Food News: GWARBar, Chicks and Waffles, and Richmond’s food truck folly

This week: GWARBar brings upscale junk food to Jackson Ward, drag queens take over Richmond CenterStage for the “Chicks and Waffles Brunch,” and Southern Living Magazine honors four Richmond restaurants in its “100 Best Restaurants in the South” list.

Southern Living Magazine named its “100 Best Restaurants in the South” in the latest issue, and four local favorites made the cut. Comfort, located in the Arts District, The Fan’s Heritage, Peter Chang China Café in Short Pump, and The Roosevelt in Church Hill were all given top honors. Check out the full list on the magazine’s website.

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GWARBar, the forthcoming restaurant and bar from Richmond heavy metal heavyweights GWAR, will open next month at 217 West Clay Street in Jackson Ward. The venture includes GWAR band members, along with Travis Croxton of Grace Street restaurant Rappahannock and building owner Jonathan Staples. GWARBar’s menu promises to be just as unique as the band itself. GWAR guitarist Mike Derks told Richmond BizSense in a recent interview you can expect “junk food-style fare with better ingredients. That may include house-made hot dogs and GWAR’s own take on Doritos, Twinkies, and SpaghettiOs.” Speaking of, the 5th annual GWAR-B-Q, honoring late GWAR frontman David Brockie, takes place this weekend at Hadad’s Lake. Check it out here.

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Not to be confused with the very similarly-named GWAR-B-Q mentioned above, RVA BrewBQ takes place this Saturday at the 17th Street Farmers’ Market. Expect pigs and brews-a-plenty from 12:00-5:00 PM in Shockoe Bottom. Check out the beer lineup here.

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Move over, Godfrey’s! There’s another drag brunch game in town. Well, for one weekend at least. “Chicks And Waffles Drag Brunch” comes to the Carpenter Theatre at Richmond CenterStage Sunday, August 31st at 10:30 AM. According to organizers, the buffet-style brunch will feature Cajun chicken and waffles, scrambled eggs, fresh fruit, bacon, and sausage links. Patrons will be seated at tables on the stage of Carpenter Theatre. Tickets are $30 and include brunch, one beverage, and the show. Performers include Ellia J. Garlands, Michelle Livigne, Millenium Snow, Monica Duvall Ferrah, and Vivienne Hardwood. To purchase tickets, call 804.592.3339.

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Redskins Training Camp wrapped this week, and it doesn’t appear that the six food trucks, which were allowed to operate near the facility after throwing down a whopping $2,500 fee for the privilege, saw much business at all. What went wrong? Was it the location (local trucks weren’t allowed on the property, but rather, relegated to Leigh Street)? Was it the fact that national chains associated with the Redskins brand were closer to fans inside the facility? Opinions are varied. Mayor Dwight Jones’s press secretary Tammy Hawley says only, “Whether this model fits the event is something we will all have to access and analyze when the event closes out to determine how we move forward.”

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Mac McCormack, owner of McCormack’s Whisky Grill, and the forthcoming (much larger) McCormack’s Big Whisky Grill at Regency Square Mall in the West End, has picked up a noted executive chef. Philip Denny, former chef at Aziza’s on Main and Six Burner, came on board this week. Due to the massive size of the 600-person dining room, McCormack is still looking for a co-executive chef to work alongside Denny. “I am really excited to work with Mac and his team,” Denny told “His vision for The Whisky was a big factor [in my decision to go there], as was his energy and passion for the project.” The restaurant is slated to open this fall.

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Starr Hill Brewery and Hardywood Park Craft Brewery are teaming up for a collaboration beer brewed specially for Richmond’s Fall Line Fest, taking place September 5th and 6th. This unique brew was named by local fan Page Hayes in a contest run on Starr Hill’s Facebook page. The “Fall Line Fest Amped Up Ale” is a Farmhouse ale, dry-hopped with Sorachi Ace and Mandarina Bavaria hops and spiced with fresh ginger. It will debut next week in Starr Hill’s taproom in Crozet and be available for purchase at the weekend-long music festival.

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Tickets for this year’s Richmond Folk Feast go up tomorrow! The event is a special night of food and drink featuring some of the city’s biggest culinary stars and restaurants, with all proceeds benefitting the Richmond Folk Festival, celebrating its 10th year. 17 chefs from 16 local restaurants will converge on Historic Tredegar on the riverfront October 7th to show off their culinary creations, with all proceeds benefiting the Richmond Folk Festival. You still have a day to snag your tickets for $75 apiece before the price increases to $100 on Friday.

Photo: The Roosevelt

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Trevor Dickerson

Trevor Dickerson loves all things Richmond and manages RVANews’ West of the Boulevard and West End community sites.

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