Rappahannock's back in business tonight with $1 oysters. (Photo by Stephanie Breijo)
Greetings! This week RVAdine's all about oysters, new restaurants, new supermarkets, booze delivered to your door and so much more. Plus, we've got so many great ways to eat, drink and give back to the community all at once:
- Who's ready for Rappahannock? A March 5 fire couldn't extinguish the downtown seafood restaurant, which reopens tonight with $1 oysters in celebration of the big return. They open at 3 p.m. over the weekend, and resume regular weekday lunch hours starting Monday. Rapp Session, the sibling concept next door, reopened only a few days after the fire, but is offering some new items to get in on the fun: Expect more than pastries and coffee now that this oyster saloon serves freshly launched breakfast items, plus a new focus on grab-and-go food. We've got more information about the new menu, the fire and the festivities, right this way.
- Up in Church Hill, keep an eye on the double lot at East Marshall Street and Chimborazo Boulevard, where chef Jessica Wilson hopes to open a farm-to-table restaurant, GRACE. Wilson's business plan will utilize an on-site garden, which would also function as a community market. (Church Hill People's News)
- Whether it's Ukrop's closure (and recent return), the onslaught of Aldi, the latest on Lidl, the forthcoming Publix, the enormity of Wegmans, the West Broad Whole Foods, or the online ordering at Kroger, it feels nearly impossible to keep track of our region's supermarket news. Fortunately, in our spring/summer issue of Dine, we published "Store Wars," a look at the ever-changing market landscape, plus what to expect from these competing grocery stores and when. So whether you're looking for an in-store event-planning team or a new pair of jeans as you make your weekly trip to stock the pantry, you'll know where to find them.
- Related: Amazon continues to up its game with even more online-ordering incentives here in Richmond. This week, the latest comes by way of booze news: You can now order alcohol through Amazon Prime's delivery service, Prime Now, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., daily. "The company adds hundreds of alcohol-related products to its inventory from popular name brands such as Chandon, Barefoot Wine and Bud Light as well as local favorites like Stone Brewing, Hardywood and Devils Backbone Brewing Company," reads a news release. "Customers in Richmond are already loving the [delivery] service." Get your beer and wine within one hour for an additional fee of $7.99, or get it within two hours for zero delivery charge.
- In expansions news, Greek on Cary is movin' on up — or over, as the case may be. The Carytown restaurant just leased the space next door, with plans to add more seating as well as a bar. Look for the new 80+ seats and accommodations around the first week of May. (Richmond BizSense)
- In more expansion news, The Luncheonette's new North Side location is now open at 10 E. Brookland Park Blvd. Read more about the new diner digs right over here. (Richmond magazine)
- An excited congratulations to the South of the James Market, which turns 10 next month! This weekly event has become so much more than a Saturday stroll through the region's local vendors: It's a community gathering place, an education center, an access point to fresh produce and artisan goods, and a way to support our area's farmers. Here, we spend a Saturday and chat with some of the market's longstanding purveyors and makers, from Bonnyclabber Cheese's Cole Sullivan — who's been selling there for nine of these 10 years — to Appomattox's Paige Craft of Just Bee Kind, who drives four hours round-trip every week just to be there. (Richmond magazine)
- Are you in the club? Due to the amount of secrecy that surrounds Richmond's private social, sports and dining clubs, the answer is probably not. Come with us as we take a look at some of the city's most popular and long-lived social clubs and the quality food therein, including but not limited to: luau-themed dinners, private herb gardens, duck confit tacos. (Richmond magazine)
- Looking to downtown, there's late-night, creative cocktails and Mexican-Asian fusion fare to be found at Wong Gonzalez. Our review is online now!
- And in Oops news, Scott's Addition restaurant Lunch/Supper believed someone had stolen a "Habst to be Pabst" painted pig sculpture, which is to be auctioned off during Saturday's Lunch/Supper block party (see events, below). The alleged thievery was especially heinous given that the pig's proceeds will benefit The Ronald McDonald House. Thankfully, according to Lunch/Supper's Facebook page, the sculpture was not, in fact, stolen, and was simply in the shop, receiving a coat of sealant before Saturday's big event. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Ready for the weekend? It's here and full of great events to fill you:
- Saturday, Saturday, Saturday, it's time for another Brunch Market at Lunch/Supper's Urban Roost event space, and you know what that means: so much brunch, so many brunch-appropriate beverages, so many vendors — NOW IN BLOCK-PARTY FORM. The monthly brunch-and-shopping extravaganza is teaming up with The Big Pig Project, which benefits The Ronald McDonald House. Find local vendors, live music, barbecue, brunch, an auction and more at 1213 Summit Ave. from noon to 6 p.m. $5 suggested donation. (The Brunch Market)
- Then get shellfish this Saturday for a great cause at a crab cake festival benefiting the Children's Miracle Network, which raises funds for children's hospitals and medical expenses. A portion of the proceeds from your crab cake sandwich and/or lobster roll will help the cause, so stop on by 3120 Polo Parkway in Midlothian from noon to 7 p.m. (Charm City Crab Cakes)
- Sunday, Sunday, Sunday, it's finally here: Mike Ledesma is bringing his family recipes to a Filipino pop-up dinner near all of us, in a secret outdoor location (you'll be notified once you secure your tickets). The first Passport Pop-Up event takes place that evening, starting with a cocktail hour at 4 p.m. and progressing to a full spread featuring lumpia, embutido (Filipino pâté), lechon (crispy-skinned pork), garlic fried rice, kare kare (oxtail stew), chicken adobo, New York strip with lemons and onions, a seafood sinigang (stew with salmon and tamarind), flan, halo halo (layers of evaporated milk, sweet beans and crushed ice) and so much more. A handful of tickets remain, so get 'em here. Find them for $100 per person, or $180 for two.
- Then on Monday, head to Carytown for another installment of Garden Grove's Taproom Dinner series, and this time, Laura Lee's Scott Lewis is in the kitchen! Five courses, five beers, all from 7 to 10 p.m., for $39 plus tax 'n' tip. Score. Get your tickets here.
- Looking ahead to next Thursday morning, stop by Ironclad Coffee Roasters in Scott's Addition for fresh coffee and cinnamon rolls, and 100 percent of your dollars will benefit Building a Better RPS at this month's installment of LoveRVA Mornings. Start your morning with warm goods, and a warm feeling inside: win-win! 7:30 to 10:30 a.m. (Ironclad Coffee Roasters)
And now for a few (inter)national links:
- A food-for-thought feature for you: Here, how the border tax and immigration crackdown hurts one of Texas' most beloved tamale shops — and U.S.-Mexico border towns — economically, culturally and culinarily. (Eater)
- HACK YOUR COOKING: Here are a few great tips to trim your kitchen time, make fluffier rice, clean shrimp quickly, get the perfect deviled egg and more. See also: no more onion tears. (Bon Appetit)
Till next time, I'm not crying, I've just been cuttin' onions, I'm makin' a lasagnaaaaa ... for one.