Sperryville Column for Sept. 30

Oom pah pah and desserts

Foot-stomping music, fabulous beer, sausages, German pancakes and sauerkraut were a natural segue from our fabulous harvest moon to the Octoberfest celebration on the deck of the Thornton River Grille on Sunday afternoon. Music was provided by the Alte Kameraden, the German band unit of the City of Fairfax Band. Since 1977, the “Old Comrades” have introduced American audiences to the lush, spirited festmusik played by Bavarian bands. The ensemble is an authentic blaskapelle wind band that performs music of the Alpine village bands. Thanks go to Andy Thompson for bringing this Alpine mountain treat to the Blue Ridge Mountains for a lively oom pah pah afternoon.

Tom Nash's fabulous dessert. Photo by Barbara Adolfi.

Whoa! There is more! Tom Nash, inspired by his recent participation in a three-day pastry seminar, has added new desserts to the menu at the Thornton River Grille. Your co-columnists sampled the new strawberry-rhubarb tart and found it to be superb.
The seminar was sponsored by PreGel America, the U.S. division of PreGel, a global specialty dessert ingredient company founded in Italy by Luciano Rabboni in 1967. Tom said he found the seminar both exhilarating and humbling and is eager to adapt his learning to his menu at the Grille. Looking dapper in his new Chefware jacket, Tom’s enthusiasm for his recent training was definitely evident in his new dessert! Be sure to try one soon.

In memory of Little Johnny

The First Annual Poker Run in Memory of Little Johnny will be held this Saturday (Oct. 2). Johnny and Michelle Jenkins are among the dedicated volunteers of the Sperryville Volunteer Fire Department and auxiliary, respectively. Their son Johnny, who was born with severe disabilities, was expected to live one day, but was able to share his challenging life with his devoted parents for 12 years. In his honor, his parents have established a scholarship fund and have had a dinner and silent auction in previous years to raise money for the fund. This year they have decided to take advantage of our spectacular fall countryside and are sponsoring a bike ride from Sperryville to Luray, Shenandoah, Elkton, Stanardsville, Madison and back. Riders will be treated to a dinner of homemade chili, barbeque, hot dogs, slaw and drinks. Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. at the Fire Hall. The fee is $20 per bike and $10 for an additional rider. For information call Art Smith 540 219-1906 or Michelle Jenkins at 987-9440.

Farm tour

Judging from the reaction of people registering for the Second Annual Farm Tour and the reports from the field, this year’s tour was a wonderful success. Rachel Bynum of Waterpenny Farm, who appeared on the cover of Town & Country in the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star, reported that they “were happy with the turnout and the enthusiasm of participants. They also bought a lot of produce at our farm – about twice as much as last year.” Several of us went home with Janet Kerig’s naturally dyed silk scarves (mine was dyed with goldenrod and turmeric), soaps, hand salves and other items from the marketplace vendors. Everyone enjoyed Triple Oak Bakery goodies and Central Coffee Roasters coffee. Thanks to all the participating venues and to the committee that organized this event. The program, designed by Kim Bealle, was both gorgeous and informative and was a terrific reference for farm visitors to take home.