3400 Pilates, yoga, Body Pump, cycling—Gold’s Gym offers a myriad of group fitness classes all day, including four 6 a.m. classes for that before-work workout. The gym is not just for adults though: The Front Royal location offers three levels of children’s tumbling every Sunday, as well as “Zumbatomic” so kids can get their Zumba on too. second place: Augusta Health Lifetime Fitness, Fishersville AugustaHealth.com/Lifetime-Fitness, 540-932-5433 third place: Rockbridge Area YMCA, Lexington YMCARockbridge.org, 540-464-9622 third place tie: Staunton-Augusta YMCA, Staunton SAYMCA.org, 540-885-8089 FortLewisLodge.com, 540-925-2314 Fort Lewis Lodge, the cattle farm on Colonel Charles Lewis’ 3,200-acre mountain plantation circa 1750, provides bed-and-breakfast-style lodging from rooms to cabins for a genuine outdoor retreat. The Cowpasture River runs through the farm, a popular river for fly fishermen with large populations of smallmouth bass and rock bass. The lodge stocks rainbow trout every spring. second place: Douthat State Park, Millboro DCR.Virginia.gov/state_parks/dou.shtml, 540-862-8100 third place: Clearbrook Park, Clear Brook FCPRD.net, 540-665-5678 114 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 ph o t o C o u rt e s y o f th e h o m e st e a d EASTERN REGION • Arts & Culture SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Food Drink & Entertainment Best Barbecue Restaurant Peck’s BBQ 477 Lee Jackson Highway, Staunton PecksBBQ.com, 540-886-4647 Though its location has changed a few times—from Fishersville to Waynesboro to Staunton—since it first opened in 1980, Peck’s down-home barbecue remains exceptional. Owner Peck, formally known as Samuel A. Thomas III, sees to it that everything his restaurant serves is made from scratch, from the coleslaw to the hush puppies. second place: Hank’s Smokehouse Southern Grillery, McGaheysville HanksSmokehouse.com, 540-289-7667 third place: Bar-B-Q Ranch, Harrisonburg Bar-B-QRanch.com, 540-434-3296 food & drink A Weather Eye Mother Nature drives the menu. Chef Ryan Zale of Harrisonburg’s Local Chop & Grill House is watching the weather. The unusually cold spring means that the 60 local farms that supply the restaurant don’t know yet exactly what they’ll have for him, and so menu planning for next month is on hold: “At this point, I’m just waiting for farmers to call back and say hey, things are poppin’!” But that’s what farm to table is all about, says the 34-year-old Ohio native. “We rely on Mother Nature to see what we’re going to get.” Zale came to Harrisonburg in 2009 to open the Local Chop & Grill House after spending two years at the Inn at Little Washington. Zale says when he agreed to open the restaurant he wanted to modernize the traditional chop house. He added dishes diners do not see on typical chop house menus, including a charcuterie plate with salumi and pastrami, and what he describes as “playful” appetizers like Boer Bok rosemary goat sausage with butternut squash purée, crispy kale and Turner Country ham consommé. And of course, there is the meat. Locally sourced beef comes from Buffalo Creek in Lexington. “It is easily some of the best beef I’ve tasted in Virginia, or anywhere,” says Zale comparing it to an A2 Wagyu. (Zale also sources beef from a producer in Kansas known for high-quality hormone-free product.) Zale says he has noticed an uptick in the questions he gets from diners about the source of the food he serves. Zale knows the farmers that supply his menu personally, and can talk to diners about the producers’ philosophies and even the lifestyle that their animals lead. For Zale, the backstory on the food he serves is just as important as what is served on the plate. “It’s exciting that people are getting involved and wanting to know where their food comes from. I’m happy knowing I’m fighting for a good cause.” LocalChops.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 Best Caterer full circle catering 20 Swink Lane, Lexington FullCircleCatering.com, 540-463-1634 The mission of full circle catering is simple: “fine food for all folks, leaving as little footprint as possible.” Given that the business is currently one of just four caterers in the Commonwealth to be recognized as a Certified Green Restaurant by the Green Restaurant Association, we can safely say owner Jenny Elmes has achieved that vision. second place: Six Star Catering, Winchester SixStarCatering.com, 540-877-9900 third place: Shaffer’s Catering, Barbecue and Deli, Woodstock ShaffersCatering.com, 540-459-3744 Best Dessert Menu Local Chop & Grill House 56 W. Gay St., Harrisonburg LocalChops.com, 540-801-0505 Local Chop & Grill House has only been open since October 2009, but its gourmet dessert menu is already legendary. This establishment’s finishers, like goat cheese and lemon cheesecake made with lemon white chocolate ganache, graham cracker crust and raspberry coulis, are the stuff of dreams. second place: The Chocolate Bar Restaurant, Shenandoah Fine Chocolates, Winchester ShenandoahFineChocolates.com, 540-535-0010 third place: The Red Hen, Lexington RedHenLex.com, 540-464-4401 Best Steakhouse Joe’s Steakhouse 124 S. Main St., Woodstock Best Bakery Newtown Baking 960 W. Beverly St., Staunton NewtownBaking.com, 540-885-3799 Newtown may open at 7:30 a.m. during the week, but its bakers are always on-site by 3 o’clock in the morning to begin making fresh bread. From sourdough pecan raisin and walnut wheat to classic Italian filone and seeded baguettes, Newtown’s selection of breads and pastries promises to satisfy even the narrowest of tastes. second place: New Leaf Pastry Kitchen, Harrisonburg NewLeafPastryKitchen.com, 540-432-8942 third place: Shank’s Bakery, Harrisonburg ShanksBakery.com, 540-433-2253 JoesSteak.com, 540-459-5637 What’s the only thing more exciting than enjoying a hickory-smoked sirloin, certified black angus ribeye, beef skewer or St. Louis ribs? Why, doing so during Joe’s Mystery Dinner Theatre, of course! Perhaps the biggest whodunit of all is a HOWdunit: How do they make the steak taste so good? second place: Local Chop & Grill House, Harrisonburg