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Two acre winery, restaurant set to open today in Scott’s Addition

Today, urban winery Brambly Park will make its debut in Scott’s Addition, the neighborhood known for its breweries and warehouses. The establishment flanks the railroad tracks in the historic neighborhood and will feature an event space, restaurant, a large park-like area, and a 3,000 sq ft covered and heated patio.

The venture is led by the same duo behind the Hofheimer Building and The HofGarden rooftop. Restaurateur Bobby Kruger and his business partner, real estate developer, Carter Snipes conceived the idea after seeing the property and realizing the potential to create a one of a kind park in a former industrial area.

“We saw the property with its pine trees and grass hill and immediately knew this could be something different for Scott’s Addition,” said Snipes.

Their team includes Winemaker Ben Nichols, who previously worked for Red Hook Winery in Brooklyn and Executive Chef Wyatt Swaney, who previously worked at Aloi in Scott’s Addition. Kruger, a seasoned Richmond restaurant veteran, really wanted to bring a winery concept with a broader more laid back appeal to Scott’s Addition.

“We knew from the start we wanted to be wine-focused,” explained Kruger, “but the key was to have an avant-garde winemaker in order for the concept to really shine. When we met Ben it quickly became apparent that we had found someone that excelled at sourcing high-quality unfinished products and turning it into exceptional wine.”

The Wine

The first batch of Brambly Park’s own vintage won’t come out until harvest season so Kruger traveled to Oregon, California, and several vineyards in Virginia to find winemakers who could help craft the first labels and blends.

Virginia favorite Michael Shaps of Wineworks Virginia quickly signed up to produce a dry Rose’ for the venture. Wooden Valley Vineyard, an 85-year old family estate in

California, produced the Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Cabernet Sauvignon. Walnut City Wineworks, in Oregon, joined on to produce Riesling and Pinot Noir.

“We’ll work with these partner vineyards and others to bring in grapes and juice for wine that will be produced at Brambly Park under our Scott’s Addition Reserve label,” said Kruger. “After harvest season, we’ll grow beyond the initial six labels with the Virginia grapes our winemaker has sourced for our small batch series. We are excited to showcase these growers and vintners and their amazing products.

The Food

The menu will feature foods that traditionally pair well with wine, with a focus on Italian cuisine. Housemade pasta, charcuterie, cheese, and a variety of baked items are emphasized on both the restaurant menu and the park menu, with the restaurant menu having a larger selection of entrees and the park menu having a larger selection of small plates.

“We have this great interior space and also a large property that lends itself to outdoor dining so we wanted to lean into the versatility of this location and the different ways people would want to enjoy their time at Brambly Park.”

The Park

The property is located in the far northwest corner of Scott’s Addition on almost two acres nestled against the railroad at 1708 Belleville Street. It features a small grass hill and a charming wooded picnic area and is surrounded by wild-growing bramble bushes from which the name was inspired. A large steel pavilion was added to the existing building and designed to resemble a railroad station platform. The inside is decorated with rustic furniture, reclaimed wood, and vintage railroad signage. There over 100 tables spread out across the spacious property, as well as a large parking lot.

Richmond Flying Squirrels to offer ballpark food pickup with “Funville Foodie Fridays”

The Richmond Flying Squirrels will have ballpark food available for curbside pickup with Funnville Foodie Fridays on deck at The Diamond. The first Funnville Foodie Friday will be this Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Pick-up time slot reservations and food orders can be submitted here. Orders can be placed until 5 p.m. on Wednesday each week. Online payment options are also encouraged to limit contact.

Fans will be able to enjoy their favorite Flying Squirrels concession items, including Squirrelly Fries, burgers, chicken tenders, and more.

Cans of the Flying Squirrels’ new official beer, Richmond Rally Cap, as well as the team’s new wine, Feelin’ Squirrelly, will also be available for pick-up for customers 21 and older. Beer and wine pick-ups are also available every Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“We miss our fans terribly, and we know one of the things they miss right now is our Funnville food and beverages,” Flying Squirrels VP & COO Todd “Parney” Parnell said. “We look forward to being able to give them the opportunity on Fridays to enjoy that through safe, social distance-oriented curbside pickup right here at The Diamond.”

Hot dogs, burgers, chicken sandwiches, chicken tenders, mild and hot sausages, and bratwursts are all available as individual items or as part of combo meals, which include a regular Squirrelly Fry and a 20 oz. bottled beverage.

