Food News: Discovering the old and appreciating the new

Oh, it’s ramp-time, people. It’s ramp-time.


Southern Season will squeeze out its last few deals in Richmond as it plans to shutter its Libbie Mill location on April 24th. Its Cooking School and restaurant the Southerly ceased business as of this Monday, the day of the announcement.

The news came as a shock to no one more than Southern Season’s own employees, many of whom found out about the store’s closing at the same time as the rest of us. As one of the poor unfortunate souls who made her way through Southern Season yesterday in pursuit of the aforementioned deals, I can tell you, the opportunity to buy Veuve Cliquot and black summer truffles for 40% off their intended price brings out a crazy side in people. OK, me.

For displaced Southern Season employees, nearby Shagbark has rolled out a welcome mat. And both Mise en Place and Kitchen Thyme have opened their doors to chefs who were planning to deliver classes in Southern Season’s once pretty cool Cooking School.


If I had to sum up the taste of Richmond, it would be a combination of craft lager, pollen, bike lube, punk rock, and of course, pimento cheese. I’m not sure that’s exactly what the Richmond Times Dispatch has in mind when it came up with the Taste of Richmond event on April 28th, but I do know that Jason Alley’s pimento cheese will be a star of the menu.

The live cooking show and sampling extravaganza stars Alley as the headliner and includes bites from Lehja, Rappahannock, Mosaic, and Lucca Enoteca among others, plus samples of Virginia beer and wine for $50 per person.


The highly anticipated opening of The Veil Brewing Co. is this Saturday, April 16th starting at 11:00 AM. Richmond’s newest brewery opens its taps on the very same day as local pioneer Legend Brewery’s 22nd Anniversary. Beer stars align in the heavens! Take a drink! Take an Uber to both parties!

Stroops, ZZQ, and Boka Tako will be on-hand at the Veil to make sure we are both libated AND well-fed on Saturday and again on Sunday. Study up on all we have to look forward to at the Veil in this Richmond Magazine preview.


In “Big fish eat the little ones” news, Anheuser-Busch InBev announced on Tuesday that it will buy Virginia-based Devils Backbone and add it to its growing craft brewery menagerie. We’re looking at a Brewery-Borg situation here people, and I’m afraid to say that resistance may, in fact, be futile. (JK, that’s just a nerd joke. Resistance is totally possible! And Devils Backbone is still, in many ways, a local company, so maybe you shouldn’t even try to resist it.)


There’s a whole new pack of dogs at Stroops. One of them is vegetarian. One of them is fried chicken. One of them is a burger. Shit’s getting crazy over there at Stroops.


Thank you, Apple, for this.

SIP: The Limeade at Classics Sandwiches and Subs

My husband, Mr. Ganz, has been very enthusiastically recommending Classics Sandwiches and Subs the entire time we’ve been together, but it wasn’t until I saw the odd little modern building and very, you know, classic signage of the Williamsburg Road sandwich shop when I finally became interested. And by interested, I mean, obsessed.


I made my maiden Classics voyage last weekend, and while the Italian Sub and macaroni salad were quite lovely, I would go back at the drop of a hat for another 16 ounces of limeade perfection over…wait for it…PELLET ICE. And really, who doesn’t want to sip their limeade-over-pellet-ice while staring at 30 years of autographed pictures of beloved celebs including Garth Brooks, Jerry Seinfeld, and Coolio. No one because that is what we all want whether we realize it or not.


This time last year, ramps were my bite of the week, and they are back! You can find ramps hanging out on the menu at Dinamo (atop a white pizza), Acacia (grilled), Saison (pickled), and East Coast Provisions (emuslified). In fact, the Spring 2016 Restaurant Week menus are lousy with ramps! Metzger, Helen’s, Vagabond, Family Meal! It would be easier to tell you who doesn’t have ramps on the menu.

According to Stock Provisions co-owner Hunter Hopcroft, this was a pretty good season for the wild onion, so they’re popping up all over–at Stock as well as Little House Green Grocery and Yellow Umbrella. Stock plans to release their own “Ramp Tramp” sausage in the next few weeks, and believe me, it is a ramp experience for the true believer.

Once you’ve scored your own bushel of ramps, check out these recipes for treating them right.


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Stephanie Ganz

Stephanie Ganz thought there would be pizza.

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