LocalChops.com, 540-801-0505 third place: Mill Street Grill, Staunton MillStreetGrill.com, 540-886-0656 p h o t o s B y E s t l a n d De s i g n 115 EASTERN REGION • Arts & Culture SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Food Drink & Entertainment Best Overall Restaurant The Red Hen 11 E. Washington St., Lexington Best Pizzeria Shenandoah Pizza 19 E. Beverley St., Staunton Best Farmers’ Market SAFarmersMarket.com Staunton/Augusta Farmers’ Market Wharf Parking lot on Johnson Street, Staunton RedHenLex.com, 540-464-4401 Lexington’s very first farm-to-table restaurant, The Red Hen is committed to showcasing the finest meat and produce available in the Shenandoah Valley. So whether Executive Chef Collin Donnelly has prepared you pan-fried haggis or a butter leaf lettuce salad, you know your meal is supporting the local farming community. second place: Mill Street Grill, Staunton MillStreetGrill.com, 540-886-0656 third place: Zynodoa, Staunton Zynodoa.com, 540-885-7775 ShenandoahPizza.com, 540-213-0008 At Shenandoah Pizza, each pie is named for one of the Valley’s landmarks or notable figures. We recommend the Skyline Drive, topped with Alfredo sauce, spinach, tomato, bacon, smoked gouda and mozzarella, or the Virginia Vineyard, featuring grapes, gorgonzola and rosemary. If you’re counting calories or carbs, order the Shenandoah Bake. There’s no crust! second place: Melting Pot Pizza, Front Royal MeltingPotPizza.com, 540-636-6146 third place: Salerno Family Restaurant, Lexington Facebook.com/SalernoVa, 540-463-5757 On Wednesdays and Saturdays eight months of the year, dozens of vendors pack historic downtown Staunton’s Wharf Parking Lot to create the Staunton/ Augusta Farmers’ Market, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. The market’s website also features a number of tasty recipes, from Queen City cheese and chives potato casserole to “Absolutely Ultimate” potato soup. second place: Harrisonburg Farmers’ Market, Harrisonburg HarrisonburgFarmersMarket.com, 540-476-3377 third place: Lexington Farmers’ Market, Lexington 540-463-7191 Best Breakfast Restaurant Kathy’s Restaurant 705 Greenville Ave., Staunton Most Creative Chocolatier Cocoa Mill Chocolatier 123 W. Nelson St., Lexington Best Al Fresco Dining Byers Street Bistro 18 Byers St., Staunton Kathys-Restaurant.com, 540-885-4331 This Staunton treasure can whip up any home-style meal just like mom used to make, but Kathy’s is prized for its breakfast menu—specifically its gourmet pancakes which, it claims, are the best in the world. You can now enjoy Kathy’s flapjacks at the restaurant or purchase her secret formula pancake mix to take home. second place: The Little Grill, Harrisonburg LittleGrillCollective.com, 540-434-3594 third place: Mrs. Rowe’s Family Restaurant & Bakery, Staunton CocoaMill.com, 540-464-8400 Chocolate-covered strawberries are nice, but Cocoa Mill’s famed chocolate-dipped ginger will have you seeing coated confections in a new light. The crystallized ginger and bittersweet chocolate make for a simply divine, sweet-and-spicy treat. Celebrating its 20th anniversary, the Lexington chocolatier also offers a tempting assortment of chocolate bark and truffles. second place: Shenandoah Fine Chocolates, Winchester ShenandoahFineChocolates.com, 540-535-0010 third place: Chocolate Occasions, McGaheysville ChocolateOccasions.com, 540-289-5940 ByersStreetBistro.com, 540-887-6100 “Eat. Drink. Live.” Byers Street Bistro’s motto is straightforward, yet memorable, just like its outdoor dining experience. A sprawling patio paired with live, late-night entertainment and an extensive dinner menu featuring everything from “The Godfather” pizza to vegetable Napoleon makes for an al fresco meal you won’t soon forget. second place: Dave’s Downtown Taverna, Harrisonburg DavesTaverna.com, 540-564-1487 third place: Village Square Restaurant, Winchester VillageSquareRestaurant.com, 540-667-8961 540-886-1833 Best Sunday Brunch Mill Street Grill 1 Mill St., Staunton Best Burger Joint Pure Eats 107 N. Main St., Lexington Best Seafood Restaurant Red Lobster 2121 E. Market St., Harrisonburg MillStreetGrill.com, 540-886-0656 Ah, the irony. There is nothing run of the mill about this 19th-century flour mill-turned-restaurant, especially the Sunday brunch menu, which showcases delectable versions of eggs Benedict. On the off chance you’re not in the mood for filet mignon, shrimp Florentine, crab cake or fried green tomatoes and shrimp Benedict, Mill Street is happy to make your dish to order. second place: Joe’s Steakhouse, Front Royal JoesSteak.com, 540-636-5637 third place: Southern Inn Restaurant, Lexington SouthernInn.com, 540-463-3612 Pure-Eats.com, 540-462-6000 Pure Eats believes so strongly in using local fare that everything the restaurant serves--from Buffalo Creek beef patties to Homestead Creamery milkshakes—is made from ingredients produced within a 75-mile radius. Though its burger menu is full of classic favorites (think double bacon cheeseburger), Pure Eats’ specialty burger offerings vary weekly to “keep locals on their toes.” second place: Jack Brown’s Beer & Burger Joint, Harrisonburg JackBrownsJoint.com, 540-433-5225 third place: Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Staunton FiveGuys.com, 540-885-8861 RedLobster.com, 540-564-2719 What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Red Lobster? The “sea food differently” catchphrase? Lobsterfest specials? The legendary cheddar Bay Biscuits? It’s the perfect combination for a college town: good seafood at affordable prices. The world’s largest casual dining seafood restaurant enterprise, Red Lobster has fans from Harrisonburg to Honolulu. second place: Mill Street Grill, Staunton MillStreetGrill.com, 540-886-0656 third place: The Green Leaf Grill, Waynesboro TheGreenLeafGrill.com, 540-949-4416 Best Place for a Sandwich Blue Sky Bakery 540-463-6546 16 Lee Ave., Lexington Best Locally Owned Coffee Shop Lexington Coffee Shop 9 W. Washington St., Lexington Best Sushi Cuisine Mike and Brenda Gregg founded this homey restaurant nine years ago as a bakery, but its sandwiches became so