Southern change: Scottsville takes center stage

Peering through our gastronomic goggles last month, Dish spotted a strange glow in the southern sky. A purplish haze hovered over the ground approximately 20 miles down Route 20 South, by our rough estimation. Was it some sort of heavenly event? A ghostly apparition? No it was simply the energy generated by all the goings on in the Scottsville restaurant world.

First up: Memory Lane Diner. Located on Valley Street, Scottsville's main drag, Memory Lane is actually a reincarnation of Whole Lotta Shakin', a '50s diner owned by Donna Turner. Turner sold the business three years ago to spend more time with her young daughter. The new owners renamed it Blast From the Past but kept the '50s diner theme. Things didn't work out Blast from the Past closed this summer– and last month Turner stepped back in to reopen the place with its third name and current name, Memory Lane.

Though it's still a '50s diner, Turner says there have been some slight changes in decorating: the tables and stools are now black. Turner offers hamburgers, milkshakes, banana splits, grilled cheese sandwiches, and Philly cheese steaks, as well as other classic diner fare. Not exactly a dieter's dream, but who count calories at a diner?

Next stop: Jimmy's on the James. When Jimmy's closed for renovations back in early September, a few locals feared the worst: that Jimmy's would meet the same fate as its predecessor, The River Rat. But Jimmy's is faring fine, thank you, says head chef Chad Ervin, a chef for three years at Oxo restaurant, who started at Jimmy's last March.

Ervin says changes include the addition of a bar and a new entryway to "improve the flow" of the space. The menu has also undergone some gentle adjustment: "It's a little bit cheaper and has more variety," Ervin says. More cuts of steak and the addition of more seafood dishes will make Jimmy's "more accessible to a broader clientele," Ervin hopes.

Now for some news with teeth. It's been more than a year since we said farewell to Shady Grove Pizza, but our last hopes for a new restaurant to take its place seem to have been dashed. Our Scottsville sources report that the dentist next door has consumed the Shady Grove space, so except for a few tasty fluoride drops, no eating will be taking place in that building from now on.

 

Closer to home

 What's going on at Rapture? Remember the dance club Rapture co-owners Mike Rodi and Andrew Vaughan have been planning for the past year? Well, despite lengthy delays on the project, it's still a go.

Vaughan, who also owns Orbit Billiards on the Corner, says the space may or may not be given its own name, since it will be a part of Rapture. And as for an opening date, Vaughan says it would be premature to offer one up.

When we checked in earlier this week, Vaughan and Rodi were meeting with architects on the project.

"There have been some hold-ups," says Vaughan, "but we're definitely moving ahead."