Food News: Strawberries, shellfish, Shoryuken, and a shload of food-related activities

Also, the “shakerato,” which sounds a whole lot like “sharknado.”

Strawberries

THE VIRTUE OF SHELLFISHNESS

Not satisfied with merely reclaiming the rightful oyster aquaculture of the Chesapeake Bay, the folks Rapphannock River Oysters have begun reintroducing the bay scallop to the water. The Washington Post takes a look at the idea and its challenges, early adopters in the restaurant industry, and how we may soon be slurping a scallop that looks like, “an oyster on the half shell that dressed up for a Goth convention.”

In related news, at an Earth Day reception last Friday, the Executive Mansion was awarded a Virginia Green Certification for their environmentally friendly practices. Part of that award includes the mansion’s partnership with the Virginia Oyster Shell Recycling Program, which has partnered with the mansion for the past two years to recycle oyster shells from their events.

WHAT’S NEXT, SHORYUKEN?

Shoryuken Ramen’s path in Richmond has been an unconventional one. A well-attended series of pop-ups at Lunch lead to a popular brick-and-mortar spot and new business partners. But when the team somewhat cryptically announced that the 900 W. Franklin St location would close in mid-May, it sent shockwaves through ramen lovers around the city. It just didn’t seem to make sense.

Under the leadership of Sarah Choi, the staff at Shoryuken marches toward their final bowl, to be served on May 14th. Meanwhile, Will Richardson, largely assumed to be the driving force behind the ramen shop, is looking toward his next project.

Mondays in June, Richardson will introduce a new series of pop-ups (back at Lunch) called Shoryuken Naam, tying together Richardson’s southern upbringing and Chinese heritage, with part of the proceeds benefitting the Southern Foodways Alliance.

Meanwhile the rest of the ramen ninjas will be heading on to new jobs, thanks to efforts made by Choi and partners Jessica and Josh Bufford, while waiting for the giant ramen signal to once again shine in the night sky.

YOU GO AND SAVE THE WEST FOR LAST

Hardywood is pulling a Lewis and Clark and heading West, with a new brewery and taproom in Charlottesville set to open this fall. Richmond Magazine has the details on the Uncommon concept–how big, how much, and how soon.

COME WHAT MAY

Cinco de Mayo! Mothers Day! Graduation! May is BIZZY with a capital BONE. I’m not even going to attempt to cover Mothers Day in this blurb. Rather, here are my Activity Picks for the first two weeks of the month. I’ll check back to make sure you survived these before tackling the rest of the month.

Sunday, May 1st, 2:00 – 4:00 PM Chocolate and Coffee Tasting at Perk! with Chocolates by Kelly and Ironclad Coffee Roasters

$5 per person or free with a $10 in-store purchase. (So, just to be clear, you could get a latte and a couple spanakopita handpies, and you will have earned a free ticket to this tasting. That’s economics, people!)

May 5th, Cinco de Mayo at Isley Brewing Company

Don your sombreros, drink beer with lime, eat tacos. Repeat as necessary.

Saturday, May 7th, Rogue Gentleman’s Third Annual Kentucky Derby Party

There will be cocktails and funny hats, and apparently also some kind of dog race or something. Mint juleps on draft!

Saturday, May 14th, Pickled & Fermented

If it’s naturally funky, chances are it will be represented here at Richmond’s first-ever celebration/competition for all the pickly, fermenty things one can imagine. That means everything from pickled peppers to kombucha to sourdough bread.

Sunday, May 15th, An Evening with Peter Chang

In terms of people I’d like to share an evening with, Peter Chang is pretty high up on the list. And soon my dreams can finally come true when the man behind Full Disclosure, Roben Farzad, will bring Chang to the Hippodrome for a night of culinary contemplation and five Chang-picked courses for $75 per person.

Sunday, May 15th, 12:00 – 4:00 PM, Slow Food RVA’s Graze

Celebrate sustainability at VCU’s Rice Rivers Center, with Travis Milton, Rapphannock River Oyster’s Patrick Oliver, soft shell crabs from Yellow Umbrella, and of course, beer and wine. This event combines sustainably-sourced food with thoughtful education thanks to speakers like Slow Food RVA’s John Haddad, Todd Janeski of the Virginia Oyster Shell Recycling Program, and sturgeon restoration expert Matt Balizik.

And the crazy thing is that April’s not even over yet! Say good-bye in grand form this weekend at Metzger’s Maifest and Saison’s Spring Fling.

FROM ELSEWHERE…

Now seems like a good time for Beyoncé’s lemonade recipe.

Congrats to the 2016 James Beard Foundation’s Book, Broadcast, and Journalism Winners!

SIP: SHAKERATO

What do you do when you crave the flavor and intensity of a shot of espresso but can’t bear to imagine consuming a hot drink on a hot day? ICE THAT SHIT. Specifically, shake it for fifteen seconds or so in a cocktail shaker with simple syrup and ice until the espresso takes on a velvety foam and wee little ice granules.

The shakerato reminds me of a ice-cold shot of Patrón XO (ugh, I just imagined a warm shot of Patron XO and almost barfed!) and gives me diabolical ideas about a double shot of pure trouble. I’ll keep you posted on how that plays out.

In the meantime, you can find shakeratos (or “Iced Shorties” as they call them at Lamplighter) at Saison Market, off and on as part of Alchemy’s Coffee Elixirs menu, and at the Morris Street Lamplighter with milk and vanilla syrup.

BITE: STRAWBERRIES

The first of the strawberries are starting to appear! Whether you get them at the farmers market or pick your own from places like Gallmeyer Farm, Mt. Olympus Berry Farm, or Chesterfield Berry Farm, you’d better start picking soon–the strawberry window always seems to slam closed faster than it should, and grocery store berries just don’t compare to these peak-season beauties.

GRAM: @RELAYFOODS

Guys! Home delivery subscriptions are now available for a mere $19 a month. It used to be $30! Kick back, relax, and let somebody else worry about carrying all the grocery bags on one arm while the other arm remains mysteriously free.

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Stephanie Ganz

Stephanie Ganz thought there would be pizza.

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