For sale: Dew Drop Inn

 How'd you like to have a piece of history to call your very own? Ever wanted to own a restaurant? If you answered yes to both questions, Dish has the answer for you: Grab your wallet and head down Route 20 South to Scottsville.

The Dew Drop Inn, a Scottsville fixture for the past 60-odd years, and a regular set on the 1970s television show The Waltons (Jason had his first job playing piano at The Dew Drop), is up for sale.

Owner Jackie Lohr cites her health as the reason. "Because of my diabetes," she explains, "my doctor's advising me to sell."

But she's not eager to hand it over to just anyone: "I'd like to see it stay the same," she says. "It's very important to the town that it stay The Dew Drop Inn."

The menu features steaks, Gulf shrimp, hamburgers, "mounds" of French fries and a variety of slaws and salads. Most importantly, Lohr says, it's all made in-house.

"We don't have any buckets of stuff," she says.

Now that Jimmy's on the James has shut down, Lohr says it's also the only joint in town with a full bar. In the distant past, Lohr laughs, parents made their children cross to the other side of the street so they wouldn't see the regulars sitting around drinking and cussing.

Now, she says, it's a different story.

"Young kids come in here and think it's really great," she says. So do tourists, who come from as far away as Europe, where Lohr say The Waltons still airs, to see the spot where John-Boy and family broke bread.

If all that hasn't sold you, the music scene is also humming. "I have musicians beating at my door," Lohr says. And when no live band is on stage, a blues jukebox keeps the tunes rolling.

Though Lohr won't name her price, she suggests that low-ball offers won't fly. When the right money comes in, though, she's got the rest of her life all planned out.

"Running a restaurant is in my blood stream," she explains. And while she doesn't want to do the full-service thing anymore, a traveling hot dog stand sounds right up her alley.

"I'll call it Dirty River Dogs," she says.

We'll keep you posted.


*In other Scottsville sales news: Laurel's Kitchen is also on the block. Stay tuned to The Dish for details.



 Seminole Square is alive with the sounds of sipping. Sipping at The Grounds Café, of course, which opened July 14 in the former Caldo & Freddo's spot. One of two new additions to the shopping center (CiCi's Pizza is the other), The Grounds is the brainchild of Chris Moriarty and Patrick Finley, who, with the help of a coffee consultant named Kricket Clark, hope to take the coffee scene to a new level.

Making coffee is "an art form," Clark says, as well as "a precise science." That means there is a difference between a latte and a cappuccino

Aside from the expert coffee available at The Grounds,

morning commuters and daytime shoppers will be able to grab more than a good cup of Joe (roasted by local favorite, Shenandoah Joe) here. Breakfast pastries, muffins, homemade granola, trail bars and cold cereal will fuel patrons fatigued by their morning commute.

Lunch will feature sandwiches on homemade focaccia, soups, and insalata mista (artichoke hearts, grated parmesan, chianti vinaigrette), among other things.


Bye-bye burgers

 If you live west of town and you've a hankering for a hunk of meat, you're gonna have to drive a little farther. On July 31, the Hardee's on Ivy Road got the plywood treatment, and according to a manager at the sister store on 29, it was simple arithmetic: "The price went up," reports Hardee's night manager Jennifer Riner, adding that it was the only Hardee's property not actually owned by the franchise.

The 3,321-square-foot building, owned by Esther Coopersmith of Washington, D.C.-based Gerry Franklin-Holladay Corp., is now empty. Dish will keep you posted on what'll take its place.