2012 Best Dishes. (Part 2)
Like I said yesterday, 2012 wasn’t about which restaurants were best, but the DISHES I ate that were memorable. Here are numbers 9-7. Cheers and congratulations to all the winners! Charlottesville is cooking up some grand food these days…
9. Taco Truck Tacos. No, I’m not talking about the ones at the Saturday Farmer’s Market. Have you seen the food trucks on the corner of Hydraulic and 29N that magically appear every evening? Carne asada, al pastore, chorizo HEAVEN. Served up with onions, lime, cilantro, green or red salsa on the side. For 2 bucks. Yep, 2 bucks a piece. I get at least 3 and inhale them before I’ve made it back to my car. They’re that good.
8. Fried Chicken. Back in July I had the good fortune to judge a fried chicken contest for C-Ville Weekly with Chef Harrison Keevil of Brookville (Congrats on the new baby dude!) and Joel Sleasak of Free Union Grass Farm. We all agreed on the winner (Michie Tavern), but personally? There was one bird I couldn’t stop eating. The Chicken Coop in Lovingston HAS to get a mention because their chicken had a green, herbal-like flavor throughout the breading I couldn’t place. In any case this crunchy on the outside, tender inside drumstick kept me going back for more tastes even after the judging was done. It was the only leg I stripped clean. Some seriously good chicken I craved long after judging was finished.
7. Ossobuco. Just saying the words gets me drooling. It rolls off the tongue and snuggles you close like a warm, fleece cuddy banky. Much like the food does to your tummy on a cold winter’s night. Veal shanks are slow-braised until they’re falling off the bone and served with sweet roasted root vegetables. Comfort food porn. You can’t make just a little of it. And the one I had at The Ivy Inn this year prepared by Chef Angelo Vangelopoulos is some of the best I’ve had anywhere. We took the leftovers home and ate on it with adoring love for the next two days! Do yourself a favor. If he has this on the menu, order it.
Stay tuned….we venture into my Top 6 tomorrow :D