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About mickswagger

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  1. Hey Y'all... If any of you happen to be out in the Shenandoah Valley and/or Skyline Drive this weekend and have a hankering for something different, pop into Vinova! We're open til 1am (or later) everyday featuring a 3 for $10 tapas on select menu items from 11pm to 1am as well. Sunday's we offer Paella (single serving or bottomless) and Sangria. Here is our projected menu for the weekend. Hope to see some of you out here. Again, let us know youre a Rockwellian and we will send something special out to you for the venture. Cheers
  2. here are some pics of some of the food as well as our weekly menu. hope you all enjoy your holiday.
  3. The best place to stay around here is an Air BnB from the Giving Tree, which is our local farm market and grocery. Its beautiful as well as the Giving Tree is. The owners Britney and John Duvall are amazing hosts. Here is a link to that: https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.airbnb.com%2Frooms%2F32720241%3Fs%3D67%26shared_item_type%3D1%26virality_entry_point%3D1%26fbclid%3DIwAR3cdK5YKWuvDwJdQSRAnYHrbIelp03P61_-w9zyj-guVJ98y90c3xE0zlE&h=AT3hYrDqgvUqqbZYq82WLYmVlGGnTjXs-RxxZLV6o9EQ1lGf9aV9II0TvE-rskAIzvIXOffqhqzbKLQnoJJUgmyVA9QKZ2tvx-PJB6HAmFLyF3cNp7OH-tOn36CrIEioaS4V7xO7hgc38igWkD8 The Quality Inn on Commerce street is great with direct access to Main Street. The Hampton Inn and Holiday Inn are also standard issue. There are other Air BnBs available and i suggest checking them out first. Hope to see yall soon out here. Ciao
  4. Hello fellow Rockwellians. Writing about my new restaurant in Front Royal called Vinova Tapas and Wine Bar. We are located on cozy little Main Street, right next door to the Front Royal Brewery. Our concept is a European influenced tapas menu, exclusively European wines, and almost all European Liquors (minus Tequila and Rum) and cocktails. The menu is ever changing and reflective of seasonality as well as influences from experiences abroad. We showcase a variety of original art and will be hosting featured artists for event dinners every 6 weeks or so. This is a great place to stop in if you're out in the Shenandoah Valley hiking, canoeing or just getting away. Hope to see some of your faces in here. Let me know you're a Rockwellian and i will send something special to your table.
  5. this place is closed. RIP to the quirkiest spot I have ever drank on a Friday night, where steel guitars and retired redskins mingled in the atmosphere of my great aunt's basement.
  6. in general, the historic downtown area of leesburg is dismal minus the wine kitchen and palios. but for the most part all of the hearsay is true. balls bluff no longer exists and the "colonial inn" are a group of rooms above the georgetown cafe and kings court which maybe for board? i live down here and it is sad to see how this historic area, which should be the pinnacle of the town, is owned and operated by a bunch of inept dinosaurs that refuse to update or refine their practices. service here is laughable, knowledge of cuisine is deplorable and decor is like stepping into a time machine into the late 80s. icing on the cake: all of the owners (whom i know and have spoken to) have the same smug "i've been doing this for "x" amount of years and it works just fine" mentality and answers. the lightfoot being the WORST ($35 for a Sysco Select Filet). i really hope there is a renaissance of sorts and either new owners/operators step in or the old reinvent. the good part of this is that it encourages my wife and i to explore the countryside for gems which we constantly find (the shack, Staunton; Grandvale on the 868 winery, Spelunkers in Front Royal, Farm at Potowmack, etc.)...it truly is a sad state of affairs in historic leesburg and hopefully something will happen soon to amend them.
  7. dawn burkhart is one of dc's best classical chefs whom you've probably never heard of. her classic french cuisine is a direct result of being brought up by jean louis palladin, if i remember correctly, she was the ONLY woman on the savory side of that kitchen. if you are down on the occoquan, this is THE spot to check out.