For pick-up, customers are asked to enter The Diamond’s parking lot on Squirrels Way, where an attendant will direct vehicles to the order pick-up location.

The Flying Squirrels Food & Beverage staff has put additional safety measures into place and will be following all COVID-19 safety protocols.

UMFS aims to fill lagging foster parent pipeline through virtual information sessions

Leaders at foster care and adoption nonprofit UMFS are worried that mandated closures and social distancing measures related to the COVID-19 pandemic could cause gaps in the foster parent pipeline later this year. To proactively address the potential problem, the organization is holding virtual information sessions in the Richmond market where individuals can learn more about the process to become a foster parent.

The virtual sessions are held twice a month, though UMFS staff are available for one-on-one sessions, as needed.

Upcoming info sessions will be held on April 28, May 12, May 26, June 16, and June 30 from 6-7 p.m. Interested foster parents can register for a session at UMFS.org/foster or by calling 804.310.7572.

“We have seen the impact that crises have on foster parent recruitment, and we’re getting ahead of that by offering virtual information sessions to keep our pipeline full while people are staying home,” said Nancy Toscano, COO at UMFS. “The threat to finding homes for our youth isn’t right now, it’s six months down the line. So, if we don’t act swiftly, we’ll be in a dire situation where children in need of safe homes won’t have anywhere to go. And we can’t let that happen.”

Attending an information session is the first step to becoming a foster parent through UMFS. The info sessions are led by staff and cover what to expect as a foster parent with UMFS and what qualities make a strong match based on the children and teens we serve.

The process of becoming a foster parent through UMFS takes roughly 3-6 months and the majority of the training can take place online at this time. The home study and CPR certification will resume once COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.

For more information about becoming a foster parent or to register for a virtual information session, individuals can visit UMFS.org/foster.

Cost Plus World Market donates entire stock of Easter baskets, decorations to UMFS youth

Cost Plus World Market recently donated its entire stock of Easter goodies and decorations to UMFS to bring some Easter spirit to children living on the nonprofit’s campuses and its essential staff and their families.

As a non-essential business, Cost Plus World Market found themselves surrounded by aisles of untouched chocolate bunnies and rainbow-colored eggs that would be of no use when they reopen. Rather than let them go to waste, the Cost Plus World Market location on West Broad Street donated three aisles worth of Easter products to UMFS this week.

Approximately 45 youth are currently receiving care at UMFS’ residential treatment centers in Richmond and Fairfax. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the campuses are closed to visitors, including the families of youth. Thanks to the donation, staff were able to provide every child with an Easter basket full of goodies. They used what was left to set up a mini-store for UMFS essential staff who have been working around the clock throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It warms our hearts, and we are so happy that children and families get to be on the receiving end of something like this,” said Pam Jackowski, general manager of CPWM. “We all feel so uplifted, especially during such a difficult time in the world.”

UMFS received 17 large moving boxes and 8 large bags worth of Easter eggs, baskets, chocolate bunnies and other assorted Easter décor.

“This gift from World Market was incredible and so timely for our residential youth and our team on the front line,” said Sheena Lyle, UMFS program director for the UMFS Child & Family Healing Center. “We’re so grateful because the donation provides Easter treats to all of our incredible staff and residents at both CFHC in Richmond and Leland House in Fairfax. One of our teaching staff here was actually moved to tears by World Market’s generosity.”

Ardent Craft Ales launches food bank for restaurant workers affected by closures, reduced hours

Ardent Craft Ales is teaming up with SyscoThe Holli Fund, and Digital Minerva to launch Ardent Helps, a food bank resource inspired by Harrisonburg-based Pale Fire Brewery to support restaurant workers during the COVID-19 crisis.

The food bank will start taking orders on Monday, March 30. All orders must be placed online at www.ardenthelpsrva.com. Orders will be packed and made available for pick up the next business day between 2-8 p.m. at Ardent Craft Ales’ taproom at 3200 West Leigh Street in Scott’s Addition. Orders may be placed seven days a week, with pick-up times scheduled during our operating hours of 2-8pm on Tuesday-Sunday.

“The restaurant industry has been decimated by the COVID-19 virus and the country’s need to close or restrict public gathering spaces. We want to do our part to help the thousands of restaurant workers in Richmond and the surrounding area who have been laid-off, furloughed or are suffering from reduced hours,” said Tom Sullivan, Ardent’s co-founder. “Pale Fire’s popup food bank concept connected with our brewery and community and we’re honored to be able to help the Richmond service industry.”

