A hidden treasure of Harrisonburg that many residents have yet to discover is the Sub Rosa Supper Club.
A private, invitation only club, it meets regularly in Harrisonburg and the surrounding area at uniquely appointed homes, local businesses, and recently, the woods!Each dinner has a different theme with a menu to match. While the dinners are invitation only, anyone can register for the club and request an invitation at http://www.subrosasupperclub.com/.
Sub rosa is a Latin idiom meaning “in secret”, whose literal translation is “under the rose”. According to the Sub Rosa website, roses were symbolic of secrecy in ancient Rome, and elegant houses featured paintings of roses to suggest that whatever transpired under the influence of wine at a dinner party was to remain secret. Most of the details of each event are not revealed, maintaining their air of secrecy. Invitees learn first the time and date, and later the address of the event.
Each dinner is a carefully crafted experience centered on a unique theme, incorporating the location, the decor, and the menu. The multi-course dinners are small enough to be intimate, but large enough for lively conversation. The table is typically set for 30 attendees, and each attendee may only obtain two tickets, to ensure that a broad cross section of guests will encounter new people. While “casually elegant attire” is suggested, guests are encouraged to come as they are and express their individual identities.
A recent article on the Virginia Living website shed some light on Sub Rosa. It is the creation of Kirsten Moore and Jennifer Sodikoff, who started the club three years ago, inspired by the idea of bringing people together to explore new foods and new locations in their hometown. Moore is in charge of the food while Sodikoff creates the ambiance for the event. The inspiration behind each event is different and can come from finding a great location or a particular chef. The club meets semi-regularly, once a month or every other month.
Dinners are planned to balance opportunities for trying new foods with a sense of comfort that’s accessible to all palates. Food allergies and dietary preferences are gladly accommodated upon request. While the food is central to the event, the deeper purpose is community building. According to their website, “We want people to discover new spaces and foods, but more importantly new faces. Sitting around a dinner table with strangers can be a powerful means of community building. We think that's pretty important these days.”
Each event is documented on their website with a description, menu, and photographs. Events are beautifully captured by a professional photographer. A recent foray into the George Washington National Forest included a rustic menu themed Flora + Fauna. The six course meal featured ingredients foraged from the forest, such as berries and chanterelles, or wild mushrooms. The main courses were grilled rainbow trout and venison medallions, with a wild blackberry mousse for dessert.
While the weather interrupted with a rainstorm that prompted a slight change of location, guests were also treated to a spectacular double rainbow. It was all in keeping with the adventurous spirit behind the events, which aim not only to introduce people to new places and flavors, but to bring strangers together around a table to find common ground.
For more information on Sub Rosa Supper Club, please visit http://www.subrosasupperclub.com/.
Photographs by Sarah Featherstone
This blog is part of the Best of Harrisonburg Blog Series.
We at Harrisonburg Homeowner had the privilege of visiting with the founders of Chestnut Ridge Coffee Roasters. Chestnut Ridge Coffee Roasters is a local coffee roaster organization located right here in Harrisonburg, Va. Chestnut Ridge is not like other coffee shops within the area however. They are in fact not open most days. Their primary way of conducting business is by selling their phenomenal coffee to local businesses, catering, doing professional coffee cuppings, and other such events. However, you can buy the coffee online with three different delivery options: by mail, by giddy-up, and free pickup during their Saturday hours.
Chestnut Ridge Coffee Roasters typically offer between 4 to 5 different coffees including one decaf at all times. They are continually rotating their inventory in order to offer seasonal coffees from some of the top coffee producing countries in the world. They also never repeat the same coffee twice. They choose their coffees by sampling between 30 to 40 different types and picking the best 2 to 3.
Chestnut Ridge Coffee Roasters are looking to do more private events within the greater Harrisonburg area, so if you are interested be sure to reach out to them at the link below. If you want to swing by to try the coffee, tastings are offered every Saturday from 8am to noon.
If you have any other questions regarding Chestnut Ridge Coffee Roasters be sure to reach out to either us at HarrisonburgHomeowner.com. Or Chestnut Ridge Coffee Roasters at https://chestnutridgecoffee.com/
A less exotic, but equally enjoyable activity that Massanutten Resort offers is golf. Massanutten Resort is home to two conventional golf courses: Woodstone Meadows Golf Course, and Mountain Greens Golf Course. Woodstone Meadows is an 18-hole course with 5,065 yards of golf, and a par of 65. Woodstone Meadows has generous fairways allowing for golfers of all capabilities. The Mountain Greens course is more challenging, and is generally recommended for intermediate to advanced golfers. It is an 18-hole course with a par of 72/73. A variety of different tees are available with the longest tees equating to 6,443 yards of true, mountain style, golfing. Apart from the two conventional courses, Massanutten also offers FlingGolf, a relatively new sport that essentially combines elements of golf and lacrosse. Instead of swinging a golf club, players use a FlingStick to fling or whip the ball down the fairway. Massanutten also has a driving range, lessons, and leagues available for those that are interested.
Official Page for Massanutten Golf
This blog is part of a Massanutten Blog Series
Massanutten’s Family Adventure Park is one of its most daring attractions. The adventure park is a one stop shop for climbing, tubing, ziplining, rappelling, and more. The largest of these features is the Mega Zip. The Mega Zip is an 800’ zipline fully capable of reaching speeds of up to 30 miles per hour. Another ziplining option is the Canopy Tour. The Canopy Tour incorporates four different ziplines in addition to a variety of other obstacles that takes up to an hour and a half to complete. The Ridge Rappel and Climbing Excursion is yet another great option for any daredevils. An enjoyable chair lift ride leads to a quick hike where participants are eventually able to rappel down two cliffs with the experience and guidance of a trained safety instructor. The largest of these two cliffs is an exhilarating 58 feet tall. After the cliffs, participants are guided through a rock climbing experience, based on physical ability and comfort level. If these options sound a bit intense, don’t fear. Massanutten also features a Kids’ Adventure Course targeted for ages 12 and below that still sparks fun and excitement, but in a well-controlled environment. Other great activities at the Family Adventure Park include a 16-30’ climbing wall, the QuickJump (a 30’ free fall sensation), summer tubing, and Kids Playland (play area complete with inflatable bounce houses and gem mining).
Official Page for Massanutten Adventure Park
This blog is part of a Massanutten Blog Series
One of the best options for obtaining fresh, healthy food, in the city of Harrisonburg is the local Farmers Market. The Farmers Market is located at 228 S. Liberty St. right across from Rocktown Kitchen and behind City Hall. The mission statement of the market as described on their website is “to provide the public with easy access to fresh, nutritious, locally produced agricultural goods and crafts of the highest quality, to assist local and regional farmers and other producers to directly market their products to the local customer base, and to support environmental stewardship and community well-being.” The farmers market hours differ by season. The summer market is april through thanksgiving, and it is open on Tuesdays and Saturdays from 8am to 1pm. The winter market is from December through March and it is open from 9am to 1pm on Saturdays only. Credit, debit, and EBT cards are accepted. Due to food sanitation guidelines only service dogs are allowed at the farmers market. If you are interested in the vendors, history, and the market government please contact Mattias or visit https://www.harrisonburgfarmersmarket.com/