  8. dining in leesburg can be extremely rewarding when you find a gem or two. my wife and i moved out here in january and have weekend adventures trying out places. in historic there are only a couple places that are really acceptable for what they advertise. the wine kitchen and palios are both very pleasant and well executed cuisine and service. palios is a bit pricey but good, hand made pastas and italian fare. the wine kitchen is a great little farm to table nouveau american place that has a lesser price tag and cityesque service. their wine and beer lists are really great. avoid the lightfoot like an aids ridden prostitute. prefab sysco products in convoluted fusion bastardizations at the cost of a car payment. same with kings court, old town grill and georgetown cafe. seriously unsanitary and stale food. if you are willing to go a bit off the path, the q company of catoctin circle is some of the best bbq ive had in my life in a cool rockabilly atmosphere. farther down the road into the country towards the wva line there is the grandale farm restaurant on the 868 winery and vineyard property. this has the vibe of a more casual ashby inn with similar fare, yet not as adventurous. it has a cool open kitchen and the service is also comparable to more urban restaurants. good luck and bon appetite.
  9. sad. this is where i got my real start in the cooking world when mark sakuta owned it. in it's hey day when mark ran things, it was truly a hidden gem with cutting edge cuisine, even by city standards. it was one of the first (if not first) outside of the beltway reviews sietsema did and although we received a good review,i feel this place should have received more kudos. mark's ecclectic cooking style was really inspirational and came from an organic drive for greatness. i will never forget having such a great family environment to work in (my sister, my best friend, a vuluptuos crush, steeph, jorge and senior pepino) and making such from the heart food. unfortunately sbc will probably be remembered to the public as a great little sandwich shop with "cute little owners who tried their little hearts out but couldn't make it" (aka had no idea what they were doing). it was a travesty what the subsequent owners did to it. i will pour out a little liquor for the fallen homie that was SBC. sweet dreams. ps. ^^^^ that recipe was one that mark sakuta and i wrote in 2002 and was the same recipe used there till it closed.
  10. if you are going to roys and expecting anything in the food department to be outstanding, or stand out, prepare to be disappointed. where roys cant be beat: THE BEST CUSTOMER SERVICE. i go to the one in leesburg off market st. everytime i go, the employees are in genuinely good spirits and the air of southern hospitality is definately present. the "hi and how are ya"s are awesome, but the kicker is the manager making rounds in the dining room, bringing after dinner mints to finishing customers. thats gangsta!
  11. hey donrockwellers, its tuesday, which means ill be commiting lobster genocide. at $12 apop, you cant go wrong. also have our oyster special tonight, soft ahells, fresh alaskan halibut and much more. let me know youre in thw house and ill let you try my ceviche free of charge. cheers!
  12. Hey guys, Just letting donrockewell folks in on our monday and tuesday promotions.....mondays are our oyster night, $1.50 oysters and other specials from the sea. Tuesday nights we have whole 1# lobsters for $12. Mention you're from donrockwell and ill send you a complimentary pickle sampler. Cheers!
  13. hey arlingtonites and those with means of travel, we have officially opened our doors. we will be opening at 6 today, tommorow, and sunday. Will be open at five on monday and will start lunch service on tuesday. Brunch will follow in the next couple of weeks. we are featuring pride of the plains beef (the plains, Va), have a mac and cheese to die for, and really good craft cocktails. be the first of your friends to "discover" us.... chef chris
  14. wilson tavern looks to open by the second week of december. our menu is straight forward american fare executed using high quality ingredients from locally sourced purveyors and will involve a very technique driven kitchen. despite the "pretentious" craigslist ad, our concept is very casual and welcoming. the interior has been dramatically revamped to provide a more asthetically pleasing environment, however it's not going to be a nose in the air ambiance. we want the neighborhood to make this an extension of their living room, we want this to be a place you can stop by and grab a bite and a brew without breaking your wallet. the team here is excited and we are looking forward to serving the courthouse area. cheers.
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