Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 23

macaroni and cheese, oyster baskets, country fried
chicken, grilled cheese, onion rings, hash browns,
applesauce. And for dessert: milk shake malts, pie
and – yes, funnel cakes.
Ab o u t a d e c a d e a n d a h a l f a g o , w h i l e
Harrisonburg’s downtown was still in the very
beginnings of its revitalization, I graduated from
JMU and headed two hours south to Roanoke, a
city whose downtown was already evolving. Today,
Roanoke’s restaurant concentration is high and its
cuisine eclectic.
One of our favorite spots is Lucky, a downtown
bistro that opened in October 2010. It’s cozy,
friendly, and the food is adventurous and delicious.
It’s owned by J.P. Powell and Hunter Johnson, and
head chef Jeff Farmer will be an owner as well.
“J.P. and I were both musicians,” says Johnson.
They had the same booking agent, played in the
same cities, and both ended up back in Roanoke
(from time in Boston and D.C.). At the time,
Johnson was working for Mill Mountain Coffee
and Tea. They started a band together, MyRadio.
They were inspired by restaurants in cities they
played, particularly Diner in New York City, and
wanted to open something like it in Roanoke.
“It’s pretty cliché, musicians opening a restaurant – we’re not only pursuing one thing in life that
doesn’t make any money… we’re opening a
restaurant.”
Lucky focuses on fresh and regional ingredients.
“You gotta keep it fun and interesting, and not be
afraid to take risks,” says Johnson.
“We get a whole hog once a month, and [Farmer]
uses almost every part of that pig.” Pate, ribs, bacon,
pork chops, barbecue. The restaurant works with
about 30 vendors; dishes can include pickled okra,
duck confit, beef cheeks and mussels.
The building dates from 1901 – among its
incarnations was an appliance store (“when the
windows fog up, you can see the logo”). There are
no televisions. The bar is built a little lower and
wider than most, the booths lifted on concrete
slabs, the seats low-backed “so you can talk to
people.”
“We really stress the idea of food and drink
together… it’s going to be better than if you have
one or the other.”
Other Roanoke stops – for burgers: 1906 Ale
House, Wasena City Tap Room and Grill, Fork in
the Alley (as well as the other Forks), Table 50 (also
for desserts). CUPS Coffee & Tea and Mill
Mountain Coffee and Tea for caffeine and baked
goods; Bubblecake or Viva La Cupcake for cupcakes; Wildflour on 4th Street or Crock and Roll
for soups. The Texas Tavern and the Community
Inn are well-loved, long-time hole-in-the-wall
institutions.
NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2013 | 23



Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013

Cover
Table of Contents
Letters/Worth a Click
From the Editor
Digital Help Guide
From the Farm
The Hike
Mountain Report
Creature Feature
Festivals & Events
Explore West Virginia Covered Bridges
DIGITAL EXCLUSIVE: Cave in to Adventure
Fall Travel to Restaurants, Diners and Dives
Photoessay: Late Fall Comes to the Mountains
What's New in these Hills?
Life and Death in Butterfield Branch
Mountain-Classic Recipes
Cabin in the Woods: A North Georgia Getaway
Mountain Garden
Guest Column
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Intro
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Cover
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Cover2
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Table of Contents
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 4
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Letters/Worth a Click
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - From the Editor
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Digital Help Guide
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - From the Farm
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 9
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - The Hike
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 11
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Mountain Report
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Creature Feature
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Festivals & Events
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 15
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Explore West Virginia Covered Bridges
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 17
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - DIGITAL EXCLUSIVE: Cave in to Adventure
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - DE2
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - DE3
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - DE4
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - DE5
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - DE6
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Fall Travel to Restaurants, Diners and Dives
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 19
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 20
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 21
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 22
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 23
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 24
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 25
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Photoessay: Late Fall Comes to the Mountains
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 27
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 28
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 29
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - What's New in these Hills?
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 31
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 32
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 33
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 34
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 35
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Life and Death in Butterfield Branch
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 37
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 38
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 39
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Mountain-Classic Recipes
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 41
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 42
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 43
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Mountain Garden
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 45
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Cabin in the Woods: A North Georgia Getaway
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 47
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 48
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - 49
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Guest Column
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Cover3
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2013 - Cover4
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