The Ardent Helps food bank will only be available to restaurant industry workers. However, it is not limited to Richmond residents, and all restaurant workers are welcome to place orders and pick up goods. Participants are asked to avoid stockpiling and take only what they immediately need. The program will last as long as it can safely continue to operate and donated items are available. Responsible sanitation and social distancing measures will be followed at all times.

A variety of perishable and non-perishable items donated by Sysco will be available. Ardent is also accepting both shelf-stable food donations to support this program and monetary donations to directly benefit affected restaurant workers via grants from The Holli Fund.

There is no cost to participate in Ardent Helps. Participants are asked to show their most recent pay stub to confirm eligibility upon pick up. Ardent’s taproom will remain open to the general public for to-go beer and merchandise purchases.

Learn more about the program at www.ardenthelpsrva.com.

Ardent Helps. Photo courtesy Ardent Craft Ales

Help Scott’s Addition Businesses During COVID-19


Retail & Services

Broad Street Veterinary Hospital – Open regular hours
City Barre – Online classes
Diamond Dog House – Open regular hours
Ironwood Automotive – Open regular hours
Jackson & James – Online store open; free shipping & curbside pickup
Midas of Richmond – Open regular hours
Shepherd Street Antiques – By appointment
Studio Two Three – Online store open
TURN Cardio Jam Studio  – Online classes
The Yoga Dojo – Online classes



Blanchard’s Coffee Roasting Co. – Regular menu available for carry out
Boulevard Burger & Brew – Full menu available for takeout and delivery during lunch hours and from 5 to 9 p.m.
Brenner Pass – Curbside pickup. Menu changes daily and is posted on social media
Buz and Ned’s – Regular menu available for carry out and limited delivery
Chicken Fiesta – Full menu available to takeout
En Su Boca – Delivery, Carry out, and curbside delivery available
Fat Dragon – Full menu available for takeout and delivery during lunch hours and from 5 to 9 p.m.
Gelati Celesti – Takeout only
Lalo’s Cocina – Full menu for takeout and delivery
Lemon Cuisine of India – Full menu for takeout and delivery
McLean’s – Full menu available for takeout daily 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Moore Street Cafe – Full menu for takeout and delivery
Perch – Special menu available to-go, no contact pick up. 1 to 8 p.m.
Peter Chang China Cafe – Full menu for takeout and delivery
River City Roll – Takeout and curbside delivery. Online-only ordering, daily, noon to 7 p.m.
Smohk – Regular menu available for carry out
Tazza Kitchen – Limited menu available for curbside delivery and some delivery
The Big Kitchen – Drive through available
The Savory Grain – Takeout and delivery


Breweries, Cideries, Meaderies – Delivery available

Ardent Craft Ales
Bingo Beer Co.
Black Heath Meadery
Blue Bee Cider
Buskey Cider
Cirrus Vodka
Courthouse Creek Cider
Isley Brewing Company
Mainline Brewery
Starr Hill Brewery
Strangeways Brewing
Three Notch’d Brewing Company
Vasen Brewing Company
The Veil Brewing Co.
Virago Spirits




Scott’s Addition dance studio pivots to online streaming classes during pandemic

On March 30th, Governor Ralph Northam issued an executive order that shuttered all Virginia gyms and studios and mandated all residents stay home to “flatten the curve” of COVID- 19 cases. So, what are you supposed to do when your whole business is based on the in-person group experience and it gets shut down? You go virtual.

Although virtual fitness and on-demand classes have been out there for a while, most boutique fitness studios were not set up to do it and a lot of small studios have been scrambling.

“I’ve learned something new about executing it every day,” said Sandi Cauley, owner of TURN Cardio Jam Studio, “I’m sitting in webinars, grabbing online help videos and testing out new products daily hoping to deliver quality audio and video via our streaming provider. And then on top of it, l am like an air traffic controller coordinating with instructors, scheduling the class, streaming the class and then making sure the client got a great experience. It’s a lot harder than you think.”

TURN has been trying to stay true to its studio schedule providing clients with 15 various classes 7-days a week; everything from dance fitness and dance instruction to yoga and HIIT strength classes. They have even added family classes to incorporate workouts with teens and children. Members are given the added bonus of On-Demand classes to watch at a later time.

The business also rented out its equipment to members and clients; allowing them to take home weights, bands, BOSUS, and whatever else needed for an effective home workout. Next week, the studio will launch private lessons. Allowing anyone to book time with instructors to again get that one on one interaction and attention.

