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The Ashby Inn, Paris, Virginia - Neal and Star Wavra Have Departed As Innkeepers, Chef David Dunlap Replaces Tarver King

Paris Inn Modern American Built in 1829 Wines Farm to Table Local and Seasonal Bed and Breakfast Separate 4-Room Inn for Let Patio

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#101 LauraB

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 01:39 PM

The Ashby Inn just posted on their FB page that Neal and Star Wavra are leaving the Ashby. There was no mention of where they're going. This is a huge loss -- Neal is a fantastic GM and Sommelier and they are both lovely people. They will be greatly missed. Wishing them well wherever their path takes them.

#102 Joe H

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 09:57 PM

From their Facebook page:

 

Dear Guests, Friends, and Colleagues,

After four plus years at the Ashby, our time has come to an end. We remain committed to all of you and regret not having the opportunity to say goodbye in person. Know you have our sincerest gratitude for the many wonderful experiences we shared and the memories we will cherish. We look forward to what the future may hold and hope it includes connecting with all of you again soon. 

Fondly,

Neal & Star



#103 Joe H

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 10:09 PM

I cannot tell you how much we loved the Ashby Inn.  Because of Neal.  Just an incredible loss:  this was a Great restaurant and a Great Inn.  And, for me, he was the primary reason. He drove it, he made it, he made our nights when we visited.  He was also a huge champion of the Virginia countryside and Virginia wine.  He directed the Ashby Inn into becoming one of the best restaurants in the mid Atlantic.

 

And, he was managing partner.  Their note says  they "regret not having the opportunity to say goodbye in person."  

 

Neal, please let us know wherever you are going.

 

I will toast you tomorrow night with a bottle of Granite Heights Humility '10.  If you read this I have two bottles left and would love to share one with you.  I even know where....

 

I'd also throw in a bottle of something from Walla Walla.



#104 DonRocks

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 10:28 PM

Neal, please let us know wherever you are going.

 

Yes, please, Neal. You were the greatest GM / innkeeper / whatever-the-term-is that I can think of. Your name is not mentioned on the Ashby Inn voice mail. I have such respect for you that you simply cannot believe. 

 

One thing people may not realize is the depth with which Neal knew Virginia wines. He is perhaps the only person to know more about them than Dave MacIntyre - Neal is a world-class expert, and his loss is devastating, just at the sommelier level, to The Ashby Inn. 

 

I'm so sorry, but honestly? I'm sorry for myself. 

 

My blessings, my kindest regards, and my support and very best wishes for whatever you do. Even though I've never seen you outside of The Ashby Inn, Neal, I am your close friend whether you know it or not - someone you and Star can call on first whenever you need them. I promise you I'll always be there for you.

 

Your friend,

Don


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#105 lion

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 11:51 PM

That's sad news. Look forward to hearing about Neal's next venture. 



#106 nealwavra

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 08:44 AM

Don and Friends,

 

Star and I are very moved by your sentiments.  We cannot thank you enough for the support.  We are gratified beyond words to know that our efforts at The Ashby were so well received. The Ashby will forever be a special place for us.  After four plus years of spending nearly every waking hour with The Ashby, we will be taking some time to tip the scales in the favor of family and some r & r. We have a couple of projects that we intend on devoting some time and attention to and will share them in due course.  I remain committed and very interested in promoting the VA wine industry and will continue to seek a role in this arena.  I will also be joining John Shields and Karen Urie for their monthly restaurant, Riverstead, located in Chilhowie, VA, which is set to debut in May.  John, Karen and I worked together at Charlie Trotters years ago and I look forward to working with them again.

 

We love this site and will keep you updated here.  You can also find us on facebook and twitter.

 

neal & star


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#107 B.A.R.

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 11:20 AM

My last meal at Ashby was very good. The dinner was extraordinary. Neal Wavra was the reason our dinner was far greater than what we merely ate and drank.

 

he setting was lovely. The dinner was impeccably prepared. The wines were well sourced and interesting. But Neal tied it all together and made it truly special.

 

Best of luck to them both (not that people this talented need luck).


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#108 lggl

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 12:27 PM

This news makes me terribly sad.  Thank you to the Wavra's for their tremendous hospitality over the last few years.  Thank you Neal for opening my eyes to wines I never would have tried.  I always looked forward to pleasant chats with you in our visits to the restaurant.  Your wine dinners were always entertaining and something we were very much looking forward to this spring and summer.  I trust the staff you leave behind will carry on your good work.  Best of luck to both of you in your new ventures.  



#109 Joe H

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 07:22 PM

Don and Friends,

 

Star and I are very moved by your sentiments.  We cannot thank you enough for the support.  We are gratified beyond words to know that our efforts at The Ashby were so well received. The Ashby will forever be a special place for us.  After four plus years of spending nearly every waking hour with The Ashby, we will be taking some time to tip the scales in the favor of family and some r & r. We have a couple of projects that we intend on devoting some time and attention to and will share them in due course.  I remain committed and very interested in promoting the VA wine industry and will continue to seek a role in this arena.  I will also be joining John Shields and Karen Urie for their monthly restaurant, Riverstead, located in Chilhowie, VA, which is set to debut in May.  John, Karen and I worked together at Charlie Trotters years ago and I look forward to working with them again.

 

We love this site and will keep you updated here.  You can also find us on facebook and twitter.

 

neal & star

 

I sincerely believe it will literally be a life's memory to visit you and the Shields at Riverstead.  Neal, for us, an experience to talk about in the nursing home!  An incredible, dream partnership that I hope someone reading this will appreciate, understand and consider bringing to D. C.  

 

There is nowhere else on earth than I would like to be except in Chilhowie this spring or summer.  







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