popular that the pair let the business evolve into the bustling sandwich shop it is today. Blue Sky’s sandwiches, made with freshly baked, homemade breads, from honey wholewheat to four-cheese focaccia, are addicting. second place: The Pampered Palate Cafe, Staunton ThePamperedPalateCafe.com, 540-886-9463 third place: The Woodstock Cafe & Shoppes, Woodstock CafeShoppes.com, 540-459-8888 DamnFineCoffee.net, 540-464-6586 This quaint downtown coffee house promises locals “the freshest cup in town, always.” And with Lexington Coffee Shop’s vast variety of gourmet coffee blends from around the globe, that’s an easy promise to keep. Bring the dog—pets are welcome on the patio—and a good book to while the hours away. second place: Coffee on the Corner, Staunton Massaki Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi Bar 1027 Richmond Road, Staunton MassakiSteakhouse.com, 540-886-9191 No need to go out for dinner and a show: at Massaki, you get two in one. Sit back and watch as expertly trained Hibachi chefs (one of whom showed off his skills on Rachael Ray’s TV show) prepare your meal in between knife juggling, shrimp tossing and setting veggies on fire. 540-887-0041 third place: The Woodstock Cafe & Shoppes, Woodstock CafeShoppes.com, 540-459-8888 second place: Sushi Matsumoto, Lexington Facebook.com/SushiMatsumoto, 540-464-8196 third place: Beyond Restaurant & Lounge, Harrisonburg RestaurantBeyond.com, 540-432-0105 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 117 EASTERN REGION • Arts & Culture SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Food Drink & Entertainment Best Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurant The Little Grill 621 N. Main St., Harrisonburg Best Local Microbrewery 123 S. Randolph St., Lexington Blue Lab Brewing Company BlueLabBrewing.com, 540-458-0146 Blue Lab may be less than three years old but, in that short time, the family-run, two-barrel nanobrewery has crafted over 40 styles of ale. Whether you drink a pint on the premises or take a keg to go, this Lexington brewery gives you the flavor of the region. second place: Devils Backbone Outpost Brewery, Lexington DBBrewingCompany.com, 540-462-6200 third place: Three Brothers Brewing, Harrisonburg ThreeBrosBrew.com LittleGrillCollective.com, 540-434-3594 A restaurant since the 1940s and a worker-owned collective since 2003, the Little Grill serves up a healthy array of vegan, vegetarian and meat options. Locals check in regularly for the fun-flavored pancakes of the month; lemon poppyseed for March, ginger pear for August and spiced chai for November, just to name a few. second place: Cranberry’s Grocery & Eatery, Staunton GoCranberrys.com, 540-885-4755 third place: Counter Culture Cafe, Healthy Foods Co-Op, Lexington HealthyFoodsCoOp.wordpress.com, 540-463-6954 Zynodoa, Staunton Smoked Scallop, Arugula and Cucumber Salad with Grapefruit Viognier Vinaigrette 8 scallops, approximately 2 ounces each 4 large grapefruits 1 egg 4 ounces baby arugula, cleaned and picked 750 ml bottle Viognier (we use Michael Shaps) 2 English cucumbers peeled, seeded and cut into 2-inch lengths 1 pint sugar 4 pints water 1 shallot, finely diced 1 pint good white wine vinegar 1 pint light olive oil or grape seed oil salt and pepper to taste Chef’s note: If you don’t have access to a smoker, then grilling will impart almost the same flavor. Peel grapefruit and remove the pith. Slice peels lengthwise and cover with one pint of water in heavy pot. Heat to boiling and drain. Repeat process two more times to remove bitterness in the peels. The fourth time, add sugar to water and simmer for one hour. Set aside. While you are cooking the zest, juice three of the grapefruits, combine with Viognier in a heavy pot, and reduce on medium heat until you have about 3 ounces by volume liquid. Set aside and cool to room temperature. While that is cooking, peel and segment the remaining grapefruit, slicing between the white segment lines so that only fruit segments remain (no white pith). Prepare smoker. Season scallops with salt and ground black pepper, put in smoker. At Zynodoa, we smoke in a pressure smoker for three minutes. Do not cook all the way through, as there will be a second cooking to caramelize. Remove scallops from smoker and place in refrigerator. Slice cucumbers lengthwise, about 1/8 inch thick, making sure to avoid seeds. In a bowl or dish, cover cucumber slices with vinegar and shallots, and season with salt and pepper. In a blender, thoroughly mix Viognier grapefruit reduction and egg. Drizzle in oil until emulsion is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reserve. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Add a light coat of oil and sear scallops on both sides until caramel in color, adjusting heat as necessary. To plate, spread vinaigrette on the bottom of each plate. In a large bowl, mix arugula and candied grapefruit zest. Toss in a small amount of oil to coat leaves. Drizzle some of the syrup (made during the grapefruit zesting process) on leaves as well. Place cucumbers, arugula, grapefruit segments and scallops onto each plate. Serves 4 as an appetizer. Best Overall Bar Best Sports Bar Southern Inn Restaurant 37 S. Main St., Lexington Buffalo Wild Wings 437A Tiffany Drive, Waynesboro SouthernInn.com, 540-463-3612 Southern Inn and its owners, George and Sue Ann Huger, are nothing if not resilient. The Hugers not only restored the then-66-year-old building when they acquired it in 1998, but also rebuilt it following a devastating 2010 fire. This phoenix-like energy—plus a stunning drink selection—are just part of why Southern Inn is the best bar in town. second place: Local Chop & Grill House, Harrisonburg BuffaloWildWings.com, 540-943-9464 Buffalo Wild Wings, also affectionately known as B-Dubs and BW-3, is about three things: “Wings. Beer. Sports.” With 16 signature wing sauces, a multitude of domestic, imported and craft beers on tap and at least 30 flat-screen TVs per restaurant, it’s no wonder Buffalo Wild Wings is a Waynesboro favorite. second place: O’Neill’s Grill, Harrisonburg ONeillsGrill.com, 540-574-4267 third