“Initially, we thought this could be a steep challenge, but we have gotten a lot of support,” explained Cauley. “The bulk of our members have stayed with us. Former clients have returned and some friends from as far away as Australia are now jumping into classes, some of them trying us for the first time. If there’s a silver lining – that might be it.”

A spirited solution: GRTC sources sanitizer from Reservoir Distillery

Normally barrels and buses are buddies as a safe solution for patrons traveling after imbibing. Today there’s a new spirited solution. As hand sanitizer supplies quickly back-ordered during the COVID-19 crisis, GRTC needed to find a supplier quickly to refill dwindling inventory for essential employees. A Richmond Times-Dispatch news story about local businesses shifting production from spirits to sanitizer sparked a solution.

GRTC contacted Reservoir Distillery last week to place a recurring bulk order for their newly produced sanitizer. Just as sanitizer dispensers at GRTC’s headquarters emptied, reinforcements arrived today from Reservoir Distillery, normally a bourbon whiskey producer in Scott’s Addition.

“Creative solutions like this are exciting, said GRTC Chief Executive Officer Julie Timm. “Our essential employees need sanitizer at headquarters and in the field, and a local business benefits from our need. This is a win-win solution for both of us and I am proud of our Procurement Department’s ingenuity.”

“We are happy to be able to support GRTC during this unprecedented time,” says Dave Cuttino, co-founder of Reservoir Distillery. “Reservoir will continue to make hand sanitizer as long as resources are available and the need is there within our community.”

More than 100 gallons of liquid sanitizer were picked up Monday from Reservoir Distillery, helping GRTC staff reporting to headquarters maintain proper personal hygiene practices. Operators and other frontline staff can refill personal bottles to use in the field.

Planning officials unveil conceptual renderings of a future, higher-density Scott’s Addition

Richmond planning officials unveiled a preliminary vision for the Greater Scott’s Addition neighborhood Tuesday evening at Diversity Richmond. The meeting was the third of four held by the Richmond 300 commission studying ways to encourage smart growth, best and highest use cases for future development and redevelopment, and create recommendations for zoning and planning policies that foster cohesiveness neighborhood-wide.

While the committees are studying areas around the city, the Scott’s Addition neighborhood is unique in its areas of opportunity, including nearly 30 acres of largely vacant land around The Diamond. Using input from over 1,000 respondents to a survey asking residents and other stakeholders what characteristics future development in the neighborhood should have, planning officials unveiled high-level renderings and cordoned the neighborhood off into six distinct districts. For the purposes of this study, Scott’s Addition encompasses approximately 800 acres and stretches from I-195 on the western bound to Lombardy Street on the east; I-95 on the north to West Broad Street on the south.

The largest and most dense, the Gateway District, would see the encouragement of cohesive, high-density development along Arthur Ashe Boulevard near the Diamond site. Other areas including the “core” of the Scott’s Addition Historic District would remain mixed-use industrial to allow for a variety of uses from single story warehouses to six-to-twelve-story buildings as is currently the case.

The plan emphasizes tenets including open space, affordable housing, walkability, density, and access to transit. De-emphasized are lower density uses like single-story buildings and parking lots, which are no longer allowed as “by right” developments per code.

The renderings were presented on printed boards, charette-style, for attendees to reflect on and leave feedback via sticky notes. Planning officials including Director of Planning Mark Olinger were on hand to answer questions and give clarification. Mayor Levar Stoney opened the meeting with his thoughts on cohesive development, and Second District Councilmember Kim Gray was on hand as well.

After gathering additional feedback from stakeholders, planning staff will create draft recommendations that will guide future growth and development and present a final plan in May.

See the full presentation (PDF) here.

Please Welcome Your New 2020 SABA Board Members!

If you didn’t get a chance to meet them in person last week at our February public meeting, please give a warm welcome to our new 2020 SABA board members! We’re excited about what we’ll achieve together in 2020 and beyond as our growing neighborhood moves forward.

Please join us in welcoming:

  • Jay Bayer, Bingo Beer Co.
  • Phil Crosby, Richmond Triangle Players
  • Dr. Jeremy Hoffman, Science Museum of Virginia
  • Sue Mellen, Virginia Municipal League
  • Erin Wischer, The Community Foundation

Here’s a shot of our full 2020 board. We look forward to working together to make our neighborhood the best place to live, work, and play.