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Richmond Food News: Week of April 4-8

Love at First Babka

Long Island native Claudia Strobing, a former master cake decorator and current bakery owner in Carytown, is days away from opening her namesake store. Serving babka, rugelach, croissants and Million-dollar Cookies, Claudia’s Bakery —which is certified kosher dairy—brings the spirit of a New York bakery to Cary Street. (Richmond Magazine)

fresh beans

Usually when a group of college students get together, one can assume that a bit of a ruckus will ensue. But at the University of Richmond, a team of 16 budding entrepreneurs recently developed a nut-free alternative to granola as part of their curriculum. Now its crispy bean-based product, called Absurd Appetizers, is gracing store shelves at Good Foods Grocery, Lombardy Market and more local stores. (Richmond Magazine)

what mushrooms

Johnny Cerra can remember exactly the first time he learned about growing mushrooms. It was in 2006, during an episode of “Dirty Jobs” starring Mike Rowe, and he has been fascinated with mycelium and fungi ever since. Along with his wife Megan, the duo operate watermelon farms and supply everything from prized oyster mushrooms to arugula to various area restaurants. (Richmond Magazine)

fresh on the scene

based in norfolk Table Brewing has started serving pints at its new RVA tavern, with a grand opening event this weekend. Part of The Current mixed-use development, which is also home to the Hatch Local food hall, the outpost is located at 434 Hull St. PS: Hot dogs are having a moment with their in-house kitchen concept, Silly Thoughts, which gets creative franks (Press release)

The family behind Mom’s Siam, Mom Siam 2, Yaya’s Cookbook, Pik Nik and My Noodle Bar, Sukanya Pala-art and her sons Joe and Sonny Kiatsuranon, have added another restaurant to their growing empire. Described as a combination of all family restaurants and a tropically outfitted place to watch a game, MPM Tiki and Sports Bar is now open at 11275 W. Broad St. (Press release)

ICYMI

Fans of gluten-free cupcakes and lovers of rustic breads and artistic cake creations, get ready to eat. We recently took a big bite out of the Richmond Bakery Scene in a function that celebrates all the sweet and savory candy stores in the region. (Richmond Magazine)

Check out Walmart’s frozen section for a local favorite the next time you visit. Mini snack-sized versions of Nightingale Ice Cream Sandwiches, also known as Chomp, are now available in hundreds of stores along the East Coast, while their OG sammies are available at every Fresh Market in the country. (Richmond Magazine)

Add a little freshness to your garden party with herbs ranging from basil to mint to brighten alcoholic beverages. Do spring cocktails at home with recipes from bartenders at JewFro, Kuba Kuba Dos, Gersi and The Boathouse. (Richmond Magazine)

Anchovies. Breadcrumbs. anchovy breadcrumbs. Get crafty in the kitchen with a remix of canned fish from Second Bottle Wine & Snack Shop owner Erin Keene. (Richmond Magazine)

Richmond Restaurant Week, one of the most anticipated and celebrated food traditions in the city, returns from April 18 to 22. This time, the 22nd annual event will return to its roots. Diners can expect three-course prix fixe menus for $35 at all participating restaurants, with $5 from each meal benefiting the hunger-relief charity Feed More.

Alcoholic drinks to go last a little longer. Earlier this week, Governor Glenn Youngkin extended a bill on takeout rules for portable sips through July 2024. (Press release)

Richmond Bakers Against Racism is hosting a Spring Bake Sale on Saturday, April 9 at Church Hill’s Pizza Bones. From 11 am to 1 pm, grab some seasonal treats from area home and professional bakers to benefit ReEstablish Richmond, a nonprofit organization whose goal is to connect refugees and new immigrants with the resources they need to establish roots.

After weeks of rounds of March Madness, Strawberry Street’s Scoop ice cream parlor has revealed the winner of its flavor tournament. Keep an eye out for the baklava, along with a dairy-free sticky rice and mango, appearing in the freezer in the coming months.

Speaking of ice cream, based in Roanoke blue cow — also with an outpost in Fredericksburg — will soon be added to the region’s portfolio of cool vendors. Owned by a husband and wife team, the duo plans to open their doors in June at 7017 Three Chopt Road. (Richmond BizSense)

Longoven announced his second ongoing event, two year dinner series for the benefit of the Richmond Public Schools. On April 19, Laine Myers from Oro will join the Longoven kitchen team for a family-style potluck to benefit Fairfield Court Elementary, with Tickets on sale now.

VCU held a course fair this week and welcomed a handful of new classes to the curriculum, including one right up my alley: food writing. English 491’s offering dives into the strategies and techniques of food writers and storytelling related to food and travel. As a student of Ram’s, I am jealous that this did not exist when he attended school.

Upcoming events

  • Girl Scout Cookie Desserts – Per SliceLark Baking Co. (April 8): Mechanicsville Bakery features a menu of Samoan-inspired pastries, Thin Mints, Tagalongs and more.
  • Home Zaz Pop-up2845 Hathaway Road (April 8): The inaugural appearance of the Haitian and Caribbean-inspired pop-up
  • ode to bluegrassHardywood Park Craft Brewery West Creek (April 9) – A free all-day music event in conjunction with the launch of Peach Tripel
  • Wine tastingPizza Bones (April 9): Nicknamed the Friend Bar, stop by on Saturday night to uncork bottles of Natural Wines and Plant Wines.
  • Richmond Night Market17th Street Farmers Market (April 9): The monthly market returns to Shockoe Bottom.
  • Homegrown mushroom workshopHomegrown VA (April 10): Learn how to grow blue oyster mushrooms at home during this interactive class.
  • Craft MarketMain Line Brewery (April 10): Shop local vendors during the outdoor market.
  • Emerging Gold: FlowerCelladora Wines (April 10): An intimate four-course dining experience just scraps from the pasta-focused concept
  • April Drag BrunchJewFro (April 10): Bring out singles for this brunch event.
  • Spring Fling Sidewalk SaleStudio Two Three (April 12): Big sale and grand reopening event with $1-$5 containers, drinks, coffee, and a My Empanada performance.
  • Falafel and SkewersPublix Aprons Cooking School (April 12): A hands-on cooking class that explores Middle Eastern dishes

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