place: Macado’s, Lexington Macados.net, 540-464-8200 LocalChops.com, 540-801-0505 third place: Capital Ale House, Harrisonburg CapitalAleHouse.com, 540-564-2537 third place tie: Zynodoa, Staunton Zynodoa.com, 540-885-7775 Best Ice Creamery The Split Banana 7 W. Beverley St., Staunton Best Winery TheSplitBanana.com, 866-492-3668 With an impressive lineup of more than 60 gelati and sorbet flavors, the Split Banana has a plethora of possibilities for ice cream lovers. The five-year-old shop’s unique blend of exotic (honey saffron, cocoa ancho, orange Cointreau) and locally inspired (Virginia peanut butter, Highland County maple, Beverley apple pie) concoctions make other ice creams seem oh-so-dull. second place: Klines Dairy Bar, Harrisonburg KlinesDairyBar.com, 540-434-6980 third place: Sweet Things Ice Cream Shoppe, Lexington Facebook.com/SweetThingsIceCreamShop, 540-463-6055 Barren Ridge Vineyards 984 Barren Ridge Road, Fishersville BarrenRidgeVineyardsVa.com, 540-248-3300 Who says you can’t go home again? After years of living abroad, John Higgs and his wife Shelby proved the old saying wrong. He returned to the apple orchard where he spent his youth (Higgs’ father purchased the land back in 1934) and converted it into one of the Shenandoah Valley’s favorite wineries. second place: Rockbridge Vineyard, Raphine RockbridgeVineyard.com, 540-377-6204 third place: Bluestone Vineyard, Bridgewater BluestoneVineyard.com, 540-828-0099 Most Creative Cocktail Menu Zynodoa 115 E. Beverley St., Staunton Best Wine Shop Washington Street Purveyors 9 E. Washington St., Lexington Zynodoa.com, 540-885-7775 While this hip Staunton hot spot is known for whipping up “inspired Southern cuisine” in farm-to-table fashion, its frequently changing cocktail menu is a draw all on its own. Popular selections include the Lavender Lemon Drop—Cirrus vodka, lavender simple syrup and lemon— and Eat.Drink.Love—cava sparkling wine, Chambord and Split Banana blackberry raspberry sorbet. second place: Local Chop & Grill House, GopherWine.com, 540-464-9463 As proprietor Charles Smith will attest, life is too short to drink bad wine. That’s why his 17-year-old shop is a haven for only the highest quality wines, brews and gourmet foods. When you visit Washington Street Purveyors, bring an open mind; Smith loves to introduce his customers to new things. second place: The Woodstock Cafe & Shoppes, Woodstock CafeShoppes.com, 540-459-8888 third place: Downtown Wine & Gourmet, Harrisonburg DowntownWines.com, 540-432-9463 Harrisonburg LocalChops.com, 540-801-0505 third place: Village Square Restaurant, Winchester VillageSquareRestaurant.com, 540-667-8961 photo by sera petras Zynodoa.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 119 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Shopping & Services Best Day Spa Tres Bella Luxury Spa & Boutique 426 N. Royal Ave., Front Royal TresBellaSpa.com, 540-635-2255 Including special spa packages like Chocolate Lovers Delight and Rainforest Restoration, hydrating green tea manicures and pedicures, 12 different kinds of massages from couture to classic, tanning, waxing, peels and facials—Tres Bella’s list of spa treatments goes on and on. Even your little princess can partake in the pampering with the “princess manicure/pedicure” for children under 12. second place: High Tech Design & Day Spa, Verona shopping & se rv ices Best Hair Salon Foilz Hair Studio 600 University Blvd., Harrisonburg HighTechSalon.com, 540-248-3333 third place: The Beauty Spa, Harrisonburg BeautySpaOnline.com, 540-564-1925 Best Air Charter Service Professional Air Solutions 51 Aviation Circle, Suite 103, Weyers Cave Best Shopping Area/Mall Beverley Street, Staunton FoilzHairStudio.com, 540-433-6459 The stylists at Foilz specialize in highlights and color, although that is not all this full-service salon offers. Up to date on the latest styles and techniques, the stylists can do everything from a basic cut to hair extensions. Men and kids are welcome too. second place: Encore Salon 215 Spa, Lexington Salon215DaySpa.com, 540-464-4215 third place: High Tech Design & Day Spa, Verona HighTechSalon.com, 540-248-3333s ProfessionalAirSolutions.com, 540-849-0823 Trade the TSA for a friendly greeting. Park just 50 yards from the plane, board immediately and bring the entire bottle of shampoo if you wish (3 ounces of shampoo doesn’t go very far, you know). These are just some of the perks of flying with an air charter service, which Professional Air Solutions brings to the Shenandoah Valley. Their most popular routes include Chicago, Atlanta, Baton Rouge and Providence. Historic Downtown Staunton StauntonDowntown.org, 540-332-3867 The revitalization of Historic Downtown Staunton has helped turn this district into a destination for shopping, dining and fun at the gateway to the Blue Ridge. Colonial-era buildings now house shops, galleries and restaurants, and the American Shakespeare Center and Blackfriars Playhouse add to the cultural mix. second place: Apple Blossom Mall, Winchester Simon.com/Mall/Apple-Blossom-Mall, 540-665-0202 third place: Downtown Harrisonburg, Harrisonburg DowntownHarrisonburg.org, 540-432-8922 third place Tie: Downtown Lexington, Lexington DowntownLexington.com, 540-463-5375 All in the Family Apples have been the Markers’ business for more than a century. In 1908, when Amos Marker bought a piece of land in Winchester, it came with a stone house on it that was already about 100 years old. He raised his family there and, by the time his son John picked up a shovel in the 1930s, that plot of land was ripe for planting. John planted so many apple trees that, before he knew it, the Marker land was awash in orchards, and selling apples became the family business. When John’s son Ralph came along, the natural progression was to expand the operation, so in the ’40s and early ’50s, Ralph set about adding peach trees. By the time the next generation took over, the orchards had expanded to include several varieties of apples. Out of necessity, the packing shed became a fruit stand where passers-through and local residents could purchase some of