Actual up-to-date news that is not a year-end retrospective! But then also a year-end retrospective!
THAT’S MR. TUXEDO T-SHIRT TO YOU
Did you forget to make NYE reservations? Dude, you had ONE JOB. Quick, before you get busted by your date for being totally inept, peruse this list Five Totally Solid Places to Eat Dinner on New Year’s Eve, and then call and beg your way to a reservation. (And tell me this: is your life just, like, one continuous episode of an NBC sitcom? It sounds like probably yes.)
CLINCHER: At $45/person, this three-course dinner is super affordable if you’re not a big boozer and still pretty affordable if you, in fact, are.
CLINCHER: This party comes with near-guaranteed dancing, thanks to DJ Big Chair, who starts spinning at 11:00 PM.
CLINCHER: You’ll be in close proximity to ice-cold, just-shucked oysters and sweet, briny caviar–the way you are supposed to welcome a new year.
CLINCHER: Personal pecan pie for dessert!
CLINCHER: After dinner, you’ll find yourself in a shiny, sparkly hotel, an ideal place to be when the clock strikes twelve!
And, in the sage words of Karri Peifer, “every restaurant that serves dinner is serving dinner on New Year’s Eve.” Odds of getting a table seem better now!
You’ll also want to reference Bird Cox’s Choose Your Own Adventure guide in Richmond Magazine. Be you fierce or fancy, she’s got dinner-and-activity options waiting for you, but, for the love of God, act fast, people.
Or, we can just all go to Susan’s house and watch Making a Murderer while eating $10 ice cream. PJs encouraged, whoever falls asleep first wins!
Style Weekly’s Brandon Fox sat down with Claire Hollingsworth, 10, and Emily Waters, 11 to talk about their upcoming appearance on The Food Network’s Chopped Junior. The episode airs Tuesday, January 5th on Food Network. According to the promo, “In the entree round, there’s a super-sour basket ingredient, and for dessert, a punny snack that might make them crabby!” Sounds awesome.
Hollingsworth and Waters will be at Steward School that night for a viewing party, cooking competition, and a donation to FeedMore on January 5th starting at 6:00 PM.
Perhaps more important than where you actually ring in the new year, I would argue, is the first place where you finally right yourself the next day, after a night of excess, over the predictable comforts of eggs, butter, and more booze. Comfort is opening up for a special New Year’s Day Brunch, as are 821, Tio Pablo, and of course, Millie’s Diner.
A BUCKET AND A BREWSKY
If your New Year’s hangover is so epic that it lasts for two days, the only remedy I can suggest in good faith is a bucket of fried chicken and a beer. Lucky for all of us, at noon on Saturday, January 2nd, new RVA food truck Mean Bird will grandly open her wings from the nest that is Ardent Craft Ale.
Crunch your beautifully-fried chicken or vegan fried chicken and sip contemplatively on Ardent’s just-released Rye Kolsch. You’ve got a whole long year ahead of you and only a few foggy memories of the last 48 hours.
YOU HEARD IT HERE FIRST…AND ALSO SECOND
I’m not one to dwell on 2015 or to predict the trends of the coming year, but I do love a good superlative, and so here is my number one “From Elsewhere…” read, plus the best Sips, Bites, and ‘Grams of 2015. Thanks for being good readers with only a few mostly positive comments. Great audience! As always, send me your food-related announcements and let me know if there’s something you’d like to see in the ol’ Food News next year!
SIP OF THE YEAR: SAISON MARKET’S BARREL-AGED NITRO (from January 15th)
“This one barrel has seen a lot of liquids. First there was Reservoir whiskey, aging to perfection, then Hardywood took a turn and put their beer in it. Now the crazy geniuses at Saison Market have put Lamplighter cold brew in the barrel, and they plan to tap it for consumption this very weekend before giving the barrel back to Hardywood for MORE DELICIOUS BEVERAGE CYCLE.”
BITE OF THE YEAR: LAMB HAM(B) (from April 2nd)
“Sam Edwards and Craig Rogers have joined forces, like superheroes, to resurrect lamb ham, just in time for Easter.”
GRAM: @CHEFJACQUESLAMERDE (from March 26th)
This is the first and only person I’ve ever met and befriended thanks to Instagram, and I’m all-the-way tickled about it. SOIGNÉ!