All the Bons Temps, Fine Dining in Fulton, and a Pizza Love Story


Starting tomorrow at Rapp Session, kick off a long weekend of Mardis Gras goodness, leading up to next week's Fat Tuesday celebration. According to Richmond Magazine, Rapp Session will offer 'bons temps'-themed menu items including oyster pie, red beans and rice, po' boys, muffaletta, and gumbo a-plenty. And yes, there will be king cakes, thanks to pastry chef Danielle Westbrook. Wash it all down with a Hurricane or a Sazerac, America's first cocktail and a New Orleans original.

Meanwhile at Whisk, pastry chefs Morgan Botwinick and Earl Vallery are preparing to sell Mardis Gras macarons, with green and gold shells holding a bourbon cinnamon filling, plus mini raspberry cream cheese king cakes, through the weekend. 

This Saturday, Dogtown Dance Theater will host their 6th annual Mardis Gras party and parade from 3:00 to 8:00 pm. Tickets include cajun catering by Sophia's International Cuisine and live performances, tarot-reading, and family-friendly activities. 

On Tuesday, bring your green, gold, and purple beads to Lady N'awlins their annual Fat Tuesday party from 2:00 pm to 2:00 am. 

And Kabana Rooftop is getting in on the party action with their own Fat Tuesday celebration, featuring Creole cooking, including jambalaya, cajun crab cakes, deep fried okra, and fried shrimp po'boy sliders from chef Jared. The event is free, but eventbrite registration is required.


Congratulations to all of the winners of this year's Elby awards. We are especially proud of the team at Nota Bene for bringing home the award for Best New Restaurant, as competition in that category was mighty steep. We were also totally stoked for our farmer friends, Brian and Autumn, of Tomten Farm, for taking home the award for Local Food Purveyor of the Year. They absolutely earned it by providing exceptional flavor-focused food to some of the best restaurants in the city. And extra big ups to David Shannon and his crew at L'Opossum. They nabbed the award for Best Chef and Best Restaurant. Check out the complete list of winners.


Speaking of Nota Bene, you can find me (hi, it's me, Stephanie!) there this Sunday for Pizza Club. The kitchen will be serving up a pizza based on my earliest memories of meeting Mr. Ganz. It's cute; it's lovey; it's LOADED WITH MUSHROOMS (sorry, Pete). The Hungarian Mushroom Soup from The Wildflour in my hometown of Roanoke, VA was the original inspiration for this pizza, which I made for the first time in 2010. Come eat my memories and drink my signature cocktail, which combines prosecco, sweet vermouth, and Campari to dizzyingly fizzy effect! 


This weekend, the Fulton Neighborhood Resource Center will host Amour Wine Bistro chef Paul Heitz for a pop-up from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. "The idea behind the pop ups is that, aside from Krispy's fried chicken, there are no restaurants in Fulton," says Food & Outreach Director Brandon Walton of the NRC. "We want to give Fulton residents the the opportunity to dine out every now in then with a meal that is professionally prepared and served for an affordable price." Admission is $6 for Fulton residents and $10 for everyone else. Walton says no other dates or chefs have been determined so far, but proceeds from this event will roll into the pop-up fund so the NRC can continue to provide this service to the community.


Eat and drink your sorrows away at the next Jackdaw Industry Night, this upcoming Monday, February 27th at Millie's. Chef Ian Merryman and crew will serve up an eclectic mix of snacky foods, inspired by their wildest dreams, including steamed buns, a bbq-esque sandwich, and chicken soup for the soulless. Rogue Gentlemen bartender Shaun Loughran will be pouring Fernet and clever cocktails like the 2-Fer (Pimm's No. 1, Gin, Rosé, Bubbles, Citrus, Cucumber, and Mint for $13) all night long.


Brunch starts at Laura Lee's on Sunday, March 5th at 10:30 am! BOOYAH BRUNCH OPTIONS!

SIP: The Barns at Hamilton Station Vineyards 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon

This past Tuesday, Virginia's wine community gathered at The Hotel John Marshall for the VWA'S Governor's Cup Gala. Governor Terry McAuliffe named The Barns at Hamilton Station Vineyard's 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon as the winner. 

In a press release, winemaker Michael Shaps said, "Our team is especially proud of this wine. It is a classic Virginia Cabernet Sauvignon. Perfectly balanced, and has mature tannins that are ripe but not overly extracted; and it has nice acidity.” Adding, “The fruit comes from mostly Carter’s Mountain with some additional fruit from Mount Juliet vineyards. Carter’s Mountain has southwest exposure, constant breezes, great drainage and a slightly cooler climate to retain nature acidity.” 


In a six-course meal of rockstar dishes at the Maiko pop-up this week, who could have guessed that a salad would stand out as the most memorable moment? Not me; my money would've been on the Mapo Nachos, and surely those won't be fading from my mind any time soon.

But this salad, with shredded cabbage, radish, and cucumber on a spicy, kaffir-scented peanut sauce, garnished with savory granola and bright, juicy chunks of pommelo, was such a smart answer to the Mapo Nacho first course that I've been thinking about it obsessively ever since. Please know that I will be adding savory granola to my diet asap. According to Maiko creator Mike Tam, more pop-ups are in the works, so stay tuned.


You like pizza and beer? This guy does too.

Stephanie GanzComment