the tastiest fruit in the valley. In the century-plus since, Marker-Miller Orchards has remained a family enterprise, now run by John Jr., 65, his wife Carolyn, 64, and their daughter Heather McKay, 37. Covering some 350 acres, the business has diversified to include many varieties of apples, vegetables and other fruits, including hard-to-find damson plums and apricots. The packing shedturned-fruit stand has been replaced by a complex that includes a playground to entertain children while parents pick produce and a market where Marker-Miller pies, jams, jellies and other delectable comestibles—like Marker-Miller’s famous apple cider doughnuts and its fruit wines—are sold. McKay estimates that some 40,000 visitors come in the six months a year that MarkerMiller Orchards is open for business. And while expansion isn’t on the horizon at the moment, Marker-Miller Orchards continues to grow through diversification. “We’re always adding different vegetables to harvest,” says McKay. “And, of course, we’re replanting trees with new varieties of apples.” As the only member of her generation to be involved in the family business, McKay hopes that the next generation will step it up a little. “Family is very important,” she says. “You always hope there is someone in the family who has the desire and love to continue farming. It’s not a glamorous nine-to-five job with weekends off, but it … allows you to spend time with family, witness the life cycle firsthand, and know that, at the end of the day, you left a little mark for future generations.” For a full list of what’s ripe for picking from June to November, go to MarkerMillerOrchards.com Best Men’s Haircut Rocktown Choppers 320 S. Main St., Harrisonburg RocktownChoppers.com, 304-902-0315 The old school barbershop atmosphere is alive and well at Rocktown Choppers: It’s men-only here. They only do military cuts, flat tops, fades, high and tights, classic old-fashioned haircuts (and some modern men’s hairstyles, too) and include a hot towel and hot lather straight razor neck shave with each cut. Did we mention the price tag? Just $8. second place: Foilz Hair Studio, Harrisonburg FoilzHairStudio.com, 540-433-6459 third place: N 2 Hair Barbering & Styling, Harrisonburg 540-434-4844 Best Florist The Jefferson Florist and Garden 603 N. Lee Highway, Lexington TheJeffersonFloristAndGarden.com, 540-463-9841 Jefferson Florist has an extensive variety of flowers and arrangements, probably because it maintains its own greenhouse at the bottom of the Shenandoah Valley in Rockbridge Baths. It’s been in business since 1983, and have created fabulous floral arrangements at some of the area’s iconic places, including The Homestead, Lee Chapel at Washington & Lee and VMI. second place: Honey Bee’s Florist, Staunton HoneyBeesFlorist.com, 540-887-1221 third place: University Florist, Lexington UniversityFloristLexVa.com, 540-463-6080 ph o t o C o u rt e s y o f M ar k e r - M i ll e r Orchards B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 121 SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Shopping & Services Best Interior Designer 134 E. Beverley St., Staunton Margaret McElroy, Margaret McElroy Interior Design MargaretMcElroyInteriorDesign.com, 540-886-2480 Margaret McElroy began her interior design career in Richmond and, since 1992, has added projects as prestigious as a Symphony Designer House and a home on the Historic Garden Week tour to her portfolio. She opened a retail store in Staunton in 2009, where she provides home furnishings and accessories alongside her design services. second place: Beth Young, A.S.I.D., Staunton Best Women’s Clothing Store The Fashion Gallery 111 Lee Highway, Verona Best Sporting Goods Wilderness Adventure 50 Middlebrook Ave., Staunton FashionGalleryVa.com, 540-248-4292 Just north of Staunton is the aptly-named Fashion Gallery: 25,000 square feet of formal and casual clothing, shoes and accessories. Staff there love fashion with a Southern twist, so much so that it is a “premiere Vera Bradley store,” which means it receives its selection of the colorful cloth merchandise before anyone else. second place: Design at Nine, Staunton 540-886-0060 third place: The Yellow Button, Harrisonburg ShopYellowButton.com, 540-801-8110 WildernessAdv.com, 540-885-3200 Wilderness Adventure carries clothing, gear and accessories for all of the Shenandoah Valley’s outdoor adventures. Along with brands like North Face, Patagonia, Keen and Merrell, the store also carries shoes but, even more importantly, the staff is willing to share insider knowledge of the area’s best places to hike, backpack, climb and canoe. You can’t put a price tag on that. second place: Rockfish Gap Outfitters, Waynesboro RockfishGapOutfitters.com, 540-943-1461 third place: Dominion Outdoors, Fishersville DominionOutdoors.com, 540-337-9218 540-290-1929 third place: Stephen Robbins, Hamilton-Robbins Ltd., Lexington 540-464-9142 Best Pet Boarding Puppy Luv 4110 Greenmount Road, Harrisonburg Best Lawyer Victor M. Santos 12 N. New St., Staunton Best Bridal Shop 540-833-6901 Amanda’s Touch Bridal & Formal 1561 Commerce Road, Suite 403, Verona NMSSLC.com, 540-885-0346 The practice of Nelson, McPherson, Summers & Santos, L.C., has become a mainstay in downtown Staunton, operating out of its New Street location for 50-plus years. As one of seven lawyers at a practice with diverse fields of expertise, Santos specializes in divorce relations, civil litigation, personal injury, insurance and business law. second place: H. David Natkin, Lexington DavidNatkin.com, 540-464-3283 third place: Laurence A. Mann, Lexington MVELaw.com, 540-463-7119 The folks at Puppy Luv have been grooming and boarding dogs for more than 30 years, so they know a thing or two about caring for animals. Though they specialize in puppies, Puppy Luv provides grooming, doggie day care and boarding services to animals of all ages. Visits always include exercise in the large outdoor area. second place: Creature Comfort Inn, Strasburg CreatureComfortInn.net, 540-465-3007 third place: Cedarcrest Country Club, Fishersville AmandasTouch.com, 540-248-5123 