Essentials 2018: Mike Rodi

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Essentials 2018: Mike Rodi


What’s your favorite lunch spot in town, and why?

I’m a big fan of Petit Pois, located on the Downtown Mall. It’s been consistently good for years now, as is the menu. You can count on certain things being on the menu and being done the same way. Since I work during lunch myself, I don’t often get to go, which means I don’t want to regret going somewhere. Petit Pois always delivers (though, of course, not literally).

Also, Brasserie Saison doesn’t yet have the long history for me of many, many awesome meals, but it has yet to disappoint.

Last, Ace Biscuit and BBQ doesn’t exactly suck, either.

What restaurant(s) are you dying to check out, but haven’t gotten around to visiting?

Well, I’m eagerly awaiting Prime 109’s grand opening! I don’t think there are so much places that I haven’t visited, as places I’d like to get back to and delve in a bit more.

What’s your favorite spot for dinner in town, and what’s your favorite meal on the menu?

I have to say Fleurie. I should spread the love around a little more. Fleurie and Petit Pois are both owned by Brian Helleberg, and the food is outstanding, the service impeccable, and Melissa Boardman’s wine knowledge, particularly when it comes to pairing, is unparalleled in Charlottesville. Of course, Tavola has never disappointed, and has its own tradition of vinicultural brilliance.

What’s your favorite spot for a date night and what’s your favorite cocktail?

A great date night might start with oysters and bubbly at Public Fish and Oyster. Their by the glass bubbly is “Franky Mo”, the Francois Montand Brut. Parallel 38 is always a great next stop. P38 has some really good cocktails, although and I’m not a cocktail guy. I prefer neat whiskey.

However, when it comes to making good cocktails, River Hawkins at The Bebedero is a real Charlottesville treasure.

Mike Rodi

owner of Rapture Restaurant and Nightclub

Hometown: New York City, NY

Employed since: 1998

Personal motto: There’s nothing quite so bad as not so bad

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