FOOD- THE DISH- Green Scheme: A St. Patty's Day twist

Boylan Heights owners J.R. Hadley and Andrew Watson want you to think about "green" in a whole new way this Saint Patty's Day.

This St. Patrick's Day, going green will mean more than green beer and green hats at Boylan Heights, the burger bar restaurant on the Corner, as the owners are offering a $100 gift certificate for the best environmentally friendly idea the restaurant can implement.

"Basically, instead of wearing a green shirt and not remembering it the next day," says co-owner J.R. Hadley, "we're hoping to inspire people to go green on St. Patty's Day, permanently."

Of course, this could be a challenge, as the restaurant already uses grass fed organic meats, recycles its bottles and plastics, uses non-toxic cleaning supplies, energy-efficient light bulbs, chlorine-free paper products, and contracts with GreenerOil, a company that collects restaurant grease and oil for making fuel.

"But the great thing about being in an educated university community is someone will always have creative input beyond anything we may have considered," says Hadley.

You can enter the contest by emailing your idea to One entry will be selected as the $100 winner and also five other entrants will be drawn at random for $20 gift certificates.

Blue Mountain makes the Sweet 16

March Madness has begun...March beer madness, that is. For the third year now, the Washington Post has organized an NCAA-style tournament of beers from all over America, complete with a live-action online bracket. And Afton's own Blue Mountain Brewery has advanced to the Sweet 16 with its Blue Mountain Lager!

Managed by the Post's beer columnist Greg Kitsock, a call for panelists this year drew 630 emails from folks touting their beer-tasting creds, from which eight judges were selected with Kitsock on board to break any ties. On March 11, the day after this paper went press, the final eight will have advanced, and on March 18 the final four will be announced. The finals will be held on March 25.

While Blue Mountain brew master Taylor Smack admits the competition will be stiff, he likes his chances. 

"While Classic Lager isn't the power forward of the Blue Mountain team, it's our solid player who has what it takes to get us into the final four," says Smack, taking the sports motif and running with it.

"Until the next round," he continues, "we're just trying to take it easy, keep Classic Lager out of trouble off the court... I don't mean to comment on its conduct, but, you know, he's known for being in bars all over the state, so we're just trying to keep the focus on the game right now."

The master might also have to do battle with his past.

"If we can advance a little bit more we have the chance to go up against my old Chicago brewery's flagship beer," says Smack, who learned his craft at Chicago's Goose Island Brewing.

"Seriously, though, it was very flattering coverage and I thought it was a nice nod to the growing beer scene around here," says Smack.

Crush Wine Shop to become another Belmont eatery

While rumors have been flying around for weeks that Crush Wineshop in Belmont is being sold, owner Paul Coleman finally confirms that he is selling his wine shop to the former manager of Coran Capshaw's restaurant group, Michael Keaveny, who plans to convert the place into a combination restaurant/winebar/wine shop.

"I would say it's a done deal at this point," says Coleman, who has been busy working out the details of the deal. "He [Keaveny] has taken over the running of the shop through this week at least, and will probably shut down shortly thereafter to begin converting the place over." 

Coleman, one of the partners who opened Orzo in the Main Street Market, opened Crush in December 2007 with his wife, Nan, and then partner, Gregg Oxley, hoping to "take the snobbishness out of the wine mystique...and create a place where people feel comfortable checking out wines."

The TAP is flowing

As Dish mentioned a month ago, Ivy resident Gwen Goodkin is hoping Charlottesville restaurants will participate in UNICEF's TAP Project, and now Goodkin is happy to report that 23 local restaurants have signed on.

What's the TAP Project? It's simple. Order tap water during the week of March 22-28 and opt to pay $1 for it, and the proceeds will go to helping secure clean drinking water for children around the world. 

Participants include Aroma's, Bizou, and the Blue Grass Grill. To participate, contact Goodkin by March 15 at 984-4649 or

 "Mc" culpa for WahooRidge

Finally, apologies to WahooRidge owner Mike McBlair. In mentioning his take-out BBQ place in the McIntire Business Park a few weeks ago, which is just beyond Saigon Café and Kathy's Hair, we managed to leave out the "Mc" in his name.

For a reporter with a Scottish "Mc" in his own name, this was a particularly grievous d'oh!

As we mentioned, McBlair is now offering hot homemade BBQ and breakfast burritos made with local organic ingredients from the site of his new frozen food business. Check it out!