Cedarcrest.cc, 540-943-7577 third place Tie: Woodworth Animal Hospital, Waynesboro WoodworthAH.VetSuite.com, 540-942-5163 Traveling nationwide to handpick the Verona shop’s dress selection, Amanda’s Touch has more than 200 gowns in stock alongside bridesmaid’s, mother’s and flower girl’s dresses, and tuxedo rentals. Weddings are not the only specialty though: As a retail store for Top 10 Prom, one of the world’s largest designer dressbuying groups, it carries designer formals too. second place: Becky’s Bridal, Buena Vista BeckysBridal.net, 540-261-3140 third place: Bridal Impressions, Harrisonburg BridalImpressionsVa.com, 540-564-9622 Best Antiques The Factory Antique Mall 50 Lodge Lane, Suite 106, Verona Best Gift Shop SoLace Studios 193 W. Spotswood Ave., Elkton Best Children’s Clothing Store Grandma’s Bait 24 E. Beverley St., Staunton FactoryAntiqueMall.com, 540-248-1110 The Factory Antique Mall is definitely a destination: A brand new expansion finished this year brings the space to more than 100,000 square feet—one of the largest antique malls in America—complete with a café and an artisan center. Aisles have street names for easy navigation, and maps are available at the entrance. second place: Duke’s Antique Center, Lexington ShenandoahValleyWeb.com, 540-463-9511 third place: The Antique Mall, Lexington SoLaceInc.com, 540-298-5222 The workspace and showroom for the marbled silk designs of fiber artist Barb Polin, SoLace Studios carries handcrafted clothing and accessories featuring the ancient fabric and leather design technique known as marbling. Marbled silk is also available by the yard, and the studio shows the work of more than 100 regional and national artists as well. second place: The Emporium, Staunton Emporium-Gifts.com, 540-885-1673 third place: Pumpkinseeds, Lexington Facebook.com/Pumpkinseeds.Boutique, 540-464-5002 GrandmasBait.com, 540-886-2222 Owners Bob and Shirley Robinson had decided on the name for their store long before they opened it in 1981. Then manager of the children’s department at a major department store, Bob would put especially cute items in the front aisles with the sign, “Grandma’s Bait.” Today, their store carries those especially cute and traditional children’s clothes, toys and accessories. second place: Kids @ Kimberly’s, Winchester Kimberlys.biz, 540-662-2195 third place: Once Upon a Child, Harrisonburg OnceUponAChildHarrisonburg.com, 540-438-5607 540-464-5555 Most On-Schedule Home Builder Welsh Construction, Inc. 15A N. Randolph St., Lexington Red Hen, Lexington Spiced Asian Pear Cake 1 cup olive oil 2 cups sugar 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1 pinch ground nutmeg ½ teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking soda ½ cup candied ginger, diced 4 cups Asian pears, peeled and diced Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a cake pan. Combine the WelshConstruction.com, 540-464-1008 As a full-service construction firm, it’s no surprise that home building, additions, renovations, and interior and exterior remodeling are on Welsh Construction’s list of services, but what sets this firm apart is its ability to do historic restorations. Based in Lexington, Welsh has worked on historic projects from a small 1700s log cabin to the Thornhill Estate mansion. second place: Bryan A. Nesselrodt Construction, Inc., Mount Crawford 540-810-5842 third place: Beebe Construction, Inc., Lexington BeebeConstructionInc.com, 540-461-0150 flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg in a bowl. Set aside. In a mixing bowl, beat oil and eggs until creamy. Add the sugar and vanilla, and beat well. Slowly add the flour mixture to the egg mixture until combined. The batter will be very thick. Fold in the pears and ginger by hand using a wooden spoon. Spread batter into the prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until cake tests done. Place pan on wire rack to cool. Serve with toasted pecans and whipped cream. Serves 8 to 10 RedHenLex.com B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 123 EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Shopping & Services Best Cycle Shop Black Dog Bikes 121 S. Lewis St., Staunton BlackDogBikes.com, 540-887-8700 Located in the Historic Wharf District in Downtown Staunton, Black Dog Bikes supports the local biking community from its full-service bike shop. Weekly group rides, welcoming everyone from beginners to experienced cyclists leave, from behind the building. Check out the shop’s Facebook page for ride times, routes and weather updates. second place: Shenandoah Bicycle Company, Harrisonburg ShenandoahBicycle.com, 540-437-9000 third place: Lexington Bicycle Shop, Lexington 540-463-7969 Best Fine Jewelry Store Crown Jewelers 6 E. Beverley St., Staunton CrownLtd.net, 540-885-0653 Specializing in watches and estate jewelry, with two full cases of estate collections, this small, independently owned jewelry store has served Staunton since 1960, from buying to repairs and cleaning. The European-trained jeweler uses a laser for the most delicate repairs and on-site engraving, and the watchmaker has more than 55 years of experience. second place: James McHone Jewelry, Harrisonburg McHoneJewelry.com, 540-433-1833 third place: Hamric & Sheridan Jewelers, Inc., Lexington 540-463-2022 Pie in the Sky Ole’ Time Fried Pies in Timberville takes pie to new heights of yummy. What could possibly be better than pie? Fried pie, perhaps. An old-fashioned treat popular in the southwestern states, fried pies are making a name for themselves in the Shenandoah Valley, thanks to a small business called Ole’ Time Fried Pies. Run by the Beachy family—Alvin and Karen, both in their 50s, and their four daughters who range in age from 14 to 19—Ole’ Time Fried Pies delivers their home-cooked goods to nearly 30 businesses over a 300-mile radius from their hometown of Timberville twice a week. “It’s a family business,” Alvin says. Everyone participates, and even the school-aged girls are “on standby for the frying and delivering.” So what is a fried pie? “Most people describe it as like a turnover,” explains Alvin, “basically