There's more ZZQ in your future. A lot more. (Photo by: Stephanie Breijo)
What a week in food news! Between openings, closures, makin' moves and servin' 'cue, it seems like everyone had something to announce this week. Fortunately, we've got this handy roundup to keep it all straight, and keep your stomach grumblin':
- First off, we've got some deets on ZZQ's new format, its upcoming pop-up series and the forthcoming restaurant. (Whew!) Starting April 30, you can find RVA's favorite barbecue pop-up slingin' brisket, ribs, pulled pork and a slew o' sides at Ardent Craft Ales every single Saturday until Thanksgiving, from noon until the food runs out. Also, say hello to an authentic Texas barbecue tradition; the husband-and-wife team will now begin serving its barbecue on butcher paper with pickles and a few slices of white bread, and charging by the pound for all its meat. (Except for those new sausage links.) You can also expect this format in ZZQ's restaurant, which the duo hopes to open in 2017. Want more info? We've got your back. (We've also spent a day at the ZZQ smoker, if you'd like to know how all that meaty magic happens.)
- More in Scott's Addition news: King of Pops is launching a new sandwich concept next Wednesday at the 3001 W. Clay St. spot, and it includes five sandwiches inspired by the seasonality and creative flavor combinations you'll find in the brand's pops. The Reign will offer sammiches such as smoked ham, cheese, pepper jelly, arugula, tomato and red onion, as well as smoked turkey, chive cream cheese and golden raisins, all between Billy Bread and $6 and $9. Should the sandwich menu become a success, it's possible The Reign will get its own storefront in the future. More, right this way. (Richmond magazine)
- When you need spaaace and throw events that need mooore seats you can al-ways go.... down-town! Shockoe Slip staple La Grotta just announced its upcoming move to the Hilton Richmond Downtown due to a need for a larger events space. The Northern Italian restaurant anchored the Slip for more than 20 years, opening at 1218 E. Cary St. in 1994. La Grotta's final day in Shockoe is July 2; the restaurant's owners expect to open in the former Miller & Rhoads building in early August. (Richmond magazine)
- More moves: VCU-area Mama's Kitchen closed last Saturday, and will move to 9 N. Fourth St. downtown and rebrand as K-Town Kitchen and Bar sometime in early May. Expect a full-service incarnation of Mama's, complete with full bar and happy hour specials. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
- And upscale burger chain Burger Bach is expanding in two new directions this summer, opening a restaurant in Midlothian at 101 Heaths Way Drive and in Charlottesville at 2050 Bond St. (Richmond BizSense)
- In some sadder news, Shoryuken Ramen is shuttering its restaurant at 900 W. Franklin St. on Saturday, May 14. The ramen team cited the lease's end as the reason for the closure. According to chef and partner Will Richardson, there's more to come — we haven't seen the last of Shoryuken, but we'll all have to stay tuned to find out exactly what's next. (Richmond magazine)
- In terms of recent openings, Early Bird Biscuit Co. welcomed guests to its new Fan location on Tuesday morning! After a successful soft opening last Saturday, this week Tim Laxton and co. threw open the door to the little spot of sunshine located at 119 A. N. Robinson St. Want more info on the move? Check it out. P.S. Sunday hours coming in May. Spread the word. (Richmond magazine)
- And we now have an opening date for The Veil Brewing Co., the new, roughly 15,000-square-foot brewery opening in Scott's Addition at 1301 Roseneath Road. Stop by on Saturday, April 16, for a grand opening party that starts at 11 a.m. and includes Stroops, ZZQ, beer, merch and more. (Richmond magazine)
- MORE BEER: Whole Foods in Short Pump is opening its expanded "in-store pub" tomorrow, which will offer 48 taps, happy hour specials, chef's specials, kombucha flights, and beer and wine by the glass and the bottle. And from 4 to 6 p.m. tomorrow, reps from Lickinghole Creek Craft Brewery, Hardywood Park Craft Brewery, Stone Brewing Co. and Old Bust Head Brewing Co. will be there talkin' beer and pourin' samples. (news release)
- Happy anniversary to Mosaic Cafe & Catering, which turns 20 tomorrow! To celebrate, the company is participating in new volunteer and community initiatives, as well as bringing back some of its most popular dishes from the past two decades. "I never get tired of hearing someone ask for a menu item or recall a favorite special that they enjoyed with their family many years ago," owner Steven Niketas says in a news release.
- Lastly, our polls are now open for Richmond magazine's 29th annual Best & Worst awards! There are a ton of great categories where you can weigh in on your local faves, but when it comes to dining, you'll find some fun new ones scattered throughout, such as "neighborhood in most need of a grocery store" and "best cocktail menu." Polls are open until May 4. Come on in, the water's fine.
Ready for the weekend? GOOD, COOL, COOL.
- Start your weekend early at Barrel Thief tonight, where you'll find a $15 pinot noir tasting from 5 to 8 p.m. (Remember how these guys just won the Elby for best wine program? Go check 'em out.) (Barrel Thief Wine Shop & Cafe)
- Then at 7 p.m., Sweet Fix hosts its first ever Dessert Series event at the Branch Museum of Architecture & Design. One $65 ticket gets you a four-course architecturally inspired dessert menu with wine pairings and entry into The Branch House. (Sweet Fix)
- Tomorrow, head out to Virginia Distillery Co. for its inaugural First Fridays event, complete with live music and specialty cocktails! Fun runs from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Virginia Distillery Co.)
And now for a few (inter)national links:
- Restaurateur / ramen celebrity / food-media mogul David Chang recently and briefly weighed in on a few of the most pressing issues in food today, from cost margins to fast-casual conception. Worth a quick read. (GQ)
- File under: IT'S FINALLY HERE! The "Bob's Burgers" cookbook is full of those delightfully lame daily-special chalkboard puns and it is now hitting shelves and I personally can't wait to try my hand at an If Looks Could Kale burger. (Laughing Squid)
- Over in L.A., iconic local chain Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles is in some trouble: The restaurant's parent company just filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, but don't worry, guys, because Snoop Dogg wants to buy it. (Yessssss.) (Foodbeast)
'Til next time, waffle like it's hottttttttt, waffle like it's hotttttt, waffle like it's hotttttttt.