we take a dough that we handmake ourselves, flatten it to a 6.5-inch circle, add the filling, fold over the dough and crimp the edge, then fry it.” It’s still pie, but better. Alvin got the idea from his sister, Anna, who has run her own fried pie operation in Texas for seven years. “She taught us everything we know about fried pies,” says Alvin. But there was a learning curve. “We tried them on our own the first time, and it was just a disaster,” says the Virginia native. But they seem to have gotten the hang of it. They began just two years ago, but today the family fries nearly 2,000 pies over two days each week to keep up with demand. All of their fillings are handmade, and while the pies come in just about every flavor imaginable, from coconut cream to blackberry, they can do only 10 flavors each week. Apple and peach are favorites, but they frequently try out new flavors. On top of the delivery business, you’ll find the Beachys frying on-site at festivals across Virginia most weekends during the summer. Some people recognize the treats, but it seems to have skipped a generation: “In Texas,” says Alvin, “it’s not uncommon for people to say ‘My mama used to make these,’ but in Virginia, you’re more likely to hear ‘My grandma used to make these.’” If the Beachys are bringing the fried pie back to Virginia, well, that’s all right with us. 540-435-2077 ' Best Independent Home Decor Store Hamilton-Robbins Ltd. 21 S. Main St., Lexington 540-464-9142 Hamilton-Robbins just might inspire a few decorating ideas with the eclectic variety of items in the store. Sift through the fabric samples, or browse the antique furniture and paintings, fine linens and soaps, ceramics, glassware, pewter, silver and brass jewelry, oriental rugs, even bottles of imported olive oil and balsamic vinegar. It also offers engraving, custom printing and calligraphy. second place: Arthur’s Home Gallery, Staunton ArthursHomeGallery.com, 540-885-8609 third place: The Lady Jane Shop, Harrisonburg TheLadyJaneShop.com, 540-820-6629 third place Tie: Ponte Vecchio Living, Winchester PonteVecchioLiving.com, 540-450-8762 Best Shoe Store Best Men’s Clothing Alvin-Dennis 102 W. Washington St., Lexington Wilkins’ Shoe Center 7 S. Loudoun St., Winchester Best Hospital Augusta Health 78 Medical Center Drive, Fishersville WilkinsShoe.com, 540-667-5600 Opened in 1947 and now owned and operated by three generations of the Wilkins family, Wilkins’ Shoe Center has a huge selection of shoes: more than 30,000 pairs in stock. Casual and formal, it also carries dance shoes, steel-toed boots and other safety shoes, and its athletic division outfits high school and college teams across five states. second place: The Sole Source, Harrisonburg AugustaHealth.com, 540-332-4000 AlvinDennis.com, 540-463-5383 Seersucker and poplin suits. Colorful cumberbund sets by High Cotton. Barbour, Sperry and Vineyard Vines. Since 1963, Alvin-Dennis has provided Lexington with traditional casual and formal clothing, Southernstyle. It also carries a large selection of W&L and VMI clothing, jewelry and accessories, from belts to blazer buttons with school colors and logos. second place: Bell’s Fine Clothing, Winchester BellsFineClothing.com, 540-667-1430 third place: Belk, Harrisonburg Belk.com, 540-434-4477 Augusta Health has grown since it began providing healthcare to Augusta County in 1994, opening the doors of its newest expansion in March—the Heart & Vascular Center. The hospital employs more than 225 full-time physicians and has 255 beds and a number of specialty centers, including its Sleep Center and Internal Medicine Center. second place: Rockingham Memorial Hospital, Harrisonburg RMHOnline.com, 540-689-1000 third place: Winchester Medical Center-Valley Health, Winchester ValleyHealthLink.com, 540-536-8000 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 TheSoleSource.net, 540-564-2668 third place: Design at Nine, Staunton 540-886-0060 125 y e l l a n V i t h s a e o B d n d a e Vot Shen e Th Waynesboro is a natural place to explore a stunning landscape; centrally located in Virginia, easily accessible via interstate and 3 miles from the entrance from the Blue Ridge Parkway, Shenandoah National Park, Skyline Drive and the Appalachian Trail. Waynesboro is a charming destination as well as an ideal hub for day trips and excursions. Most Welcoming B&B Seafood Restaurant Sporting Goods Store, Outdoor Outfitter Independent School 191 Chinquapin Dr 1-888-585-9018 www.IrisInn.com Music Venue 415 W Main St 540-949-4416 thegreenleafgrill.com Food Festival 1461 E Main St 540-943-1461 rockfishgapoutfitters.com Art Event 225 S Wayne Ave 1-w800-946-7773 fishburne.org Gateway 329 W Main St 540-943-9999 www.WayneTheatre.org 301 West Main St 540-447-6350 virginiachili.com 126 S Wayne Ave 540-949-7662 svacart.com The EASTERN REGION • Arts Culture & Entertainment SHENANDOAH VALLEY • Shopping & Services Best Dentist Frederick W. Broadhead, D.M.D. 80 W. fourth St., Front Royal FrontRoyalDentalCare.com, 540-635-4567 Ever wonder what is really happening when you hear the dreaded drill at the dentist’s office? Dr. Broadhead’s website explains it all before you arrive at his office. The FAQ page describes a number of procedures from root canals to cosmetic dentistry, and answers many toothrelated questions. second place: Stephen T. French, D.D.S., Woodstock 540-459-3411 third place: D. Clayton Devening Jr., D.D.S., F.A.G.D., Lexington DowneyDevening.com, 540-463-2134 third place Tie: William B. Hanna, D.D.S., Staunton Skyland Resort, Shenandoah National Park Caramelized Onion Soup with Jarlsberg Crouton 4 tablespoons butter 6 medium onions, thinly sliced ¼ teaspoon salt 4 cups water 1 can (14 ½ ounces) beef broth 1 ¾ cups brown beef stock or beef broth ¼ teaspoons dried thyme 4 slices (½-inch thick) diagonally cut french bread 4 ounces gruyere or fontina cheese, shredded (1 cup) In nonstick 12-inch skillet, melt butter over mediumlow heat. Add onions and salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are very tender and begin to caramelize, about 45 minutes. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring frequently, until onions are deep golden brown, about 15 minutes longer. Transfer onions to stock pot. Add ½ cup water to same skillet and heat to boiling, stirring until browned bits are loosened from bottom of skillet. Add to onions in stock pot. Add remaining 3 ½ cups water, broth and thyme to onions, and heat to boiling over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange bread slices on cookie sheet and bake until lightly toasted, about 5-7 minutes. Spoon soup evenly into four ovenproof bowls on cookie sheet and top with toasted bread, slightly pressing bread into soup. Generously distribute Fontina evenly on top of each. Bake until cheese has melted and begins to brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Serves 4 NPS.gov 540-886-7012 Best Independent School Fishburne Military School 225 S. Wayne Ave., Waynesboro Fishburne.org, 540-946-7700 A military boarding school for boys grades 7-12, Fishburne’s military tradition and academic ideals extend back to the founding of the school in 1879. Today, as a nationally recognized JROTC program, with an 8:1 student-teacher ratio and 100 percent college acceptance, they continue the traditions their “Corps of Cadets” can be proud of. second place: Stuart Hall School, Staunton Stuart-Hall.org, 540-885-0356 third place: Pollywog Place, Woodstock PollywogPlace.com, 540-459-6582 Best Cosmetic Surgeon Saied Asfa, M.D., F.A.C.S. 1502 Brookhaven Drive, Harrisonburg Best Dermatologist Best Outdoor Outfitter Walkabout Outfitter 15 W. Washington St., Lexington Jerri A. Alexiou, M.D. 2062 Pro Pointe Lane, Harrisonburg WalkAboutOutfitter.com, 540-464-4453 Walkabout Outfitter carries clothing, shoes and gear for the outdoors, outfitting the hardcore hiker, the backpacker, or those who simply want to walk about outside. It recently added rock climbing to its list, carrying climbing gear alongside their hiking and camping essentials. Check out its website for sale events or a list of local hikes. second place: Wilderness Adventure, Staunton WildernessAdv.com, 540-885-3200 third place: Rockfish Gap Outfitters, Waynesboro RockfishGapOutfitters.com, 540-943-1461 AsfaPlasticSurgery.com, 540-432-0303 No stranger to being among the best, Dr. Asfa graduated in the top 1 percent of his medical school class and went on to be chief medical resident and chief plastic surgery fellow during his subsequent training. Highly trained in plastic and reconstructive procedures, he also provides a number of minimally- and non-invasive procedures from facelifts to body contouring. second place: Matthew Karen, M.D., Winchester ExclusivelyFaces.com, 540-667-3223 third place: Paul A. Lambert, M.D., Winchester HarrisonburgDermatology.com, 540-433-8700 After completing her dermatology residency training that the University of Arkansas, Dr. Alexiou opened her Harrisonburg practice in 2001. Trained in the latest treatments for diseases afflicting the skin, hair and nails through continuing education courses, Dr. Alexiou treats everything from acne to skin cancer. second place: Cynthia H. Dent, M.D., Waynesboro BlueRidgeDermatology.net, 540-949-6934 third place: Jane M. Lynch, M.D., Waynesboro BlueRidgeDermatology.net, 540-949-6934 Renew-You.net, 540-722-2280 Best Kitchen Designer Best Orthodontist Most Beloved Pediatrician Paul Borzelleca, Modernboy Woodshop 501 Middlebrook Ave., Staunton A.B. Hammond, D.D.S. 208 E. Washington St., Lexington George Sproul, M.D., F.A.A.P. 401 Commerce Road, Suite 421, Staunton ModernboyWoodshop.com, 540-849-0155 Paul Borzelleca is all about color. At Modernboy Woodshop, which does its own finishing, he can do things to cabinets others cannot. One of his favorites is painting cabinet interiors bright primary colors for a bit of surprise. “I think the sassy interiors put a smile on your face,” he says, and we agree. second place: Joanne Peretti, Fashion Floors & CMySmile.com, 540-463-7744 ValleyPedGroup.com, 540-885-8143 During his residency at Columbia University, Dr. Hammond not only trained in orthodontics, he was also involved in cleft lip and palate research and earned a master’s degree in functional anatomy. At his Lexington practice, Dr. Hammond perfects patients’ smiles using various treatments, from less painful, high-tech braces and retainers to Invisalign. second place: Frances M. Kray, D.D.S., Harrisonburg A Staunton native, Dr. Sproul returned to his hometown in 1977 to begin practicing. A parent, grandparent, and a pediatrician, he knows a thing or two about caring for kids. His practice at Valley Pediatric Groups takes care of parents too, offering prenatal visits and newborn care classes so newbies know what to expect. second place: Scott B. Dubit, M.D., Lexington RockbridgeHealth.com, 540-463-0951 third place: Robert C. Gunther, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.A.P., Fisherville UVAHealth.com, 540-932-0980 Cabinets, Lexington FashionFloorsAndCabinets.com, 540-464-1422 third place: Beth Young, A.S.I.D., Staunton 540-290-1929 KrayOrthodontics.com, 540-433-8814 third place: Stephen G. Alvis, D.D.S., Harrisonburg AlvisOrthodontics.com, 540-433-3790 B e s t o f V i r g i n i a 2 0 1 3 127 Really good pie begins on the farm... 126A COMMERCE ST 路 OCCOQUA N 路 703 497 7437 KEVIN PASCHUCK PHOTOGRAPHY 220 LOU D OU N ST SE 路 LEESBU RG 路 703 771 8590 MomsApplePieCo.com Paws Awhile Pet Motel www.PawsAwhilePetMotel.com â€˘ (540) 347-4855 A Wine & Food FestivAl tWo Hundred YeArs in tHe MAking August 30th - September 2nd © 2012 Robb Sharetg/sharetgpictures.com. All Rights Reserved. Courtesy Equinox Restaurant Picture a food and wine festival so unique that no existing name quite fit. A food and wine experience so epic, in fact, that we’re calling it something completely new: Epicurience. Held in the East Coast’s premier wine region, Loudoun, Virginia: DC’s Wine Country. It’s where insiders come to savor award-winning wines and seek out noteworthy farm-to-table cuisine. Taste the finest in Virginia wines, meet top tastemakers and master winemakers, prepared by celebrated chefs from around the country including renowned DC chef Todd Gray.